The Outdoorsy Girl’s Complete Guide to Dubai

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Often envisioned as nothing more than a skyscraper-filled metropolis, Dubai reveals a whole other side to it when the weather starts to cool down – one that offers no shortage of opportunities to spend time outside. The city boasts a diverse array of landscapes, with both crystal-blue waters and silky sand dunes made easily accessible. Here, Savoir Flair breaks down how to make the most of these beautiful Dubai days, from where to spend leisurely afternoons horseback riding to waking up with the sun and scoring the best surf lessons.

On the Water

With endless waves to catch, Dubai is the perfect place for those who like to spend their weekends in the water. From wake surfing and jet skiing to parasailing and donut rides, Sky & Sea Adventures is a great one-stop shop for all things water. If kitesurfing is your sport of choice, be sure to check out Kite Beach, where you can get an introductory lesson for AED 100/SAR 102 or a two-hour lesson for AED 600/SAR 602 at Mark Andrew Kite School. For seasoned and aspiring surfers, look no further than Surf House Dubai to arrange a lesson with a friendly instructor. For scuba and snorkeling excursions, count on Al Boom Diving, which has dedicated training facilities on Al Wasl Road.

On the Dunes

One of the most unique things about living in the UAE is nearly instant access to pristine rolling sand dunes. To take advantage of this, book a tour with Platinum Heritage (more on that, here) or channel your inner daredevil with a hot-air balloon ride. Camping is also a great option if you’re looking to soak up the desert sky, should you choose to head toward the Shwaib region, off Hatta road. Find more tips on how to road trip across the UAE, here.

On The Palm

Head to the palm-fringed lagoon to spend an afternoon swimming with dolphins at Dolphin Bay. Palm Jumeirah is also a great place to paddle board; we’re particularly fond of Riva beach club, which offers one-hour lessons for AED 85/SAR 87.

On the Green

Spend a Friday morning at Zabeel Park to catch Ripe Market’s weekly organic-produce fair, which also features artisan goods from homegrown brands. If you want to perfect your golf swing, you can take advantage of one of Dubai’s lushest golf courses by enrolling in lessons offered by Emirates Golf Club. Mushrif Equestrian & Polo Club offers lessons to aspiring horeseback riders; start with the full-moon ride for AED 300/SAR 302. If you prefer to just admire the city’s flora instead, head to Dubai Miracle Garden, which will reopen for its fifth season on November 27th.

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