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Since we spend over half of the year baking under an unforgiving desert sun, we are taking advantage and making the best use of our fantastic winter weather here in the UAE and getting the kids outside as much as possible. From hidden gems that don't get as much love as they should to exciting adventure parks, there is heaps of things to do outdoors in the UAE.
Get ready to swing through the treetops in this nature adventure park with over 80 challenges for you and your kiddos. Tucked away in Mushrif National Park, in the great Ghaf forest, this one-of-a-kind experience challenges you with exhilarating zip-lines spread across 5 levels.
Brave enough to take a leap of faith? Try out the 25-meter Tarzan jump and soar through the trees like the jungle hero himself. Your little ones can also join in on all the action with the ‘Mini Kids’ circuit - a variety of friendly, adventurous activities for your kids aged 4 to 8.
When you're ready for some thrills, book with Kidzapp and get 20% off your General Admission.
Big adventure for little ones, XPark Jr is the UAE's only natural playscape of its kind. Designed to spark your children's imagination and ignite their spirit of adventure, this park's natural natural environment encourages free-play with water streams, wooden forts, climbing ropes, trees and many other exciting activities. If you head there during the cooler months, you may even get to meet their resident pony or walk side by side with a tortoise.
Pop over on Sundays at 10:30am and Wednesdays at 1pm where Kidzapp gets you two Entry Tickets for the price of one.
One for the bucket list for sure is this once in a lifetime experience that you and your kids will never forget! Hop aboard a hot air balloon and adventure across the UAE desert.
You will be taking to the skies and fly alongside peregrine falcons, watch the gorgeous sunrise over the Hajar mountains and even look down below and maybe see camels and gazelles journey through the golden sands. It's a truly breathtaking experience that has to be seen to be believed.
If you're a UAE resident, good news! You can now book your ballooning tour and get 20% off - and fly anytime before 31st May 2021 .
This is the place for adventure with a capital A. Fairly new on the block, The Arch over at Dubai Festival City is your thrill hub featuring the likes of a climbing wall, zip-line, bag jump, and quick flight.
You and your mini thrill-seekers will have an awesome time as you fly through the air on a 23m zip-line as you bask in the stunning surrounding views. A massive leap of faith from a 13m platform awaits those brave enough to take on Quick Flight. Sure to have your knees shaking, the only way down is by jumping off the platform, with a cable catching you a few seconds later.
For the climbers in the family, you have five different routes to choose from, for both beginner and experienced climbers at the climbing wall. And finally, experience the thrill of leaping through the air from platforms of four our six metres onto a giant inflatable bag if you dare to try the Bag Jump.
An absolute must-do is definitely the ever-popular desert safari, and with Arabian Adventures you'll be in very good hands. Here you get to go outdoors with the whole family on an Evening Safari in the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve, with all of the enhanced health and hygiene protocols in place.
You and your kiddos can look out for wildlife, take a thrilling dune drive and enjoy desert safari staples such as sandboarding, henna hand-painting, live entertainment, and a three-course BBQ dinner.
The UAE is home to gorgeous scenery, not least of which is the magnificent and mysterious desert. The Empty Quarter, located in the Liwa Desert, is the perfect camping spot, with sprawling dunes and smooth sands as far as the eye can see. This location is perfect for desert activities including dune-bashing, sans-surfing, barbecuing, and star-gazing.
Like the name says, this is literally an empty spot, so be sure to go prepared with all necessities and safety gear, preferably with an experienced camper and a desert-friendly vehicle. So pack up the 4x4 and drive out with the family for a refreshing day in nature.
The capital's newest adventure hub, Hudayriyat, comes complete with Circuit X - the perfect place for you and the whole family to get your thrills on. The outdoor adventure zone has a wide range of fun experiences split into four exceptional action-packed parks: Splash, Skate, BMX and Ropes.
Head to the Splash Park where you can let your little ones explore and go wild. The Skate parks, located on the Marsana side of Hudayriyat Island, faces the stunning blue waters so you can catch amazing views of the marina while you do your kicklips. For the brave ones in the family, the Ropes Course brings in a whole new level of thrill, and challenges you and your kids with 3 different levels of obstacles. It also features a 100m long zipline, 50-foot high climbing wall and a 13m free fall! Finally, for the bike-fans, race around on the Dirt Trail or go crazy with the workout-worthy Pump Track!
Abu Dhabi's Rahal Ranch is where you would normally take your kids for horse riding lessons from International Horsemaster, Ali Al Ameri. But if you're up for an adventure with the family, you can also book one of the ranch's chalets and spend the night. During your desert getaway, you and the kiddos can enjoy the simple farm life, help feed the animals, ride on ponies and horses, and simply enjoy the peace and serenity of this local gem.
Up in the Khor Fakkan mountains, you'll stumble upon this picture-perfect park. Bedecked with an artificial, 25 meters high waterfall that flows into the lake surrounded by stone paths, Shees Park is definitely worth the trip.
Completed in just 8 months, Shees Park entices you with an amazing mountain walkway. Three mountain terraces, connected by stone stairs, lead to the main viewing platform at a height of 30 meters from the main park level. This is where you and the family can take in the stunning natural sights of the region from great heights.
The park also features several paths surrounded by palm trees, a group of local plants, play area, 32 shaded seats, and an outdoor theatre, and a barbecue area.
An underrated beauty, the Al Zorah Nature Reserve is a vibrant ecosystem made up of mangroves, turquoise lagoons, and sandy beaches. Being a home to nearly 60 species of birds, such as the famous pink flamingos, egret and heron, Al Zorah Nature Reserve is the perfect spot to bask in the glorious nature that the UAE has to offer.
A great place for a family day out, you can find food trucks and a variety of restaurants onsite where you and the kids can fuel up while enjoying the gorgeous view. If you want to explore the waters up close, jump on a boat or into a kayak. And if you fancy and outdoor workout, you can hit their jogging and cycling tracks.
Straddling the northeastern borders of Oman and the Eastern UAE, Hajar Mountains is the highest mountain range in the Arabian Peninsula. Located just a few hours drive from Dubai, a road trip to the Hajar Mountains is definitely one to put on the list.
It's an adventures trek through the ragged rock face as you and the kids make your way to the top to soak up the breathtaking views.
If you want to overnight it, you and the family are free to camp anywhere other than the cultivated areas. Do keep in mind though to avoid camping close to the wadis as there may occur unexpected floods.
Take flight on the longest zipline in the world and experience an exhilarating and unique bucket-list adventure. Experience the freedom of flying as you shoot across the sky and beautiful scenery of the Jebel Jais mountain at speeds over 120kph.
Open to any thrill-seeker at least 122cm tall and weighing a minimum of 40kgs, this out-of-this-world experience is your chance to soar at a height of 1,680 metres above sea level on top of Jebel Jais mountain.
The flight is approximately two to three minutes long, and once completed, you will finish the flight on a suspended landing platform where you will be transferred to a second line to complete your journey back to the ground.
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