10 Things to Know Before You Visit Dubai Safari Park
When people think about visiting exotic places like Dubai, they often conjure up visions of high-rise hotels with sleek shopping malls under construction and glitzy indoor ski slopes. But if you’re looking for something off the beaten path, one where you can see wildlife without leaving civilization, then take a tour on a dromedary (or “one-humped”) camels’ back and explore this city from a unique perspective.
Dubai is located between Oman and Saudi Arabia along the Persian Gulf coast of the Arabian Peninsula. Its location makes it strategically important as well as popular among tourists who want to experience Middle Eastern culture and history while traveling within the region. In fact, more than 15 million visitors come here each year.
While most stay in the modern part of town called Deira, those interested in experiencing life outside the tourist hub will find themselves drawn toward the old city known as Burj Al Arab. This area was originally inhabited by nomadic Arabs until the early 20th century when wealthy European businessmen built opulent resorts on what were once sand dunes and desert oases. Today, Dubai has become a global business center and tourism destination that attracts world travelers from all over.
The following pages have tips for planning excursions into the heart of Dubai. From animal encounters to hotel recommendations to transportation options, we’ve got you covered.
1. The Best Time to Go
While Dubai isn’t exactly cold during the winter months, temperatures tend to be cooler in January and February. Summertime also tends to bring out the crowds, so avoid going during peak season unless you really need to save money.
In addition to avoiding heat waves, keep an eye on the monsoon season (September through November). During these times, rain may interrupt some activities such as boat trips and picnics. Also, watch out for thunderstorms which could make roads impassable.
2. How Much Does It Cost?
Depending on how long you plan to spend in Dubai, prices vary widely. For example, a typical two-night family vacation package including accommodations, meals, and admission costs $1,200 per person for a full week. However, many local residents live below the poverty line, so be sure to consider any additional expenses beyond basic lodging and dining in order to help them even further.
3. What Should I Wear for a Day at the Desert Theme Park?
You’ll definitely want to pack light since you won’t be carrying anything except cameras, purses, and water bottles. A swimsuit, loose-fitting pants, and T-shirt work best. Sunscreen and sunglasses are essential items to protect against harsh sunlight. Be prepared for hot days, but don’t worry too much about humidity. As long as you follow common-sense precautions, you shouldn’t run into trouble.
4. Is There an Animal With Special Needs that We Can Experience in Dubai?
Yes! Giraffes and elephants are just two examples of animals native to the UAE. Both species have been brought to the country specifically because of their docile nature and gentle disposition. These gentle giants are used to being taken care of and fed daily schedules. Your guide will feed the giraffe throughout its journey across the grounds, and both giraffes and elephants enjoy hayrides every afternoon.
5. Where Are the Camel Rides Located?
Camel riding tours offer riders a chance to interact directly with wild creatures instead of simply observing them from afar. Most guides speak English as well as various dialects of Arabic, allowing guests to communicate easily. Tours last approximately 30 minutes and include several stops along the way. Afterward, you’ll receive refreshments and souvenirs. Some people opt to ride only partway due to the intense heat.
6. Do They Serve Arabic Food At the Restaurants or Cafes?
Most eateries offer traditional dishes made with spices and herbs imported from India, Morocco, and Egypt. Others specialize in regional cuisine influenced by Iranian, Lebanese, Syrian, Greek, and Turkish cooking techniques. Many locals prefer not to eat meat, so vegetarian fare is available everywhere from Indian curry houses to Chinese restaurants. Local favorites include falafel sandwiches, kibbe maybe (ground lamb patties) served with tahini sauce, shakshuka (a spicy tomato stew), hummus, and taboon bread.
7. Will My Hotel/Touring Company Give Me Return Transport Back To Airport Or Otherwise Provide Assistance With Getting To & From Places Of Interest?
Hotels usually provide shuttle service between your room and public areas of interest nearby. Touring companies typically arrange pick-ups from airports, train stations, and bus terminals. Since you’ll probably return to your own flight after a few hours in Dubai, having someone waiting for you at the check-in counter is helpful.
If you miss your plane, chances are good that your airline will send somebody to retrieve you. Depending upon the time of year, expect the wait time to range anywhere from 1 hour to 2 weeks. Having someone meet you at customs upon arrival helps ensure a smooth entry into Dubai.
8. What Happens If Weather Conditions Cause Air Travel Problems?
There are no flights scheduled to leave Dubai International Airport during bad weather. Therefore, you should arrive at least 90 minutes ahead of schedule in case of delays occur due to inclement weather. Airlines generally contact passengers 24 hours prior to departure regarding cancellations caused by severe storms. Plan accordingly. Hotels might cancel reservations depending upon the policy.
9. What Other Attractions Are Close By?
Dubai offers numerous sights worth seeing, ranging from museums to historic landmarks. Among the most popular destinations are the Gold Souk, Spice Bazaar, Dubai Museum, Dubai Opera House, Emirates Towers, and Jumeirah Mosque. Each attraction varies based upon personal preference and budget constraints. Take a look online to determine whether particular sites appeal more strongly to your interests.
10. How Do I Get Around Once I’m In Dubai?
Public transit systems in Dubai consist mainly of buses and taxis. Public buses operate primarily on fixed routes connecting major points of interest. Taxis are relatively inexpensive compared to neighboring countries. Drivers use meters to measure fares and must turn on headlights when approaching vehicles and pedestrians. Visitors should always carry identification cards issued by the Ministry of Interior.