Endless adventures await in and around the capital of the United Arab Emirates. If you find yourself holidaying in Abu Dhabi, take advantage of the natural beauty of the barren landscape that encompasses the city, because nothing offers a taste of freedom like an off-road adventure through the desert.
Staring out to sea in Abu Dhabi, feeling the cool sea breeze on your face, it’s sometimes easy to forget the barren enormity of the desert behind you. The cool inviting water may even make you question why you would want to direct your attention to it, never mind put yourself there. Surely, stuck between the scorching sun and the unforgiving sand is the last place you want to put yourself. Then you remember the comfortable seat and cool air conditioning that can be found in your car, and remind yourself that it isn’t just a machine for getting from A to B; it’s also means to the enjoyment of a journey, and a perfect mobile sanctuary from which to enjoy the splendour of the Arabian desert.
As you head west and the skyscrapers make way for more modest dwellings, you find yourself being eased towards the sandy openness that almost engulfs you. It’s easy to let yourself imagine the past, pondering the way people carved out lives for themselves in such hostile terrain. As the kilometres ease past the window and sand gives way to settlements, you’ll find yourself at the beginning of one of the most beautiful mountain roads in the world; the road to Jebel Hafeet.
As you begin your rise through easy, gracious curves, you feel the pull of gravity tugging your body back as the road gouges through the mountain. All the while the horizon pulls your attention to the desert below, as the peak invites you ever upwards. Here and there the mountains loom ominously over the road, a constant reminder of who is in charge, the flawless asphalt a deep contrast to the callous rocks that embrace it. As you start to feel yourself nearing the top, you find yourself ensconced in an artificial valley, the mountain once again towering over you.
Before long, gravity has normalised and you find yourself at the summit, ready to admire the spectacle of the deep black artery you have ascended, as it winds its way into the haze below. If you stare hard into the distance you can just make out the Gulf of Oman to the east and Persian Gulf to the west, seemingly a world away from the scorched rock beneath your feet. In no time the sun’s unwavering rays urge you back into the air-conditioned comfort of your car, ready to ease yourself back down through the twists and turns to the desert below, into the welcome embrace of the cool sea breeze.
When you’re weary from your travels, and in need of a place to rest your head, you would be hard-pressed to find finer accommodations than the luxurious facilities of Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara. Embrace the epic adventures of this evocative landscape. Each room, villa and suite is considered to be one of the finest amongst Abu Dhabi resorts and features desert views seamlessly blending the landscape with the rich interiors.
For Club Points Owners who wish to make a booking, visit www.anantaravacationclub.com, and select ‘Abu Dhabi’ from the Browse Destinations menu.