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Dubai Parks & Wildlife

Dubai is a striking proof that beyond the cesspool of materialism, the city is bursting with unusual wildlife across UAE’s desert areas.

Here there are some indigenous species you won't find anywhere else outside of the Gulf. The spiny-tailed lizard, sand snakes alongside the Arabian oryx and Arabian Red Fox are just a few examples of how animals survive in the inhospitable parts of our planet.

Dubai municipality has made sure that the emirate is home to some beautiful, thoughtfully planned parks with all required amenities for leisure and recreation. They don’t just give respite from the sweltering desert heat but also add to the aesthetics of the environment.

There are also numerous man-made entertainment parks dotted around the city, that will ensure an action packed day out for all the family.

Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve

Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve

With endless construction works, shopping malls and skyscrapers, no one could have imagined that Dubai has dedicated its biggest piece of land to the UAE’s first national park.

The Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR) is a systematically planned rehabilitation area restored to save Dubai’s severely damaged beautiful desert habitat. At an hour’s drive inland from Dubai, the DDCR encompasses 250 square kilometers of shifting dunes, sprinkled with fire bush, stunted acacia and endemic ghaf trees, and serves as a sanctuary for threatened local mammal and reptile species such as the Arabian mountain gazelle, sand gazelle, Arabian red fox, oryx and sand fox.

It is possible to visit the reserve only through tour operators who arrange for 4X4 and camel-back tours of the area. For those who are ready to splurge on a luxury hotel stay, the fancy Al Maha Resort lies deep within the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve.

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Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary

Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary

The Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary (RAKWS) is UAE’s first Ramsar wetland site located along the Dubai creek featuring intertidal mudflats and mangroves, sabkhas saline flats, small lagoons and pools along with a few small islands.

It is renowned for providing a critical staging ground for wintering birds of the East African-West Asian Flyway, 500 of which are Greater Flamingos. Today, there are 3 birding sites where potential nature lovers can admire the biodiversity of the region, its birds, flora and fauna.

Entrance is free and the sanctuary operates from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Saturday to Thursday.

Wonderland

Wonderland

The 18 hectare Wonderland family fun park features a wide range of water attractions including speed slides, surf hills, wave runners and a Caribbean cruise. It is closed on Sundays, Wednesdays are for Ladies only and Thursdays are for Families only.

Magic Planet

Magic Planet

Housed in the giant Deira City Centre shopping mall, this children’s entertainment centre is a unique indoor site with 10 pin bowling, a crawling bungie jungle, a variety of electronic games and a mini pitch and putt.

Wild Wadi Water Park

Wild Wadi Water Park

Imagine 12 acres of desert filled with 30 million litres of water, solely dedicated for having fun. That is Wild Wadi Water Park in Dubai, with 23 rides to entertain and excite every member of the family. This has been more than just a shelter for those wanting to escape the heat of the desert. Adrenaline seekers will love Jumeirah Sceirah – a 33-meter high slide with steep angles to propel riders up to 80km per hour. There is also Breakers Bay, which has a wave machine creating 1.5-meter waves all day.

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Aquaventure, Atlantis, The Palm

Aquaventure, Atlantis, The Palm

Aquaventure Waterpark at The Atlantis, The Palm is one of Dubai's biggest waterparks where one can feel the fervour of excitement with adrenaline pumping rides and slides. For an action-packed, thrill-seeking day, you could take on the Aquaconda - the world's largest water slide. There are plenty of other crazy rides to do such as the Leap of Faith, Zoomerango and Poseidon's Revenge. If you are really brave, get up close and personal with the toothy sharks in the middle of a shark-filled lagoon.

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Dubai Creek Park

Dubai Creek Park

Located in the heart of the city, the Dubai Creek Park is one of the oldest parks in the emirate and is still very popular among families and singles of all ages and sizes. It is a well-planned park with a glorious abundance of grassy areas, flower beds and themed gardens. With the cool wind blowing from the Creek and lots of open space, the park is one of the best escapes to spend some tranquil moments. One can hire a bike or take a miniature train to traverse the large expanse of the park, but for a panoramic bird's eye view of old Dubai, take a cable car ride at the Creek Park. There are barbecue areas and children's play areas marked throughout the park. If you are travelling with kids, don't forget to visit the Children's City and Dubai Dolphinarium.

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Recommended Activities

4x4 Dubai Desert Safari

Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

Hot Air Balloon Flight

Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

Dubai Seaplane Flight

Duration: 40 mins (approx.)

Dubai Sandboarding

Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

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