Destination Overview

United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates is the perfect blend of ancient culture mixed with modern skyscrapers, boasting tons of attractions, deluxe hotels, and real Arabian experiences. Enjoy Dubai’s amazing Skyline in all its splendour and visit the famous souks in Abu Dhabi. Be amazed by the vastness of the desert that stretches across the country’s interior and see one of the world’s most renowned collections of work by Arab artists at the Sharjah Art Museum.

Capital

Abu Dhabi

Time

GMT +4

Language

Arabic

Religion

Islam

International Airports

Abu Dhabi, Dubai

Weather

With a coastal location on the Arabian Peninsula, Dubai enjoys a warm climate all year. The ‘winter’ months last from October to May with warm temperatures ranging from 20–35°C (68–95°F). The summer season lasts from June to September with hotter temperatures reaching the mid-40s (~110° F) – and the city’s wide range of indoor and outdoor facilities and attractions ensure Dubai is a year-round destination.

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Top Highlights

About Vietnam

Vietnam, has finally won its last battle, to capture the imagination of the travelling public. Elegant Hanoi now vies with its dynamic sister, Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) for the attention of visitors drawn by the eclectic mix of old and new. More modern than other Vietnamese cities, Ho Chi Minh City has also retained its French colonial influences. Its vibrancy is maintained by the ever-entrepreneurial Saigonese and the streets are jam-packed with mopeds and scooters, often carrying whole families. The markets are chaotically busy.

Food and Wine

The Portuguese love their food and even more so, their wine! From north to south the variety is huge, the north prefers their strong meats and stews accompanied by full bodied red wines from some of the 250 native grape varieties, or a salted cod baked in the oven paired with a reserve white. The coast offers such an array of fresh fish and shellfish, grilled on charcoal accompanied by a cool Vinho Verde. The south is the land of garlic, olive oil, and acorn fed black pigs. The Algarve goes Mediterranean with its oranges, figs, almonds that taste so good in the local traditional sweets.

Nature

Portugal is surprisingly varied in nature, considering how small the country is. From the craters of the old volcanoes in the Azores, turned into beautiful colourful lagoons, to the ravishing tropical vegetation and breath- taking cliffs of Madeira island, the vineyards of the Douro Valley, or the endless plaines of Alentejo just after the highest mountain in the country with its pure springs of water, until we get to the caves of the Algarve, in between the long white sand beaches and sand islands where the birds build their nests when fleeing from the cold weather of norther Europe.

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United Arab Emirates Top Destinations

Dubai

Once a small fishing village in the Arabian Gulf, Dubai is today one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world and home to nearly 200 nationalities. The emirate offers a truly memorable experience to all visitors. Whether it is by the banks of the Creek, or at the top of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, Dubai lives and breathes a sense of possibility and innovation. And with an unparalleled coastline, beautiful desert and magnificent cityscapes, memories are just waiting to be made here. Dubai is a luxury travel destination for leisure and business travelers, combining a modern metropolis with a timeless sensibility and Arabian flair.

Ras Al Khaimah

The emirate has about 1,000 archaeological sites, four of which have been added to the ‘UNESCO Tentative List for World Heritage’. It is also home to one of the best-preserved traditional fishing villages in the Arabian Gulf, Al Jazirah Al Hamra, and the only hilltop fort still in existence in the UAE, the 18th century Dhayah Fort. The emirate is noted for its varied topography, from the Hajar mountains, to rolling sand dunes to 64 kms of beaches, as well as its adventure tourism attractions. It is the fourth-largest emirate and is located near the northernmost point of the United Arab Emirates and shares its boundaries with the emirates of Umm Al Quwain, Fujairah and Sharjah. It shares its international border with the Sultanate of Oman.

Abu Dhabi

The capital of the UAE and the largest emirate by size, but not its city. The city is on a T-shaped island going into the Persian Gulf from the central western coast and is the second biggest after Dubai. AL Ain, a desert oasis city also belongs to the emirate of Abu Dhabi. Its a great destination to paddle in the mangroves, watch birds and turtles or to hatch on the white beaches and crystal clear waters of the Arabian gulf. Beach wise, Abu Dhabi definitely hosts the whitest beaches amongst all emirates. Additionally, Abu Dhabi has the largest desert in the UAE, Rub Al Khali meaning the Empty Quarter Desert which is the world’s largest sand desert.

Fujairah

The only emirate that is located completely on the eastern coast of the UAE along the Gulf of Oman. The shores of Fujairah extend along the Gulf of Oman for about 70km from the city of Fujairah in the south to the town of Dibba in the far north. The emirate is distinguished with its rugged mountains, valleys, waterfalls, oases and wide sandy beaches. It has several hot, cold and mineral springs. Because of its easterly location, Fujairah’s climate is more moderate than that of Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Weekend visitors looking to escape the heat are drawn to Fujairah’s relaxed and peaceful atmosphere.

Umm Al Quwain

The second smallest and the least populated emirate in the UAE. It covers an area of approximately 720 km² which is equivalent to one percent of the UAE’s area. The emirate has rich coastal mangroves on the coast of Arabian Gulf and many islands that lie to the east of the mainland. The biggest island, Al Seniah, is home to Arabian gazelles, falcons and turtles. The emirate provides facilities for numerous recreational activities: Sailing, skydiving, traditional activities such as dhow building and sports such as falconry and camel racing. Dreamland Aqua Park, the UAE’s largest water park and resort attracts several visitors.

Ajman

The smallest of the seven emirates, which constitute the Federation of the United Arab Emirates. Ajman lies on the coast of the Arabian Gulf, in the northern part of the UAE, and is located right in the middle between the emirates of Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain. Ajman is perhaps best known for its cultural attractions. The Ajman Museum, which opened in 1981, is set in an eighteenth-century fort. The Dhow Yard is one of the most active boatbuilding yards in the country. Al Muwayhat was discovered in 1986 and is a major archaeological site on the outskirts of the city of Ajman.

Sharja

The third largest city in the United Arab Emirates after Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Sharjah is a land with architectural heritage and cultural wealth. It is also known for its various touristic sites, which include historical areas like Heart of Sharjah and modern sites like Al Qasba and Al Majaz waterfront. Sharjah became a dry state, with strict sharia laws, which extend to western hotels, hence alcohol and shisha aren’t allowed. Sharjah is famous for beautiful Souqs such as the Blue Souq, their heritage areas as well as their beautiful lagoon.

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