One of the best things about exploring the Gulf is the diversity it offers. What often comes to mind is the futuristic, cosmopolitan city of Dubai, but few realise that the Arabian Gulf is home to a rich history.
From prisons that now serve as museums, to a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with excavations that date back to 3000 BC!
Visitors can find soaring skyscrapers in Abu Dhabi, then move onwards to lounge on a beach in Bahrain (also a great place for travelling to the Tree of Life in the midst of a beautiful desert).
Middle Eastern cuisine will have you indulging to new heights. Traditional Arab cuisine, Qatari, is made up of Arabic and Levantine dishes, with Iranian and Indian influences. You’ll be filled with a combination of spices, rice and chicken. Not to mention, all of the assorted mezes and fresh hummus on offer.
Then there is the world-class mall shopping and bustling markets. Step inside one of the many souks and you’ll be unable to resist picking up a few gifts for friends and family back home.
If it’s contrast and colour you’re seeking, then dip your toes in the warm, clear waters surrounding the Gulf’s best kept secrets and enjoy a destination where worlds and cultures collide.
We’ve handpicked a few of our favourite hotels and resorts, with perfect locations for exploring what the Gulf has to offer...
Ras Al Khaimah
Ras Al Khaimah provides stunning vistas of mountainous surrounds and glorious beaches, and the warm mineral waters of Khatt Village are renowned for their healing qualities and are a popular destination for visitors and locals alike.
The UAE’s northern-most Emirate offers its visitors boundless natural attractions – from its golden beaches, lush mangroves and terracotta deserts, to the towering Hajar Mountains bordering Oman.
Exploring the Awaﬁ desert and rolling sand dunes by 4WD or camel
Visiting the beautiful Ain Khat, with its natural geysers and swimming in one of its thermal springs
Climbing the coastal hilltop Dhayah Fort for wonderful views of the Arabian Gulf, Hajar Mountains and the lush palm gardens below
Taking a thrilling ride on the world’s longest zip line in the Jebel Jais Mountains
Hilton Al Hamra Beach & Golf Resort
Hilton Al Hamra Beach & Golf Resort offers the ﬁnest in Arabian hospitality, nestled in landscaped gardens and proud to showcase its 640 metre white sand beach. Attention to detail is apparent in the tasteful design of the interiors and stylish pools beside the sea providing irresistible places to unwind.
With watersports and entertainment aplenty it suits both active and languid types.
The resort features stunning views of the Arabian Gulf and Hajar Mountains, providing a unique backdrop for the 18-hole championship golf course at Al Hamra Golf Club.
Fairmont Fujairah Beach Resort
To the east of the UAE lies Fujairah on the Gulf of Oman coastline. It’s emerging as a popular place for travellers to stretch their legs away from the hustle and bustle of its well-known neighbours and has a ‘yesteryear’ feeling which often appeals to explorers. This hidden jewel offers the best of both worlds; tranquil escapes in a rugged setting, and countless opportunities to explore.
Nestled amongst the hidden valleys of the majestic Al Hajar Mountains, Fairmont Fujairah Beach Resort lies along the coastal region of Dibba, the second largest town in Fujairah. Set against a dramatic backdrop of rugged terrain, your stay will be luxurious and tranquil, whether you’re setting sail from the private marina, dining on impeccable seafood and regional cuisine, or marvelling at the design, art and architecture. We recommend:
Going on a Fujairah City Tour where you’ll drive along the coast to Bidiyah then continue to a souk at Khor Fakkan
Scuba diving, deep-sea ﬁshing or snorkelling
The Emirate of Ajman may be the smallest of them all but it’s brimming with top quality hotels, attractions and historical sites. The bustling corniche is a popular destination for families at weekends and evenings. Located on a natural stretch of Ajman coast where the turquoise waters of the Arabian Gulf and white sandy beach dazzle in the sun, Ajman Saray is the ﬁrst beachside Luxury Collection Resort in the Middle East.
This resort offers an enchanting coastal sanctuary for weekend breaks and beach escapes off the beaten track, with exceptional personal service and renowned Arabian hospitality amid spaces that exude reﬁned elegance. We recommend:
Learning about Ajman’s cultural history with a visit to Ajman Museum, housed in a late-18th century fort
Visiting the Dhow Yard – the world’s largest dhow building centre
Relaxing along the white sand stretches of beach, widely regarded as some of the prettiest in the UAE
For more information on what the Arabian Gulf has to offer, or to book your own Middle Eastern adventure, please get in touch.