Exoticism and luxury meet perfectly in the United Arab Emirates. The hotels in the upscale price segment are designer temples that promise first-class service to discerning travellers. The accommodations in the metropolises Abu Dhabi, Dubai or Schardscha are ideal for all those who want to combine their beach holiday at the pool or on a private beach with shopping experiences and cultural exploration tours. Thanks to outstanding spa amenities and wellness areas, couples on their honeymoon, guests with high-luxury expectations or business travellers will experience a completely relaxed stay in the hotels of the United Arab Emirates.
Abu Dhabi on the Persian Gulf is one of the most luxurious travel destinations in the United Arab Emirates. The capital is surrounded by the azure sea and powdery sand beaches. An excursion to the Heritage Village will leave visitors amazed at how the former desert town with its Bedouin tents has been transformed into today's megacity. A safari in the largest sandy desert Rub al-Chali is an unforgettable travel experience – Especially if you finish with an overnight stay in a desert camp under the wide starry sky. On the island of Yas off Abu Dhabi, there is a golf course with magnificent views, the world-famous Yas Marina Circuit Formula 1 race track and several theme and amusement parks. If it is at all possible, Dubai may even glitter a little more than its big sister. The metropolis' hotels, which are well over 20 storeys high, are decorated with gold ornaments and design treasures and feature magnificent, spacious facilities. Abundance and luxury can also be found in huge shopping temples like the Deira City Center or the Dubai Mall and large-format entertainment complexes. Those who prefer more traditional shopping can go souvenir hunting at one of the metropolis' numerous gold and spice markets. Bathing enthusiasts will find relaxation in Dubai at one of the well-designed hotel pools or on a public beach like the Burj Al Arab. At sunset on the shore of the Khor Dubai estuary, you can end the day wonderfully.
The Sheikh Zayed Mosque, one of Abu Dhabi's landmarks, is unique to look at. The magnificent building, named after the father of the country, is made of gleaming white marble and has 82 domes. Outside prayer times, you can also marvel at the magnificent interior. There you will find a lot of gold leaf and a handmade Persian carpet of more than 5000m² as well as the biggest Swarovski candleholder of the world. A rare view of the history of the country is offered by the approximately 200-year-old Fort Al Maqtaa just outside the city. Art lovers can enjoy important paintings on the island of Saadiyat very close to the city in the Louvre Abu Dhabi, which are on loan from major French museums. In Dubai is the magnificent Jumeirah Mosque, which was built between 1975 and 1978 and is effectively bathed in a shimmering sea of light as darkness falls. Those who visit the mosque in the morning can take part in one of the very popular guided tours. There is an artificial island paradise off the coast of Dubai: On The Palm, Jumeirah you will find villas and luxury hotels, restaurants of prominent chefs, exclusive beach clubs and water parks. Like the island, the skyscraper Burj Khalifa embodies the wealth of the country. The prestige object is the tallest building in the world and has several visitor terraces and viewing platforms.
Arabic cuisine is characterized by spices such as coriander, saffron, cardamom and cinnamon. Pine nuts and almonds are often mixed with rice or semolina. Pork is avoided, and instead chicken and lamb are the specialties, served with rice, vegetables and bread. Thanks to its proximity to the sea, you can also enjoy fabulous fresh fish and seafood. Meanwhile, the best hotels in the United Arab Emirates are known for their first-class fusion dishes, which skilfully combine tradition and internationality. The guests of the luxury hotels often have the choice of several restaurants that prepare dishes of different national cuisines. In addition to a visit to a gourmet temple, the everyday Arabic dishes also promise great enjoyment. One such typical dish is kabsa, which is prepared with chicken, rice, raisins and nuts. Also, the Shawarma of lamb or chicken grilled on a spit and served in warm bread should be tried. Sumptuous sweetness rounds off a meal, such as baklava made of puff pastry, nuts, honey or syrup. The serving of alcohol is only allowed in hotels or licensed restaurants. On the other hand, gastronomic establishments often offer a wide selection of fresh juices, sweetened tea, cardamom-flavoured coffee and, of course, mineral water. The dates served everywhere make a nice souvenir.
With the prevailing subtropical to tropical climate of the United Arab Emirates, the months from October to April are the main travel season. With temperatures between 25°C and 35°C, travellers along the coasts can look forward to sunny days for their explorations. Rain is almost not to be expected during this time. Those who take a bathing holiday will find pleasant water temperatures in the winter months. Water sports enthusiasts also appreciate the light and constant wind. From May to October, the temperatures rise extremely, and in July and August, it gets so hot and humid in the proximity of the coast with temperatures over 40°C that even the local people hardly go outside. Those who still want to spend their holidays in the United Arab Emirates during this time or travel on business will find relaxation in the air-conditioned hotel complexes and shopping centres.
Fans of spectator sports can experience some top-class events in the United Arab Emirates. In November, the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is held as part of the Formula 1. Then the world's best racing drivers do their daring laps at the Yas Marina Circuit on Yas Island. For many travellers, the Dubai World Cup is also one of the highlights of their holiday. Every year at the end of March, famous trainers, their jockeys and the lithe horses come together for the most lucrative horse race in the world to compete against each other on the Nad Al Sheba circuit.