A federation of states rather than a country, the United Arab Emirates offers an enticing mix of the familiar and the exotic. Whether you want to explore Bedouin history or enjoy the lavish opulence of the highly modern Emirates, you can have it your way in the UAE.
Arriving in the spectacular airports in Abu Dhabi or Dubai, you know straight away that you are in for a unique experience. As you approach the cities, prepare to be bewildered by the luxurious glass oases that seemingly grow out of the arid desert. The cities of the UAE are super-modern and highly consumerist... if you want something you can buy it here. Luxury is the order of the day in the countries that sit above the world’s seventh largest oil reserves.
The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is a sparkling spectacle that shows just how far these states have come in the last half a century. Formula 1’s first night race is a worldwide event that brings visitors in from across the world. Residents are proud of the rapid modernisation that has recently changed the face of the region. But if you explore away from the hyperdrive modern cities, with their glass towers and indoor ski resorts, you will find a very different way of life. Bedouin people still roam the sparse deserts with their camels, living a life that has changed little in the last two thousand years. Take a camel ride under the vast canopy of stars and you will quickly forget the stresses of city life. Or dive in the crystal clear waters of the Gulf and discover another world of diverse, thriving coral reefs.