"Don't do the Desert Safari Tour" Dubai Tourist Trap Tip by dln6874

Dubai Tourist Traps: 15 reviews and 10 photos

  dune bashing
by dln6874
 
  • dune bashing - Dubai
      dune bashing
    by dln6874
  • man and camel - Dubai
      man and camel
    by dln6874
  • belly dancer - Dubai
      belly dancer
    by dln6874
 

The standard 'thing to do' in Dubai seems to be a Desert Safari tour which takes you dune-bashing in the dessert, sandboarding, camel-riding, and to a dinner/belly-dance show. The dune bashing itself was okay, but the other activities were lame. The sandboarding is down a tiny slope, not big enough to do any turns, and you get to go down only once (unless you queue up again after the long line). After having the done the real thing in Namibia, this was just pathetic. I can't even call it sandboarding. As for the camel ride, there is only a few camels so you are again queueing for it. The dinner was okay, but nothing special. Same with belly-dancer. If you're a seasoned traveller, this tour will be cheesy as hell. Btw, most of the camels we saw were fenced in as if they are on display for tourists. I think they are more interesting if seen in the wild - and there are some. This was disappointing.

Unique Suggestions: Don't use Oasis Palm. They seem to be the largest tour outfitter there, at least for this tour. There were about 20-30 4x4s all in a big convoy bashing around the desert. At each of the 'activity' stops, you are competing with all these other people on the tour for a ride on the sandboard or camel, or for the food. Use a less advertised outfitter and make sure that they are not going to lump you in with 50 other people.

Fun Alternatives: If you've never been to the desert, you're better off going to the real thing - like Namibia or Egypt. Maybe even to an oasis in Oman (Al-Ain), though I didn't make it there myself. If you're easily entertained, go for it, but otherwise, just skip it and enjoy the pool at your hotel.

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written May 3, 2007
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