Ultimate Guide to Dubai Desert Safaris: All You Need to Know (2023)

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The major draw for most people visiting Dubai is its towering skyscrapers and tons of leisure choices, but this fabulous Arabian city is not all about that. Roughly 30 to 40 minutes’ drive out of the city limit, Dubai’s blissfully unblemished desert land is well worth a visit for one of the Dubai Desert Safaris.

Rightly so, it caters to a variety of preferences and experiences. If you’re confused about making the right choice of a desert trip, this guide by Neha Singh on different types of desert journeys will help you select the best Dubai desert safaris.

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What are Dubai Desert Safaris

Dubai desert safaris are guided excursions into the vast swathe of desert sands that is isolated and located away from the city centre. It’s a complete contrast to what Dubai’s glitzy part appears to be.

Devoid of any noise and crowd, this distinct off-road trip effortlessly disconnects you from the chaos of the city life for a few hours. So all you’ll get to experience here is the unequaled allure of the dune scenery accompanied by sheer silence and absolute tranquility.

What to Expect in Dubai Desert Safaris

A typical desert safari in Dubai is an immaculate sum up of nature, adventure and most amazing cultural and traditional experiences. In fact, you can look forward to enjoy the following on your desert safari. That said, there will be variations in inclusions, dependent on your chosen Dubai desert safaris.

  • Dune Bash
    A dune bash includes the use of a powerful 4X4 vehicle which is maneuvered by an expert driver. Sure enough, this will navigate you through the seas of low and high sand dunes in the most pulse-racing way. For adventurists, it goes without saying that this is one of the highpoints of the Dubai desert safaris.

  • Sunset or Sunrise Views
    Witnessing sunrise or sunset views or both is one of the specialties of most Dubai desert safaris.  Whether you’re passionate about photography or not, you can’t help but capturing a few images of this phenomenal sight of sun coming out or descending amidst the raw desert beauty.

  • Experience the traditional Arabian Hospitality
    Following dune bash and brief stops along the way, you’ll be taken to the Bedouin style campsite. It’s where you’ll spend the rest of the time before your Dubai desert safari culminates. Your experience here starts with a warm welcome with Arabic coffee and fresh dates. And this would charge you up for the next set of adventures.

  • Camel Ride
    Take in the changing colors of the breathtaking desert dunes as you hop on to the camel back and enjoy a cool wobbly ride. Fun and thrill apart, it gives you an insight into the humble lifestyle of the ancient Emiratis as this friendly creature was the only means of transport and food in the pre-oil phase.

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  • Quad Biking
    There is quite nothing as exhilarating as riding a quad bike across the infinite expanse of the Arabian Desert. The best thing is that you don’t need to have any prior experience or specific license to try this.  Just a brief orientation from experts will get you ready for this adventure-of-a-lifetime, the Dubai desert safaris.

  • Cultural Activities
    A desert safari is not all about adrenaline-pumping experiences; many activities included in it let you dig a little deeper into the intriguing traditions and cultural heritage. Have your hands tattooed with striking henna designs, try Shisha smoking, enjoy falconry, and be sure to capture some pictures wearing customary attire as a keepsake of the Dubai desert safaris.

  • BBQ Dinner 
    This forms one of the main highlights of the evening or overnight Dubai desert safaris. The taste and quality of cuisines largely depends on the service provider you choose. For instance, Rayna Tours has one of the most lavish BBQ fares, enriched by live cooking stations and dedicated counters for fresh fruits, scrumptious ever traditional desserts etc.

  • Traditional shows
    From the sensuous belly dance show to the fabulously dervish Tanura and cool fire shows, there is a spectrum of amazing traditional entertainment, which makes your evening or overnight Dubai desert safari unforgettable.

  • Camping
    All Dubai desert safaris are more or less the same, but this is one thing that makes an overnight desert safari unique. All camping facilities are arranged in the midst of the desert means all left for you is to sit back and enjoy the nighttime glory of Dubai’s desert.

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Types of Dubai Desert Safaris

There are many different types of Dubai Desert Safaris, let’s look into each of them below.

  • Morning Desert Safari
    Whether you’re short on time or just want to catch up with the inspiring desert flora and fauna, this is the best desert safari for you. And not forgetting the many adventure activities that fill up this desert safari, such as dune bash, camel ride, sandboarding, quad biking etc.

  • Sunrise Desert Safari
    See the desert awakening to life in its entire majesty and splendor!  Kicking off before the dawn, this Dubai desert safari allows you to get the first-hand view of the sun gradually lighting up the sand dunes. Apart from these, it offers all other inclusions of a standard morning Dubai desert safari.

  • Hot Air Balloon Ride
    This is not a regular inclusion of the Dubai desert safaris. In fact, this is a premium experience reserved for those who wish to appreciate the natural grandeur of the magnificently preserved region of Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR).

    Needless to say, this allows you to immerse yourself into the vastness and compelling exquisiteness of the desert landscape and its indigenous wildlife.

    So be sure to sign up for this desert adventure if you wish to carelessly float in the air and sink into the majesty and tranquility of the surroundings. It also comes with traditional breakfast plus flight certificate and photographs of this experience.

  • Red Dune Safari
    Dubai desert safaris can’t get any better than a trip to the mysterious red dunes of Al Lahbab region. Whether you wish to go on a morning or evening desert safari, you can be rest assured of a fantastic desert trip augmented by enigmatic fun and thrill.

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  • Evening Desert Safari
    Kicking off in the late afternoon and extending well into the dusk, this is ideal for anyone looking for an epic desert safari experience in Dubai. This offers all inclusions of a morning desert safari, along with the perks of BBQ dining plus cultural experiences and traditional entertainment such as belly dance, Tanura show and more.

  • Dinner in Desert
    Most people skip the desert safari during their Dubai trip, considering it as an adventure trip. But, in real, this is for every taste and ability. So if you want to forego all high-octane desert activities or experiences, simply opt for Dinner in Desert package. Yes, this Dubai desert safari is all about best dining options and super relaxed moments amidst the unparalleled desert sands.

  • Overnight Desert Safari
    No matter you’re up for some distinct desert adventure or planning a romantic trip, this desert safari should be top on your Dubai bucketlist. It’s a perfect blend of all desert safaris as you get to participate in dune bash and cultural activities, together with the chance to dine and camp under the desert stars. That’s not all, witness the first rays of sun illuminating the desert land and complement this safari with a scrumptious traditional breakfast.
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Top Desert Safari in Dubai

If you’re looking for the top desert safari in Dubai in advance, there are many options to find online. Below, you can find a list of Dubai desert safaris and bestsellers at an affordable price.

Tips for Choosing the Top Desert Safari in Dubai

  • Now that you’ve this guide, the first step is to zero in on inclusions or experiences you would like to have in your Dubai desert safari.
  • Pre-book it to avoid any last-minute confusions. But make sure that you get this part done through an experienced desert safari provider.
  • Always choose a direct desert safari service provider; the benefit is that there are no middlemen involved in this case, so you can expect maximum savings with utmost quality in every aspect of your Dubai desert safari.
  • You can choose Dubai desert safaris with or without transfers. But our suggestion is to book it with roundtrip transfers, so that you can make the most of your desert safari without worrying about late night drive or losing the way to your Dubai accommodation.
  • When it comes to transfers, you can opt for shared or private transfers. Shared transfer is cost-effective, while private transfer is exclusively arranged for you and your group. But it’s not just transfers; every aspect of your desert trip can be customized as per your group’s unique preferences.
  • Wear comfortable modest clothes for your desert trip. Complete your look with right accessories like sunglasses, hats and more for that picture worthy moment.
  • Don’t forget to apply sunscreen lotion or cream.

Final Thoughts on the Best Dubai Desert Safaris

So go forth and take your pick from the above list of desert safaris! Right from the moment you land in the desert, you’ll realize that there is nothing exaggerating about this trip as every cliché revolved around it turns out to be an unforgettable reality.

Have you ever been to a Dubai Desert Safari? What are some of the best Dubai Desert Safaris you have experienced? We’d love to hear your questions or travel stories in the comments below!  


Neha is a travel blogger who enjoys traveling, meeting new people, and learning about the local culture and food. She is always looking forward to visiting new places and likes to play tennis in her spare time.

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21 thoughts on “Ultimate Guide to Dubai Desert Safaris: All You Need to Know (2023)”

  1. Great post! Like everyone else it’s also on my bucket list to visit Dubai and if I have the time, I want to visit the Dubai desert too.

  2. I have always seen photos of desert safaris but never looked into it, so this was extremely helpful! An African Safari has been at the top of my bucket list for so long, but now this might be too. I have always wanted to see those desert views in person, will definitely be saving this blog!

  3. Danik the Explorer

    I never looked into a desert safari but would seriously consider doing this. I only done a one day/night trip into the desert but it wasnt an safari in Tunisia. However I loved the short experience and I would consider doing this in Dubai. I would love to check out these views and say I have done something away from the city. I am more at home with nature and natural landscapes.

  4. Hi there,
    We did this a few years ago and did the combo. We did dune riding in the jeeps, then went to dinner with a show. It was a great afternoon/evening out that I would recommend to anyone. Nikki

  5. If I ever brave the insanely long fight to Dubai, a desert safari is a high priority! I love the idea of spending the day on the sand dunes before returning to the camp for BBQ, belly dancing and a fire show. I’m shocked by how affordable an overnight safari is!

  6. This is really helpful. A trip to the desert safari has been part of our bucket list. I look forward to the camel ride and enjoy fresh dates. Saving this post for future reference once we have the chance to visit Dubai again.

  7. I’d love a chance to visit the incredible Dubai Desert, as you pointed out it’s such a unique dichotemy compared to the glitz and glam of Dubai itself. The different styles were interesting to consider and I’d never heard of a dune bash before, but I think for my style of travel the Bedouin experience or the sunrise views are some of my favourites. There are a lot of things here to consider before booking so thanks for sharing all these thoughtful details.

  8. Wow, such an extensive list for safaris. I wish I had known before I visited Dubai. I have done only the jeep safari in the desert when I visited Dubai the last time. It was during sunset and it was an amazing experience.

  9. If I go to Dubai, this would be high on my list. I’ve done a camel safari in India, but for some reason, a desert safari in Dubai sounds more appealing, because… it’s the Middle East. I don’t know, it just sounds more authentic to me. I’d love to try dune bashing in the desert.

  10. Whenever I think of Dubai the first thing that comes to mind is the Safari in the desert. So this was such an interesting article and so much of relevance to me. Makes my desire to be there increase many fold. It was nice to imagine being there through your post till we are actually there. Hopefully soon.

  11. This post brought back all those sweet memories from my UAE trip. I had been to this Arabian country 4 years ago. Needless to say, I love every single day spent in the city. From the towering buildings ready to touch the sky, the food, endless indoor and outdoor adventure, Dubai is the most-loved city for tourist from around the world. Among all the adventures that I experienced in Dubai, Desert Safari has been my favorite. The while-knuckle ride in a powerful 4×4 SUV is unforgettable, the camel ride amazing, the quad-biking thrilling, and the food and entertainment activities in the camp right in the middle of the desert are awesome. Thanks for tips on how to book Desert Safari.

  12. Bubble Tea Island

    Hi there, great article! I really enjoyed reading about the different experiences and activities one can expect when going on a Dubai desert safari. It’s fascinating to see how one can disconnect from the hustle and bustle of the city and immerse themselves in nature and culture. I particularly liked how you highlighted the different types of desert safaris available, such as the Hot Air Balloon Ride and the Red Dune Safari, which cater to different preferences and interests. It’s amazing how much there is to see and do in the desert beyond just dune bashing! Thanks for sharing this informative and exciting piece.

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