No matter how big or small your budget is…

If you go camping in the desert, chances are you’ll find yourself packing up the car with tents, blankets, a barbecue, firewood, three times more food than you need, and returning with half a tonne of sand. Luckily, you can enjoy the fun of a camping trip without the hassle.

Here are 9 places to go ‘glamping’ in the UAE that are currently open. 

Dubai

Sonara Camp

nara camp

Sonara won the award for Best Indie Restaurant at our What’s On Award this year and their luxury desert escape is just as amazing. It is one of UAE’s most luxe desert experiences and includes dinner under the stars, desert activities such as camel rides, archery, sandboarding and a falcon show, stargazing experiences and a moonlight cinema for the kids. After all that, you can retreat to your plush nomad-style tent for good night sleep. From May, you can enjoy low season rates, so there’s no time like now to make a booking.

Sonara Camp, Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve, Dubai. Prices start from Dhs1,000 per night. Tel: (050) 336 0397. nara.ae/sonara

Bnbme

bnbme-glamping-UAE

Dubai-based holiday home company Bnbme has just added bedouin camping to its repertoire. The fun part? It’s a bit of a mystery. Choose from a glamping experience in the desert or at a beach and you won’t find out where you’re going until you make your booking. Prices start from Dhs750 per night. You can even partake in a range of activities such as hiking, stargazing, sand surfing and watching the wildlife. Read more here and make your booking on bnbmeglamping.com

Bnbme glamping. Prices start from Dhs750 per night. Book your trip here.

Abu Dhabi

Jubail Island Abu Dhabi

For a real slice of nature, you need to put Jubail Mangrove Park on your must-visit list. The huge boardwalk walks you through a natural mangroves where there’s kayaking, wildlife spotting and more. If you’d like to spend a little longer soaking up the fresh air and natural splendor of the island ‘glamp’ on the island in one of a series of shorefront eco domes. On site you’ll find a spa, barefoot-luxury throughout, waterside dining and a roving green expanse for long walks, kayak trips or dawnlit yoga sessions. Room nights start at Dhs1,450. You can book stays and meals at Pura Eco Resort on staypura.com

Jubail Mangrove Park, Al Jubail Island (next to Saadiyat Island), Abu Dhabi. Tel: (05)6 303 2423. park.jubailisland.ae

Sharjah

Mysk Al Badayer Retreat

Located on the remote east coast of Sharjah, this eco retreat feels worlds away from the bustle of Dubai. It’s home to 20 coastal-chic tents with private plunge pools and decking, offering a choice of Arabian Sea or mountain views. The barefoot-luxe resort is also home to a restaurant and a spa.

Mysk Kingfisher Retreat, Khor Kalba, Sharjah. Prices start from Dhs1,690 per night. myskhotels.com/en/sharjah-collection-hotels/mysk-kingfisher-retreat

Ajman

Caravana Alzorah 

caravana

We all love a good staycation, but if you’re on the lookout for something unique, check out Caravana Alzorah where you and your mates will get to spend the night in a fully equipped caravan right on the beach. Located in Ajman, the caravans are fitted with air conditioning, bathrooms, and depending on your booking, come with bunk beds, sofa beds, or double beds. The best bit? Each caravan comes with its own private beach and barbecue area. There’s also fishing and cycling available within close proximity to the camping site.

Caravana Alzorah, Ajman Tel: (06) 749 0441 instagram.com/caravana.ae

Ras Al Khaimah

Bear Grylls Explorers Camp

Bear Grylls Explorers Camp

Launched in May 2021, this pet-friendly camp in Ras Al Khaimah has a cosy feel, with all containers facing inward. There’s an open campfire area where you can socialise in the evening and even toast marshmallows. They have private bathrooms with a shower, and the lodge comes equipped with the basics, including a cool-box filled with a selection of food, from meat to prawns, corn on the cob and more, ready to light up on the barbecue. Read more here.

Bear Grylls Explorer Camp, Jebel Jais, Ras Al Khaimah. Prices start from Dhs450 @beargryllscamp

Bedouin Oasis, Ras Al Khaimah

bedouin oasis camp

For the full overnight desert experience, check out Bedouin Oasis in Ras Al Khaimah. The Nature View Tent includes ‘posh amenities’ such as your own bathroom, comfortable double bed and sitting area. Take a camel ride around the courtyard, try your hand (feet?) at sandboarding and enjoy the entertainment around the bonfire experience with a tasty barbecue dinner. 

Bedouin Oasis, Close to Banyan Tree Al Wadi, Emirates Road, RAK. Prices start from Dhs499 for two per night. Tel: (055) 228 4984. arabianincentive.com

Longbeach Campground

longbeach

Putting the glam into glamping, the Bin Majid Beach Hotel has a series of luxury camping facilities ranging from a Deluxe Tent to Panoramic Dome Suite. The resort is well equipped and the camping area is located directly next to the swimming pool. Activities include beach yoga, seaview aerobics, kite flying, kayaking, waterpark obstacle course, beach volleyball and an outdoor spa and sauna.

Longbeach Campground, Bin Majid Resort, Al Jazeera Al Hamra, RAK. Tel: (800) 5700. binmajid.com/hotels/longbeach

RAK Glamping

rs-RAKGlamping2

Bring your pooch along to this dog-friendly campground in the Ras Al Khaimah desert. Choose from traditional Bedouin tents or no-frills cabins. The site is run by husband and wife duo Neil and Amanda, who also own Homely Petz so you know that your pet will also be well looked after.

RAK Glamping, Ras Al Khaimah, from Dhs395 per night for a tent. Tel: (0)50 8717 072. rakglamping.com

Images: social/supplied