At Dubai’s Number 1 Desert Safari, my family got a once in a lifetime experience. Being the only company in the UAE operating on the private grounds of a royal family, you are truly treated like royalty.
Upon arrival at the private grounds of the desert safari, we were warmly greeted by the Platinum Heritage staff. They provided us each with traditional scarves and helped us tie them around our heads for protection from the sun and dust.
After taking a few pictures and meeting the camels who would be our transportation for the first part of the excursion, we picked one and mounted it. If you’ve ever ridden a camel before, you know it’s definitely an experience and not like getting on a horse at all. The camel is laying down for you so after you get on its back, you’ve got to make sure you hold on tight! It lifts itself up either front or back legs first, meaning if you’re not gripping anything you’ll definitely get thrown off! (not fun.)
Look how cute the camels are! *heart eyes*
After everyone was comfortably seated on their respective camel, we rode through the desert until we came across a carpet laid out for us with lots of comfortable pillows and miniature, wooden tables. We were greeted with sparkling apple cider and had the opportunity to watch a traditional falconry presentation. Falconry is the hunting of wild quarry in their natural state and habitat by the use of a trained falcon. It was really cool to be able to see how historically Emirati people would hunt for food in the middle of such a desolate place like the desert.
After enjoying our refreshments, we continued our safari experience and headed to a gorgeous oasis.
At the oasis we were greeted with some traditional coffee and dates (they don’t use traditional sweeteners so they use dates instead. Prior to this I didn’t really like dates, but this definitely changed my mind!). As we settled in and explored our new surroundings, we could smell – and watch! – the chefs preparing our dinner. When it was all ready, we got in line buffet style in front of an amazing spread of assorted, traditional Emirati food.
If you know me you know I LOVE food. I filled my plate with pretty much everything they offered, including some of the more unfamiliar items like camel meat and milk! I tried them both and the meat has a very unique taste, unlike anything I’ve had before. It wasn’t bad at all, but it wouldn’t be my go-to choice in game. The camel milk on the other hand was not something I’d drink again. It reminded me of hot, bitter cheese in a way. I’m sure a lot of people would like that, but it definitely wasn’t my favorite. At least I get to say I’ve tried it though!
Some of the menu items included lentil soup (best lentil soup I’ve EVER had), handmade bread (mmmm carbsss), tea (the best tea I’ve had in my LIFE), lamb, vegetables, and more. I stuffed my face and wasn’t afraid to go back for more! On top of the extremely satisfying food, we got to watch a traditional Emirati dance performance and enjoy some relaxing shisha and henna tattooing.
After our time in the oasis was finished, we rode our classic Land Rovers back to the entrance of the royal grounds where we were picked up by a driver who would return us to our hotel for the night.
If you’re ever in Dubai, you absolutely CAN’T MISS this experience. It was one of the highlights of my trip and I would absolutely do it again! Platinum Heritage Safari has been featured in the likes of National Geographic Traveller, BBC News, The Los Angeles Times, CNN Travel, Condé Nast Traveler, and more! They produce top tier experiences and even do private events and hot air balloon trips.
This experience is something I will remember forever and I can’t wait to do this with my own kids one day!
Khakis and Belt: H&M
Choker and Sunglasses: Aldo
Tan Headwrap/Scarf: Thrift Store
Sandals: Dolce Vita