Off the Beaten Path

Sir Bani Yas Island

Sir Bani Yas Desert Island, 250km west of Abu Dhabi city.

Your soul needs this! Exposure to nature is the ultimate antidote to stress. Being in nature improves our psychological well-being and is linked to a host of benefits such as better mood, calm, creativity, reduced stress, better sleep and so on. No wonder we tend to look to nature to escape our fast paced lives. It is in being here that we become acutely aware of ‘something’ greater than ourselves, its Creator.

Beneath the UAE’s glistening facade of opulence, skyscrapers, luxury hotels and massive malls is an incredible array of wildlife. Across the country, there are impeccable efforts to conserve wildlife along with their natural and specially-made habitats by setting aside national parks and wildlife reserves. Plenty opportunities abound for nature lovers to get close to the animals, from the ever growing population of greater flamingos to the indigenous dune-dwelling creatures of the desert.

On Sir Bani Yas Island, giraffes, gazelles, Arabian Oryx, ostrich, even cheetahs and hyenas roam the island, it’s Arabia with a slice of Africa. The island was established as a nature reserve in 1971 by the UAE’s Founding President, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and is an homage to his vision. The Arabian Wildlife Park, a 1,400-hectare nature reserve takes up more than half the island, and is home to over 10,000 animals. You can reach the UAE’s safari island via seaplane or take a peaceful road trip with your favorite playlist. Explore the island on foot, mountain bike, 4×4 and even on horseback. There are various activities and amenities on the island including a relaxing massage at the spa.

Gorgeous sunset view from the infinity pool at Anantara.
You can sit with us.

“The Kingdom of God is a people who transcend nationality, nations, races, religion, and even time itself”, these words by Rev. Andrew Thompson struck a chord in my quiet time. They resonate with my feelings about the UAE. A country that I have learned to love and respect deeply; a country that embraces diversity, inclusion and tolerance. The remarkable vision of its Founding President – ‘to bridge the gaps that separate people of different cultures, and to discover and celebrate the bonds that unite them’ – is still actively and genuinely upheld by the country’s exemplary leaders through their continuing commitment. This is one of several reasons why the UAE is one of the best countries in the world.

Hasta la próxima vez amigos!

4 responses to “Off the Beaten Path”

  1. The UAE is indeed a country worthy of our love and respect (for obvious reasons). It’s exemplary leadership is remarkable; a blessing to all its inhabitants.

  2. I will forever cherish my time spent in the UAE. Love the stunning photography in this article.

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