SPONSORED: Escape for an outdoor adventure.
Located less than an hour away from Dubai, The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Wadi Desert invites UAE residents to escape for an outdoor adventure with a plethora of heart-warming ecotourism-driven activities such as Ghaf tree-planting, educational programs, Chef’s garden experiences and intuitive nature interactions. For younger guests, the secluded resort even offers the chance to learn crucial outdoor survival skills such as shelter making and desert navigation as a Ritz Ranger.
Ideal for a staycation or a family holiday, The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Wadi Desert is set within a 1,234 acres nature reserve where each villa is equipped with a private pool villa – the ideal base to plan some nature based adventures and alfresco experiences.
Take an exhilarating equine adventure
Horse riding is symbolic to authentic Arabian culture and The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Wadi Desert is one of the most popular resorts in the UAE that offer Equestrian activities. Guests can take an unforgettable desert hack across the rolling red and golden sands of the Al Wadi Nature Reserve and experience the expansive conservation area on four hooves. Riders will encounter the region’s diverse flora and fauna ranging from the Arabian Oryx and Arabian Gazelle as well as an abundance of native and migratory birds, whilst cantering across the dunes. You may even spot elusive species such as the black buck antelope or Gordon’s wild cat!
Price: AED 205 for 30 minutes.
Become a Ritz Kids Ranger for the day
Ritz Kids, aged 7 to 15, are invited to put down their tablets, turn off the TV and journey outside to the desert in order to learn essential outdoor survival skills through this special Rangers programme. Ritz Rangers will have a chance to open their minds and discover new things that are hidden in the Al Wadi Nature Reserve, for example, how to make natural soap from the Sidr tree leaves, how to successfully track and find animals like the sandfish and learn desert navigation skills using the shadow stick method. With lessons including how to identify native flora and fauna, animal care and bird identification, this incredible programme includes a two-hour activity for the young ones.
Price: AED 275 per child.
Participate in a Wildlife Feeding experience
Animal lovers have the chance to feed the majestic resident Oryx and Gazelles in the Al Wadi Desert Nature Reserve while learning about the local wildlife such as how the Arabian Oryx was saved from the brink of extinction which is one of the world’s biggest conservation success stories. For an extra special memento, guests are invited to take photographs in this unique setting.
Price: AED 160 for adults and AED 125 for children.
Leave your mark with heritage forest tree planting
The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah Al Wadi Desert believes in the importance of preserving the environment and has pledged to plant 1,000 native Ghaf trees by the end of 2022 within its Heritage Forest. Inviting guests to disconnect and get back to nature, visitors can plant a tree which they can then visit every time they return to the resort. The Ghaf tree, is the national tree of the UAE and has an ability to stay evergreen, through establishing tap roots that can go as deep as 35-60 meters to permanently connect with the water table, making it a significant tree that provides both food and shade for the Arabian Oryx, dromedary camels and sand gazelles within the Al Wadi Nature Reserve.
Price: 160 AED per tree.
Take a majestic full moon camel ride
For an authentic evening in the desert, guests can experience an exclusive moonlight camel ride together. During the full moon nights, guests take a magical camel ride across the undulating sand dunes under the open sky within the beautiful Arabian Desert, enabling the couple to truly be at one with nature. Guests can also identify navigational stars that were used by the Bedouins at night during the night camel rides. You may even spot the reserve’s nocturnal inhabitants which include reptiles, rodents and other critters such as the desert hedgehog, Baluch Rock Gecko, or Middle Eastern camel spider.
Price: AED 495 per couple for 30-minutes.
Chef’s Garden – farm to table dining
Green fingered guests can learn more about local vegetables and herbs grown in the resort’s grounds and undertake a bespoke farm-to-table dining experience which is designed with foodies in mind. The Ritz-Carlton Al Wadi Desert’s 450 sq m Chef’s Garden grows a range of vegetables and herbs for use throughout the resort’s restaurants. Foodies have the chance to visit the expansive garden and meet with the resort’s culinary teams to learn more about how seasonal produce is grown in the desert climate, to sample fresh-from-the soil produce and even select their own vegetables, salads and herb dressings.
Connect with nature
Nature walks promote the preservation of local culture and knowledge concerning the environment. As part of sustainable tourism, the nature walk activity focuses mainly on educating visitors on the traditional uses of the flora and fauna for survival and how every aspect of living organisms are connected and depends on each other. This helps to appreciate the Bedouin values and preserve knowledge for future generations.
Price: AED 190 for adults, AED 310 for couples and AED 125 for children.
Revitalise with a private yoga session
Perfect for those looking to rejuvenate their body and soul, with the choice of an alfresco setting at the Falconry Deck, the professional wellness instructors at the Ritz-Carlton Spa combine spiritual, mental and physical practices to offer a host of yoga classes ranging from Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa to Yin Yoga whilst gazing across the dunes.
Price: Starting from AED 150 per class per person.