17 August 2020

At the top of the highest mountain in UAE

Snow, it covered all.

The way to the mountain is a suffering way.

- From the Soweol Kim’s poetry "Mountain" -

Yes. It is true. Middle east has snowy days in somewhere. The mountain. At the top of the mountain, there has snow almost every winter. Of course, it doesn’t similar happen like the poetry, hope it could cover all. Every year, I read that from a newspaper once or twice. It is just windy that mixed snowing in the rocky mountain, so couldn’t match with a cup of hot cocoa or hot soup. In terms of religions, the foundation of the roman catholic and Muslim, “through the wildness” would be looked like this scene. 

The highest mountain in UAE is Jabel Jais (Jabel mean is a hill, a mountain, or somewhere is higher than nearby in Arabic. It is still used for a village in Dubai or other Arab countries). Someone said it is 2000m above from sea level, but official data shows it around 1996m.

First, let’s see the below map. You can see what a politically complex area.

t looks like an edge of the corn shape land with Saudi Arabia, UAE and Oman, and the mountain is almost at the top of the corn where is between the Persian Gulf and Oman sea and that is in front of the strait of Hormuz. You will understand with the below map why I said it is a politically complex area.

Did you find the familiar name the strait of Hormuz. Yes, the mountain is at the start of the strait of Hormuz, a cross of Iran and partially crossed Oman UAE border. Also, the Oman side Jabel Jais part is not in the mainland of Oman, it is in the part of Oman peninsular. Therefore, if you look at the google satellite image map, you can see many military bases near the mountain. Someone told me, the path was used by smugglers between Iran, UAE and Oman a long time ago.
Anyway, it is in the middle of many other mountains like Rocky mountain in North America.  Let’s check it out the satellite image.

Maybe no one visits there without any specific purpose, and very hard to find the way, SO I visited there. The start of the way was from the fancy highway in Dubai. However, it changed fewer lanes from 16 lanes, 8 lanes and didn’t look like 2 lanes but anyway 2 lanes road eventually. Then, I realised drove on the almost offroad way.

Continuously mountains came up to my car dashboard and too dried wildness land, and it showed me what a rocky desert is.  If rocks had some gaps, of course, it filled with sands. In the middle of these sands, a piece of plant leaves the most challenging life itself. Feels seem they called me with a very dried and husky voice. 

How long I drove the way, I felt something big and big blue, crisp navy colored piece had passed my eyes. It was more than just cool one, it was spooky and creepy blue one like a frigid deep blue sea. What was that? My car stopped with milky white dust over my head, and I grabbed my camera and sucked to the lens. However, the heat from the hottest land broke my passion for photography soon.

Who knows when it built, how deep it is, was that built or made naturally. the pale blue water was trying to break the edge and the rusty fence was only trying to tell the story. Between two mountains, enough sands were layered in many hundreds of years (over 1km wide), in the middle of sands, wadi (water flew area in Arabic) made the dam. I don’t know, enough water came from the mountains or just well up naturally (I checked the sea level at the park, it was -10m. Behind the cold blue dam, I drove to the mountain again.

Pass through the limitless mountains,

I couldn’t count how many sharp curves I passed. I drove the “not too bad” 4x4 car and didn’t meet any surprisingly uncomfortable situations, but if you want to test your car engine how high temperature couldn’t be harmed, I recommend you to visit and drive this road. I was also very nervous and softly pushed the gas pedal.
How long I climbed the mountain. Cutting edge cliffs were around me, and couldn’t recognise which mountain is far more. Looked like VR images mountains were in front of toes. It was the Jabel Jais.

At the top of the mountain, possible to see the start of the strait of Hormuz. I climbed Jabel Jais the highest mountain in UAE.
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#Ras Al Khaimah #UAE mountains #highest mountain in UAE #UAE travel #Travel #mountain #UAE

14 July 2020

Picnic/Day trip in UAE: The best beach near Dubai

UAE is the best country to enjoy beaches in all seasons. Of course, summer days are not advisable (it is possible but you definitely would get sunburned all over) to stay or play at beaches, but even evenings in summer and all other seasons you can enjoy swimming at the beach all day.
However, some beaches are private (e.g. hotel or private property), crowded on weekends, no showers or very expensive parking areas and no shade.
Lots to consider when we needed to find a nice picnic area or a beach., Especially, when we had no idea what we can do and what we should not do at the picnic area or the beach. So, I'll tell you what beach is my favourite one, where it is and what are the official and unofficial rules for visiting there./

1. Beach for camping and cooking - Al Aqah Beach (called Snoopy Island and Aqua Beach)
Benefit: It is suitable for camping, cooking even lighting bonfires. I saw many people snorkelling, swimming and fishing there also. I couldn't see anybody doing surfing and kite surfing but I think it may be possible. You can park your car on the beach road or at the beach.
Disadvantage: There is no toilet and fresh water showers. That means there is no place to change your clothes after swimming. The other things are crowds of people on weekends and holidays. Many people go camping during the weekends and holidays. This area has a famous beach since a long time ago, called Snoopy Island beach, Aqua Beach, but the official name is Al Aqah beach. As usual, you could see some trash and burned charcoal easily in the sand. However, I don't think there is much dirtier than Dubai public beaches.

Tips: If you want to go camping at the beach especially during the weekends, you should go there as early as possible. Of course, the nice camping spots at the beach are first come first serve. The best camping spot is just next to the resort. For picnics or swimming, don't forget to have some fresh water to wash your feet and a small tent for changing clothes. Remember, you cannot find a toilet or any spot for hiding, so don't drink too much! If you go there from Dubai, you can find the last public toilet in Kholfakan city area. Lastly, the beach is the west side sea of UAE, so you can see the best sunset at the beach.

The beach - From 25°29'13.4"N 56°21'37.0"E to 25°29'27.3"N 56°21'39.8"E
The beach parking - From 25°29'12.3"N 56°21'35.9"E to 25°29'27.1"N 56°21'35.9"E. Also, nearby 25°29'24.9"N 56°21'34.5"E
The best camping spot - 25°29'27.1"N 56°21'38.4"E
The best sunset point - 25°29'19.5"N 56°21'36.6"E (You can see the best sunset on Snoopy island)
High seasons: All seasons, but remember there is no shower and no shade.

2. Beach for a family picnic - Khor Fakkan Beach
Benefit: You don't have to bring your sunscreen or sunshades or chairs. You can find a free table under the big tree just in front of the beach. Also, you can park your car just next to the beach area. The other benefits are free hot water shower and the newly built toilet that has A/C. If you want to ride a boat, many boats are waiting for you for 70-100AED (The price for a one-time ride for a group, not for a person).
Disadvantage: No fire, cooking and camping allowed in all of the beach areas. If you make any kind of fire or cooking, they will give you expensive fine. However, you can find many local and international food restaurants nearby the beach. I'm not recommending to wear a bikini and no shirts. The beach is in front of a mosque, so I wore a shirt as soon as possible after swimming to avoid any misunderstandings. 

Tips: Not many people were there on weekends. However, if you arrive there after 10am, you cannot find any free tables under the trees. As you know, the local families used to make some distance with others, that means one family will use one big tree shade. So, if you don't want to bring much stuff like sunshade, tents, table, and chairs, arrive before 10am or after 5pm.

The beach - From 25°21'22.0"N 56°21'05.1"E to 25°22'13.4"N 56°20'57.5"E
Free hot water shower - 25°21'23.3"N 56°21'03.9"E
My tree (Don't stay here!) - 25°22'11.0"N 56°20'55.1"E just next to a cold water shower, KFC, Pizzahut, and Wendy's!
High seasons: All seasons, but not recommended to visit in Summer daytime.

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