If you speak Arabic, Russian, German, Italian, French, Spanish or Portuguese, our talented team can help you at no additional cost. Please let us know at the time of booking so we can try to accommodate your request to the best of our ability.
We are happy to accommodate your food/dietary requirements. We have many vegetarian dishes so you will still have a variety of food to enjoy. Please inform us at the time of booking if you have any food allergies.
Many of our guests want to recognise the tremendous contribution our Conservation Guides make to their experience. However, there are no obligations to include a gratuity. If you do want to tip, the amount depends completely on you.
Platinum Heritage only operates with in-house vehicles and Conservation Guides. Therefore we have very limited availability and book out in advance. Once you have confirmed your travel plans, we strongly suggest that you book your desert safari before arriving to avoid disappointment. Our online booking system contains live inventory so you can see if seats are still available.
Desert safaris require a minimum number of guests to operate. Minimum guest numbers differ between experiences and are subject to change at any time. If a safari is cancelled due to minimum guest numbers not being reached, guests will be offered an alternate option or be provided with a full refund.
You already do! A portion of your fee is donated towards the conservation of the UAE desert. We provide support for a protected area that ensures the future of the region's desert habitats and bio-diversity. It is managed according to scientific ecological principles, aimed at protecting natural resources and maintaining original desert landscapes. Please let us know if you would like to make an additional contribution.
Alcohol is generally not permitted in the Arabic culture, and while the Rulers of the country have shown great flexibility in allowing service in hotels, we are committed to stay true to local traditions and showcase the authenticity, warmth and hospitality of this region. For these reasons we do not serve alcohol on our tours.
We hope that you agree and are happy to support us in our sustainability mission.
The weather in the Dubai desert is very different than in the city. During the day, loose-fitting clothing and shoes that you can easily remove (flip flops/sandals/thongs) are suggested. However, at night, please use the following as a guide:May-October: Loose clothing, shorts, t-shirts, etc
November-April: Dress in layers.
It can become quite cold in the desert as soon as the sun has set. Especially between December-February, the temperature can get less than ten degrees Celsius. Jeans, closed shoes, shirts, cardigans or even a jacket is required on cooler nights in the desert.
We are happy to pick you up from a private residence if you book a private car.
If you have shared transport, it could translate into a delay in the experience for yourself and other guests if the Conservation Guide needs to look for the house/villa. For the convenience of all guests, we have a central pick-up in each location. Our team will share the exact pick-up location and time with you before your experience.
Bedouins would build their camps on the top of sand dunes for many reasons; to catch any cool winds, to avoid low areas susceptible to flash floods, to keep watch on approaching tribes, and to avoid snakes and scorpions which prefer low lying brush. Platinum Heritage has constructed the industry's first camp sitting on top of a dune.
By doing this, we avoid creatures like scorpions, snakes etc., making a home in our camp. We also take advantage of the cool Dubai afternoon breeze, using nature's natural air-conditioning and pest control.
Our camp is located approximately halfway between the cities of Dubai and Al Ain. Dubai experiences a coastal weather system, usually associated with high winds and rain around 5-7 days per year. Al-Ain is at the base of a mountain range and is subject to higher concentrations of rainfall.
Since our camp is between the two weather systems, it does not usually enjoy rainfall as high as either centre. Due to this lack of rain, there are fewer trees and plants in the desert than in the cities. If you see a weather report for rain and storms in Dubai, quite often, the sun is shining with vivid blue skies at our camp. Please check with us before changing your plans. If the tour is not able to operate due to inclement weather, compensation will be offered.
As the first four-wheel-drive introduced in the UAE, our 1950s Land Rovers are collectors' items, and this is the only place in the world you can experience these vehicles driven in the desert. Most four-wheel drives (including modern ones) take a lot of maintenance to drive over the dunes every morning and night. When a vehicle is 60 years old, it takes daily monitoring and maintenance. Therefore, we have a full-time mechanic on hand to take preventative maintenance.
However, things happen, and vehicles do break down (even modern ones). We always have spare vehicles close by. This way, on the rare occasion of a breakdown, it only becomes part of the adventure and not something that spoils or delays the whole experience. If something does happen during the desert safari, enjoy the adventures as many generations before you have done (see the picture below taken in Al Ain in 1958).
As an ecotourism company, we focus on sustainable practices and conduct gentle wildlife drives in the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve that doesn't include dune bashing. While dune bashing can be a fun experience, it has its downsides; it's typically not family-friendly, can feel rushed, and most importantly, the pristine Dubai desert has so much more to offer. With an expansive and rich culture, exotic wildlife, and some of the most breath-taking scenery in the world, the deserts of Dubai have a lot more charm that will leave you with lasting memories.
In addition, the desert ecosystem is very sensitive, and about 95% of the animals in the desert live under the sand. When you drive fast across dunes, you are damaging all the vegetation and wildlife. Dune bashing is not an innocent pastime; it's an adventure sport and should be limited to certain areas since it does a lot of damage. For more details, please visit the sustainability section on our website.
Numerous factors make it difficult for us to provide an exact pick-up time at the time of booking. However, you will have a 1-hour range to help you plan your day. We never want our guests to wait. Therefore, we try to give a precise pick-up time on the day of your safari. We will call you in your hotel room first. However, if you are not in the room, we will:
- Leave a message with the Concierge
- Send you a confirmation email
- If you are not in the room and didn't provide us with an email address, we will phone or leave a text message on the international number you provided
- If you have not received a message by 01:00 PM on the day of your tour, please phone +971 4 4409827
The only concern for our pregnant guests would be during the wildlife safari in our Land Rovers as it can be a little bumpy. It shouldn't be an issue if you are experiencing a healthy pregnancy, as it is only slightly bumpier than driving on a dirt road.
For their comfort and safety, we are happy to accommodate expectant mothers up until their last trimester. If you would still like to join the safari, you can skip the wildlife drive, and we can arrange for you to be dropped directly at the sunset stop for the falcon show, where you can wait for the other guests. This would be approximately a 1-hour wait, and besides missing out on the wildlife drive, you can still enjoy the full itinerary.
If you will be travelling with a child below 5 years old, a private car is required for various reasons:
- The drive will be toned down to accommodate a younger child, this might change the nature drive experience for other guests.
- Car seats are strictly required for young kids, eliminating the chance of seat rotation for everyone to enjoy the splendid desert views.
- Young children often get scared, cry, sick etc. Having a private vehicle will allow you the flexibility to shorten the drive better to suit your family's needs.