Wildlife Tours in Dubai

Dubai is home to a diverse range of species and one will get a chance to explore Dubai desert wildlife as they tour through the sandy hills. The sand dunes, mountain slopes, and mangrove areas are among the wildlife habitats found on the Arabian Peninsula, and have always been a home to various species of desert animals, birds, and beautiful fauna. 

From seeing the Arabian Gazelle, a rare species at the beautiful Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve, to watching the pretty flamingos in artificial Al Qudra Lake, you’ll be stunned by learning and watching a variety of Dubai's wild animals. In addition, Dubai is home to a number of endangered species, including the Arabian Tahr, which can be found in Dubai's steep rocky hillsides, and the Arabian Oryx, which is the UAE's national animal. Dubai’s desert wildlife is a total treat for all the wildlife and nature lovers out there!

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Which are the best places to see desert wildlife in and near Dubai?

1. Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve: One of the best places to witness the Dubai desert wildlife is The Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR), United Arab Emirates' first national park. This one-of-a-kind reserve was established to safeguard endangered species while also preserving the natural desert ecosystem and heritage. The Arabian Oryx and the Arabian Gazelle, a rare species and one of the reserve's most unique species, can be found in Dubai's wildlife reserve. Around more than 200 birds and animals can be seen in this must-see location. While opting for activities such as camel riding and horse riding, you can experience the unique and magnificent desert habitat

Location: Desert, Dubai-Al Ain Road – Exit 50, United Arab Emirates

2. Ras Al Khor: Due to its lush nature, Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary, located just outside of Dubai, is home to Dubai’s desert wildlife. A variety of rare and endangered bird species can be spotted here. Salt flats, lagoons, mangroves, intertidal mudflats, and other Dubai fauna make for a perfect hideout for the wildlife. This wildlife sanctuary serves a dual purpose as both a tourist attraction and a bird habitat. Gray herons, reef herons, cormorants, great egrets, black-winged stilts, sandpipers, ospreys, and other colorful birds are among the birds you might see.

Location: Ras Al Khor Road, Ras Al Khor - Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Timings: 7.30am to 5.30pm (closed on Friday and Saturday).

3. Wasit Wetland Centre
: A huge salt flat with lots of mudflats, dunes, and freshwater lakes, famously known as Wasit Wetland Centre, is located on the outskirts of Sharjah. This nature refuge is the best place for bird lovers to learn and have fun. Along with the great stretches of desert, a large number of migratory and native bird species can be observed soaring high above in the bright blue skies. There are eight birding hides where visitors can observe around 200 species of birds, including herons, purple swamphens, and white ibises, among others.

Location: Sheikh Salem Bin Sultan Al Qasimi St - Al Homah, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Timings: Sunday to Thursday - 9 AM to 6.30 PM, Friday - 2 PM to 6.30 PM, Saturday - 11 AM to 6.30 PM.

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4. Al Marmoom Desert Conservation Reserve: The Al Marmoom Reserve project, which covers 10% of Dubai's total land, is the UAE's largest unfenced natural reserve. It is open to the public, with about 40 hectares of shrubland and fertile land for tourists to explore. It is home to one of Dubai's largest populations of Arabian oryx and the UAE's greatest concentration of huge flamingos. Over 204 species of native birds, 158 kinds of migratory birds, and many other endangered species call the reserve home. A number of reptile species can also be found in Al Marmoom's various ecosystems.

Location: R63X+5HV - Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Timings: 8am to 8pm (Saturday-Thursday).

5. Al Ain Zoo: Al Ain Zoo is one of the best sites to observe the beauty of Dubai's desert wildlife. This zoo, which is spread out across 900 hectares at the foot of Jebel Hafeet, is huge and home to around 4000 animals. The big cats and reptiles, which have their own enclosures, are the Zoo's main attractions. Starting at 7pm every day, the zoo hosts a 30-minute bird display including predatory and night birds. There is also a Dinosaur Trail with mechanical dinosaur models and information about their history. All of the creatures are kept in environments that closely approximate their natural habitats.

Location: Nahyan The First St - Sahib Al Ashkhar - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
Timings: 9am to 6pm everyday.

6Al Qudra Lakes: The Al Qudra Lake is home to approximately 170 kinds of birds and animals. The lake is a birdwatcher's paradise, with exotic swans, lapwings and ducks, as well as a large flock of flamingo, who make for a pretty picture as they rest in the shallows on red, spindly legs. You’ll be rewarded for your patience if you look harder, though, as cormorant, heron and even kestrel have been seen here.

Location: Al Qudra Road - Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Timings: Open throughout the day on all days of the week.

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7. Al Hefaiyah Mountain Conservation Center: The Al Hefaiyah Mountain Conservation Centre covers a total area of 12 square kilometers. This is the most spectacular location, with roughly thirty different desert and mountain species. Scorpions, snakes, hedgehogs and lizards could be found during the nighttime. Many Dubai desert wildlife such as the Arabian leopard, wolf, tahr, and caracal walk freely throughout the huge environment.

Location: Sharjah, Dubai
Timings: Sunday to Thursday 9am to 5.30pm (Monday closed), Friday 2pm to 5.30pm, Saturday 11am to 5.30pm.

8. Jebel Ali Wildlife Reserve: Jebel Ali Wildlife Reserve spans 2000 hectares and is home to 300 species, including the highly endangered hawksbill turtle, Arabian gazelle, foxes, the endangered mottled eagle ray, green turtle,reptiles, and other water birds. It is presently on the Ramsar List of Internationally Significant Wetlands. The Emirates Marine Environmental Group (EMEG) manages the reserve, which is only open to the public for special occasions. Many social activities are observed here, such as turtle releases, mangrove plantings, and clean-ups.

Location: The coastline between Ghantoot and Jebel Ali, Dubai

9. Sharjah Desert Park: The Sharjah Desert Park is an edutainment zone that spans a large area and is divided into three sections: the Natural History Museum, the Arabian Wildlife Centre, and the Children's Farm. It assists visitors in gaining a greater understanding of the UAE's flora and wildlife, as well as scientific explanations of natural processes, in the most enjoyable manner possible. This wonderful park, located 28 kilometers from Sharjah on the way to Al Dhaid, is a must-see for environment and wildlife lovers.

Location: Sharjah, Dubai
Timings: Sunday to Thursday 9am to 5.30pm (Tuesday closed), Friday 2pm to 5.30pm, Saturday 11am to 5.30pm.

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Which are the desert wild animals that we can see in Dubai?

1. Arabian Leopard: The Arabian leopard is a smaller subspecies than the others, that loves to dwell in harsh mountainous terrains with a constant water source nearby. To thrive in the dry terrain, they require wide territories to ensure enough food and water. This nocturnal creature hunts at night and eats hare, gazelle, mice, and hyrax. There are around 250 remaining in the wilds of Dubai, which can be seen around Jabal Samhan.

2. Arabian Oryx: This magnificent antelope was on the edge of extinction until Sheikh Zayed ordered the establishment of a captive breeding programme for the endangered animals. It was a remarkable success, and the Arabian Peninsula today has over a thousand wild oryx. The Arabian Oryx antelope is the smallest member of its genus and the United Arab Emirates' national animal. You can spot this beautiful creature at Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve and Baba Al Shams, Dubai.

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3. Arabian Wolf: The Arabian Wolf is an omnivorous wolf that resides in the Arabian Peninsula. It is currently extremely rare, only being found in small areas of UAE and Saudi Arabia. These wolves can reach a height of 26 inches and weigh roughly 20 kilos. Long-eared wolves prefer to live in large packs rather than small partnerships.

4. Arabian Tahr: The Arabian Tahr is an endangered Arabian animal that is protected by the UAE government. The tahr's smallest species can be found in the UAE's steep rocky hillsides. This is one of the beauties of Dubai desert wildlife.

5. Arabian Sand Gazelle: The Arabian Sand Gazelles, after the Oryx, dominate the desert nature scene in Dubai. The Arabian and Syrian deserts are home to a large population of this species. Although the Arabian Sand Gazelle population has shrunk to a few hundred individuals, they can still be found in portions of the UAE, Turkey, Oman, and a few other nations.

6. Arabian Sand Cat: Arabian Sand Cats, one of the most secretive little feline species, live in the UAE deserts. These cuddly tiny critters will melt your heart with their lovely coat and attractive face characteristics if you are a cat lover. The Arabian Sand Cat has a body size that is similar to that of a regular house cat. Closer examination reveals their exceptionally huge ears, wide cheeks, and multiple dark stripes on their legs. The Sand Cat is one of the few feline species that has adapted to live in the desert. Their vision is sharpest at night, which is when they seek for prey.

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7. Arabian Toad: The Arabian Toad can be found in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in their natural habitats. The Arabian toad's head and snout are rounded, and its eyes and tympanic membranes are small. It has little warts on its back and a variety of colors, including gray, tan, brown, and green, with golden speckles. The Arabian toad is active at all hours of the day and night. It is well camouflaged and can be found in fissures, animal burrows, and other hidden places.

8. Horned Viper: The horned viper, sometimes known as the horned desert viper, is a Middle Eastern reptile. Sidewinding motion is also used by the deadly snake to move through the desert dunes of the United Arab Emirates. The ground color of the pattern is yellowish, pale gray, pinkish, reddish, or pale brown, and it almost always matches the color of the substrate where the animal is found. Although hornless individuals do exist, it is commonly distinguished by the presence of a pair of supraocular "horns."

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What is the best time to visit Dubai to experience wildlife?

The best months to visit Dubai are September and April, when the weather is warm but not humid. While the majority of the Northern Hemisphere is preparing for winter, the city continues to provide beautiful skies and pleasant temperatures. Temperatures rise from May through August, resulting in lower accommodation prices and a lower number of travelers.

How to reach Dubai?

1. By Air: Dubai International Airport is the only airport in the city and the busiest in the United Arab Emirates. Emirates Airlines, FlyDubai, and Etihad are among the airlines that serve the airport

2. By Bus: Dubai is connected to all other emirates by the Emirates Express. Buses run frequently between Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Masafi, Abu Dhabi, and other destinations.

3. By Road: The only method to go to Dubai is through Oman, which does not require a permit and just charges a 3000 Omani Rial exit fee.

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What is the most famous animal in Dubai?

The Arabian Oryx is the national animal of the United Arab Emirates. The Bovidae family, which includes Arabian Oryx, is one of the largest antelope groups. This little desert creature is distinguished by a pair of long, straight horns that form a characteristic shoulder hump.

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