Soggy sandwiches on a drizzly beach. That’s the great British summertime for you. Charming though that might sound, it’s got to beat jostling for space in the overcrowded hotspots of Europe though, doesn’t it? But wait, there is another way. Just a relatively short flight from the UK, the UAE offers guaranteed sun for more than 300 days a year, and the very highest standards of hotel accommodation in one of the world’s safest destinations.
Dubai is among Low Season Traveller’s top picks for summer bargains, when you’ll get the best deals during the school holidays making it a great choice for families for fantastic stopovers or lengthier stays. The long hot summer in Dubai sizzles from May to September with July and August reaching the highest temperatures and lowest prices. Don’t be surprised if averages reach 45°C with high humidity and warm winds, but please don’t let the conditions put you off. Dubai is a city designed for the desert heat and offers a bounty of fabulous facilities to ensure you’ll have excellent fun this summer. In the heat of the day, we recommend being indoors whenever possible, but there are plenty of options on offer. Just about everywhere is air-conditioned to the max, the airport, the transfers, the metro, the malls. There are even air-conditioned bus stops!
Super Luxury Hotels
The top properties in Dubai rank among the best in the world for their facilities and stunning design and cater for honeymooners, families and visitors of all ages. In the low season you can grab great deals with competitive prices, complementary upgrades and add-ons. Our favourites include One&Only Royal Mirage beautifully set on a mile long stretch of private beach amidst 65 acres of exquisitely landscaped gardens; Atlantis the Palm, mega-complex set on the engineering marvel that is Jumeirah Palm Island and featuring suites with underwater views into the renowned aquarium; and Madinat Jumeirah, designed to resemble an Arabian town and incorporating 5 separate hotels, a modern souk, restaurants and a private beach. The majority of properties chill their pools in summer making them blissful oases from the heat and pride themselves on fine dining options created by award-winning and celebrity chefs.
Out of this World Malls
Shop ‘til you drop, but that’s only the start. Dubai Mall, one of the largest in the world, is the access point for Burj Khalifa observation deck, and includes aquarium, underwater zoo, a virtual reality theme park, and the brilliant Kidzania, a true to life town where youngsters can earn currency to spend of fun activities. Mall of the Emirates offers a climbing wall and a full-on skiing experience complete with slope, chairlift, snowpark and its own colony of Gentoo and King Penguins. Mirdiff Centre contains an indoor flying simulator while Times Square hosts the Chillout Ice Lounge serving up refreshments in sub-zero temperatures.
By far the most fun way for children and adults to stay cool in the heat is at one of a choice of thrilling waterparks . Atlantis Aquaventure is included for those staying at Atlantis the Palm as is Wild Wadi for guests of Jumeirah Hotels. The latter includes the tallest and fastest free-fall water slide outside the US. In Legoland Waterpark, specifically aimed at the under 12s, you can design your own lego raft. Laguna Waterpark is right in the centre at the La Mer Waterfront while Yas Waterworld in Abu Dhabi makes a fabulous day trip for those on a longer stay.