There’s a holiday coming up and the art of staying at home is simply impossible. Whether it’s a quick Wednesday night to Sunday morning trip abroad or a relaxing jaunt right here in the UAE, this National Day you ought to celebrate by going somewhere.

Three straight days off, which means a day at home and a couple away, perhaps in a different emirate, or a whole-nine-yards journey to pastures new. Here are a few options to mull over.

Away

London calling shoppers

Shop till you drop in England’s capital. Indulge in all your commercial fantasies and dive from store to store to avoid the frosty weather. In a world of fashion labels, Selfridges is a London landmark. In Covent Garden, you can find lots of smaller designers with unique creations. There’s too much and the easiest way to get there is British Airways straight to Terminal 5 followed by the Heathrow Express straight into town.

On a Thai high

It’s only six hours away by plane and offers an experience unlike any other. Bangkok, Thailand, is another one of those places to which people always seem to be disappearing and for very good reason. The street food alone is enough to make us crawl there on our hands and knees. And the best bit? Bangkok hotels, from hostels to five-star properties, are insanely good value.

Istanbul welcomes you

It’s a firm UAE resident destination and a trip to ‘Old Istanbul’ is always worth it. The food, the atmosphere, the history, it doesn’t matter how many times you head to Turkey’s major city, there is always something new to discover. If you like staying in the authentic areas when you travel, the Ajwa Hotel Sultanahmet is a great mix of modern and classic architecture, is in the midst of all the tourist hot spots and has a number of deals on for the long weekend including rooms from Dhs870 per night.

Home

Once in a lifetime at Zighy Bay

Six Senses Zighy Bay is one of those resorts that you just can’t ignore. No matter if you’ve lived here for five minutes or 25 years, you’ll know someone who has been and had the time of their lives. Jealousy ensues and you resolve to paraglide down into the paradise Musandam cove.

The RAK desert

After changing hands, one of the best hotels in the world is back up and running in time for this long-weekend. The Al Wadi Desert Resort in Ras Al Khaimah has to be seen to be believed. The private chalets dedicated to each guest, the beautiful red sand setting, the wildlife, the world-class restaurants and traditional activities and the most incredible spa. It all comes together in a blend of rustic charm and state-of-the-art luxury.

The Hatta experience

There isn’t a huge amount of choice when it comes to digs in Hatta, but then why would you need any when you’ve got one so close to our hearts, the Hatta Fort Hotel? While relaxing in a newly-renovated Mountain View Room, decide whether to enjoy a culinary experience at Jeema or Gazebo before enjoying a game of tennis, mini-golf, archery or exploring the tracks for walking and mountain hiking or kayaking by the famed Hatta dam.

 

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Mustafa Noori

Nothing in life is complicated for this guy. He lives one day at the time and never worries about anything. A great guy with an even greater heart.

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