The tap water in the UAE is desalinated seawater, so technically it is safe to drink; though the cleanliness of the tank from which it comes can be a health factor.It’s cheapest, safest and greenest to refill a reusable water bottle or canteen with filtered water. With the exception, of Sharjah, all the Emirates permit non-Muslims’ consumption of alcohol in designated areas (typically hotel restaurants and bars).To many travellers, the United Arab Emirates mean just one thing: a stopover.It’s a place to endure rather than to enjoy; somewhere to touch down in, scoot through, and take off from ASAP.Hop atop a camel for a lope along desert dunes…or charter a chopper. Year-round, daytime temperatures rarely drop below 25. November to March are the cooler – though by no means cool – months, when tempering sea breezes drift in from the coast.Break bread with Bedouins…or dine with the fishes in a restaurant aquarium. Don’t be too put-off by the prospect of travelling during summer though (July to August), as the cities are covered and air-conditioned.Public toilets in places frequented by Westerners are generally of the Western-style, sit-down variety.Beyond the cities, squat-style toilets are more common (although these are gradually making way for the Western type).
Even fleeting glances or interactions can be interpreted as bearing flirtatious overtones.Tour an old spice market…or withdraw gold bars at vending machines. Very few countries have had as dramatic turnabouts in their fortunes as the UAE.Prior to the discovery of the region’s vast petroleum and gas reserves in 1958, the southeastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula was a conglomeration of ‘Trucial States’ heavily dependent on a fated pearling industry and British protection against neighbouring powerhouses.Your travel insurance details will be recorded by your leader on the first day of the trip.Due to the varying nature, availability and cost of health care around the world, travel insurance is very much an essential and necessary part of every journey.Dubai’s Jumeirah Beach is the best bet, but a far more reliable one is Abu Dhabi’s Wadi Adventure park, where the waves are guaranteed no matter what the conditions are doing. We recommend that all travellers check with their government or national travel advisory organisation for the latest information before departure: Internet access – be it at cyber cafes or through Wi-Fi – is readily available throughout the UAE.