Getaway to Hatta Dam – A UAE Hidden Treasure

Who doesn’t like weekend getaways?

It was a long weekend in UAE in honor of Martyr’s Day and UAE National Day.  This is one of the most awaited off times which people look forward to in the UAE. Like everyone else, I pondered what to do and where to go, until one of our friends came along with the idea of driving to Hatta Dam to enjoy kayaking with a group of friends.

Hatta lies to the south-east of Dubai’s main territory and is about 134 km east of Dubai City. It is located relatively high in the Hajar mountains, bordering Oman to the east and the south, the Ajman enclave of Masfut to the west, and Ras al-Khaimah to the north.

Driving to Hatta Dam

Well, our plan was exciting.  The fifteen of us meet up, as scheduled, at a commonplace at Silicon Oasis, one of the quietest and most beautiful residential areas in Dubai.

After our quick breakfast at Arya’s, a local restaurant, we embark on our journey towards the mountains. It’s quite a scenic drive; one of the hidden treasures here in the Gulf! We drive on, reaching the outskirts of Dubai. It’s a beautiful drive, particularly since the road is surrounded by deserts on both sides, with red soil and beautiful dunes. One can often spot camels in these deserts, quite a treat for the kids!


As we drive further and reach the Hatta border, we experience the change in the driving condition. The deserts end and the mountains begin.  We reach the Rocky Mountains, black and dark brown in color. The mountain terrain zigzags against the blue skies. Whether lush green or barren rock, mountains are the most beautiful terrain the universe has given us, I think. The serenity here should be felt and experienced as one of the most picture-perfect backdrops in the UAE, in my opinion.


We reach Hatta Dam after a drive of an hour and thirty minutes. Weekends generally attract more crowds, but the place is especially crowded due to the long weekend. We park the vehicle and make our way towards the dam. There’s a long, slow-moving queue for the tickets, yet this doesn’t dissuade our enthusiasm for kayaking. The view is so surreal and picturesque, the blue skies and the clear water compliment each other beautifully.


The majestic mountains frame the crystal green waters. Swimming is prohibited, but you can burn off some calories with kayaking and paddle-boating. One can rent the paddle-boat for an hour; there is no time limit on the kayaks. Kayaking isn’t as easy as it looks; it can be an absolute workout on your arm muscles.


After all the fun, laughter, and exercise, we go to the Hatta Fort Hotel to relax and enjoy some modern comforts. This 4-star hotel retreat in Dubai is the ideal destination for leisure, business, and incentive stays. The hotel is surrounded by mountains and visiting is a rejuvenating experience. Hatta Fort Hotel is an ideal place to be close to nature and is best for stay-cations.


Key Notes:

1. Visit this place post-summer when the weather is pleasant. Best Time – October to March.
2. Price per Kayak and paddling boat – AED 60 and AED 120 respectively. Kindly check the site for any price changes.
3. There are no washrooms in the vicinity.
4. Open from 7:30 AM to 5:30 PM from Sunday to Saturday.
5. There are some parking spaces available, but if you’re visiting on a public holiday or a busy weekend, be sure to park your car down the road.
6. This place does not have a store for snacks, water, and other basics. Please bring your own necessities.

I am Neelamma Subramani, family and friends call me Neeraj. An ITES professional having worked in India and UAE, I am an intermediate Table Tennis player, an avid reader, love travelling and have tried my hands on adventurous activities like sky diving. Writing has always been my passion and stress buster. I have written articles during my school and college days, however, it took a back-step after I started working and was constantly on the move. Now that am on a break, with plenty of time and some brains to spare, I blog on Soulful Leisure and wish to take this forward.

See Neelamma Subramani's Articles