Yas Waterworld 

Been wanting to visit this water park in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi since it opened in 2013 but the rates were just too much for my budget. The cheapest is their bronze ticket at AED250 for adults and AED210 for children (unlimited access to waterpark) and the highest is their gold ticket at AED485 for adults and AED410 for children (unlimited access to the waterpark, fast pass, merchandise voucher to name a few). They do offer discounts & promos though from time to time, you can always check their Facebook page. And in our case, fortunately we got a bronze ticket voucher for only AED75/- (imagine the AED175/person we saved!) which we got from joining the AUH Electric Run at Yas Gateway Park last month (free VIP tix – the perks of my husband working in an events company) thus finally I have ticked off YW from my UAE bucket list.

We arrived at 10:30 on a sunny Friday morning from Dubai. Thankfully it was not crowded, was expecting it is since it’s a weekend but maybe because there’s still a hint of winter in the air, or was it just me who thinks 28 deg Celsius is still cold.ūüėā And yes, it was exactly how I envisioned it to be (thanks to photos online), you know how sometimes photos differ from actual. Spacious, clean, clear waters, big slides, awesome water park environment.



We rented a small locker for AED35/- but regretted it because hello, this is UAE, and you can just leave your bag with your phones/wallets (which what we did the whole time we were there) and nobody would even care to steal it. What I will terribly miss living in this country, it’s very rare that theft happens. Moving on, we immediately try their rides. As if,haha, out of over 43 rides, I only manage to do 3. Blame my fear of heights, my claustrophobia and the fear of panic attacks. I did the Slither Slides with the hubs (cannot do a slide alone, first and last was 2010) where there are 4 slides you can choose from. We tried the Serpent Spin, as suggested by the attendant when she noticed how fearful I looked. Seriously I was scared at first but it turned out to be the best choice, it was slow and fun and thanks to the LED lights inside, my fear subsided.


Hubs did the Sebag ( I was actually at the top already when fear overpowered me and I have to back out, the heights and that narrow open slide just don’t suit me). He, on the other hand, had fun (evident by the photo below).


We challenged the waves of Amwaj wave pool. The waves are gentle and small, perfect for the kids and the oldies ‚úĆūüŹĽ (i still prefer the wave pool of Wadi Adventure). Played with sonny at the Tots Playground, but mind you, adults love it here,too, especially when the bucket spills.


Hunger got the best of us, so we stopped for a bite at one of their dining areas, Chubby’s Kitchen. Spent AED200 for 2 medium sized pizzas, 2 order of fries & drinks. Not bad for a group of 6 (child included). Tummy full, kinda tired but doesn’t want to miss the rides, Al Raha river was the answer. Ah, laze¬†around in bliss.

Rejuvenated, we all agreed to ride the Bandit Bomber, the only attraction we all enjoyed, ok we fearfully enjoyed,haha. The heights and its roller coaster feel, it was such a feat for me but am glad I did it though my eyes were shut the whole time, still. Had a similar experience at Universal Studios Singapore thus the lesser the fear ( char, if you only heard my screams) ūüėā.

If there’s something I regretted not riding was the Falcon Falaj. It wasn’t supposed to be scary because you’re sliding in a group but again, fear got me. So maybe next time.

All in all, it was a 4/5 experience for me (fear took the 1 point) and my family, my son most especially. 

Visit their website for more info: https://yaswaterworld.com/

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Jebel Hafeet

Jabal Šł§afeeŠĻę (Arabic: ō¨ō®ŔĄ ō≠ŔĀŔäō™‚Äé, translit.¬†Jabal Šł§afiŠĻę‚Äé) (variously transscribed Jabal, Jabel and Jebal and Hafit or Hafeet – literally “empty mountain”) is a mountain located primarily in the environs of Al Ain, which itself is in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in the UAE.[1] Part of the mountain straddles the border with Oman, while the summit is located wholly within United Arab Emirates.

This is not my first time in Jebel Hafeet, which I believe is the most famous mountain in the UAE. It’s been 2 years since my first visit here with friends in 2014 (photo below on top of our trusty Rocky).1393856_10201471028049557_1596043826_n

This second time is unplanned though, we went to Al Ain to collect our pasalubong from Pinas) and I just heard the mountain calling me (charooot!). Seriously, I felt the urge to visit the mountain again since it’s still early to head back to Dubai. So off we go.

Nothing has changed too much with Jebel Hafeet. The way to the top is still clean and maintained and the view on top is still awesome as ever.

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It’s peaceful up there but it’s cold. It’s better in the mountain they said but we still need to work. So bye for now, who know’s well meet again. Here’s the sunset greeting us on our way down.15621878_10209791099806151_2453967233779597453_n.jpg

Jebel Jais Conquered

I have never heard of Jebel Jais since I came here in 2010 until one my Facebook¬†friends recently posted her pics on the top. I only heard of Jebel Hafeet in Al Ain. But her¬†pics are so envious¬†that being the natural wanderer that I am, I vowed I’ll have mine posted soon.While waiting, I search for photos taken there online¬†and boy are they awesome. Also, read some info re the place from Wikipedia as follows:

Jabal Jais, Jabal al-Jays or Jabal Bil Ays is a mountain on the border between Oman and United Arab Emirates, with an elevation of 1,911 m (6,268 feet).[1] The highest point of this mount is located on the Omani side, but a secondary hill (in the same mountain) west of this peak is considered the highest point of the United Arab Emirates, at 1,892 m (6,207 feet) above sea level.

Temperatures as low as -3 degrees Celsius have been measured at the top of the mountain in winter,[2] with plans in place to build a hotel, cable car, paragliding launch ramp, golf course and ski slope following the opening of a road scaling the mountain from Ras Al-Khaimah.

Been bugging my husband to go but because it’s events season, his weekends are fully packed until last Friday. Fortunately, husband’s workmates have also planned for a road trip with Jebel Jais in the itinerary so we opted to go with them instead. The more, the merrier, they say.

Since we left Dubai late than scheduled and we left Fujairah late as planned, we reached Jebel Jais at 5:30 pm (sigh) just a few minutes before darkness fills the area. I don’t know how many turns we took to reach the summit’s camping site (its peak’s still barricaded and road’s under construction thus cars are not allowed to pass). Yes, my dear, you heard it right, a paved 3-lane road towards the top. Just one of the perks of living in the UAE, they make your life comfortable by making the climb easy. ¬†And it’s FREE, no entrance fee or anything like that. Before my discontentment with my home country leads us somewhere else. See some snippets of my very limited photos. Again, these photos cannot capture¬†the beauty and the happiness I felt while in Jebel Jais.

The start of our climb up.

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Almost at the top.

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A closer look of the rock formations.

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Me at the top, happily conquered the tallest mountain in the UAE ūüôā16299513_10210169432304227_62648008670131422_n

Enjoying the sunset!

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Our stay though very short was worth it. How much more if we have reached earlier and camped the whole night? Let’s plan about it next time, the cold above had bothered me a lot ūüėÄ

Amazing Fujairah

Last Friday weekend is my second time in Fujairah, one of UAE’s seven emirates. I thought I had seen all of her the first time I came but there’s more to Fujairah than its scenic coastline. Indeed, there’s always a need for a second or third time to get to know a place better.

This time we drove to Fujairah via Kalba-Sharjah Road. Left Dubai at 5:30 just in time for this beautiful sunrise to greet us, a moment I rarely enjoy being the clinomaniac that I am. 16142820_10210169421583959_5364884519189995508_n

Stopped over at  Wadi Al Helo Tunnel (this is actually a part of Ras Al Khaimah but this leads you to Fujairah soooo, :D) for a quick breakfast with the crew and of course, for photo shoots, we rarely get into tunnels you know.

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Here’s our mandatory family jump shot¬†(guess who ate a lot here based on the jump height).

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Finally, we arrived in ¬†Khorfakkan, Fujairah. Went to their¬†fish market for some fresh catch for lunch. Now, look at this awesome port view. Looks like it’s straight from a Hollywood movie, very clean and well maintained.¬†16265783_10210169427864116_3536319271553614344_n

Lunch at Fujairah Corniche. Awesome for weekend bonding – beach’s clean, there are a park and play are for the kids, perfect place to idle and take pictures ūüėÄ

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Tummy’s fed so off we go to our last stop in Fujairah. But can’t help not to stop at this beautiful beach site with Snoopy Island just a few meters away. I tell you, this picture cannot justify the raw beauty of this beach. Just wow! And it’s free for you to walk and swim in, one of the major perks of living in the UAE, you can enjoy the site without paying for it.

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Last stop, Friday Market in Masafi (yes, it’s where that sweet Masafi water is bottled). Fresh fruits everywhere, carpets and tea pots and camel meats and I got to enjoy a cob of sweet corn for AED5 which I normally buy for ¬†AED10 in Dubai, see the difference?

All in all, I have a wonderful short trip in Fujairah. I’m pretty sure there’s more sights for me to see in this emirate but I believe I have the most attractive ones covered ;). I hoped to have stayed longer but ours is basically a road trip. So, yes, maybe next time.

P.S.

Here’s a 2014 photo of me at one of her many forts, Al Hail Fort.

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WADI ADVENTURE

Heard of Wadi Adventure since 2012 as my husband was part of the audio team during its launching but only got the chance to visit yesterday.

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Off with the husband, son and friends, we left Dubai past 10am and arrived in Al Ain past 12pm (you can get to Al Ain from Dubai in less than 2 hours but since it’s everybody’s first thus making us not-so-accurate-GPS-dependent plus the city’s too many¬†roundabouts).

Wadi Adventure looked so quiet on the outside, considering it’s a Friday, a regular public/private holiday in the UAE.¬†Upon entry, the counter’s¬†not crowded,too. So then¬†I thought maybe, Wadi’s not what I’ve seen on the pics and heard. ¬†Their rate is so affordable though, ¬†AED50 for adults and AED25 for children, which already¬†includes park admission, access to low rope courses, surf pool beach, kid’s pool and ¬†restos. Sweet! And should you be the adventure junkie, which I think what this park is really all about, then they have the AED195 adventure package which includes surfing, kayaking, white water rafting, wall climbing , giant swing and the zipline. Since we are not ready for the above mentioned activites, we opted for the¬†general admission tickets. Now you think AED50 is already cheap, wait, there’s more! Since we are with each of our families, we were able to avail of their Family Package for AED100 (2 adults + 2 children). Plus 25% discount if you use an Emirates NBD credit card, now how’s that? Sweeter. They do check the stuff you’re bringing though. Warning, no outside food allowed! And we’re like, uggh, pockets get ready.

When we entered the park, lo and behold, we were amazed.

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What greeted us was this beach-liked pool with the Jebel Hafeet mountains as its backdrop. Isn’t that cool, right in the middle of the desert, is this lovely¬†waterpark. ¬†It is not crowded but not for the wrong reasons. Beach chairs everywhere, free life-vests, and lockers for rent for those hesitant to leave their belongings outside (we were never hesitant, come on we are in the UA of E, where there might be some thefts but few reported, I am just so confident leaving things in this country). We immediately changed to our swimming attires and headed to the beach pool. It’s so wide, you’ve got plenty of space to swim, it’s child friendly though there’s a designated children’s pool but you’ve got lifeguards ready to whistle and keep you out of danger. Plus the main pool attraction – the man-made waves, though it doesn’t come one after another (I think it’s every two minutes and they’ve got timings) but boy, it sure is amazing. It makes you wait with ¬†excitement for the next wave to rush. And every single time, we always end up laughing.

They have plenty of restaurants around. So when hunger strikes, we went to Surf Cafe. Earlier I must have said that I was expecting their food to be expensive like other water parks but I was mistaken. Their food are affordable and in big servings. They have combo meals, too, which what we have paid for.

Wandering around the park, we were able to witness the adventure junkies ziplining and kayaking that we decided to upgrade to adventure package. Unfortunately, there’s a schedule to follow, first come first serve, and 7 pm’s¬†too late for us as we’re planning to go up Jebel Hafeet mountains. Which unfortunately did not go through as our time’s again consumed by the wave pool. We finished at around 6pm. But stayed until 7pm because the mountain air’s just so relaxing.

Over all, I and the others find our stay soooo worth it. I think AED50’s not enough to pay for the experience. But of course, may their rate remains the same so others can experience and enjoy like we did. We shall be back again, but we’ll surely avail¬†next time, the adventure package.

For more info re Wadi Adventure, you can visit their website: http://www.wadiadventure.ae/

Page 1 of many..

Hooray! Finally got a blog site for my travel stories and aspirations (mainly) and sometimes, the by-product thoughts of my sudden burst of emotions. Got  a venue too, for the frustrated writer in me. Shukran, WordPress!

Now let’s go straight to the point of making this page.

I am just a wanderlust by nature. I love going to different places and meet different people (yup, despite people seeing me as anti-social though I find my self just selectively social, yes, cut the maaartes asap). I’d rather spend my money anywhere than the mall (because I tend to overspend on things that I don’t really need and eventually give or throw it away and by that I mean immediately out of my sight as I’ll get depressed by the thought of the hard-earned cash I spent them with).

Back when I was young (gees how 30 makes you sound old),  you’ll find me swimming in the river or the beach til I’m sun-baked and hands are wrinkled, sliding on the farmers’ irrigation and shorts tattered, up on the hill satisfying my thirst with young coconuts’ water and to wherever my restless feet brings me.  I like to travel and unravel. But I was not born rich (nor I am currently rich) thus I have to travel at my pocket’s pace. 

I used to just  settle in reading travel books and gush over travel photos (still does) and dreamt of the days when I myself will be the subject of the photo and the story. Thankfully, life became a bit easy to handle. I got myself a job immediately after six gruelling-financially-and emotionally-burdened years in the University. It was a taste of heaven. My first job is in a call center where team buildings are productivity boosters thus a must.  I was able to go places. And it was then my travel book-like journey started. But it was not just my journey, but my sister’s and my best cousin’s and my then boyfriend turned husband’s too. They are the favorite people I want to travel with. Now my son, included. If a genie will grant me a wish, I’ll ask not for a magic travelling shoe but a magic travelling car, enough to fit us all. Of course, am gonna be the driver. I am always the trip organizer, the planner, the new place checker, the budget maker. I can pass as a tour guide, I bet, lol, I mean seriously.

Oops, forgot this is just page 1 and not a chapter. So shall post accordingly.