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Leave the skyscrapers of Abu Dhabi behind and head to Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara. This sprawling oasis found amongst the Liwa Desert dunes gives you the chance to really get away from it all. You can experience life in the desert, except now with lush drapes, fine dining and a decadent spa with an ice room. Embrace nature by joining the ranger on a sunrise desert trek for a spot of animal tracking or watch the Arabian oryx from your balcony while the sun goes down. If you’re keen to burn calories you can go horse riding, fat biking or sand boarding. Whichever activity you choose you are sure to discover the magic of the desert.
Experience the African wilderness at Shipwreck Lodge on the Skeleton Coast. Designed to look as raw and wild as the setting, the shipwreck-style buildings feature wood burning stoves, wraparound decks and views all the way to the Atlantic Ocean. Join the team for game drives through the Skeleton Coast National Park, where you can spy the famed desert lions and elephants; visit one of the famed shipwrecks that inspired the resort, or go for treks along dry river beds.
Take a panoramic drive through the Utah desert to Canyon Point. It’s here you’ll find one of the world’s most glamorous desert hideaways – Amangiri. Tucked between a desert filled with spectacular rock formations, hoodoos and pinnacles, you’ll find what looks like a modern art installation nestled within the landscape. The result is surprisingly harmonious: Its brutalist-architecture matches the rock face that the swimming pool wraps around. Go horse riding, rock climbing, trekking through the slot canyons and enjoy a hot air balloon ride. Then relax in your bathtub with its picture windows or sit around your outdoor fire and take in the view that you came to see.
If you ever wondered what it’s like to walk on the moon, the lunar-like landscape that surrounds Alto Atacama Desert Lodge & Spa in Chile is probably as close as you can get. And if to illustrate the point, you’ll find Moon Valley on its doorstep. With zero light pollution, you will be treated to a night’s sky that’s like a blanket of stars. If you haven’t got time to visit the Alma Observatory, the dark skies above the hotel give you the perfect shot of the Milky Way.
For desert sights Uluru is hard to beat. Book into Sails In The Desert that lies in the shadow of the famed monolith. This resort provides the perfect destination from which to explore Australia’s Red Centre. Join a bush yarn with a local Aboriginal storyteller, take a dot painting workshop or enjoy an Outback astro tour. While you may no longer be able to climb Uluru after October, you can still get a close look if you book a helicopter, Segway or motorbike tour.
Want to explore the Gobi Desert without leaving those little luxuries behind? Then book into the Three Camel Lodge. This eco retreat comes with a massage ger, screening room and farm-to-fork dining. You can tour the richly-coloured desert by foot, camel or in a vintage BMW sidecar. One vacation here and you won’t want to vacation anywhere else.
From $10,120 pp
When to go:
From $12,080 pp
When to go:
From $16,450 pp
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