Adventure: Desert Safari

I have the luxury of choosing what I want for my birthday present and this is what I have chosen.  Since arriving in UAE I wanted to do this and this month is perfect to do it since the weather is cooler and Abu Dhabi is a windy City so it adds to feeling “Winter”.  It may be different to what you know about winter, but it is definitely cooler than summer here in this part of Middle East.  This season is a much preferred by expats as it is not too hot nor too cold unlike in the opposite side of the World where it’s snowing or raining!  Oh yeah, I prefer the weather here now.

Here are the photos and I hope this can inspire you to have the same adventure.  There are a lot of travel agencies who can help you with this and what theme you prefer as I have chosen the “Family” so it suits us, especially with a young child.

Don’t be fooled with these hilly sand dunes they are higher than you thought. Riding a 4×4, you will need a good driver.  Lots of bumping along the way and it feels like in a roller coaster when our driver goes up the hill and down.  A novice doing this sort of thing can easily make the car roll on their side or worst upside down, and I say if you are not an expert in sand dunes better not risk going up the hill to show off then ending up with the quad bike on top of you.  Some anyway are driving on a low hillside.

Riding a camel is a MUST no doubt about it.  Even a 7yr old child can ride so it is safe though the height is greater than riding a horse.

Sand boarding is also good to try.  Don’t worry there are some staffs who will help you to get started… pushing you down below the sand dunes!

Falcon show and Henna tattoo are also part of the program, Traditional clothes you can also wear and lots to choose from at your own leisure while waiting for your turn for the activities.  Arabian coffee & dates are included and eat as many times as you like plus the dinner buffet is the typical Arabian BBQ that makes you feel hungry by the smell of it.  You sit on their Arabian dinner table & comfy cushions surrounded by Palm trees and Arabian music then a complimentary show about UAE by the end of it.

Belly dancing and shisha can be offered by other agencies.  Your choice.


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Let me end this with a quote… I think this is very appropriate 🙂

“Of all the paths you take in LIFE, make sure a few of them are dirt.” by John Muir

The Hotel: Marriott in Amman, JORDAN

“There is no hospitality like understanding..”  by Vanna Bonta

Marriott, Amman Vinneve photos

Marriott, Amman
Vinneve photos

Just like any Marriott hotels in another place whether it is old or new it has an air of elegance.  It is sitting on top of the hill.  Amman is full of hills to my surprise as the last time I was in a hilly City was in my hometown in NZ.20151031_084045

When you enter the hotel their staff do the usual greetings and leading you to their own X-ray machine just like in the airport.  I do not mind as it is for added safety of the guest.  Although I can say that the City of Amman is a safe place to tour around as well as the people are very approachable and they try their best to help and they speak English (some of them).


Now the room… as we travel with family on business so we always choose an Executive room with an access to the Lounge.  Some of you will know that having an access to the “Club” or Lounge can save you money as the breakfast, snacks, cocktails were included and it is all day long up to a certain time at night that the foods are available to you.  Unfortunately this time my son is not allowed in the Lounge (except one time for breakfast when we arrived that they gave us an exception as we are the only one in the room).  It is not showing on their website and the reception didn’t tell us either. We have stayed in Marriott in other Countries and there was no problem admitting my son in the Lounge except for cocktails of course which are understandable.  So please be aware now though for breakfast we can eat at their restaurants downstairs in buffet style which was better than the Lounge for the ambiance and food choices! For snacking – there is always a way to do this… either my husband or I took out some foods on a plate so we can all enjoy including my son.  Good thing nobody was in the elevator when we raid the lounge haha! … there you go!



The room has a very narrow entrance but to our surprise when we finally get in it was spacious indeed that can fit a family of four.  Just ask for a roll away bed which we did.  Furniture’s was a bit dated or traditional but acceptable and well-maintained.  The bathroom is small, but it will do.

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Lounge – disappointed as there are not a lot of food choices though I like their coffee very much!

View from the room overlooking the newest building (heard it was Rotana) as you can see it is different from the rest and towering the older and usual type of building blocks in the vicinity. There is a pool outside, also an indoor pool, but we don’t have the time to try it.

20151030_094634I can recommend this hotel as there are some restaurants inside both American bar and Italian restaurants just across each other and another one I forgot the name, sorry. Their staffs make’s the difference too as the usual Marriott standard of good service. I hope this review can help you when you go and visit Jordan.  We were fortunate when we arrived as it was a beautiful weather not too hot and not too cold.  In the morning, it was 20-degree celsius and in the afternoon it can get to 27 degrees when we went to Dead Sea.  This week Amman was in an unfortunate situation there is flooding everywhere (perhaps been affected with the terrible hurricane in Yemen, a rare one! this is only my view) and we feel sorry to see it on the news!  I hope they will be back to normal soon.  Lots of tourists when we were there a week ago.  Will post some touristy spots in another time.

Thanks for your time reading this.



I am putting all my Middle Eastern life’s blog to this site  “Life & Wonders”

The Daily Post – Photo Challenge: Ornate

This is in response to The Daily Post – Photo Challenge.

“Architecture is a visual art, and the buildings speak for themselves”       by Julia Morgan

20150717_123950 vinneve photo

Capital Gate, considers to be the Leaning Tower of Abu Dhabi              Owned and developed by ADNEC (Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company).  It is one of the tallest building in the City and inclines 18 degrees to the west (source: Wikipedia).  

Hyatt Capital Gate which is a 5-star hotel is connected to this Iconic building. Mostly tourists enjoy the luxury of this hotel and the building itself especially when there is an event not to be missed.

The first time I saw this building I cannot help myself to look and crane my neck to see how magnificent it is. I actually nicknamed this as “The boot” as from a distance it seems to look like one (as the photo shown for comparison. Sourced: Google images) My photo cannot do justice but you can see on Google some other good photos (like the one below).  I wonder if the architect was getting the idea from a shoe. This is just one of the many unique architectures here in the Capital of UAE.

   Capital Gate - Abu Dhabi ....{by Bassam}

Photo credit to Hyatt Capital Gate at their entrance

A few months ago we attended a Hunting Expedition Exhibits inside this beautiful building and it is huge and sparkling clean.  They often have many events so Families and Friends surely can find something to see and do.

vinneve photos

vinneve photos


Saluki (Arabian Dog) Beauty Contest

And last month it is one of the many iconic landmarks that turns #UNblue to celebrate UN 70th birthday.  Photo credits to Instagram UN.

Note:  Please feel free to click the link in red for further information and it’s sources.  Thank you for reading. 🙂

Camera Lucida – Reflections

This is in response to the Week #13 of Camera Lucida Photo Challenge.

“The decisions you make are a choice of values that reflect your life in every way..”  by Alice Waters

Every expat somehow missing their old home and this is just normal.  Old photographs served good memories and the reflections of your past actions of leaving your comfort zone but will be back for sure… someday!

Beach NZ, vinneve photo

Beach NZ, vinneve photo

” YOU find yourself through the reflection you discover.”  from pinterest