Seeing a different side to Dubai – Bab al Shams Desert Resort 

Dubai, I have found on the whole is a marmite kind of place – you either love it or you hate it! It’s a pretty showy place and every time I have been I have stayed on the palm! So this time we wanted something a little different so we booked ourselves into the Bab al Shams desert resort and spa! Meaning gateway to the sun, we were hoping for something special from our stay at the desert resort – Bab al Shams!

One of the things I like when staying in a luxury hotel is getting a real sense of place. Personal touches and things unique to the place. To be honest, the hotels I’ve stayed in Dubai previously have been lacking in this! There a lot of chains (nothing wrong with that) but on the inside can feel like anywhere else in the world. My favourite hotels always have something unique about them and this was my hope for Bab al Shams and it didn’t disappoint! All the luxury and 5* treatment that you expect f a great middle eastern hotel coupled with a taste of tradition and heritage! 

We flew into Dubai maktoum airport which is much closer to the resort than dxb but offers only regional flights at the minute but was perfect for us! From here it was about a 40-50 minute drive. When we arrived we were greeted with a lovely Arabian welcome and some fresh lemon mint and baby e was given a soft camel which she became very attached to! 

The desert resort

After a slight confusion over booking details we were shown to our room. The resort is laid out like an Arabian fort – low rise and you walk down winding corridors and alleys with quaint ‘historic’ objects littering the walkways to get to your room! On the way there are many areas to sit and unwind such as reflecting pools and nighttime fire pits! 

Water feature
Fire pit

The room was stunning and had a true sense of place that other Dubai hotels can lack. I was particularly fond of the bathroom.

The bath
Luxurious bathroom
 

The only downside to the traditional layout could be that it can seem a little dark but I think the ambience it creates more than make up for it!

Sitting area

As we arrived late in the evening we went straight out to dinner in one of the five onsite restaurants. Night one we tried masala the Indian offer and were very impressed with the quality. There was a nice mix of traditional and more contemporary dishes and a live band which baby e enjoyed dancing the night away too. Of all the restaurants we tried, this was our favourite.

Masala

On other nights we tried the Italian, Le Dune and Arabic, Al Forsan, which are nice and have lovely views across the desert especially for sundowners. There is also an Arabic buffet restaurant, Al Hadheerah, that has a live show and has a firework display at weekends. Since wandermust daddy was ill and the baby has an earliesh bedtime I didn’t get to do this but is something I’d love to return and do!

As we went half board we had our breakfast at the buffet restaurant. I am not always a buffet fan but was really impressed with the breakfast, especially the live cooking stations. Due to illness, I mostly experienced the resort on my own, I was concerned about the mix of baby and buffet while solo parenting but the staff were so helpful. I had a great time even if wandermust  daddy was shut away in the hotel room for most of the trip! At least we had a nice bed! 

The bed

The whole resort was perfectly set up for families of any size and age. Baby E enjoyed the heated pool and there was plenty of space around the three pool areas.

The pool

Your room rate also includes some desert activities such as camel riding, nature walks, fat bikes and baby E’s favourite falcons! She has now become slightly obsessed with trying to pet birds!

Our fearless traveler

I must admit that even I enjoyed the falconry. The blend of afternoon activities I think makes Bab al shams perfect for the young and he young at heart! 


The resort, while well connected by road is set amongst the sand dunes! You could organise trips out through the hotel but we just enjoyed sitting and taking in the scenery! The baby particularly enjoyed the sand between her toes!


We had a fantastic time and would thoroughly recommend anyone who wants to experience a more traditional Dubai scene to try visiting a desert resort.

Top tip – the resort is much busier on a Friday than in the week due to a large brunch and pool day passes so try and stay mid week if you can 

Have you ever stayed in a desert resort? I’d love to know what you thought! 

 UK City Breaks with babies 

We love a city break and the UK is filled with some great baby friendly cities! Some of favourite family travel bloggers have picked their favourite cities for family city breaks and have shared other parents to offer top tips, advice and inspiration for other families to take successful UK city break. Continue reading  UK City Breaks with babies 

Doha’s Best Restaurants from A-Z

Since starting this blog I’ve discovered that Actually people know very little about Qatar, and certainly isn’t on a lot of people’s bucket lists so I thought I would share something I love about Doha – that’s all the great restaurant you can chose from in this town. From High End to Cheap Eats, Doha is full of unusual and interesting restaurants. So here are my favourite restaurants in Doha from A to Z! Continue reading Doha’s Best Restaurants from A-Z

Top 10 Pre-preganancy and Pre-parenthood Travel Bucket List Items

Travel has always been a big part of mine and Wandermust Daddy’s life and we were determined that travel would stop just because we had a baby (You can read more about why we have and why we will continue travelling with our baby here)! Saying that, we knew it would change! So before we had Baby E we made a pre pregnancy and pre parenthood travel bucket list – this is what was on it:

1. Do a holiday which you can’t do with children

For us this was visiting a malaria zone and going gorilla trekking. Our line in the sand for travelling with children is always about health and safety and we won’t travel to malarial zones with Baby E!

Also gorilla trekking is an activity that can’t be done until children are at least fifteen years old. We didn’t want to wait that long to experience this so this was our last ‘big’ holiday before Baby E came along!

Gorilla trekking in Uganda

Continue reading Top 10 Pre-preganancy and Pre-parenthood Travel Bucket List Items

Weaning while travelling – our top tips! 

We travel a lot and don’t really stress about traveling with our baby but since starting our blog I’ve discovered that a lot of people are apprehensive about travelling with babies especially when it comes to feeding. Well here are our experiences and top tips for weaning while travelling.

Don’t stress Continue reading Weaning while travelling – our top tips! 

The Hidden and Not So Hidden Gems of Qatar

Qatar, not on everybody’s bucket list but it is gaining momentum on the tourist front especially through layover/stopover offers with Qatar Airways. I have lived in Qatar for over three years and have discovered that people’s perceptions of the country are limited and many people even expats don’t really head off the beaten track. So here are my hidden and not so hidden gems of Qatar!

 

BEACHES 
KNOWN GEM

Most people when they think of the Middle East think of swanky 5* and luxury hotels where expats can sun themselves all year long. One of my favourite hotel beaches at the Intercon – you can read about our recent staycation here

 

Enjoying the Intercon beach

Continue reading The Hidden and Not So Hidden Gems of Qatar

Fearless Family Travel Interview – Daisy The Bus

As part of our new monthly link-up we will be featuring some of our fellow fearless family travellers. We can’t wait to hear all about other families global adventures. This month we are interviewing Jonny and Joelle from Daisy the Bus. Daisy the Bus is one of my favourite family travel blogs not only because they have some amazing adventures internationally but I am also learning lots about life in Luxembourg from them! It is also really great to hear a dad’s perspective on family travel. So without further ado here is our Fearless Family Travel Interview with Daisy the Bus! Continue reading Fearless Family Travel Interview – Daisy The Bus

What I learnt on the free Melbourne walking tour 

I love a walking tour but when travelling for business it’s hard to know when you will have the time which is why the free walking tour in Melbourne was so appealing. No need to book just turn up at  either 10:30 or 2:30 daily by the Redmond Barry statue outside of the State library of Victoria.

Starting point by Redmond Barry statue
Continue reading What I learnt on the free Melbourne walking tour 

Business Trip or Mummy’s Guilt Trip? How I survived my first post-parenthood business trip

This week I have had my first business trip post parenthood. I’ll admit that it’s a good job that this isn’t a pen and paper post as if it was it might be illegibly stained with tears. It’s true I have never been particularly good at solo travel. I like experiencing things with my loved ones and just having someone to chat to. It’s just the way I am. One of the worst travel experiences I’ve ever had was a ten day business trip to Washington DC over Columbus day weekend on my own. I ended up jumping on a plane to Chicago for one night to see friends just to counter the loneliness. Therefore it came as no surprise that I was dreading this trip. Not only was I travelling alone but I was also leaving behind my ten month old baby for the first time. Not something I relished and I’ll admit there was a love actually scene in the departures area as I said goodbye! As I was sat at the airport waiting to depart I was overcome with the Mummy Guilt and would have done anything I could have to avoid going.

Now as I hit post, I can say that I have been happily reunited with baby and hubby and the good news is I survived! my first solo trip post parenthood!  It was never going to be the best trip but my survival strategy definitely worked so if you are a parent having to take a trip or business trip away from your baby these are my tips for how to survive! Continue reading Business Trip or Mummy’s Guilt Trip? How I survived my first post-parenthood business trip

Fearless Family Travel #2

Hello and welcome to the second ever Fearless Family Travel linky! It has been a busy month in the Wandermust Family household. I’ve had my first post parenthood business trip to Australia, so lots of posts on Melbourne about the terrible mummy guilt I felt about leaving Baby E. Speaking of Baby E she has literally just taken her first steps so today marks our first travel with a walking little human! We’ll keep you updated on how that goes. But on top of that I had to comment on a whopping twenty five posts that were linked up on the first ever Fearless Family Travel! I was so chuffed with all the posts added from reasons why families travel, top tips on airline bassinets, caravaning expenses and picking family friendly accomodation to some great reviews! I loved the diversity of the posts last month and can’t wait to read what you have in store for us this month!

It was so difficulty picking my favourite posts from last month as they were all ace but pick I must!

I LOVED the usefulness of Our Globetrotters ultimate roundup of airline bassinets and the honesty of Digital Nomads with Kids expense report on caravaning around Europe. And finally I loved Nell’s, from Pigeon Pair and Me, post on planning travel like a pro.

Please also check out the latest in our #fearlessfamtrav interview series. This month with The Adventures of Daisy the Bus. If you would like to be involved in this series please drop me an email or leave a comment on this page!

But without further ado here’s the second installMentnof he fearless family travel linky

So what is The Fearless Family Travel linky?

#fearlessfamtrav is the place to come and link up all your favourite family travel posts. From days out and holidays, city trips to beach breaks, top tips, accommodation and product reviews. If it’s about family travel then we want to hear about it!

So how can you join

– Link up one post a month– old or new

– Please link back to this page with the #fearlessfamtrav hashtag

– Posts must be about family travel but can be about anything from holidays – beach breaks to city breaks to days trips in your local area, reviews of accommodation or products related to family travel. Basically if there is a family travel connection then this is the place to link it up!

– Please share the linky love and comment on the host post and at least two others! Please add the #fearlessfamtrav hashtag to all comments!

– Tweet me your links @wandermustfam along with the #fearlessfamtrav hashtag and I will retweet to all our followers.

– Please follow me on all my social media channels as I’ll be sharing the posts on there too! I also have a #fearlessfamtrav Pinterest page so message me to be invited!

– The Fearless Family Travel will go live on the 1st of every month and stay live for the whole week ending on 7th.


Fearless Family Travellers! Embracing luxury and adventure around the globe. On a mission to prove that travel with a baby is not only possible but fun!