Beach camping made easy for the whole family at Ice Land Water Park in Ras Al Khaimah

If you are a UAE resident then you have probably passed it many times, these strange ice-capped mountains in Ras Al Khaimah! But did it ever occur to you to explore this strange place called Iceland in the middle of the desert?

The UAE has many water parks for obvious reasons, with hot and sunny weather all year round, what could be better than plunging into the cold water and having outdoor fun all day long with the whole family and friends. Iceland waterpark is located in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah just a few kilometres off the E311 which makes it only an hours’ drive from Dubai. Iceland Waterpark is not just another waterpark, it is the biggest in the UAE by size and is loaded with great slides and attractions. Since Iceland is one of the older parks it might look a bit dated from the outside but with recently changed and new management, major overhauls are on the way and the inside of the park gives a very different impression to the outside –inside the park is well maintained and clean! Because of this cleanliness, the park has good reviews on with the main complaint being that the park is not crowded throughout the week which is actually a great thing! Other parks are overcrowded so that you will queue most of the time to get on the rides. Iceland Waterpark is huge and has more than 30 exciting slides, a huge wave pool, and a vast kid’s water play area, so you can be sure you will spend most of your time having fun in the cold water rather than queuing in the heat. There are also private cabanas available if you are looking for some extra shaded luxury. With one of the best private beaches in the area, food outlets and retail shops the water park offers all you are looking for, for a fun day out.

Due to its huge size and lower visitor numbers during the week, Iceland waterpark is also an ideal place for team building events and group activities. Ice Land has the only Olympic sized pool in all the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah as well as a full sized water Cannon showered, wet football pitch in the middle.

If all this would isn’t enough reason for a visit, Iceland Waterpark opened last year its campsite right on the private beach. If you are an outdoors person you will know that, it is close to impossible to find any campsite on a beach (where it is legal to camp) in the whole of the UAE. The campsite is set up in Arabic tradition with local style tents, majilis tents for special occasions and a fire pit in the centre. This is camping made easy since you don’t need any of your own camping gear, tents are set up already, sleeping bags provided, showers and toilets are available a few steps away and you will get treated with a great BBQ dinner buffet and breakfast. The camp can accommodate up to 86 people and it can also be rented for events. Since campsite are rare in the UAE especially on the beach, you should book your stay soon and the best thing is the pricing! The cost for one tent starts as low as 550 AED (2 adults) which includes one-day entry to the whole park (regular price, adult 175 AED x 2 = 350 AED) dinner BBQ, and breakfast – so the camping costs you almost no extra to the normal entrance which makes it a deal not to be missed. And the cherry on top is the sound of the waves while you fall asleep in your tent!

[Pricing Weekdays: small tent, 2 pax 550 AED; big tent, 4 pax (2 adults, 2 kids), 700 AED, extra person 200 AED. Weekends: small tent, 2 pax, 650 AED; big tent, 4 pax (2 adults, 2 kids), 900 AED; extra person 200 AED]. ■

Words + Photos by: Daniel Birkhofer