A dream holiday of a lifetime…


Spot the difference?!!

As I sit here shivering on a chilly May afternoon (isn’t it meant to be summer???) I can only dream about me and my tribe enjoying the sun, sea and adventures that Dubai has to offer. A trip to Al Mamzar Beach would be a must. Last year, the kids had the times of their life on the beach in a very wet and windy Scarborough – just think how much more fun they would have amongst swaying palm trees, three pools, and a children’s amphitheatre? Sat huddled on the wet sand eating fish and chips would become a distant memory as we tucked into a picnic, topped up with the obligatory ice creams from the food kiosks. And forget wind-beaten beach huts, an air-conditioned chalet sounds much more like it!


My youngest, four, has just started swimming lessons and is delighting in the fact he can now do more than his land-loving daddy. A trip to Wild Wadi Waterpark would give him, and my eldest (7), the chance to show off their skills and you never know daddy might pluck up courage to try one of the 30 rides and attractions. I love the sounds of Tantrum Alley and living in the freezing North-East of England the thought of facing three tornados and a storm of water sounds like a breeze!


Before we had kids we used to love a flutter on the Grand National, the occasional trip to the races and even a night at the dogs! Swapping one four legged friend for another sounds great fun and we would love to watch a camel race – who knows we might be more lucky than normal backing something with a hump!


After all that excitement how about something to eat? As a family we love our food, especially seafood. Thoughts of cockles and winkles would soon fade faced with the tools of the trade at Aprons & Hammers. We’ve eaten on canal boat restaurants in the UK but what a wonderful experience for the kids to climb aboard a traditional sail boat and then be given the tools they need to tackle a bucket of freshly-caught crabs, jumbo shrimps, mussels and lobster. There’s nothing like working for your food, and I am sure it would be well worth the effort!


Shopping for me is a weekly trip to the supermarket – something the kids love but is a monotonous chore for me! Am I the only mother who Zombie shops – buying the same things week in week out to make the same meals? A trip to a traditional food market or one of the souks might just be the jolt I need to start appreciating the colours, smells and taste of food again and a perfect excuse for us all to try some new cuisine.

Anyway, my little boy is calling so I’d better stop the daydreaming and get back to reality – it’s been fun to dream…if only it could come true….

  • This daydream  is my entry in to the Tots100/Dubai Dreams blogger challenge where I could win a four night stay in Dubai if they like my entry. Once the best blog has been selected to win the first prize, there is a second holiday up for grabs.  The winner will receive flights and accommodation for 4 nights, and Dubai Tourism will arrange for the winning family to experience some of the adventures from their dream itinerary during their stay, up to a value of £2,000.
    What do you have to do to enter the competition?   If I’m lucky enough to win the blogger challenge, the second prize up goes to the best reader comment. So, please tell me your Dubai dreams or realities if you’ve been lucky enough to visit!  Go to Visit Dubai for lots of ideas of things to do and don’t forget to share this fab competition with your friends on Facebook & Twitter!For more information about the competition follow the link here

30 thoughts on “A dream holiday of a lifetime…

  1. This is an amazing opportunity for a blogger and one of their readers. I think it’s fantastic to let our children experience new cultures and lifestyles when we can. And at least in Dubai sun is guaranteed. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. thesoupdragonsays says:

    Sounds like a great daydream, and one I think my little family would enjoy. I think my son would love to spend a day on the beach or in a water park. I can see an evening watching camel racing would certainly beat the Brighton dogs, and fishing and eating what you catch a perfect ending to a holiday of dreams. Good Luck with your entry.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sharon Parry says:

    Definitely a different beach experience for your family! Forget the heating and turn on the air con. Something totally different for children to enjoy whilst seriously impressing Mum and Dad as well. They’ll never forget the water parks and camel racing sounds fabulous! Good luck in the competition. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What an amazing dream. I didn’t realise they had camel races. We would love to see that. I would love to take the kids to the water parks too. Atlantis looks amazing. I love markets too. I would have to sneak off and leave Daddy and the children running around KidZania. I don’t think Daddy would mind setting up camp in their McDonalds and letting the kids get his lunch

    Liked by 1 person

  5. mummyfever says:

    Camel racing – now how cool is that? I have ridden a Camel in Dubai once and I have to say it was something I was so excited about. As someone who has ridden horses for years the way they move is so bizzare but I really loved the experience and it would be wonderful to get the children on a camel in Dubai.

    Good luck with your entry!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pete C says:

    I would love to visit Dubai. It is an international hub of culture, adventure and a little bit of luxury. I would most look forward to dining al fresco, swimming in warm seas and having adventures. Some of the top activities for me and my family would be the beach, the waterparks, Dubai Fountain, Dubai Miracle Garden and the Aquarium. And I couldn’t leave without taking a safari. The world is becoming a smaller place and I love that it means places like Dubai are becoming a much more practical family holiday destination. I have been doing my own research on the Visit Dubai website and they really have listed everything and made it so easy to work out an itinerary before you go, so you don’t miss anything on your ‘must do list.’ Good luck with your competition entry. Whoever wins really is going to have the opportunity to make dreams come true for their whole family.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Samantha Mann says:

    Dubai is one of those places on my bucket list to take the children before they’re too grown up and no longer want to travel with us, as you say its not really a destination that a lot of people think of but our next door Neighbours daughter lives there with her two young daughters and when she visits her mum its great to hear of her adventures, it always sounds so exciting!

    The water park looks incredible and 100x better than any we have been to before, the boys would love it as they’re a massive fan of water … so a trip to the beach would 100% be on the cards too (with LOTS of suncream!). I can see my boy now laughing their little heads off at watching a spot of camel racing, something that would be told at school in their holiday diaries I’m sure.

    For me a spot of shopping in the amazing mall would be a must and i love to visit local markets, a love i got off my mum as we use to search for the best local produce when on our travels when I was a teen. You can’t beat getting authentic local produce when wanting some keepsakes of those special holiday times.

    We would just love to go to Dubai and make some AMAZING family memories to treasure forever… memories are made from these amazing experiences and those experiences are something i intend to give my children for as long as possible.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Dreams of Dubai!

    I have never been to Dubai before but I’ve been dreaming of visiting for a few years. Here’s my dream itinerary for a fabulous four day holiday!

    Day One: I always like to spend my first day taking it easy after the journey there and try to get a feeling for the local area. So we would spend day one having a relaxing swim in the sea and then a exploratory walk. Later, we would take the 90 minute Yellow Boat tour (Dubai RIB Boat Cruise: Palm Jumeirah and Dubai Marina). It’s an exhilarating ride around the bay for the kids (but not too tiring) and a great way to see the Palm Atlantis, Burj Al-Arab and the royal palaces.

    Day Two: The second day would begin with a once-in-a-lifetime deep-water dolphin encounter at Atlantis The Palm – something all the family would love and remember forever. The dolphin experience also gives you free entrance to the Atlantis’ Aquaventure Waterpark and 25% off your visit to the Lost Chambers Aquarium, so that’s day two covered!

    Day Three: After a couple of child-focussed activity days, my children are usually more open to a more adult-orientated sightseeing tour so we would spend our third day with Tour Val, a highly-recommended sight-seeing tour of the old and new city so we can learn more about the beautiful city of Dubai.

    Day Four: You can’t visit the desert without riding a camel so we would spend our final day on a Platinum Heritage tour, offering a Camel Safari followed by a Land Rover Safari in the desert where you are taken for a meal and entertainment at a bedouin camp!

    You see, Dubai is so magical. You would think you were dreaming, even when you’re there!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. travelingchristie says:

    What an incredible dream, I would love all of that the Wild Wadi looks so much fun our boys would love it, and to wander through the markets with my camera would feel like such an incredible luxury to catch the best of Dubai on camera would be a dream for me. And oh the food, we all love seafood so the chance to eat fresh lobster all the time would be amazing, the best of luck xx

    Liked by 1 person

  10. marie says:

    Hi, thanks for letting me know a little more about what a family could look forward to enjoying in Dubai. It’s not somewhere i’d considered taking my little girls too but I know they would love the Wild Wadi Waterpark and as for the Souk – how much fun could we have there!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I just have to say that I love that photo, what a contrast! We live on the North east coast too so can totally relate to being on a wet & windy beach even in the summer! Dubai looks and sounds like a different, more polished and exotic world away. Crazy to think it is so easy to get to on a plane these days. Camel racing certainly sounds different, I had no idea such a thing even existed! I love your daydream and I hope that you get to turn it into a reality someday soon. good luck xx

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What a great post and what fabulous places to visit. I think the Wild wadi waterpark would be our first stop! How much fun does that place look! WOW! I think my kids would literally be in water heaven, being the water babies that they are!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I’d love to take our 4 year old to a traditional food market too – the smell would simply be amazing wouldn’t it. I don’t know if your children are the same, but my daughter would be asking me so many questions about all the different spices, where they come from and what we’d use them for. I love how much their brains are like sponges, which is why I think Dubai would be a fantastic family destination – It’s such a great place for them to experience a totally different culture.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Carmen Bateman says:

    Our family loves Dubai and believe it is the best family holiday destination ever! An inspirational place, with so much to see and do, not just its year round sunshine and gorgeous beaches. The warm, unsurpassable hospitality you receive will guarantee it a place in your family’s heart. Dubai has the World’s best of everything, including horse racing, water parks, cuisine, shopping mall – complete with ice rink and aquarium inside, tallest building and must see musical fountain. There’s no poverty, and the public transport is easily accessible and inexpensive. Give it a go; the entire holiday will be the best family thrill ride they’ve ever been on! You’ll also be pleasantly surprised by what excellent value it is.


  15. I would love to take my grandsons on a Dream Trip to Dubai – a clean, safe, family-friendly holiday destination, with plenty of activities to choose from for any age range. As well as relaxing on the beautiful golden sand of JBR Beach with its warm, calm and shallow waters we would all enjoy a dune- bashing safari followed by a camel ride and BBQ dinner in a Bedouin desert camp.

    We would visit the Dubai Museum in the Al Fahidi Fort to learn about life from a bygone era as a contrast to the amazing architecture of the modern city which we could view from the front or rear carriages of the driverless Dubai Metro system and then take it all in from the At The Top observation deck of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building.

    The free and impressive Dubai Fountain water, light and music show can be watched from one of many waterfront cafes just outside the Dubai Mall. The malls in Dubai have many family attractions to choose from. The boys could try ice-skating, helped by the ‘penguin pals’, visit the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo and also see the giant 155 million year old dinosaur skeleton (DubaiDino), all in the Dubai Mall.

    The boys love theme parks and this summer Dubai will open the world’s largest indoor theme park – IMG Worlds of Adventure with four themed zones inside including Marvel, Cartoon Network, Lost Valley – Dinosaur Adventure and IMG Boulevard. This will be completely enclosed and temperature-controlled with 1.5 million square feet of entertainment space!

    Our only problem will be going home with so much more left for us to see and do in beautiful Dubai.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Dubai is such an amazing place. I have visited and was after spending ages googling things to do in dubai, realised that there is loads! We had a great day at aquaadventure and spent a day visiting the Mall, fountains and Burj Khalifa. If I were lucky enough to go back I would love to see Dubai Creek as we missed the souks, and I would love to go to the desert. I quite fancy sandboarding and a camel safari as the sunsets. Oh my I am daydreaming too now!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Richard Beesley says:

    Dubai looks simply amazing. So much to do, so many different worlds all wrapped up in one gorgeous place. Looking at what Dubai has to offer, I’ve been really impressed by the range of family-friendly options – theme parks, indoor fun sessions, skate parks – as well as sports, stunning beaches, and entertainment.

    What I hadn’t realised was how much variety there is in Dubai in terms of food and culture. Our son is a huge foodie, despite being only 10, and would love visiting some of the restaurants and tasting the new flavours.

    As a family we would love to be able to visit Dubai, and experience just a taste of what is on offer. Our elder son loves nature, so would enjoy the different wildlife on show. And dad… well, quad-biking in the sand dunes would suit him perfectly. As for mum… of course Dubai is a shopper’s paradise! And I’m sure we would all enjoy a tour of historic Dubai, as well as the many museums. There truly is something for everyone.

    The hardest part will be choosing what to do. It really does seem that Dubai has it all, a wealth of opportunities to explore and experience.

    Dubai really is the city of possibilities and I want to ‘Discover All That’s Possible In Dubai’.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. hellobabysteph says:

    Dubai has been at the top of my bucket list for many years now and reading you post has made me want to visit so much more!

    Souks, skyscrapers, sand and sea, Dubai really has something for all the family and the possibility of visiting this incredible city is making me super excited.

    I’d love the opportunity to win our perfect family holiday in Dubai; a holiday for the four of us, that combines unlimited opportunities for fun and adventure. We’d be able to
    escape the ‘day to day’, making memories and recharging our batteries. And it would give us the chance to simply spend our days together as a family, enjoying each other’s company before Jack starts school in September.

    There are so many amazing adventures we’d like to experience, but our top 3 would have to be:

    1// A day of aquatic fun at Atlantis’ Aquaventure Waterpark to cool off in the Dubai heat. Aquaventure caters for all the family with its record-breaking rides and slides for thrill seekers and the Splashers’ Children’s Play Area, which is a haven for little ones with water cannons, slides and climbing frames.

    2 // A once-in-a-lifetime experience at Dolphin Bay. As there’s no age limit, we could enjoy this amazing experience as a family and I can only imagine the joy on the children’s faces when they get up close to these amazing creatures!

    3 // Experience the heady heights of Burj Khalifa. We couldn’t visit Dubai without venturing up the tallest building in the World, and although I’m afraid of heights, I’d still feel compelled to visit the observation deck on the 144th floor. As long as I don’t stand too close to the edge, nor look vertically down, I think I’d actually enjoy it.

    I’m now off to spend the day daydreaming about Dubai and all it has to offer…

    Best of luck with your entry! X

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Dubai sounds like such a diverse place and definitely has something for everyone. I’ve travelled a lot all over the world but have never visited Dubai & it’s one place I would really love to visit one day. I too live by the coast and really do crave the warmer weather & sunshine. My little boy turns three in a few days & would love all Dubai has to offer. He’s loves water & that water park looks amazing! And the food is making my mouth water, I’m a big fan of seafood. I remember getting lost in the souks in Marrakech and it would be great to do that in Dubai too! Good luck with your entry. Polly x

    Liked by 1 person

  20. That waterpark is definitely one for Grace! I would love to visit all the markets to experience the culture and Ross would be up for the theatre to take in some of the arts. The horse and camel racing sounds like fun too. Good luck with your entry 🙂 x

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Vicky Online says:

    Goodness, just thinking about it, I would LOVE to go to Dubai!
    1. Miracle Garden. I saw it on Gardener’s World I think and it made a huge impression. (As an aside, that was me tweeting Monty Don about any chance of a programme on Islamic Gardening a few days ago.) Grand scale concept gardening against the odds for me and in your face whackiness for the kids.
    2. Dubai Conservation Reserve. A 4 by 4 safari in an exotic natural environment, which my kids would LOVE.
    3. Atlantis water park. I have never been in a water park when it was warm enough for it to be actually a pleasure, but I guess that would be pretty much guaranteed in Dubai!
    4. I’d have to root this out, but isn’t Arabia the original home of perfume? Particularly the woods (and ouds), ambers and orientals? I done with white florals, I’d like to explore this angle.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. zoe says:

    Wow the Dubai fountain looks absolutely amazing! I would love to go to Dubai just to see that yet there is so much more all in one place – it is almost too hard to imagine so I will have to go there to find out for myself 🙂 The beautiful beach beckons me, incredible concerts and entertainment, retail heaven and then relax and unwind by trying out traditional spa therapies at the hammam! The food in Dubai looks divine and I bet it is delicious. My husband would love the adventure sports, golf courses and falconry. There is something here for everyone. Dubai is my dream destination.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. This is an amazing opportunity, good luck with your entry. I think your choices are great; definitely a step up from a British beach holiday anyway! I think the markets would be a real must for us too; just for the experience and I imagine they are like nothing we have at home in the UK.


  24. I absolutely love the fact that you’ve got such unique and different ideas here like the camel race, visiting the traditional markets and food on a sailboat. I also love how you have related the experience to your family…the comparison of a cold, wet beach in the UK and a hot sunny place in Dubai without putting down the beach here – Just like you say, kids adore the beach no matter what but it would totally blow their minds to be at a beach in Dubai!!!

    We have never enjoyed ‘normal’ holidays and are always looking for something just a little bit different, that meets the needs and desires of everyone in our family but offers something more than just sun, sea and sand and Dubai’s culture and history seems to really hit the spot for us.

    Having home-educated my children for several years, I love making holidays part of their learning and engagement with the world around us and I know somewhere like Dubai would be somewhere they would learn from and remember for the rest of their lives – that is what makes it so appealing for me.

    Very best of luck for your entry.


  25. Dubai holds a special place in my heart as my last baby was born there. Having lived there for 3 years I thought that I would be done, but I’m not. Not only do we have so many lifelong friends, I haven’t seen all of Dubai I wanted to. I want to take an Abra up the creek rather than over to the Souks, to watch the sunrise. I want to head to the Beach and splash around at Splash pad. The new places opening with The Journey and Mattel World. Dubai is a place that is difficult to put into words, you need to see it, taste it, feel it…..I’d love to go back, oh and I guess the added attraction would be the fact that my husband is out there on his own without me and the boys for the next 10 weeks!


  26. My little one had swimming lessons at 2 years old and it’s so amazing when they can enjoy a pool on holiday! I would love to visit Dubai and my dream is to swim with Dolphins in and visit Atlantis. Although sitting on a Beach with a cocktail in hand whilst building sandcastles would be amazing too 🙂


  27. robyn297 says:

    I would love to go to the Souks, I can just imagine what an experience that would be, a riot of colours, textures, flavours and aromas. I dream of filling my suitcase with exotic fabrics to take home to remember our trip with.


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