I would like to tell you a story about one long journey across UAE. Yesterday, I spent about 6 hours in a car and drove through 5 emirates. It wasn’t pleasant journey but a bit stressful. We had 2 main tasks – to reach Czech embassy in Abu Dhabi to get a new password to Czech data box and visit a booze store in Ras Al Khaimah (RAK). After these two stops we wanted to come back home safely.
DUBAI -> ABU DHABI -> DUBAI -> SHARJA -> UMM AL QUWAIN -> RAS AL KHAIMAH -> UMM AL QUWAIN -> SHARJA -> DUBAI
The first step was to rent a car because we don’t have any here. Car renting companies are at every corner here and it is quite cheap issue. We chose Indigo car rental because they have office not far away from our place. One of their office is situated in JLT (Jumeirah Lake Towers), which is 3 stops far from Tecom, where we live now. Indigo has also fair prices and special offer for yesterday – 1 day rental only for 59 AED. But we didn’t know before about special fee for every kilometres more than 179 kilometres limit. I think It was 0,25AED/kilometre more. Our planned journey was more than 500 kilometres. Maybe I would change my mind about Indigo company knowing this special fee, but On the other hand, It is still very cheap to rent a car here. The prices of gasoil are announced for every month by Ministry of energy and now starts at 1,70 AED (12 CZK). The only thing that can limit you is driving license, if u don’t have UAE driving license you should have an international driving license ‘cause they don’t accept the european one.
Being behind a schedule already
Firstly I have to admit that we was already behind schedule when came out of the Hotel, but renting process was extremely slow and we lost another 30 mins by waiting for a car. You should see local passion for hurrying and their Inshallah attitude. It tooks to from Dubai to Abu Dhabi max 1,5 hour without any traffic jam. In the afternoon the traffic situation is not the best one. Therefore we had only 1 hour to get to Czech embassy and our journey started be stressful from the beginning.
1st task Czech Embassy
When we finally got a car which wasn’t the most beautiful one (I don’t rather have any photo), we drove through JLT, anyway it is also very beautiful part of Dubai, till we got to 8 lane road Sheik Zayed Rd. which leads up to Abu Dhabi. Our problem wasn’t only the time that was pressing us but also a lack of petrol. We met one or two petrol station saying ‘will be another’ but after a while there wasn’t any. Adrenaline in my blood was rising with every single kilometer. As I said second problem was lack of time. We arranged a meeting at Embassy at 4 pm, but we knew we couldn’t make it. I was trying to call consular officer, but I wasn’t lucky. That time I was really worried that we went 123 km for nothing. This situation was extremely stressful.
We made it
Finally we drove 30 km after the dashboard showed 0 kilometres more and found petrol station almost in front of the embassy in Abu Dhabi. One problem was solved but not the second one. When our car was getting petrol we was 20 mins delays. Fortunately, I was luckier and got consular officer on the phone. She was angry a lot but still gave me a chance how to make our meeting. At first I tried to kindly apology and she asked me one question that surprised me a bit ‘Why didn’t you come on time?’ I didn’t expect this and after she kindly give us 10 minutes. It was a grim deadline but we made it! I calmed out and was so relieved once we had the password.
Short relax in Abu Dhabi
After this stressful situation we went for a short walk along the island. I have to admit that the embassy is situated at for me the best place in Abu Dhabi, exactly where I want to live one day. There is fabulous view of Emirates Palace, Etihad towers and a real Palace. It is really amazing place where many families did picnic at the weekend. There is a large beach called Corniche beach near to this walk, which is also so much beautiful. I absolutely love this place. It’s a pity we don’t have enough time for longer walk.
2nd task Al Hamra Cellar
Anyway we had more than three quarters of journey ahead so we continued in our planned way. Our second target was in Ras Al Khaimah actually Al Hamra Cellar. RAK is situated on the other side of UAE. How to get there? The way is also easy, just go stright all the time and you will easily pass Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharja, (Ajman), Umm Al Quwain and get to Ras Al Khaimah emirate. This journey usually takes 2,5 hours, but the traffic wasn’t good therefor it took a bit longer.
Traffic situation between Dubai and Sharja
The worst traffic situation is between Sharja and Dubai and that’ s because of very cheap flats in Sharja. Most of the people working in Dubai lives in Sharja. Therefore in the morning there is a traffic jam from Sharja to Dubai and in the evening it is on the opposite side of the road – from Dubai to Sharja and it is every single working day the same. So bevare of this ways!
It is very nice journey during the day especially in Umm Al Quwain ‘cause the road is built in a desert. While you are driving you can see many camels walking in a desert. Unfortunately all of them are domesticated but still where else you can see that? Even at some of the roads camels can walk accros the road so you have to stop and wait till they want to go elsewhere, isn’t amazing? Anyway we drove after a sunset and didn’t see any this time, maybe because of the dark or because they went to sleep.
In hurry as always
We hurried a bit again because a store we chose is closing at 9 pm, we turned there at 8,30 pm with no problem. Al Hamra Cellar, how the shop is called, seemed to me as a large warehouse from outside but when I came in I changed my mind about it.
Oasis in the middle of nothing
It is fabulous oasis in the middle of a desert, the interior is very nice and, clean, it’s really huge with luxury stuffs. You can find there everything from high quality wines, through beers, rums, vodka to whiskeys- also a Czech beer! What’s more – fair prices. The items are selling without tax and you don’t have to pay license. I would say, prices are a bit higher than in the Czech republic but still very cheap in UAE. 24 beer cans about 100 AED, special package of wines – 6 wines about 135 AED… You can find everything what’s your appetite is at very friendly place.
Coming back home
We smoothly bought everything we wanted. The last task was to get home safely. Frotunately everything went well and we got home alright. Our whole day journey was celebrated with cold beer.