The United Arab Emirates is composed of seven emirates: Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah – all of which have coastlines. We’ve been to the beaches of all the Emirates except one, in Ajman. Ajman is the emirate just 30 minutes drive away from where we live so going to a beach in Ajman is actually nearer for us than say to go to the beach in Jumeirah (in Dubai). I’m not really sure why we’ve not been to a beach in Ajman till now.
The husband’s going away for work again and we thought it was a good time to spend a weekend with the kids at the beach. He himself wanted to go so a spontaneous decision lead me to looking for a place to stay in Ajman. It was already Thursday night on a long UAE weekend for Eid Al Adha so all the major hotels in Ajman are either fully booked or with inflated rates. We stayed at the Ajman Beach Hotel, a 3-star property seemingly dwarfed by the huge hotels along Ajman corniche. You could tell that this hotel must be one of the first ones to be built along the corniche before the big wigs like Ajman Palace or Ajman Saray or Fairmont came to be. The hotel is very basic but clean and decent enough.
TIP: If you’re a family of four and keeping budget by choosing only one room, better choose the twin beds rather than the double bed. Otherwise, get another room for the kids. Ajman Beach hotel was great value for money if you only go there for the beach (it’s the same stretch of beach anyway from the nearby big hotels) and not mind the lack of hotel facilities.
The hotel elevator was very small and the reception was really slow. Ah, I could list so many other inconvenience but it’s just because we’re used to staying in bigger hotels with better services and amenities. But come to think of it, with the price we paid, the hotel wasn’t really bad.
The saving grace of this hotel, though? The lovely private beach, which is the same stretch of beach with powdery, soft white sand and clear waters. When we went to the beach, we completely forgot about the small room or the not-for-the-claustrophobic elevator or the noisy split aircon in the room!
When we arrived just after lunch, it was still so hot (yes even in mid-September when we were there) so we had to wait for a while to go maybe right before sunset. The kids of course, couldn’t wait and though we’re speaking in all the languages we know, they can’t seem to understand when we say, “it’s still too hot!” or “wait till 5 pm”.
Finally, when we went out, the heat was milder. The tide was low so you have to really walk so far out to get in the water.
I must admit, I am not a really big fan of going to the beach. Maybe because with a small kid, it takes a bit of work to prepare the things, the clean up but then when I am there, I realize how stupid that thought is because when I am there, I can get lost in time just lying on the soft sand and listening to the waves. (It helps if someone is there to watch the kids and I can only do this when their father is here so I took this rare opportunity!)
The beach in Ajman was wonderful. We loved that it wasn’t so crowded – actually the morning after, we were the only (crazy) ones to be swimming at 10 am. Look how clean and clear the water is!
The beach was idyllic. The powder-like sand, the warm sea breeze and sea water, the rhythmic ebb and flow of the waves were setting the right ambiance for a relaxing family vacation.
However, when we finished swimming, I got the kids to the shower and I was wonder why my husband did not follow. I saw him on the shore picking up snack wrappers, candy wrappers, plastic bags and other objects and other marine debris. I guess they might have floated into the water from the nearby public beach or had been left behind by previous vacationers.
Did you know that marine debris, especially plastics, is harmful to wildlife and the environment as a whole? Seabirds, marine mammals and sea turtles often ingest floating plastic bags and debris with lethal consequences.
So, next time you go to the beach or park, please pick up after yourself. Don’t leave trash behind. The trash on the beach/shore was an insult to the lovely, pristine beach – something we all would like to preserve for our kids and the generations and generations after that, right?