At the edge of a great big desert...

Can you guess where this awesome place is? Are you clueless or have you been here once and wanted to come back just like me?

This place is the home of the highest sand dune in the world. A cranking 120-meter tall 50-degree slope and is located at the edge of Rub Al Khali Desert - the largest uninterrupted sand desert in the world also known as the Empty Quarter. 

This is Liwa -  the birthplace of the Baniyas Tribe or the Al Nahyan family and now the ruling family of Abu Dhabi. Liwa is in the southernmost part of Abu Dhabi, almost at the border to Saudi Arabia. It is an oasis with around 50 thriving villages.

This is also the farthest road trip we have done ever in UAE. A stretch of 330-380 km drive from Dubai/Sharjah all the way to this place for three hours, four if you cannot help to stop to take photo.

We stayed at the Arabian inspired hotel. Tilal Liwa Hotel is a four-star hotel with a five-star appeal.

Tilal Liwa is not yet in Liwa proper but already the sand dune overlooking the car park is surreal. 

Liwa from the hotel is another 30 minutes drive while the Tel Moreeb Hill is to another hour. The hotel provided us a road map to Liwa and to Tel Moreeb so we weren't lost at all.

The ample car parking outside the hotel was full and the hotel was fully booked even it was in the middle of summer.

We saw this fort on our way to Moreeb Hill.

The road to Tel Moreeb gets a little bumpy at times. As you can see, nature tries to reclaim itself.

This is the Tel Moreeb dune. The highest among all the giant shifting sand dunes in this area. It is deserted during our visit but once a year there is a festival here attended widely by motor enthusiasts.

My Yellow Bells

Carla is a lifestyle blogger based in Dubai who's thankful to call this ever-evolving city her second home. The pages of this blog are filled with stories about her expat life in the sandpit. It features dining and travel adventures in and around the city and beyond. It also features food recipes, parenting tips, and fashion style.


Please feel free to share your own story or views here.


  1. what a beautiful place beautifully captured!

  2. Ang ganda ng shots! Lalo na yung first photo. I've never been to Liwa.

    1. It's a must see Ms. Jo, malayo pero worth it puntahan. there are other hotels like qasar al sarab, liwa rest house and Liwa hotel, we stayed at tilal liwa which is also a good option.

  3. Wow Carla, ang ganda at ang galing :)
    Gustong gusto namin pumunta sa Liwa kaso nung attempt namin halfway lakas ng sandstorm.
    Great summer get away :)

  4. After spending few years in Dubai i must say What moreover you end up to get preferring Dubai been always enjoyable fascinating experiment and a city-state that compare to like no other. DESERT SAFARI DUBAI

  5. Hello Carla,

    Am going over your Liwa blogposts now, and got me excited to see the dunes myself and do sandboarding too when we drive there this weekend :)


  6. hi Beverly, I'm sure you will enjoy a lot. The weather is also great now for sandboarding unlike when we were there. You may also visit some camel farms which unfortunately we are not able to do before.

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