Eid Al Adha: UAE residents excited to explore newly opened roads
With three new world-class expressways now open, drivers and bikers are revving up to explore the brand new attractions
Driving enthusiasts out there, get ready to hit the road - or rather three roads - snaking through some scenic mountains and breathtaking desertscapes for a memorable drive this Eid.
Ever since His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, inaugurated a series of roads on Monday, residents, driving clubs and bikers groups in the UAE have been revving up to take to the wheels and explore the newly-constructed world-class expressways.
Farooq Naeem, member of a biker group in Dubai, said his adrenalin has been rushing ever since he heard the news. “We are really looking forward to going on a spin on the newly-constructed Al Watan Road which leads to the mountains of Wadi Al Qor in Ras Al Khaimah. We have already made plans during the Eid al Adha break and this is on our priority list,” said Farooq, adding that they plan to drive down either early in the morning or late in the evening to avoid the summer heat.”
Due to the travel restrictions, many residents have been have not been able to travel for months, and these roads have opened up just in time for the long Eid break. These new highways offer residents the chance to discover and enjoy some fabulous scenery, spectacular desertscapes, and take in some fresh air, far away from the city chaos, with the flexibility and convenience of their own wheels.
These projects worth Dh1.95 billion will shorten the distance and time between various regions and emirates across the country. The first axis, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Road, is a new route that represents an extension of the Sheikh Khalifa Road (E84) leading to Fujairah. The 52km route has three lanes in each direction, with a speed of 140km per hour.
The second axis - Al-Watan Road - with three lanes in each direction, is pegged at 42km and a design speed of 120km per hour. This road extends from the Hatta area, passing through the Masfout area in Ajman, the Almunaee area, and the mountains of Wadi Al Qor in Ras Al Khaimah.
The third axis is the Dubai-Hatta Road, which includes the development and improvement of the current Dubai-Hatta road between Nizwa and Al Madam areas within Sharjah.
Stephano Rizzo, an Italian artist and entrepreneur has already made plans for a long drive to Hatta this weekend. He is a self-confessed travel junkie who has spent most of his seven years exploring various areas of the UAE. “I have driven on almost all the roads in the UAE. I have now panned a trip to Fujairah on the E84,” Stephano said. “Exploring is something I love, as it helps me invest time in my art. There are a number of unexplored spots in the UAE and these new roads will help residents explore more adventure destinations.”
Mohammed Sameer, a resident of Sharjah said that the deserts on the Fujairah road are ideal for barbeques. “The E 84 road leading to Fujairah will be lined with people doing barbeques during the winters. I checked the terrain of this road on Google Maps - it’s a mix of desert and hills, thus making it an ideal long-drive gateway,” he added.
Hoteliers believe these new roads will give a major boost to domestic tourism. Laurent A. Voivenel, Senior Vice President – Operations & Development, EMEA & India, UAE, said that these new roads will make places more accessible for everyone. Therefore, from a business perspective, these routes definitely hold immense potential for the development of new hotels and restaurants.
“The UAE’s infrastructure compares to the very best in the world, and the opening of these three major new roads carved into the desert and mountains, will cut travel time, improve traffic flow, contribute to domestic tourism and enhance local experiences,” said Laurent.
“Places like Mleiha, Al Shuwaib, Hatta, Masfout and Ras Al Khaimah, are not only recognised for their natural beauty, but also for striking archeological, cultural, historic, and recreational relevance,” Laurent added.
These new roads will boost the existing businesses and give rise to several new businesses.
Rent-a-car companies also believe the new roads will boost their business. Soham Shah, CEO of Selfdrive.ae, said: “People in the UAE love outdoor experiences, particularly long drives. Given the announcement of the three new highways and the upcoming long Eid weekend, we have already started experiencing high volumes of reservations in terms of daily and weekly customers for this period,”
“These roads will reduce travel time substantially, and also provide a far better experience for drivers. We are confident that the addition of these new roads will help boost tourism in the country,” Soham added.
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