You might think summer is usually a time to go abroad and enjoy the cooler temperatures, but you can now look much closer to the UAE, to not only learn how to surf, but also enjoy a short getaway to Oman.
Popular Dubai-based Fahrenheit Beachsports have lined up five visits to Asilah, southern Oman over the next three months, beginning with a May 31 trip.
It’s part of their Aloha Arabia events, which have become a huge success since it was introduced by the watersports company.
“We started running surf camps and tours around five years ago and saw the demand for people wanting to go on surfari, learn to surf, meet other people and have an affordable holiday right on our doorstep,” said Carl de Villiers, owner of Fahrenheit Beachsports.
“I visited Oman shortly after moving to the Emirates over 10 years ago and have fallen in love with this country and its rugged coastline, epic swells and amazing surf! The surf in the UAE is sufficient for beginners and intermediates, but not on the same level as Oman which has a natural ground swell from the Indian Ocean, bringing with it amazing, consistent waves over the summer (monsoon) season.”
The trips are tailor-made, which vary between three to five days. Prices start from Dh1,800 which includes surf lessons, surfboard rental, accommodation, transport in Oman, food and beverages, beach and social activities and even a visit to the local turtle conservation hatchery. Transport to Oman is not included in the price, although coach travel is available for Dh600.
Whether you’re new to surfing or not, the trips are open to people of all experience and De Villiers insists it will be guaranteed fun.
“Aloha Arabia attracts surfers and those wanting to learn how to surf from all over the GCC,” he said.
“There are a lot of expat surfers living in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar who also fly in and join us on Surfari and we often have a very mixed group of people, on all levels of surfing who love the beach and outdoor lifestyle. This makes our trips very interesting, enjoyable and definitely something to add to the bucket list if you want to experience real surf here in the Middle East.”
Squash may seem simple enough as a game in which you hit a ball off the wall, but there’s far more that goes into being a top-notch player than meets the eye.
Few are more aware of what’s needed to be great at the sport than Hadrian Stiff, owner of Elite Squash and coach to some of the world’s best players. With plenty of experience under his belt, Stiff is the perfect tutor to learn the game from and the public will have the chance to get first-hand knowledge from the coach at Elite Squash UAE’s masterclass coaching camp.
To be held next month from June 9-10 at the Aviation Club in Dubai, the camp will offer the rare opportunity to receive training and advice from Stiff, as well as a seat to watch the PSA World Series Finals.
Two players to keep an eye on in the Dubai tournament next month are world No3 Mohamed El Shorbagy and world No5 Marwan El Shorbagy. The Egyptian brothers have taken the sport by storm, with Stiff having worked with them to maximise their talents.
That same type of professional coaching will be available at the masterclass camp, where players will learn about movement, technique and tactics through personal feedback and video tutorials.
Whether you’re someone wanting to take your skills to the next level, or just wanting to develop a foundation, the camp has you covered.
Participants can choose either one or both days, which will include lunch, dinner, a T-shirt and two sessions in which, for example, players will be coached on elements like ‘speed of movement and the art of relaxed efficiency’, or ‘skill development and the short game through grip sensation and feel’.
The camp is limited to eight players per day, so make sure to reserve your spot as soon as possible through www.elitesquash. ae. Participants can choose to pay either Dh1,000 per day for the camp alone, or Dh1,350 inclusive of a PSA World Series Finals ticket at Dubai Opera.
Squash fans would be remiss to not take advantage of this fantastic opportunity to up their game.
For cricketers in the UAE, here’s your chance to test yourself at Al Ain Cricket Club’s (AACC) Ramadan Cup and grab a slice of the Dh5,000 prize money.
To be held from June 8 to 16 at Al Ain Equestrian, Shooting and Golf Club, the 10-over tournament has already attracted a lot of interest and with registration closing on Saturday, May 27, there’s still time to sign up.
Since opening in 2016, the only way has been up for AACC and although the weather might well be getting warmer, organisers insist that shouldn’t pose a problem in making the competition a success.
“Cricket is a very famous sport that is widely played in the UAE,” said Afzal Pasha, cricket operations manager. “It’s the same in Al Ain but it’s just that the teams do not have enough facilities to play which means they would have to travel to other emirates to play in different venues and competitions.
“For example, we held a tournament, which was played with a tennis ball at the beginning of the month and we were amazed to have 15 teams from Al Ain and one from Dubai competing, so it shows that there’s interest. That’s why we are really excited about our Ramadan Cup.
“We’ve already started receiving registrations and hope we have 16 teams altogether.”
Matches will be played on an astro-synthetic pitch with a knock-out format. Players must be aged 16 and over with no more than 15 in a squad. Entry costs Dh1,000 per team with the champions winning Dh3,000, while the runners-up go home with Dh2,000.
Pasha is confident the Ramadan Cup will be a big success. “We at Al Ain Cricket Club want to promote and increase the popularity of the sport. We have the best facilities to all the cricket lovers and it’s a chance to experience our lush greens.
“We want to have more tournaments in this form as this is will help us to bring the community together and have fun with the game we love.”
He added: “Although it’s hot, the humidity is less and our club facilities are wonderful so families and friends can relax and enjoy the match as all the games are played under floodlights.”
WHAT: Ramadan Cup
WHERE: Al Ain Cricket Club at Al Ain Equestrian, Shooting and Golf Club
WHEN: June 8 to 16
CONTACT: For more information, or to register, phone 03 702 6469 or visit www.aesgc.ae