Our next planned family vacation isn’t coming up until the
last quarter of the year, and we’re going to Abu Dhabi! Yes, we were one of the
lucky ones to secure the steeply discounted tickets via Etihad Airways to Abu
Dhabi, and we’re excited!

Abu Dhabi and Dubai are on both of our travel bucket lists,
and we thought bringing our soon-to-be four year old on this trip out of the
country would make for an excellent, educational and fun family vacation. 
Photo Courtesy Shangri-La Abu Dhabi
Our flights are lined up, and we’ve secured a hotel, which
is currently the five star hotel, Shangri-La Qaryat Al Beri.  We chose this hotel based off of suggestions
from other people that it’s family-friendly. However, since our trip is so far
ahead, we still have time to change it.  I’ve also heard the Fairmont next door is quite kid-friendly as well.  If you have any suggestions on places to stay that are
kid/family-friendly, and have experienced traveling to Abu Dhabi with a toddler
please leave a comment.
Pool & beach view Shangri-La Abu Dhabi
Now, it’s time to figure out what to do with our four year
old for 6 days.  For the last couple of
months she’s been begging us to take her to the beach, and just a few days ago,
since the weather is warmer, she innocently asked, “Mommy, is it summer? I want
to go to the beach now.” Even she is over the cold and snow.  Of course, since our hotel is set on a
private beach, we will spend a lot of time chilling and catching some rays until she gets sick
of it, and wants to do something else.
I do want to visit one of the theme/water parks, but, I need to do more research on which one will be best for a child her age.  Oh, and she loves flowers, I think she got that from her grandmothers so the Miracle Garden in Dubai is on our list, too!
Other activities we have in mind to do with her while
visiting Abu Dhabi and Dubai include:

You can keep up with all of Beauty and the Bump Travels by searching the hashtag #BATBTravels. I’ll be sure to post updates on our plans the closer we get
to our Abu Dhabi/Dubai trip that include what to wear, what to pack, where to eat, and more. So stay tuned!

Have you visited Abu Dhabi or Dubai as a family? 
What was your experience?
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Kim S.
Kim is the do-it-all mom (and wife) who not only works full-time and is a freelance makeup artist, but also blogs about her love of family, travel, beauty and skincare. Now that she has a kindergartener, Kim has added Class Parent to her resume. These are all tough jobs, but somehow, she makes them look easy.
  • That sounds like fun! What an adventure.

  • Camesha

    That’s going to be an awesome family trip! Looking forward to hearing how it goes.

  • AHHH that is so exciting! We really never get to go anywhere fun!

  • Val

    OMG I am a huge …HUGE jar of jelly right now. I saw that rate and couldn’t do it because we’re planning a move. Enjoy and just know I’m gonna stalk your photos HARD. lol

  • Mellissa Wilmot

    Atlantis in Dubai is very nice and has an entire section for families with kids. I also enjoyed both emirates park zoo and al ain zoo. Emirates has a show where they come out with a tiger cub so you can pet it. Going to the mall can be fun too, most malls have a indoor “amusement park.” Ugh! I wish I bought those tickets! 🙁

    • Can I please take you with me? Do you think 6 days is enough time to fit in both zoos?

  • What an exotic vacation! I’ve never even thought about traveling that far.

    • Isn’t it? Really? I love travelling, especially out of the country. I think it’s a great way to learn about different cultures.

  • FabZilla_Kath

    Enjoy your trip. Bring me next time, lol

    • LOL you sound like my sister. She was kicking herself for not jumping on the flight deal. $187/pp Round trip. You can’t beat that at all.

  • marciaf

    What a fascinating place to go visit.

  • Oh my gosh… what a wonderful experience this will be. I would love to travel there and it is on my list of places to visit for sure.

    • The experience will be even better for our 4 yr old, especially since everything is so grandiose. Hopefully, my trip report can be helpful for when you do go.

  • So exciting!

  • That is going to be a great trip! Hope to see some of your photos! I’m with baby girl…it’s time to hit the beach. You all enjoy it to the fullest! I’ve never been but it’s on my list as well.

    • Thank you. I’ll be sure to take plenty of photos.

  • Mitzi MsAdventures

    Congrats on being one of the lucky ones to get the discount tickets…everyone is going but your the first one that is taking the family…can’t wait to hear your plans!

    • Thank you. I’m happy to be able to cross off something that’s on my bucket list, and take our daughter with us. I don’t know many people going as a family either.

  • Oh wow! I’ve heard mixed reviews on their family vacation packages there, however I do have a couple of entertainer friends who travel there regularly and who absolutely love it! The photos are stunning!

    • What were the mixed reviews you’ve heard about the family packages?

      • Someone posted a link on Facebook a couple of weeks back, this guy wrote a whole article on how the budget trip wasn’t such a deal because his family was treated poorly, they felt mislead about some of the information they received. But I guess you get what you pay for, so I wouldn’t expect luxury treatment if I knew I was getting the budget trip.

        • I remember the post. The guy was disgruntled because he was late to getting to the airport, and had to pay more money for his return flight. He got to the airport 2 hours before his flight instead of 4 hours before. The deal wasn’t a package, it was just for the flight alone. I agree, you do get what you pay for. If he skimped on everything else after securing his flight, that’s his fault. I have friends who have gone, and have lived there and haven’t heard anything except good things.

          • Well that’s good to hear… he made it sound like a nightmare! lol

  • Allison @neversaydiebeauty

    A friend of ours and her husband were there a couple of months ago for a conference. They loved it!

    • I wish my job sent me here for a conference. I bet they did enjoy themselves.

      • Allison @neversaydiebeauty

        I think there’s an article in the New York Times today: 36 hours in Dubai. May be worth a look if you haven’t seen it yet

  • I am disgustingly jealous right now! TAKE ME WITH YOU PLEASEEEEEE

    • Let’s see if we can make a deal. What are you willing to offer, Brooke? LOL

  • Awesome. Never been but want to. Our next family vacay will probably be….the beach 1/2 hour away lol.

    • LOL that works. I’d love to live in a warm climate close to a beach. We have Jones Beach 15 min away. My daughter is begging us to take her to a beach! She’s actually excited about the trip.

  • Yay! I am in Dubai half the time and love it. Blingy and no greenery, but never a dull moment and there’s something for everyone. Do squeeze in time for some makeup browsing (Boots, Mikyajy, Pari Gallery, Karisma, all the pharmacies for EU-brands and Sephora).

    • Oh you are? I need some pointers. I do want to check out some beauty-related things while I’m there. Can you give me some pointers? Are there any must-try brands you recommend?

      • I’d be happy to! I’ll email you a list of brands, where you get them and things you absolutely MUST do in Dubai. Apart from makeup, make sure you sign up for a desert safari (sand-boarding, dune-bashing and playing in the world’s biggest sandbox plus dip in desert-sea. And do visit a falconry.

        • I received your list. You are the best! Desert safari is on our list. I’m not sure if it would be good for our daughter?

        • Tia Garrett

          Hi! I’m going in August, and I know it will be hot. I couldn’t pass up a great deal, even in hot temps. Can you offer me any advice on where to stay, and what to do? My email is tialgarrett@Gmail.com. If you can offer any advice, I’d absolutely love it! Thanks!

          • A lot of my friends recently returned. They all split their time between Abu Dhabi and Dubai. If you want a fast paced lifestyle, try Dubai. Good party scenes, a lot to do. Everything is on a grand scale. Abu Dhabi, from what I heard is more laid back. I was told the Fairmont is good, Aloft, even the Marriot. I don’t think any of the hotels are bad. My friend did say one hotel she stayed in while in Dubai was in the “ghetto”… bur dubai

  • Tiffani G.

    I’ve never been to Abu Dhabi or Dubai, by myself or with the family, and I’m so hyped that you guys are going! I can’t wait to see the pictures and “go” on the journey with you.

    • I can’t wait to share our experiences with you.

  • Ugh. I want to go in your suitcase!

    • Hmm if that wasn’t illegal I would think about it. I can take my son.