Middle East destinations see an upsurge amongst Indian travellers in searches

Agoda observed the trend ahead of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

Ahead of the much-awaited global football tournament to be held in Qatar later this year, digital travel platform Agoda has observed a 26% increase in searches for stays in Dubai and a 20% increase across the wider region (Riyadh, Jeddah, Al Khobar, Dammam, Abu Dhabi, Muscat and Manama) as Indian fans choose easily accessible surrounding states to base themselves for the sporting spectacle. In light of this surge, Agoda has shared some great ideas to make the most of trips and is rolling out Champion Deals.

“Football is a craze the world over, and Indians and Asians are keen to catch the mega event that’s taking place this year right in their backyard. But what’s more, they are taking advantage of Dubai’s proximity to Qatar to have a bit of extra time visiting the wider region. Our Champion Deals will leave a little extra in the pockets of Indian travellers to spend exploring the culinary, shopping, and action-packed adventures that this region has to offer,” said Krishna Rathi, Country Director - India, Sri Lanka and Nepal, Agoda.

For off-pitch action, check out these ideas from Agoda while visiting the region.

Al Ain near Abu Dhabi

A 90-minute drive from both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, located in the east of the UAE, Al Ain is a garden city filled with picturesque locations surrounded by fruit trees and date palms. It is recognized as a World Heritage Site and attracts visitors to admire this marvel with its 4,000-year history. Al Ain is home to more than 147,000 trees and an ancient irrigation system that continues to deliver water to them.

Hatta near Dubai

Adventure spot Hatta positions itself as a world-class tourist destination, with visitors flocking to the Al Hajar mountains which offer an opportunity to visit rock pools, dams, and parks. Bordering Oman, Hatta is about 80 miles from Dubai. It has a beautiful honeybee garden that’s also known for its apitherapy treatments. One can also enjoy the birds and other wildlife at Swan Lake.

Jeddah in Saudi Arabia

While temperatures may be cooling down in Jeddah, there are hot things to do. Why not explore the quintessential Arabic cuisine at Al Baik, take in close views of the Red Sea at Silver Sands beach or visit the world’s tallest lighthouse called Seaport? The must-see King Fahd’s fountain, which is the tallest fountain of its kind in the world, blasts water from the Red Sea up to 800 feet in the sky.

Nizwa near Muscat

Not too far from the main city of Muscat stands the ancient city of Nizwa – known to be the capital of Islamic culture. This city dates back to the 17th century and was once a key trade route within the region. Packed with history, forts, souks, and deserts – Nizwa provides a picturesque view of Oman. While in the city one can enjoy the famous Nizwa fort, which is well-known for its 40m tall round tower.

Ski Dubai in Dubai

For more sporting adventures that you certainly wouldn’t expect in the desert, check out Ski Dubai. With more than 22,000 square miles of indoor ski areas, Ski Dubai is the coolest destination to get away from the hot sun, heat waves, and the busiest crowd in Dubai during the football tournament. Part of the Mall of Emirates, this is the largest ski center on the planet and has the world's first indoor black diamond ski run. It also features an ice tower, climbing caves, penguin encounters, and a children’s snow park play area.

SkyDiving in Dubai

If the football isn’t enough to get your heart pumping, why not try a little SkyDive? Visitors can choose premium spots such as the Palm Dropzone or the Desert Dropzone for the dive. The Skydive Dubai team offers experiences along with coaching courses to learn this breathtaking sport.

Post this adventure, visitors can taste the luxury and culture at La Coco Dubai - a California-inspired eatery located in Andaz Dubai The Palm which offers the best grilled stuffed peppers, vegan tostadas, marinated baby chicken and fresh fruity sweets.


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