DUBAI, UAE, 9 October 2023: Visitors to the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR) can now enjoy an immersive introduction to the UAE’s indigenous flora and fauna, learn about the Reserve, its work to conserve this beautiful but fragile ecosystem, and more, at the new Visitor Centre which opened on 4 October (World Animal Day). 

Emirates Group’s executive vice president of facilities, projects management & group procurement, Ali Mubarak Al Soori said: “We are pleased to enhance the experience of visitors to the DDCR and help promote awareness of habitat conservation and the achievements of the Reserve. With the busy winter season coming, we look forward to welcoming guests to the visitor centre and fostering in them an appreciation for Dubai’s wildlife and nature.”

The DDCR Visitor Centre features carefully curated content from the Reserve’s conservation experts in five distinct areas.

  • The reception hall is an inviting open space that welcomes visitors into the centre, where a massive wall and stretch ceiling photography highlights the Arabian Oryx in their natural habitat. An interactive kiosk enables visitors to explore a map of the Reserve and discover where elusive wildlife like the Arabian Fox have been spotted.
  • The cultural hall showcases the DDCR’s key milestones from its inception in 1999 as the pioneer for protected areas in the UAE to its current standing as a successful model for habitat conservation, managed tourism, and education and scientific research. Cultural elements closely linked to the UAE’s desert heritage – like falconry, date farming and camel farming are also featured as part of the DDCR’s history in this hall.
  • The AV hall is a “mini cinema” where visitors can watch a short, beautifully produced feature film to get an overview of the Reserve.
  • Dispelling the misconception that deserts are barren, the habitat hall features the diverse indigenous flora and fauna of the Reserve via true-to-life 3D-printed models, holographic displays, interactive kiosks, and push-button devices which play the melodies of the various bird species found inside the DDCR. There are also real-life specimens on display for keen nature enthusiasts.
  • Providing a whole new perspective on nightlife in Dubai, a dome display using cutting-edge technology in the nocturnal hall provides an immersive showcase of the nocturnal wildlife inhabitants of the DDCR.

Enabling visitors to self-explore the exhibits, life-size replicas of the Arabian Hare placed throughout the centre provide pre-recorded audio explanations and Oryx hoofprints on the ground guide visitors on their journey from one hall to the next. After touring the halls, visitors can try wildlife spotting for real or simply enjoy magnificent views of the open desert from an elevated viewing platform.

Initially, the DDCR Visitor Centre will focus on school groups and visitors arriving as part of safari experiences booked via one of the Reserve’s approved tour operators – Arabian Adventures, Sand Sherpa, Travco, 57 Heritage, Nara Desert Escapes, and Platinum Heritage. Walk-in visitors may also enjoy the exhibits in the centre for a nominal entry fee of AED 35 for Adults and AED 25 for children.

About the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve (DDCR)

The DDCR is the UAE’s first national park, spanning an area of 225 square kilometres, roughly 5% of the total land area of Dubai.

The Emirates Group has invested more than AED 28 million in the Reserve to fund and support the conservation of the natural desert landscape and its indigenous fauna and flora.

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