Weekend Trip to Jebel Hafeet with Aston Martin Vantage S

Every month a new trip will be uploaded to this site: enjoy!

This trip is on tarmac to the garden city of Al Ain, for a relaxing picnic at the Green Mubazzarah park and an exhilarating drive up one of the world’s most famous mountain roads.

Aston Martin Vantage S

The 12 km strip of tarmac up Jebel Hafeet is like a F1 track up a mountain – a motorsports enthusiast’s wet dream. Many have tackled it, some officially, such as Emirati rally legend Mohammed bin Sulayem, who set a record of a 7 km segment with its 22 corners in 3 minutes and 39 seconds setting a benchmark time (and now sadly imitated by every crazy driver and his cousin). Edmunds.com called it the world’s greatest driving road, and TV Show Fifth Gear featured an adrenalin-pumping sprint up.

But… sorry to all… try it in an Aston Martin sports car! Feel the “Bond”!!!

Jebel Hafeet

Jebel Hafeet road climbs 1249 meters and offers an impressive view over Al Ain city and the desert in the distance. Jebel Hafeet is the UAE's best-known natural landmark, of importance throughout the area's history and now is developed as a contemporary tourist attraction. An extensive natural cave system snakes underground through Jebel Hafeet and natural hot water springs emerge at its foot. It is often incorrectly labelled the UAE's highest mountain, but it actually is the second-highest peak.

Here is a video of a similar Aston Martin:

sunset

Download the KML file for your GPS by clicking here. Once downloaded, you can import the file into your GPS device and take it on the road, or double-click that file and it will open automatically in Google Earth if you have that installed (all adventurers should! Google Earth).

And here is an interactive map of the route.
View Jebel Hafeet Mountain, Abu Dhabi in a larger map, courtesy of AUSmotive.

Aston black and white

Aston Martin is opening its new showroom in Dubai on December 6th, right next to the Burj Khalifa tower and Dubai Mall, in the presence of the brand's CEO Dr. Ulrich Bez. I can't say you're invited, but I doubt they can turn away a sincere enthusiast! ;)

hotel

At the top of the winding road is a parking lot, so basically you drive up, enjoy the views from the various look-out points along the way, and then you drive back down again. At the top there is Le Mercure hotel but I think you can do better for accommodation down in Al Ain town.

So the real destination for this weekend trip is actually at the foothills of Jabel Hafeet. There lies the Green Mubazarrah. It is a green valley, where hot-water springs gush forth in little streams and form a lake. Little pools and jacuzzis are scattered all over the area and a large grassy park attracts picnickers. Barbeque pits are provided, and there are playgrounds for the kids to run wild. It does get very busy during weekend evenings and nights, but when you catch the fresh breeze you will understand why it is a fabulous destination (plus the road up!).
Green Mubazzarah

Please do take care while driving the Jebel Hafeet road. It is a magnet for young men and their cars, many of whom think they possess racing car driving skills – well, they don’t, and the cement guardrails are continuously being repainted as a result.

crash
Aston Martin Vantage S

On the mountain road, the Aston Martin was in its element, and there is no shame in saying I didn't get anywhere close to the limits of either the car or the road. I drove safely, absolutely loved the acceleration of the car and how it hugged the curves, and got back down safely in time for tea - that's how to approach a weekend visiting Jebel Hafeet: don't over-do it!

Oh, and I took a recording of what the Aston Martin sounds like!

Best time to enjoy the views from Jebel Hafeet is sunset, and for a quiet drive it is early Friday morning. My disclaimer is here.

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