United Arab Emirates (UAE) country lies in the very south end of the Arabian Gulf on a peninsula. It is composed of seven emirates (such as states), previously called sheikhdoms.
Dubai is the UAE’s most populous city of approximately 2.5 million and the second biggest in area (after Abu Dhabi). Most men and women reside in the metropolitan area of Dubai, but there are various kinds of landscapes within the emirate. Among the more interesting areas to explore in the UAE is the Hajar Mountains, which have peaks rising to 1,300 meters. Hatta, a quaint city set amid the hills, belongs to Dubai though the path to get there crosses to Oman. If you drive north along the coast you will pass through the emirates of Sharjah, Ajman, Umm al Qaiwain and Ras al Khaimah. Fujairah is due east. The capital of the Emirates is Abu Dhabi, about a 90-minute drive to the southwest.
To the west and south, the UAE shares with Saudi Arabia a boundary in a region called the Empty Quarter. This is a huge expanse of desert that comprises some of the world’s largest sand dunes. Oman is UAE’s eastern neighbor and across the Arabian Gulf, to the north, is Iran.
The Emirates pay 83,600 square kilometers, 80 percent of which is desert. But we also have mountains and oases in addition to over 200 islands. (See the map on the last page)