After a long week, sometimes a short getaway is in order. But deciding which destination to travel to can be daunting when you only have only few days to spend.
To help you choose, Shoestova brings you top 5 short break destinations less than 6 hours away from Dubai.
We even found the ideal resorts for you too, so keep scrolling down.
Oman is one of the few countries in the region that has retained some of the charms of the Arab world as it must have been years ago. It has everything: from majestic mountains and sawtooth fjords to unspoilt beaches and endless deserts.
The Chedi Muscat
This luxury retreat is one of the first stylish resorts on this stretch of the Gulf and located in the capital of Oman, Muscat. In the midst of the hustle and bustle, The Chedi Muscat expertly maintains an air of seclusion and serenity: it’s home to stunning palms and water gardens, and a tranquil private beach. The Spa at The Chedi Muscat offers a range of relaxing treatments and beauty therapies to indulge: The phrase “treat yourself” has never been so fitting. The food is outstanding and eating on the beach in the moonlight is a must-do for a more romantic setting.
Al Baleed Resort Salalah
Inspired by Omani fortresses of old, this whitewashed resort comprises a main building overlooking the infinity pool and low-rise villas linked by paths lined with banana trees and coconut palms. Water lovers will find themselves spending time at the infinity pool, which looks directly out to sea, surrounded by lush tropical gardens and walkways framed by coconut palms. Sun worshippers, on the other hand, will enjoy soaking up the morning rays on the resort’s 250m-long private beach. Salalah itself is full of ancient ruins and heritage sites, with fort-dotted mountains, rugged wadis and even more pristine beaches.
Alila Jabal Akhdar
Located 2,000 metres above sea level in the Hajar Mountains and a two-hour drive from Muscat, Alila Jabal Akhdar is an ideal getaway for adventure and nature lovers. The view is mesmerising, but take the time to go on epic treks, canyon walks and cave explorations or dive into the infinity pool and imagine swimming the edge of the earth.
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2. GOA / INDIA
With its wide selection of surreal beaches to take long walks on, elaborate dining laced with hints of Portuguese, Indian and coastal flavours and a rich heritage history that is significant in its cultural offerings, Goa is one happening from dawn to dusk.
Ahilya by the Sea
Set upon Goa’s famous Dolphin Bay, with a small number of tastefully decorated villas overlooking the majestic Arabian Sea, this boutique hotel experience gives one an escape to remember with its spa haven and art filled gardens that scream of chic-tranquillity galore. What makes this experience one to remember is that Ahliya by the Sea has a unique offering of a Sunrise infinity pool (that would surely get you out of your bed earlier than normal) to welcome the morning in and a Sunset plunge pool, where one can farewell to a day of fun activities and/or leisurely lazing.
In the midst of the tropical and greenery filled lands of Nerul lies the luxury and grandeur filled estate of Coco Shambhala. With an unspoken but clear motive, the Shambhala experience aims to make you one with nature whether you are lounging in the jungle pool or tasting the specially crafted Goan menu highlighted with flavours picked from across the globe. What makes this heaven on earth resort extra special is that there are just 4 villas (yes, you read that right, only four) so that means your privacy is taken up a whole notch.
True to the meaning of its name of being an Earthly Abode, Avanilaya is a pioneering boutique venture with its eco-friendly designs that make green luxury very much a reality. With the nearby Mandovi tributary, a home to a flouring flora and fauna, this oasis inspired setting/offering is perfect for the artist, writer or lover in you that might just need a quiet space to breathe and do what you do best.
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What does an archipelago that boasts of over 100 islands mean for us, sun, sad & staycation lovers? Over 100 and more resorts to choose from! The beautiful Republic of Seychelles spread wide, in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, has much to offer from relaxing on the beautiful coral beaches to observing the widespread wildlife and getting your sporty vibes on with an abundant amount of water sports (another excuse to get that sun kissed glow as well!)
Fregate Island Private and Resort
With conversation is comfort mission that is implemented while taking care of the guests and environment, this hidden gem of a resort island is nothing short of ‘unique on the planet’. Established on an island of its namesake, Fregate Island Private takes the privacy meaning in its name to a whole another level with each villa equipped with a private pool and dining up in the treehouses! The resort also gets you to know more about the beautiful blue waters with its eco-exploration activities and excursions such as Island hopping.
Maia Luxury Resort & Spa
With fresh bursts of hibiscus, lemongrass and cinnamon greeting one as you take your first steps on the island, the Maia Luxury Resort & Spa is a sure way to pamper yourself with the best of Mother Nature and her beautiful offerings. Set on the whole island of the secluded Anse Louis with a staff of over 230 for just 30 villas (talk about dedicated service!), the Maia Resort brings you the best of Creole cuisine, Balinese style spa treatments and adventurous canoeing along the horizon of the India Ocean.
Six Senses Zil Pasyon
This family oriented island is the perfect getaway for everyone, from the big to the small and we mean it! While the young ones are kept busy with a range of over 25 activities such as Treasuring Hunting, Movies under the Stars and Dessert Making, the adults can have a getaway with a taste of both, adventure and romance. You can get to choose from exploring Seychelles to trailing to the Top Hill on Félicité Island or diving deep into the ocean for some Vitamin Sea and if you plan it right, you can get a try at all!
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Known to make one live the sunny side of life with holiday offerings of adventure & thrill, romance & passion and spiritual relaxation, Maldives is a tropical dream come true at its best! You have the blue lagoons waiting for you to take a dive into, the white sandy beaches of Male (put proper accent) to have a moonlit dinner on and traditional Maldivian spa treatments that bring out the zen in you.
Finolhu Baa Atoll
Located in an UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Finolhu Baa Atoll is one of the most au naturel islands on the Indian Ocean. The resort is a thriving marine life haven where you can explore the blue world on a Snorkel Safari with sea turtles, choose to get lost in the ocean on your private yacht (or super size yacht, if you would like!) and have the best of Maldivian cuisine with a colourful spectre of in-house performers at the 1 OAK Island (Shoestova recommend!).
Naladhu Private Island
With all of its beautiful residences located above the pristine clear waters of Velighandu Huraa, Naladhu takes privacy to a whole another level on their private island. Redefining the meaning of love-o-cation with the terms, seclusion and luxury, this resort offers one to enjoy the natural zen state of the ocean with open-air living rooms, outdoor bath and even, personal House Master (a butler) and in room spa treatments (get your partners to give you a nice V-Day upgrade on the last ones). Naladhu pampers one with a check on all water activities, just ask your House Master with a quick call! (read more here)
Wanting to make you feel more at home than ever is Amilla Fushi, the ‘My Island Home’ resort which literally focusses on an all & everything sea inspired lifestyle! From blissful retreat homes in the form of Sea Chic Cocoons overlooking the coral filled sea below /with your choice of lounging in the pool or jumping into the water below to having an on island boutique to have your pick at fun in the sun wear and the award winning Javvu Spa, which is an all-round body & mental wellness treat, Amilla Fushi really is a launch point for endless discovery.
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5. SRI LANKA
While one side of the country makes for the perfect romantic landscape that is filled with lush green forests, rising mountains and flowing waterfalls, Sri Lanka is also known for its sunny beach escapes that are abundant in palm trees, coral reefs and hidden resorts galore!
Anantara Peace Haven Tangalle Resort
Hidden on the shores of Sri Lanka’s southern coastline of Tangalle, where it is situated on a coconut tree filled outcrop, Anantara’s Peace Haven Resort transports one to the world of the past with its access to cultural centres and heritage temples, ride away distances to national parks and unique whale watching beach points!
Designed to give one the holistic Sri Lankan experience with its Ayurvedic healing programs with the trademark Anantara spa touch, flavourful and tangy cuisine and iconic tea plantations visits and sampling.
Home to the famous leopard territory in South East Asia, Resplendent Ceylon’s Wild Coast Tented Lodgeis the literal definition of where land meets the sea, with its Yala Jungle touching the shore of the Indian Ocean. This lux-venture treat is designed as a treat to those looking for a swanky stay in the jungle (adding in a bit of adrenaline leopard watching as well) with secluded houses built of earthy bamboo, plunge pools to soak in the jungle mist and visits to the Sanctuary Spa so that you can benefit from the homemade Ceylon Tea & Cinnamon wellness essentials.
Santani Wellness Resort
Located in Kandy District, Santani Wellness Resort is an exclusive spa sanctuary nestled 2,800 metres above sea level with 20 private villas, spa and infinity pools overlooking rice paddies and distant mountains. What strikes the most about the resort is a buzzed-about destination spa on a former tea plantation, with an all-inclusive wellness programme, breathtaking views of the forest, mountains and rice fields from every angle and minimalistic luxury design, allowing the idyllic scenery to do the talking. The hotel focusses on the principles of health retreat with holistic programs, an in-house Ayurvedic doctor and a customized meal plan of raw foods, juice cleanses, and even biodynamic wine.
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