If you love the idea of cycling but are unfamiliar with the routes, social media is buzzing with cycling groups that cater for all abilities, from wobbly newbies to pedal-powered pros.
And if the idea of tackling the local roads puts you off getting in the saddle, you will be pleased to know that Dubai now has two large cycle tracks – at Nad Al Sheba and the Dubai Cycling Course at Al Qudra – while Abu Dhabi has the newly extended Al Wathba cycle track.
Gone are the days when people had to cycle in groups for safety-in-numbers, but group cycling remains highly popular, as it is a great way to meet fellow biking enthusiasts.
Almost every bike store has a cycling group that it runs, so you can ask at your friendly local shop about the options that suit you. As well as the regular weekly meetups, larger cycling groups also organise their own special events.
Here are a few of the better-known groups and events to get you started.
Experienced mountain bikers
HOT-COG-MTB is a club for experienced mountain bikers, most of whom were fans of the sport in their home countries before moving to Dubai.
It is run by Andy Whitaker, who has been at the forefront of trail- network development in the Shawka area for eight years.
Cyclists usually meet on Fridays in Shawka or at the new Hatta trail centre, with a maximum of 12 riders on each ride.