Image Id: 10570
Category: Nature
Title: arabian icon
Description: The island icon Sir Bani Yas Island, the UAE’s largest nature reserve. Located off the coast of Abu Dhabi’s western region, the 87sq km park is the largest natural island in the UAE. It was established as a private nature reserve in 1971 by former UAE ruler HH Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan in order to safeguard the population of endangered animals in the region; today it’s home to more than 30 species of free-roaming creatures including gazelles and Arabian oryx, as well as not-so-regional cheetahs, giraffes and ostriches. In 2008, luxury hotel chain Anantara opened the Desert Islands resort on the island, giving guests the chance to combine a high-end staycation with an authentic wildlife safari.