In recent years, Dubai has become notorious as one of the most expensive and extravagant cities on the planet. We're not sure, then, whether it should surprise anyone that the capital of the United Arab Emirates has its fair share of upscale bike shops, with prices for road bikes starting quite reasonably at about $1600 and mountain bikes at around $800. All good, right? The next question is where to ride. The area around Dubai has been described as similar to "the less interesting parts of a rock quarry," but there is a budding Moab-like mountain bike scene in Shawka, about 50 miles east of the city in desert hill country.
But perhaps the most salient question is when to ride. Summer temps in Dubai can reach as high as 125 degrees F, and they average about 113. And it's not a dry heat: Average humidity is about 90%. We're not planning on cycling in Dubai anytime soon, but we're guessing that bike prices are relatively low because any sane cyclist in the UAE would also be purchasing a roller trainer and doing most of his riding in the cool A/C comfort of his rumpus room. (And we do mean his -- one wonders if women are even permitted to ride a bike here.)