• Tom Bushell

Adventure // Walk the Valley of the Caves and discover early human adventures // UAE

The Valley of the Caves trail in the Emirates of Sharjah is where remarkable findings have been found dating back to human being's first journeys...

  • Valley of the Caves is close to Mleiha Archeological Centre

  • Book a guided tour or explore yourself

  • The caves within the valley is were evidence has been found of human settlement 130,000 years ago

  • Surrounding rock is former coral reef, thanks to the area's past on the seabed

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When looking for adventures to do in the UAE, exploring Mleiha should be on your list.


It's a common myth that the UAE is where you come for luxury holidays surrounded by chilled swimming pools and 5* amenities.


Whilst there of course is that element to the country's offerings, there are also areas that provide fascinating glimpses back in time to the very first adventures that modern humans took.


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One of the those areas is Mleiha in the Emirate of Sharjah. Here, findings have been found that prove anatomically modern human beings settled in the area when they started to populate the world from Africa 130,000 years ago.


One of the most prominent areas where these findings have been found is the Valley of Caves.

The valley, made up of former coral reef is home to a number of caves where human bones and tools have been discovered. The tools found are on show at the Mleiha Archeological Centre.


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It is easy to see why this area would have made a comfortable home. With the surrounding flat ground once a lake and the shelter within the caves, human beings had everything they needed at close hand.


The history on show goes even further back than human settlement thanks to the coral reef rock formation. This dates back 80 million years to when this now desert landscape was once infact the seabed.

The walk through the Valley of the Caves is not a hike, more of a walk which you could cover within an hour. My tip, book a guide from the Mleiha Archeological Centre so you don't miss out on any of the stories on offer.


The centre also offers heaps more experiences across multiple archeological sites and fascinating landscapes.


After your exploration of the valley, head back to the centre for refreshments and a look around the museum to learn more about the area you have just walked.

Important tips about the Valley of the Caves:

  • Stick to the marked tracks when walking through the Valley of the Caves so not to damage the once coral reef.

  • Much more to discover at Mleiha with archeological sites, treks and adventure packages available.

  • One hour drive from Dubai.

  • Make sure on all outdoor activities you take enough water, sun protection and snacks.- when on guided tours with Mleiha, refreshments are provided.


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