• Tom Bushell

Cycling // How to cycle at the Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop in Dubai // UAE

Updated: Oct 20, 2020

If you’re looking for a sunrise cycle, doing it in the shadows of the Burj Khalifa and passing Hollywood movie sights along the way is a great start to any morning...

  • Superb cycling loops of varying distances

  • Great time to get on a bike after UAE Team Emirates win Tour de France

  • Plenty of facilities and bike rentals available

  • Stunning views of Downtown Dubai and Burj Khalifa

  • Pass locations used in a very famous Hollywood action movie

  • Free to use and floodlit

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Cycling in Dubai has always been popular, but now that UAE Team Emirates have taken victory in the prestigious Tour de France, the sport could be about to reach fever pitch.

If you are a regular rider, just getting started or want to ride more, cycling at the Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop in Dubai is a spectacular setting for cyclists.

In the shadows of the Burj Khalifa, and the skyline of Downtown Dubai in view for pretty much the entire loop you may well find yourself able to push yourself just a little harder.

The Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop is an inspiring location.


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A remarkable UAE Team Emirates achievement in the Tour de France 2020

Before we get into the nitty gritty of how exactly you cycle the Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop, it would be remiss of me not to whole-heartedly congratulate UAE Team Emirates on their Tour de France victory this week.

Slovenia’s Tadej Pogacar is the rider to have achieved the feet, becoming the second youngest Tour de France champion in history at the age of 21.

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He is also the first ever Slovenian winner of the race and the first debut winner since 1983.

I suspect you’ll be seeing a lot of him around Dubai in the coming weeks. His image has already been lit up on the Burj Khalifa, and rightly so.


Okay, back to you and I getting out for a cycle… let’s use Tadej as inspiration.

What is Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop?

The Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop is a converted camel track. It consists of three loops of varying distances from 4km to 8km and has everything you need for a brilliant ride.

The main loop weaves through some areas of the Meydan One development site, but the stunning vistas towards Downtown Dubai will be all you need to take your mind away from construction in the foreground.

It’s not building works all the way around however, most areas of the track are landscaped with trees, hedges, lawns and nicely appointed rest points with benches to be found at various intervals so you can take a breather.

For the most part the track is flat, with just a couple of underpasses to go through with a small decline and incline and the track itself is mostly smooth with just a few areas where you’ll want to keep both hands on the handlebars!

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There are well marked signs with emergency contact numbers at regular intervals all the way around the route which is reassuring incase you have an accident or need assistance.

Even when I stopped at the side of the track for 30 minutes to film some shots for the above video, most cyclists shouted across to see if I was okay – which I thought was very friendly and an example of the safe environment it is.

I lost count at how many times I said, ‘I’m fine thanks, just taking some photos,’ but the gestures were very welcome.

For those early risers who want to set off before sunrise, or if you fancy an evening cycle when the sun has gone you are in luck. The loop is well floodlit and with lights on your bike, you’ll be good to go.

Facilities wise, you’ve got everything you need. A good sized car park, a café, bike hire, changing facilities and the perfect location for the start and end of your cycle.



You can find full directions below.

Spot the Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol movie locations

For some extra motivation, as you start to become a little out of breath, all you’ll need to do is look up at the Burj Khalifa, the main focus within the Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol movie starting Tom Cruise and remember a cycle is nothing compared to what Ethan Hunt did on the side of the tower back in 2010 during filming!

And even though the Burj Khalifa is a bit of an obvious Hollywood movie shout out, don’t forget the Meydan bridge that you’ll also pass on the loop.

The bridge is another feature in the Mission Impossible film. It was the location used for the end of the car chase when the sandstorm clears.

Tom Cruise, I reckon would just get one more lap complete on his bike… so you may as well go for one more.

The Burj Khalifa is the world’s tallest tower, standing at a height of 829m. Over 160 floors, 57 lifts (that travel at 37km/h btw!) and the most wonderful sight as you peddle away.

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Get out early for a Dubai sunrise cycle

My tip, set off on a sunrise cycle, there is no better sight than witnessing the sunlight catch the tower and wide spectrum of modern skyscrapers and work its way up as the sun rises. It's just about enough of a distraction to forget about the breathlessness you may be feeling.

Witnessing that sight, and cycling past the Meydan bridge thinking, ‘ah, yes! Mission Impossible! That’s where I have seen that bridge before,’ will be the perfect start to your day.


Extra Tips:

  • For bike rental call: 050 240-6660.

  • Make sure your bike is in good working order before setting off.

  • Take bottled water with you.

  • There isn’t much shade to be found on the track.

  • Always keep to the right so that people can overtake on the left.

How to get to the Nad Al Sheba Cycle Loop, Dubai

  • From the E44 turn onto Meydan Road/D69 heading east.

  • At the roundabout take the second exit continuing on Meydan Rod/D69.

  • At the next roundabout take the first exit, it will be signposted ‘private access’ but continue.

  • At the next roundabout come back on yourself

  • Take the first right at the signpost marking ‘cycle parking’.

Covid-19

  • Face masks must be worn in all public areas.

  • Once you are cycling face masks can be removed whilst exercising.

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