Dubai: The UAE — at least up in the mountains — has turned into a virtual winter wonderland on Friday, with a rare snowfall.
The phenomenon brought cheer to residents and visitors who managed to drive up Jebel Jais, UAE’s tallest peak, on Friday, a weekend here.
A cold snap brought by north-westerly winds saw the mercury drop to -5 degrees Centigrade on Friday, according to weathermen.
Many of the adventurous residents keen to experience the rare event took a perilous drive up the mountain, which stands at 1,934-metre (6,268 ft) above sea level.
The main access road to Jebel Jais was closed for traffic on Friday, and long tailbacks of vehicles were seen at the foot of the mountain filled with motorists hoping to get a glimpse of the snow.
Some, including Gulf News lensman Ahmed Ramzan, managed to get snaps of residents playing with white ice crystals.
The UAE felt a significant drop in temperatures across the country as strong winds of up to 80kph brought a cold air mass that blanketed the Emirates over the weekend due to a low pressure in the south of Iran extending to the UAE and north of Oman.
Meanwhile, coastal areas including Dubai saw high waves kicked up by strong north-westerly winds over the weekend.
This prompted the Dubai police to intervene to facilitate traffic movement on the iconic man-made island, according to an Arabic news site.
Huge waves spilled seawater on a stretch of road on the Palm Jumeirah island in Dubai on Friday, a tweet shows.
A police spokesperson said they closed the tunnel heading toward the Atlantis Hotel on The Palm Jumeirah because the waves reached the parking area in front of world-famous resort hotel, according to the news site.
However, the tunnel was re-opened after the storm water was pumped out from the area.
A tweet by Emarat Al Youm on Friday shows a woman taking inside her car taking a video of the high waves spilling over to the main road while other motorists were driving by.