What To Know Before Traveling To Dubai – Get ready for an extreme city: Dubai is home to the tallest building in the world, the largest shopping mall and the largest indoor ski slope. From almost every country on the planet, there are restaurants, beaches where bikini and burqa clad people can relax, vast empty deserts and crowded city backstreets to explore.
So where do I start? Make sure you know the latest COVID-19 safety protocols for travelers before heading out to the main attractions.
What To Know Before Traveling To Dubai
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Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About Dubai
The tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa, can be seen from almost anywhere in the city – on a clear day, it can be seen from 95 km away. Currently, the world’s highest observation deck at 555 meters is located here. At its foot is the Dubai Mall, the world’s busiest mall, and the all-singing, all-dancing Dubai Fountain, the world’s… ah, you guessed it.
The distinctive sail-shaped Burj Al Arab is the emblem of the city and is home to the world’s so-called seven-star hotel. It is located next to the huge Madinat Jumeirah complex, which has the feel of an old Middle Eastern city, albeit with high-end hotels, restaurants, bars, shops and Venetian-style waterways. From where you can enjoy a great view of the iconic hotel.
If you want to know what Dubai was like before the oil boom, visit Dubai Creek. Get it and
(a traditional wooden boat used to transport people across the Dubai Creek) cross the creek from Deira to Bur Dubai (or vice versa) and explore the different markets where you live and fish by being able to haggle for gold, spices and clothes. Discover the emirate’s fascinating history at the Dubai Museum in Al Fahidi Fort, the city’s oldest building, then a short taxi ride to the Etihad Museum in Jumeirah, which charts the founding of the UAE in the 1970s.
All Information You Should Know Before Travelling To Dubai
It seems like the only thing that doesn’t change in Dubai is the vast desert, but in fact it’s always evolving, the wind changing and changing it daily. Many companies offer trips to the red dunes, from wild off-road trips to more educational trips designed to better understand life in the dunes.
Dubai offers an incredibly diverse and multicultural dining scene, from fine dining restaurants such as Yannick Alléno and Heinz Beck to hole-in-the-wall shawarma joints. For an inside track on the city’s culinary melting pot, take a stroll through old Dubai with Frying Pan Adventures, which offers great foodie itineraries all year round.
Popular dining precincts include The Beach at JBR and The Walk at JBR for off-licence mid-range restaurants; Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) and City Walk for high-end licensed restaurants; and Deira for cheap eats (head to Al Muraqqabat Rd and Al Rigga Rd). The Dubai Mall and Mall of the Emirates also have a number of off-licence restaurants, cafes and fast food outlets.
As expected, there is an excellent selection of Middle Eastern cuisine. Try delicious grilled kebabs at Aroos Damascus in Deira, Lebanese street food at the trendy Zaroob chain and authentic Emirati food at Al Fanar in Festival City Mall. The city is full of great value Indian and Pakistani cuisine as well, thanks to its large expatriate population from the subcontinent. Some of the most popular include the legendary Ravi at Jumeirah, Karachi Darbar at Satwa and a slightly more desirable Vineet-designed Indego at the Grosvenor House hotel.
August 17th Info Session: Chamber Dubai And Abu Dhabi Trip!
Dubai is known for its five-star restaurants, but don’t miss the street food options at home, such as Salt on Kite Beach © Lara Brunt / Lonely Planet
While there are many imported restaurant concepts in Dubai, there are also a growing number of exciting home-grown restaurants serving carefree food in a cool environment. Earn 3 Fils at Jumeriah Fishing Harbor and Salt for his silver trucks permanently parked at Kite Beach, or push the boat to Play, led by ex-Zuma chef Reif Othman at the H Hotel.
If you’re in town on Friday – the first day of the weekend in Dubai – head to one of the city’s famous hedonistic brunches. The two most decadent all-you-can-eat options are Bubblicious at The Westin and Giardino at Palazzo Versace, and for more casual events, Marina Social and Bread Street Kitchen.
Dubai is known for its hotels and five-star beach resorts, but there is a wide range of hotels and apartments to suit all budgets.
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The city is roughly divided into two parts: “Old Dubai” in the north, which includes the districts of Deira and Bur Dubai around Dubai Creek; and “New Dubai” to the south, including the austere modern skyscrapers of Downtown Dubai, DIFC and Dubai Marina. It’s a relatively compact town that’s easy to get around, so you can stay on the beach and explore comfortably. Luxury desert resorts such as Al Maha and Bab Al Shams are destinations in their own right and less than an hour’s drive from the city centre.
Downtown Dubai is home to some of the city’s most exciting hotels, including the Armani Hotel and The Palace Downtown, while nearby Business Bay and Al Habtoor City across the Dubai Canal also offer top hotels within easy reach of the big scene. Beach resorts are concentrated around Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR), Dubai Marina, Umm Suqeim (home to the Burj Al Arab and Madinat Jumeirah) and Palm Jumeirah, although the artificial beaches of the latter are not as good of beaches.
More modest digs can be found in the old quarters around Deira and Bur Dubai, while the Al Barsha district, home to the Mall of the Emirates, has become a hub for mid-range hotels. Hotel standards are closely monitored by government inspectors, so you can be sure that even budget hotels will be clean and comfortable.
Whatever your age, Dubai’s water parks should be on your itinerary. The two most popular – and rightfully so – are Wild Wadi, located in front of the Burj Al Arab, and Aquaventure, located at the Atlantis resort on top of the Palm Jumeirah, which will be the world’s largest water park (amazing, we know. ). Boasting adrenaline-pumping slides, lazy river rapids and bright children’s areas, Dubai Parks & Resorts’ Legoland water park is specially designed for two-year-olds to toddlers.
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Get around the city and beat the traffic with the cheap and efficient Dubai Metro © Funny Solution Studio / Shutterstock
Dubai’s metro system is cheap and excellent, connecting the airport to many key areas of the city. You need to buy a Nol pre-paid smart card (available at metro stations) which can be used on the metro, tram and bus network.
Taxis are plentiful, metered and reasonably priced (minimum fare Dhs10). There are taxi ranks in shopping centers and hotels, but you can also hail a taxi on the street. They are the fastest way to get around, except during rush hour, when it’s better to take the subway.
Uber and the local ride-hailing service Careem are popular alternatives to traditional taxis. You can start your trip with any app and fares are calculated based on factors like distance, wait time and demand.
Facts You Did Not Know About Dubai
You can also rent a bicycle with Dubai’s public rental system, Byky. There are stations around tourist hubs such as Dubai Marina and Downtown, and an easy journey is the 11km long journey around the Palm Jumeirah crescent. Dubai is one of the most visited destinations in the world and home to many record holders, from the tallest tower in the world to the busiest international airport on the planet. However, despite the city’s praise, there are many misconceptions about the glitzy Gulf emirate. Here are 10 things you need to know before you arrive.
It is often called one of the most expensive cities in the world, but you can enjoy Dubai on the cheap. As the city prepares to host the 2020 Expo, millennial-friendly mid-sized hotel chains such as the Rove and Hilton Garden Inn are thriving. Metro taxis are cheap by international standards, and you can take the metro for as little as Dh3. The city is also full of cheap restaurants, especially around Al Muraqqabat Rd and Al Rigga Rd in Deira. Avoid roaming charges as guests receive a free SIM card upon arrival at Dubai International Airport.
Contrary to popular stereotypes, there is more to Dubai than shopping and skyscrapers. Look beyond the bling and you’ll discover a rich cultural heritage that combines Bedouin, Arabic and Islamic traditions. For a quick history lesson, visit the Etihad Museum and Dubai Museum, then head to the Sheikh Mohammed Center for Cultural Understanding for an unlimited Q&A session on Emirati culture. Meanwhile, explore the thriving contemporary art scene on Alserkal Avenue and catch a show in the form of the Dubai Opera ship.
Tandoori Tequila cocktail at Michelin-starred chef Vikas Khanna’s restaurant Junoon © Rubina A. Khan / Getty Images
Emirates Enhances Airport Experience With Self Check In Kiosks In Dubai
Think you can’t drink? Alcohol is available in licensed bars and restaurants, usually attached to hotels (although exceptions include some high-end restaurants in the Dubai International Financial Center and City Walk). lol
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