Dubai, the jewel of the Arabian Gulf, is a sure favourite with tourists, families and business people. The city boasts of a multitude of activities for the young and the young at heart. There are always new things to do and new activities to experience each time you visit Dubai.
An Arabian dream, brought to life through sheer vision, strategy and expertise by its rulers, Dubai spoils its visitors with the endless sights, sounds and places to be and discover with the potential for infinite fun and experiences that will expand your horizons.
Dubai is synonymous to shopping; this is an experience that gets the thumbs-up from even the most discerning shopper as it presents an intriguing journey through surreal attractions. In addition to the most superlative shopping experience in the world, malls in Dubai vie with each other to offer the customer the most varied and innovative retail experience. At the Mall of the Emirates; you will find ski slopes, snow chalets and penguins whereas, at City Centre Mirdif, you will find an indoor skydiving centre which utilizes wind tunnels to keep you airborne. In addition to these unique and innovative attractions, the malls are a common meeting ground for the people of Dubai, giving them the perfect ambience for shopping and dining.
Entertainment and Water Parks
Dubai has plenty of family entertainment centres that will keep you and your children happy for hours on end. Start your day with a visit to Magic Planet, the family entertainment centre at the Mall of the Emirates. Spread out over two levels are hundreds of games, rides and attractions for every age. Explore the mythical underwater city of the Lost Chambers Aquarium at the Atlantis Hotel. Ride the waves at Aquaventure Water Park and zoom down the water slide at Wild Wadi. Finish off your day with a visit to the Dolphinarium at the Dubai Creek where you can see and converse with friendly dolphins, seals and parrots.
The narrow winding streets and mud brick houses of the Bastakiya District take you back to a time when Dubai was a pearl trading and fishing port. It is perfect for picking up souvenirs and artefacts like painted plates, jewellery boxes, pottery and paintings.
Souks and Markets
Leave the air-conditioned comforts of the malls and venture into the narrow alleyways and cobbled streets of the traditional souks in Dubai. The souks are located on either side of the Dubai Creek, where traders from China, India and Iran would unload their goods in the olden days. The items at the souks have changed little over time, and traditions remain engrained within selling spices, silks, perfumes and jewellery.
The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding
This centre does what its name says; it promotes cultural understanding between the locals and tourists, explaining the various traditions and customs in the area, from why women wear a veil to how to milk a camel. All questions are welcome, and you will leave with a better understanding and appreciation of the Arab world and its rich and varied culture.
The Jumeirah Mosque
The elegant, beautiful Jumeirah Mosque, built in the medieval Fatimid design is the only mosque open to non-Muslims in the UAE as part of the “Open Door, Open Minds” program. Here you can join the tour conducted by the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding 6 days A week (except Fridays). With the tour that starts at 10am, you will gain an insight into the Emirati culture, religion and way of life in the Emirate.
Take an Abra ride along the Dubai Creek, one of the oldest and most charming places in Dubai. The creek divides the city into two, Deira and Bur Dubai, and ends at Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary. For just one dirham, you get to enjoy a ride across the creek during the sunset.
Desert is an integral part of Dubai. People tend to forget that within a few miles of the air-conditioned comforts of the city, the desert stretches for miles on end, filled with sand dunes and oases. Here, you have the option of exploring the vast Arabian Desert by land or air.
No visit to Dubai can be complete without seeing the magnificence of the Arabian Desert. Get a taste of the Bedouin life with a trip to a desert campsite on a 4-wheel drive vehicle. There you can try a traditional hookah, ride a camel, watch falcons at work and partake of a desert barbeque under the stars, while being mesmerized by some gyrating, talented belly dancers.
Hot Air Balloon Ride
How would you like to see a view of Dubai that very few have experienced? See the undulating sand dunes and mountains of the Arabian Desert in the glow of the morning sun on a hot air balloon ride over the desert. Book your ride well in advance as they are popular and are subject to weather conditions.
The city’s transport system ensures that all parts of this magnificent metropolis are tied together efficiently, and nothing beats its driverless, indigenous metro system that runs on elevated tracks.
The Dubai Metro is one of the most advanced public transport systems in the world, featuring driverless trains, air-conditioned stations and special sections for women and children and Gold Class passengers. The metro’s two lines cover a large part of the city: the Red Line runs from Rashidiya and Dubai Airport through the city centre along Sheikh Zayed Road; the Green Line goes through some of Dubai’s busiest districts in Deira and Bur Dubai.
The Dubai Metro is a swift, smart and reasonably-priced way for visitors to get around the city and to see large parts of it. With its extensive system of brand new feeder buses, much of Dubai is now accessible by Metro.
There are more to do in Dubai than any other city in the world. Every minute, every day, more and more attractions and activities are planned for entertainment, shopping, dining and pure excitement. Pick your favourite from the list of things to do in Dubai and enjoy this magical city to the fullest.