How to get around in Dubai

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

Dubai can seem like a shimmering, cosmopolitan maze of glass and metal towers and landmarks plopped down in the middle of the desert. On the first descent into Dubai International Airport, the barren, brown sand dunes give way to a glittery oasis of one of the world’s most vibrant and developed cities.

That said, travel to and in this Arabian city is easy and stress-free. As part of its transition into a tourist-supported economy, Dubai has increasingly built itself up to be a globally accessible hub welcoming to foreign guests and businesses.

With lots of transportation options, getting around Dubai is easy. In this blog, we talk about some of the best ways to get around during your visit.

Trains

With many options to choose from, public transportation in Dubai is the favored choice for many locals and tourists. The city is well connected by buses, metro, and tram.

  1. Metro

The Dubai Metro is a fully automated, driver less metro network. It runs partly underground and partly via elevated viaducts.

So far, two lines have been constructed. The Red Line runs parallel through Sheikh Zayed Road for a majority of its run.  The Green Line runs parallel to Dubai Creek, through Deira and Bur Dubai.

With over 45 stops, The Metro serves the most popular tourist areas within Dubai.  Metro fare will depend on the zone you’re traveling in and the distance you travel. There are two options you can choose from: The Silver or the Gold Class. The Gold Class is only one coach on the train and the cost is twice as the tickets to the silver class. Each train has a coach dedicated to women and children.  Cabs and supplemental buses are available at most stations and can be used to get you to your destination, if needed, but are typically more expensive.

The Red metro line runs the length of Sheikh Zayed Road, while the green line services the old town area of the city. Most points of interest for a tourist are clustered around Sheikh Zayed, so you’ll be able to hit a lot of the popular attractions solely using The Metro.

There are direct metro stops which will make it easier for you to visit Burj Khalifa, Dubai Marina or even the Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood.

Before you enter the metro, you would need to purchase a Nol Card for your travel (Nol means ‘Fare’ in Arabic). This can be bought from the customer service counters or from the vending machines. Fare can be purchased and stored on Nol Cards (which can even be used to pay for RTA parking). Cards have to be tapped on the card reader before and after your metro travel. Riders can purchase single or multiple travel tickets for rides. Trains operate within 10-minute intervals during off-peak times and even faster during rush hour. For more details, you can also check our blog on How to use the Dubai Metro!

Two types of tickets are relevant to visitors:

  • Nol Red Ticket: (AED 3, plus credit for at least one trip) Must be pre-loaded with the correct fare each time you travel; can be recharged up to 10 times; may only be used on a single mode of transport at a time.

Fares: AED  4 for one zone, AED 6 for two zones, AED 8.50 for three or more zones, AED20 for the day pass.

  • Nol Silver Card(AED 25, including AED 19 credit) With pre-loaded credit, this works on the pay-as-you-go principle with fares deducted. Get this card if you’re going to make more than 10 trips.

Fares: AED3 for one zone, AED 5 for two zones and AED 7.50 for three or more zones.

  1. Tram

Operating from the end of 2014, the Dubai Tram runs 14.5 kilometers of Al Sufouh Road. The Dubai tram travels on a specially constructed street-level track to connect the highly populated residential and commercial areas of Jumeirah Beach Residence, Dubai Marina, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Media City, and Knowledge Village.

The Dubai Tram offers a flat rate of AED 3 per ride per person and AED 6 per ride per person, no matter what your destination is, making it one of the cheapest rides in the city.

The tram connects to two major metro stations- The Jumeirah Lake Towers) now DMCC metro station and the Dubai Marina metro station. Each tram can accommodate 370 passengers at a time in seven coaches, which includes a gold suite and cabin dedicated to women and children.

  1. Monorail

If you’re planning on spending the day on Palm Jumeirah Island (which we highly recommend!) or visiting Atlantis The Palm, hop on the Palm Monorail.

The Palm Monorail connects Dubai’s mainland with the Palm Jumeirah Island station. There are three stations: Palm Gateway Station near the bottom of the ‘trunk’, Al Ittihad Park near the Galleria Mall and Atlantis Aquaventure at the Atlantis hotel. Two additional stations, The Pointe and Nakheel Mall, were expected to be up and running by the end of 2019 at the time of research. It’s the perfect way to travel from the city to Atlantis the Palm for a day of fun at Aquaventure Water Park or the Lost Chambers Aquarium. Check our top things to do in Dubai blog post for more details on the Palm Jumeirah and the Atlantis!

The 5.5km trip takes about 12 minutes and costs AED 20 (AED 30 return trip); cash only. Trains run every 15 minutes from 9 am to 10 pm. The monorail links to the Dubai Tram at Palm Gateway.

Travel Hacks for Using the Train in Dubai

  • Traffic practically grinds to a halt and metro trains are packed during rush hour, which runs roughly from 7 am to 10 am and 4.30 pm to 8 pm or later.
  • Buy a Nol Card before using the metro, local bus, tram or water bus.
  • If you’re in Dubai on a short layover, buy the rechargeable Nol Red Ticket. Longer stays might warrant getting the Nol Silver Pass.
  • On the Dubai Metro, have your Nol Card ready before you go through the gate so as not to hold up people.

Taxis

  1. RTA Taxi

RTA Taxi is the most convenient and easiest mode of transport in Dubai- you will find them in plenty in Dubai. Fares typically start at AED 5 from all locations except from outside malls, five-star hotels and other popular attractions(Mall of Emirates/ Dubai Mall/ Burj Khalifa, etc), where the fares start at AED 12.

All taxis run on a metered service with the fee charged by distance, so be sure to ask your driver to turn on their meter if they have not automatically done so. RTA taxis are licensed and can be found with red, yellow, blue, green roofs. Taxis with a pink roof are women-driven taxis intended for the use of women and families only.

Be aware that you may experience long wait times for a taxi during rush hour, typically between 3:30 pm and 5:30 pm.

How to Hail an RTA Taxi: Look for a stationary or approaching cab with the yellow light on (red means it’s occupied). As the car is approaching, stand in a prominent place on the side of the road and stick out your arm. The driver should pull over when they see you.

Taxi may not always have working credit/ debit card machines and hence having cash can be helpful.

  1. Careem/ Uber

Dubai is a taxi-centric city, and you’re likely to find yourself in need of a cab at some point.As in other metropolises, taxis are facing stiff competition from mobile ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Dubai-based Careem founded here in 2012 and now operating throughout the Middle East. Cost-wise, there’s very little difference, but Uber and Careem tend to have much nicer cars that often come with free water, phone chargers, and more clued-up drivers.

Careem and Uber are convenient yet a bit pricey options as compared to the RTA operated Taxis. But you get a premium service with a luxurious car! At peak times, you can pre-book a cab for yourself and easily travel to your destination. The cabs also operate even in late-night hours.

Travel Hacks for Using the Taxi in Dubai

  • At night, traveling by taxi is the fastest and most convenient way to get around town.
  • For shorter distances, taxis are the fastest way of getting around and not too expensive.

Bus

Dubai’s bus network is an inexpensive way to travel to places that the Metro doesn’t reach. The air-conditioned bus network includes more than 600 bus stops in and around Dubai. Many of the bus stations are also air-conditioned.

Many buses go to the Gold Souk Bus Station. This is close to popular attractions like the fish market, the gold souk, perfume souk, and spice souk.

The buses have pros and cons. The benefits include the low price, and they are air-conditioned. If you get a seat, they are comfortable. The downsides include crowded buses that move very slowly due to the traffic. Some of the stops are also difficult to find.

One thing that you need to remember before hopping onto a local bus or metro is that you need to rechargeable Nol card available from the ticket offices in the metro stations or bus stations. There are four categories of Nol Card. Fares depend on distance and are divided into five zones.

Rental car

You also have the option of renting a car from the airport or at various locations in the city and driving to your destination. Car hire agents with kiosks are available throughout the city like Dollar, Thrift, W&B Rent a Car and Hertz. This is the most expensive option. The prices vary based on the car make, length of rental and the rental company. If you’re thinking about renting a car, you should also remember to include the price of fuel in your estimate (even though fuel in Dubai tends to be cheaper than in other parts of the world) and the price of parking (as there are only a few areas with free parking in Dubai). You should also consider that driving on Dubai’s roads can sometimes get a bit chaotic, so make sure you will be comfortable driving in these conditions.

Landing at the Al Maktoum Airport or the Dubai International Airport, here is our guide on the best ways to commute from the two airports to the city.

Pros: Freedom to travel anytime at your convenience and directly to/from your destination

Cons: This is the most expensive option. You should only consider renting a car if you are planning to make use of the vehicle throughout the length of your trip.

Walk

‘When you walk through a city you are walking through time’

It is said and we believe that the best way to explore a city is to walk. When you walk through a city, you get the real scoop. You see the attractions up-close-and-personal, and really get a feel for the city. Walking through a city also allows you to interact with the locals- the real people of the city. These people make the city what it is – a melting pot of cultures. You can ask questions and engage with the shopkeepers, vendors, cooks, and servers. This will allow you to find out their story and how they fit into the amazing culture of tolerance in Dubai.

Dubai By Foot offers signature walking tours of Dubai. Our tours are designed to explore the different facets of the city. Whatever your interest, be it history, culture, architecture, fashion, art, food or technology, we are sure to have the right tour for you. Our most popular walking tours are the Old Dubai and Souk Walking Tour and the Arabian Nights Tour!

You can also walk in the city with the help of our self-guided tours in JBR Marina or Jumeirah!

Water Transportation

  1. Abra Boats

What can you get in AED 1? If you seek adventure, then your 1 dirham can let you take an Abra (wooden boat) ride in Dubai Creek.

The saltwater creek is known as the heart of Dubai. It served as a gateway for traders years ago and now became a tourist spot. It divides the city into two main areas, Deira and Bur Dubai. There are buses and trains that can take people to the other side, but the best and fun way to cross it is to ride the wooden boat.

Abras are motorized traditional wooden boats that link Bur Dubai and Deira across the Creek. The fare is Dh1 and they run from 10 am to 10 pm along two routes. It is a very popular way of crossing the Creek and a favorite of many tourists who visit the Old City.

On our Old Dubai and Souk Walking Tour, we take a private Abra to cross the Creek from the Bur Dubai side to the Deira side. The abra crossing of the Dubai Creek is at its most atmospheric after dark.

  1. Water Taxi and Dubai Ferry

Want to travel the city in style beating the traffic on roads? Water Taxis in Dubai are just for you then. Water taxis are sure pretty—much more enjoyable and relaxing than hailing a cab- to take a more scenic route to any destination.

Water taxis traverse the city’s waterways and are a faster yet a little costly option to travel.

The RTA has an online portal that allows you to now book a Water Taxi online.

Timings: The service runs between 10  am and 9 pm daily. Fares and route Fares and the route will be defined once you have specified your pick-up and destination.

Cost: You can charter a private Water Taxi for Dh200 for 30 minutes, or Dh400 for 60 minutes.

A water ferry is another luxury option but one that is limited to major stop points in Dubai. It also has group events for photography, tea, and visiting the Dubai Marina Mall. Dubai Ferry – The Dubai Ferry is as much a tourist thing to do as it is a public transport system, allowing visitors and residents to view the city from the sea and get a glimpse of some of Dubai’s iconic buildings, such as the Burj Al Arab and the Palm Jumeirah with the majestic Atlantis Hotel. Ferry timings change continually, so click here for a more thorough check. The ferry has comfortable seating, and will only run if there is a minimum of 10 people on board.

 

Although Dubai is not best known for its connectivity, there are many options for public transport, particularly if you have time and want to experience Dubai from a unique vantage point. Keep our guide handy next time you visit Dubai for an easier commute in the city.

Things to do in Dubai in January 2020

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

The best time to visit Dubai is during the winter months, from November to April. The city is full of life and light because of the Dubai Shopping Festival which makes the city come alive. Not the one who likes to shop? Then you can enjoy on the beach or go for a lovely outdoor brunch in the pleasant weather!

Whether you are in Dubai for a vacation or just for a short layover, we have a list ready for you. Here are the top ten things you can do in Dubai in January 2020!

  1. Take a City Tour or the Old Dubai Walking Tour

Dubai has emerged as a thriving metropolitan city that has become the most popular tourist destination in the Middle East. The megacity has earned the title of being the land of superlatives because of its affinity to have the best of everything. From infrastructure to lifestyle, every day, the capital city of Emirate of Dubai sets a new example of excellence for the world.

Dubai’s humble beginning as a fishing village keeps the city grounded and stands in sharp contrast with the level of advancement it has achieved. The best way to experience what the city has to offer is to go to a Dubai city tour.

Who doesn’t love skyscrapers, high rise buildings, and culture together? Our city tour is a blend of all, and we make sure to let you have the experience of both sides of Dubai. One moment you could be among the clouds as you zip through Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, and the next you could be sailing through the bustling waterways of Dubai in a traditional Abra ride. There are the flourishing spice and gold souks that you must visit to get a glimpse of the city’s past.

With so much to see and do, you can make the most of your time in Dubai by booking yourself a place on a Dubai City Tour. Whet-Your-Appetite City Tour lasts for approximately 5-6 hours. The tour starts with an engaging walk through the old historic neighborhood. Old Dubai is the center of local trade in Dubai hence there will be plenty of shopping opportunities in the traditional souks. We then proceed for a fun Abra ride across the Dubai Creek and a lunch break with local Emirati Food.

We then head to the modern developments in Dubai, driving through the coastline, the beaches, the fancy hotels, the Marinas to the Palm Islands. The tour concludes at the Dubai Mall – the hub for many fun-filled evening activities. There is also time planned for shopping or a visit to the Burj Khalifa.

At the end of the day, you will have so much insight into the city that therefore you will feel like you own this town!

When: Every day at 10 am (Timings can be flexible)

The Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood, previously known as Bastakiya is the oldest neighborhood of Dubai, and the Old Dubai Walking tour is our signature and most popular tour.  Dubai is known for its glitz and glamour, but before the tourism boom or the discovery of oil, it was a vastly different place. Dubai was then a land of fishermen, divers, and Bedouins. On this tour we will visit the Coffee Museum, Dubai Museum, the Spice and the Gold Souk and cross the creek on the Abra boat. The Creek is the historic heart of Dubai, which once divided the city into two areas: Deira and Bur Dubai. Until the construction of Al Maktoum Bridge, the first bridge in Dubai in 1963, the only way to get from one side to the other was in a rickety little wooden boat called an abra. It’s still undoubtedly the most fun (and affordable) way across.

We offer this tour daily as both public and private tours, for those who like to book a luxurious tour for themselves.

Our Old Dubai Walking tour is the best way to visit this part of the city!

When: Through January, every day at 10 am and 4 pm

*Private tours can start at the time of your convenience

  1. Enjoy the Fireworks in Dubai

January 1st, New Year’s Day, is a national holiday in the United Arab Emirates. Dubai is a hot spot during New Years’ eve. With insane fireworks and the possibility to enjoy some of the grand New Year’s celebrations for free in Dubai, it is no wonder that tourists start pouring into the emirate from the neighboring countries and the rest of the world around this time.

The fireworks continue in the evening in different parts of the city like Palm Jumeirah, JBR Walk, Al Seef, La Mer for a week after the New Year’s Day.

While museums, government services, and other official establishments will be closed, most shops and restaurants are open. Many eateries offer special New Year’s Day brunches, and with the city relatively quiet on this day, it’s also a good time to enjoy relaxing on the beach.

  1. Dubai Shopping Festival

Dubai is hailed as the ‘Ultimate Shopping Destination’. And it is this reputation that Dubai has, that inspires it to offer even more to the millions of tourists that come flocking to the emirate with every passing year. Dubai alone has more than 70 malls in addition to new malls that open every year. However, with the big brands and the high-end stores, this dream often comes with a price. And this is where Dubai Shopping Festival comes to your rescue.

Dubai Shopping Festival is the most-awaited event in Dubai- extravagant and amazing! DSF is an annual month-long event put together by the Dubai Festivals & Retail Establishment, which is a part of Dubai’s department of tourism. During the festival, shops offer discounts on their merchandise, daily car raffles, and prize drawings are held to win items such as gold and cars. During DSF, the malls also tend to have longer working hours which ensures that you have plenty of time to shop till you drop!

DSF is celebrated like any other festival in Dubai: with pomp and show. This means shopping isn’t the only experience to please your soul. There exist a plethora of activities that go on here which you could participate in, apart from shopping- fireworks, film festivals, music shows, and events!

When: December 26, 2019, until January 24, 2020

  1. Run at the Dubai Marathon

More than 30,000 world-class runners are set to descend on Dubai for the 21st edition of the annual Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon – the world’s richest road race with a winner’s prize of USD$20,000. Both seasoned marathon runners and aspiring amateurs can tread in the footsteps of the record-breakers who have run the path before, with 4km and 10km distances on offer for those who aren’t up for the full marathon. Participants can take in some of Dubai’s most iconic sights, including the Burj Al Arab, on their way along the racecourse.

Spectators can cheer the runners on and enjoy the festive ambiance filled with healthy snacks and sports accessories from all the top brands, so head down with family or friends for a fun, sporty day in the sunshine.

Register here!

Marathon Details:

  • 195km Run

Price: 150USD

Start Time: 7:00am

  • 10km Road Race

Price: 85USD

Start Time: 8:30 am

  • 4km Fun Run

Price: 50 USD

Start time: 10:30am

When: January 24, 2020

Venue: Madinat Jumeirah, Umm Suqeim Road

  1. Visit the Global Village

Global Village Dubai is located on Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road (E311) Dubai. It combines the cultures of 90 countries across the world in one place. Global Village is a multicultural festival park and the region’s first family destination for culture, shopping, and entertainment.

There’s something magical about Global Village. The part theme park, part market, Global Village features pavilions with displays from countries near and far where visitors can pick up traditional handicrafts and snacks. This festival park brings cultures together as visitors discover different parts of the world in just a few hours. The pavilions are designed in the image of iconic structures or local architecture, inviting all to meander from London’s Big Ben to the leaning tower of Pisa in Italy, take selfies against the romantic backdrop of the Taj Mahal or travel back in time to Ancient Egypt. Children and adults alike will delight in the bright lights and lively atmosphere created by parades and all kinds of shows, from fire-breathing street performances to star-studded concerts.

Plus, there’s even more fun to be had with countless games and thrilling rides at the region’s largest funfair. Keep an eye out for Global Village’s mascot, Globo, and his adventures across the globe with Scaredy Bat and more! Visit Global Village this season to see all the open-air fun you and your family can have.

  1. Dubai Desert Classic

The Omega Dubai Desert Classic is a European Tour golf tournament held on Majlis course at Emirates Golf Club in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In 1999 and 2000 it was held at Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club, all other editions have been held at Emirates Golf Club. When founded in 1989, it was the first European Tour event to be staged in the Arabian Peninsula, but is currently one of six.

The tournament is part of a wider strategy, via a government program called “Dubai Golf”, to develop both professional and casual golf tourism in Dubai.

Golfing legends such as Tiger Woods, Ernie Els, and Rory McIlroy have won this “Major of the Middle East”, which takes place annually at the stunning Emirates Golf Club. It returns this January for its 31st edition, with more action than ever before planned both on and off the course.

Guaranteed to be a showcase of the world’s finest golfing talents, this tournament is a must-attend for every golf fan.

When: January 23- January 26, 2020

Tickets: From AED1,125

  1. Enjoy a Musical night at the Dubai Opera

An autobiographical account of Kahlil Gibran’s first love, Broken Wings is a musical adaptation of the iconic poet’s 1912 masterpiece. This moving new musical is written by Middle Eastern duo Nadim Naaman and Dana Al Fardan, directed by Bronagh Lagan and produced by Ali Matar with orchestrations by Joe Davison.

This autobiographical account takes audiences through Gibran’s tumultuous love story, which starts with the 18-year-old aspiring writer returning to the Middle East after five years in America. Here, he falls in love with Selma Karamy, the daughter of a respected family friend. Selma soon becomes betrothed to Mansour Bey Galib, the nephew of the powerful Bishop Bulos Galib, who has his eyes set on Selma’s family fortune.

Gibran and Selma fight against all odds for their love, forced to confront structures of tradition, expectations, and rules imposed by their communities. While set at the turn of the century, Broken Wings explores potent themes that still resonate deeply.

When: January 17- January 18, 2020

Tickets: AED 295 onwards. Tickets can be bought here.

  1. Visit the Miracle garden

Dubai Miracle Garden is a flower garden located in the district of Dubai Land. The garden was opened on 14 February 2013. The garden occupies over 72,000 square meters making it the world’s largest natural flower garden featuring over 50 million flowers and 250 million plants.

In 2015 Dubai Miracle Garden opened the Dubai Butterfly Garden which is the world’s largest and the region’s first indoor butterfly garden and sanctuary for over 15,000 butterflies from 26 species.  Other attractions in the park include a floral clock, peacocks., flower castle and an aromatic garden. It also has an Airbus A380 which is the biggest flower structure in the world as per the Guinness book of world Record. Dubai Miracle Gardens also has a Mickey Mouse flower structure weighing almost 35 tons to attract the kids and families.

The tickets for Dubai Miracle Garden are 50AED for adults and children above the age of 2 are 40AED.

 

  1. Enjoy the evenings at the JBR Walk or La Mer

La Mer

La Mer is Hands Down One of Dubai’s Most ‘Grammable Spots. La Mer Dubai is a beach destination that offers fun, shopping and entertainment for residents of Dubai. This property has been developed by Meraas and spans over 1.24 million square meters of space. They have even accommodated an underground parking area. In La Mer, you will appreciate the street art and paintings and the design that makes for a nice walk. La Mer also boasts of a cinema and a water park!

JBR Walk

Shop dine and stroll by the sea along the chic waterfront strip known as The Walk at Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR).

Along this buzzing beachside boulevard, there’s plenty of opportunities to satisfy your retail cravings with an array of fashion, home, and handicraft shops and boutiques.

Recently, the board on the walk gives some fascinating views of the Blue waters island and Ain Dubai.

You can also check our self-guided tour of JBR on our website.

  1. Visit the Museums with your family and kids

Museum of Illusions

Museum of Illusions in Al Seef houses 80 exhibits of all shapes and sizes. The museum promises to tantalize visitors in a unique visual and sensory experience – and provide heaps of fun, of course. Unlike other museums, you are encouraged to interact with the exhibits, and take as many photos as you like.

Tickets cost AED 80 for adults and AED 225 for a family of four people.

Perfume Museum

One of the first museums to open in the Al Shindagha neighborhood is the Perfume House, paying homage to the history of all scented things in UAE. Perfume House is built within the former house of an avid Perfumer, Sheikha Shaikha bint Saeed bin Maktoum. Many of the items inside were part of her personal collection. This includes her perfume application and a 28kg piece of oud she had in her house and which she donated to the museum just a few weeks before she died in 2017, as well as other artifacts from other notable Emiratis, and those sourced from sites such as Saruq Al Hadid, an archaeological site in Dubai.

Take our 1001 Arabian Nights: Legends and Lore from the Trucial Coast tour to know more and delve deep into the past!

Coins Museum

The Coins Museum Located in Bastakiya and built of coral, stone, plaster, and leaves of palm trees and teak wood, the two-story.  Coins museum displays more than 470 rare coins belonging to different historical eras. Special display cabinets and magnifying screens give visitors a better view of the coins, while electronic drop-down lists provide all the information required.

Admission to the museum is free.

Pearl Museum

Before the discovery of oil, pearls were the biggest cash crop in the Gulf, whose warm, shallow waters produced some of the world’s finest. You can see many of these exquisite natural wonders on display at the Emirates NBD Pearl Museum.

In addition to examples of magnificent jewelry, the museum also celebrates the lives of the divers and sailors by displaying the instruments and tools they used to harvest and ship the precious cargo.

Please note, you can only visit the Pearl Museum by prearranging with Emirates NBD beforehand. They prefer 8-10 people to visit at a time, with an upper limit of about 20 people in a larger group.

Things to do in Dubai in December 2019

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

With the temperatures dropping, December to March is the ideal time to visit Dubai! Though it is the peak tourist season, it is the most enjoyable time to be in the city as the weather is pleasant, and apt for sightseeing, and indulging in outdoor activities.

Here are our top ten things to do in Dubai in December!

  1. Take a City Tour

Dubai has emerged as a thriving metropolitan city that has become the most popular tourist destination in the Middle East. The megacity has earned the title of being the land of superlatives because of its affinity to have the best of everything. From infrastructure to lifestyle, every day, the capital city of Emirate of Dubai sets a new example of excellence for the world.

Dubai’s humble beginning as a fishing village keeps the city grounded and stands in sharp contrast with the level of advancement it has achieved. The best way to experience what the city has to offer is to go to a Dubai city tour.

Who doesn’t love skyscrapers, high rise buildings, and culture together? Our city tour is a blend of all, and we make sure to let you have the experience of both sides of Dubai. One moment you could be among the clouds as you zip through Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, and the next you could be sailing through the bustling waterways of Dubai in a traditional Abra ride. There are the flourishing spice and gold souks that you must visit to get a glimpse of the city’s past.

With so much to see and do, you can make the most of your time in Dubai by booking yourself a place on a Dubai City Tour. Whet-Your-Appetite City Tour lasts for approximately 5-6 hours. The tour starts with an engaging walk through the old historic neighborhood. Old Dubai is the center of local trade in Dubai hence there will be plenty of shopping opportunities in the traditional souks. We then proceed for a fun Abra ride across the Dubai Creek and a lunch break with local Emirati Food.

We then head to the modern developments in Dubai, driving through the coastline, the beaches, the fancy hotels, the Marinas to the Palm Islands. The tour concludes at the Dubai Mall – the hub for many fun-filled evening activities. There is also time planned for shopping or a visit to the Burj Khalifa.

At the end of the day, you will have so much insight into the city that therefore you will feel like you own this town!

When: Every day at 10 am (Timings can be flexible)

2. Bring in the new year at the Burj Khalifa

Dubai is a hot spot during New Years’ eve. With insane fireworks and the possibility to enjoy some of the grand New Year’s celebrations for free in Dubai, it is no wonder that tourists start pouring into the emirate from the neighboring countries and the rest of the world around this time.

If ringing in the New Year for you is about being out on the streets and celebrating it with friends and strangers alike, there are plenty of places in Dubai, with the best and the most famous one being the fireworks at the Burj Khalifa.

The place gets extremely crowded and therefore turning up earlier than expected is clearly a good idea. You should aim to make sure you arrive as early as around 5:30 PM – 6:00 PM to take a nice spot otherwise you can book a table at one of the outdoor restaurants of The Dubai Mall. They do prove to be an extremely costly affair, but at least you have a nice view!

While you are waiting for the fireworks, you can enjoy the dancing musical fountains, the Dubai Fountain on the Burj Lake. The fountain performs to a range of different songs from classical to contemporary Arabic and world music. Some popular tracks include Michael Jackson’s Thriller, Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman’s Time to Say Goodbye, and most recently Power by Korean pop band EXO.

Shows start at 6:30 pm onwards every day till 11 pm. There are two shows in the afternoon as well at 1 pm and 1:30 pm. You can also pay for a boat and view the fountain dancing from a very near distance.

To enjoy the new year in Dubai on a budget, here are a few hacks!

  • Take a ferry ride in Dubai Marina: You can watch the night sky and the amazing fireworks of the iconic Burj Khalifa, Atlantis The Palm if you take a ferry ride on New Year’s Eve across Dubai Marina.
  • Bring in the new year on the Beach: If you are a budget traveler, then you can take a place on the Jumeirah Beach which echoes with more than hundreds of people. You can pick a great spot and enjoy the sunset and watch the midnight fireworks of the NYE.

3. Take the Dhow Cruise or a Yacht

Head on to a relaxing evening with fun and entertainment on a traditional Arabic boat, Dhow on the Dhow Cruise in Dubai Marina or the Creek. Famous for its Tanura dancers and their colorful costumes, Dhow Cruise cheers up everyone. Dhow Cruise usually includes a three-course dinner buffet. It’s a magical experience drifting along the creek while watching colorful reflections out on the water of the beautifully lit up skyline of Dubai. Make sure you bring your camera as there are lots of photo opportunities. Book now for this unique and relaxing experience. The perfect antidote to a busy city life.

If you would like a more private experience, then we would recommend you take a yacht from the Dubai Marina area. Sail through the Dubai Marina to Blue Water Island, and cruise over to the Dubai Eye. See the famous Jumeirah Beach and the Palm, as well as passing the Atlantis on the breakfast and lunch tours. You can also opt for a yacht experience with breakfast. You get a lot of opportunities for taking insta worthy photos or take a dip in the sea!

4. Dubai Shopping Festival

Dubai is hailed as the ‘Ultimate Shopping Destination’. And it is this reputation that Dubai has, that inspires it to offer even more to the millions of tourists that come flocking to the emirate with every passing year. Dubai alone has more than 70 malls in addition to new malls that open every year. However, with the big brands and the high-end stores, this dream often comes with a price. And this is where Dubai Shopping Festival comes to your rescue.

Dubai Shopping Festival is the most-awaited event in Dubai- extravagant and amazing! DSF is an annual month-long event put together by the Dubai Festivals & Retail Establishment, which is a part of Dubai’s department of tourism. During the festival, shops offer discounts on their merchandise, daily car raffles, and prize drawings are held to win items such as gold and cars. During DSF, the malls also tend to have longer working hours which ensures that you have plenty of time to shop till you drop!

DSF is celebrated like any other festival in Dubai: with pomp and show. This means shopping isn’t the only experience to please your soul. There exists a plethora of activities that go on here which you could participate in, apart from shopping- fireworks, film festivals, music shows, and events!

When: December 26, 2019, until January 24, 2020

5. Camp at the Al Qudra Lakes

Often, people think they must venture out of the Emirate in order to enjoy a fun-filled camping trip in and among the dunes. Little do they know that just 40 minutes East of the main city, you’ll find the secluded Al Qudra camping spot in the desert near to Al Qudra Lake. Disconnect from the digital world, gather your friends and pack the supplies for a night under the stars.

Al Qudra Lakes is the ideal location if you’re new to camping in the UAE, or just looking for a low-key break from the city that won’t require a huge amount of effort. You won’t need a 4×4 to reach these picturesque lakes, and the area is within half an hour’s drive of the city. Keep in mind that because it’s so easily accessible, it’s popular with weekend warriors.

Al Qudra Lakes might be manmade but it’s still a picturesque slice of greenery, with plenty of trees and wildlife, especially birds, to be spotted in and around the water. If you’re feeling sporty you could also go for a bike around the nearby Al Qudra Cycle Track, where you might also spot wild oryx and gazelle (rent a bike from the Trek store). If the great outdoors gets too much for you, there’s always Bab Al Shams Resort and Spa nearby for a little R&R. It’s unlikely you’ll need it though, as there are plenty of amenities in the area. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, see if you can track down Dubai’s new man-made Love Lakes.

6. Visit the Global Village

Global Village Dubai is located on Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road (E311) Dubai. It combines the cultures of 90 countries across the world in one place. Global Village is a multicultural festival park and the region’s first family destination for culture, shopping, and entertainment.

There’s something magical about Global Village. A part theme park, part market, Global Village features pavilions with displays from countries near and far where visitors can pick up traditional handicrafts and snacks. This festival park brings cultures together as visitors discover different parts of the world in just a few hours. The pavilions are designed in the image of iconic structures or local architecture, inviting all to meander from London’s Big Ben to the leaning tower of Pisa in Italy, take selfies against the romantic backdrop of the Taj Mahal or travel back in time to Ancient Egypt. Children and adults alike will delight in the bright lights and lively atmosphere created by parades and all kinds of shows, from fire-breathing street performances to star-studded concerts.

Plus, there’s even more fun to be had with countless games and thrilling rides at the region’s largest funfair. Keep an eye out for Global Village’s mascot, Globo, and his adventures across the globe with Scaredy Bat and more! Visit Global Village this season to see all the open-air fun you and your family can have.

7. Party at Barasti

Barasti beach bar is world-famous and the trend has not changed from the last twenty years. Barasti, Dubai Marina hosts some great parties and events in Dubai. This is for sure Dubai’s most happening place!

The reason for its popularity is multi-faceted. The massive, sprawling beach bar and club provide whatever you’re looking for – be it lazing in the sun, watching the game, tucking into some decent bar food or partying to top name DJs.

8. Visit the Miracle garden

Dubai Miracle Garden is a flower garden located in the district of Dubai Land. The garden was opened on 14 February in 2013. The garden occupies over 72,000 square meters making it the world’s largest natural flower garden featuring over 50 million flowers and 250 million plants.

In 2015 Dubai Miracle Garden opened the Dubai Butterfly Garden which is the world’s largest and the region’s first indoor butterfly garden and sanctuary for over 15,000 butterflies from 26 species.  Other attractions in the park include a floral clock, peacocks., flower castle and an aromatic garden. It also has an Airbus A380 which is the biggest flower structure in the world as per the Guinness book of world Record. Dubai Miracle Gardens also has a Mickey Mouse flower structure weighing almost 35 tons to attract the kids and families.

The tickets for Dubai Miracle Garden are 50AED for adults and children above the age of 2 are 40AED.

9. Staycation at the Atlantis

Atlantis The Palm, Dubai, the luxury hotel is located on the Palm Jumeirah. This was the first resort to be built on the island and shows distinctive elements of the Arabian world.

The hotel has a nautical theme and consists of 1539 rooms. It has two accommodation wings, consisting of the East and the West Tower, linked together by the Royal Bridge Suite. It is complemented by the Aqua venture water park and the Nasimi Beach, which frequently plays host to concerts and other events.

There are lots of exciting activities that make Atlantis beach resort the epicenter of adventure and the greatest holiday experience ever. You can swim with dolphins at Dolphin Bay or meet the sea lion at the Sea Lion Point or visit the home to 65,000 incredible marine animals in the Lost Chamber Aquarium.

Aqua venture is a water park located at Atlantis, Dubai. The water Park is overflowing with 17 fun-filled hectares of adrenaline-pumping fun. The water park has record-breaking slides and rides. It also offers up and closes time with sharks and rays. It also has a 700-meter private beach to relax. The park also offers features of marine activities and children play areas for all ages.

The ticket for the water park is 289AED.

You can also witness the amazing fireworks from Atlantis on new years eve. Often overshadowed by the Burj Khalifa fireworks, the Atlantis Fireworks truly demonstrates a one-of-a-kind show and is something one must experience when looking for things to do during New Year in Dubai.

10. Go on a Desert Safari

Desert Safari gives you the chance to drive over dunes and participate in a variety of traditional desert activities. Desert Safari is a must-do if you are in Dubai for the dune bashing, camel riding, sandboarding, henna, shisha and some hours of unlimited desert fun. There are several safari companies that allow you to camp overnight in the desert as well. Camel rides make for a great hands-on Dubai Desert Tour. Most desert safaris include a short ride, but you can definitely opt for a tour with extended riding time. Meals are included in most safaris are give you a taste of the traditional local food.

Book you Desert Safari with us on this visit to Dubai!

Hop On Hop Off Dubai Bus Tours

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

This post provides a breakdown of the most popular Dubai bus tours, including pricing, discounts, reviews and services such as day trips to Abu Dhabi and desert safaris. 

 

 


HOP-ON-HOP-OFF DUBAI BUS TOURS

These bus tours will allow you to jump on at any point and ride around the city of Dubai at your leisure.

As you coast through the streets of this city, a helpful guide will provide a lot of information about notable landmarks and historic sites along the way.

Each ticket also includes additional activities and attractions for free.

This section will provide information about prices, ticket types and additional activities that are included with both services. Read more »

Things to do in Dubai in October

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

Dubai is a very welcoming city that has got everything from fun, food and frolic. The city of the sky rise buildings has transformed itself completely from the desert to a tourist destination stop. Tourists flock to Dubai from all over the world for the sales bargains, sunshine and the Burj Khalifa! With the weather becoming more pleasant in October, the peak season is upon us. The best time to visit Dubai is from October to March. October onwards, the temperature starts to reduce with less humidity making it the ideal time to visit the city. Here is our list of top things to do in Dubai in October.

The glamour of the city doesn’t stop with the edgy designs of skyscrapers and buildings. Besides being the shopping capital of the middle east, the vibrant city is also home to museums, theme parks, desert safaris, and a beautiful seafront with golden, glistening sands that make it feel like home.

  1. Take a stroll in the Al Shindagha Neighbourhood

Modern Dubai was born in the early 20th century, when the ruling family established itself in the charming neighbourhood of Al Shindagha. Located today on the shores of the Creek, Al Shindagha is prized for its coral-clad houses, traditional wind towers, and attractions such as the Heritage and Diving Museum, and the Sheikh Saeed al Maktoum House. On our 1001 Arabian Nights: Old Dubai By Moonlight, we will walk through the lanes of Al Shindagha Neighbourhood at night. This local neighbourhood is amid renewal and renovation.

We will talk about pirates, traders, pearl divers, and adventurers who travelled on the shores of the Creek, leaving a rich legacy of local traditions and walk by life size replicas of fishing boats where the guide will you the history behind the life on the creek. As the night will progress, we will delve deep into Al Shindagha to share adventure stories and talk about the rich architectural landscape. You can book the tour here.

 

On Friday evenings, we visit the Al Shindagha Museum on this tour. Al Shindagha Museum encompasses much of the Shindagha area, on the Bur Dubai side of the Creek, and consist of 23 museums that are opening as part of the Dubai Historical District project, which was first announced by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, in 2015.  Shindagha Museum tells the universal tale of human innovation, resilience, and the desire for progress which shaped the Dubai of nowadays. Visitors can explore the heritage, submerging them into true Emirati culture and its origins. The museum also highlights Dubai’s shared heritage with the region and wider world.

 

One of the first museums to open in the Al Shindagha neighbourhood is the Perfume House, paying homage to the history of all scented things in UAE. Perfume House is built within the former house of an avid Perfumer, Sheikha Shaikha bint Saeed bin Maktoum. Many of the items inside were part of her personal collection. This includes her perfume application and a 28kg piece of oud she had in her house and which she donated to the museum just a few weeks before she died in 2017, as well as other artefacts from other notable Emiratis, and those sourced from sites such as Saruq Al Hadid, an archaeological site in Dubai.

We also take you with us to explore the history of Dubai in the newly opened Saruq Al-Hadid Archaeology Museum. Featuring artefacts unearthed from the recently discovered archaeological site of Saruq Al-Hadid; rich immersive and interactive displays bring to life the fascinating story of the Iron Age in the Middle East. Every artefact unearthed at the excavation site, along the edge of the Rub Al-Khali desert, reveals more about the Saruq Al Hadid civilization. Analysis of the precious beads reveal that some of them did not naturally exist in the area. This means the Arab tribes traded with others as far away as India. Comes with an interesting story, doesn’t it?

Take our 1001 Arabian Nights: Legends and Lore from the Trucial Coast tour to know more and delve deep into the past!

When: Every Friday and Sunday at 7pm

  1. Visit Old Dubai and the Souks

The Al Fahidi Historic Neighbourhood, previously known as Bastakiya is the oldest neighbourhood of Dubai, and the Old Dubai Walking tour is our signature and most popular tour.  Dubai is known for its glitz and glamour, but before the tourism boom or the discovery of oil, it was a vastly different place. Dubai was then a land of fishermen, divers and Bedouins. On this tour we will visit the Coffee Museum, Dubai Museum, the Spice and the Gold Souk and cross the creek on the Abra boat. The Creek is the historic heart of Dubai, which once divided the city into two areas: Deira and Bur Dubai. Until the construction of Al Maktoum Bridge, the first bridge in Dubai in 1963, the only way to get from one side to the other was in a rickety little wooden boat called an abra. It’s still undoubtedly the most fun (and affordable) way across.  

We offer this tour daily as both public and private tours, for those who like to book a luxurious tour for themselves.

Our Old Dubai Walkingtour is the best way to visit this part of the city!

For those who would like to delve fully into the Emirati culture as well as get a flavour of the Old city, we would recommend our food tour, Flavours of Arabia: Emirati Food walk. We treat on delicacies like falafel and hummus, Majboos and crunchy Luqaimat. We will also visit the Arabian Tea House Restaurant, one of the very famous go-to places in Dubai, a Heritage house in Bastakiya that has been converted to a restaurant.

Tour Details: Old Dubai and Souk Walking Tour

When: Through October, every day at 10am and 4pm

*Private tours can start at the time of your convenience

3.     GITEX Shopper- 2019

October 6, 2019 to October 10, 2019 is the time for the 39th GITEX Technology week. Visit their website to register for the event at www.gitex.com. GITEX is your one stop shop for the best deals in electronics and is the region’s biggest consumer electronics event. Get yourself along to Zabeel Halls 4-6 at Dubai World Trade Centre for consumer gadgets galore and unbeatable bargains.  You will find great deals, discounts and giveaways with each purchase. Visitors can grab the latest products, from gaming consoles and speakers to printers and washing machines. Don’t miss this chance to save big on electronics. With over 35,000 products on display, you can experience all the amazing new technology that the world’s top companies have on offer.

Location: World Trade Centre, Dubai

You can reach the World Trade Centre by taxi or by metro directly (Red Line). Here is our guide on how to use the Dubai Metro.

Ticket Price: AED 20 per person

  1. Visit the Burj Khalifa, Dubai Mall and the Dubai Fountain

Is a visit to Dubai complete without visiting the Burj Khalifa-At the top?

The Burj Khalifa passed many important milestones on its goal to become the tallest man-made structure the world has ever seen with 160 stores and 555m high. In just 1,325 days since excavation work started in January 2004, Burj Khalifa became the tallest free-standing structure in the world. Burj Khalifa makes you go in awe of the structure each time you pass by it or look at it. You can check out the views from the 124th floor of the Burj Khalifa or go up to the 148th floor and marvel at views of the city by purchasing tickets to the top from here. Alternatively, the tickets can be bought from the entrance to the Burj Khalifa or inside the Dubai Mall (near the Dubai Aquarium- largest indoor aquarium in the world).

The Dubai Mall features the world-class Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo featuring thousands of aquatic animals and a 270-degree walkthrough tunnel. The aquarium houses world’s largest acrylic panel which made it to the Guinness Book of World Records.

There are around 40 displays here housing creatures such as piranha, penguins, crocodiles, lizards, snakes, otters and eels. You can take a ride on a glass bottom boat to view over 33,000 aquatic animals and you could also go cage diving with sharks!

 A captivating water, music and light spectacle in Downtown Dubai, The Dubai Fountain is the world’s tallest performing fountain. At over 900 ft in length – equivalent to over two football pitches – The Dubai Fountain is situated on the 30-acre Burj Lake and performs to a selection of different melodies.

You can also take our private tour of Downtown Dubai to know more about the architecture of the marvellous buildings like the Burj Khalifa, Souk Madinat and Dubai Mall.

  1. Visit the Burj Al Arab for High Tea

Burj Al Arab is one of the top iconic hotels of the world. You can truly experience living like a royal if you book a stay in the Burj Al Arab. The hotel was opened in 1999 and has a distinctive sail-shaped silhouette. The hotel marks Dubai as a luxury tourism destination.

It is built on a man-made island and rises 321 meters above the sea level, offering great views of the sea. Gold interiors, lavish restaurants, great afternoon high teas, and its own helipad- that has hosted Roger Federer and Tiger Woods!

You can also check our blog on High Teas at Burj Al Arab for more details!

 

  1. Music Moments at the Dubai Opera

Dubai’s October line-up of music and live shows already has us dancing with excitement. Whatever it takes to get your groove on, you’re sure to find something to enjoy with a vast variety of musicians, artists, dancers and performers queuing up to keep Dubai at the top of the charts.

Dubai Opera and Dubai will host the world’s most popular musical, The Phantom of the Opera for the first time from October 16, 2019, through October 29, 2019.

The Andrew Lloyd Webber blockbuster has won over 70 major theatre awards, including seven Tony’s on Broadway and four Olivier Awards in the West End. The Phantom of the Opera became the longest running show in Broadway history on January 9, 2006, when it celebrated its 7,486th performance. On January 1, 2018, it celebrated its 13,000th performance and later that month on January 24, the Broadway production celebrated an amazing 30 years on Broadway.

Location: Dubai Opera

When: October 16 through October 29, 2019

Grab your tissues and head to Dubai Opera this month for Ghost the Musical, a new interpretation of the heart-touching film, produced by Bill Kenwright. Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore were stars of the original movie and screenwriter Bruce Joel Rubin was the Oscar winner and screenwriter behind the memorable tale. Rubin adapted the screenplay so you can expect the same excellent drama and tunes in this Broadway show. The performance theatre is an architectural icon, located next to Dubai Fountains, it’s always a treat to visit!

Your Instagram feed will thank you for it!

Location: Dubai Opera

When: October 9 through October 13, 2019

  1. Get active with the Dubai Fitness Challenge

Dubai gives you the ultimate reason to bin all those excuses about not getting fit. The Dubai Fitness Challenge (DFC) is back again this year, and that means one thing – the city is about to turn into one giant activity playground and gym. And yes, it’s all for free!

The inaugural challenge was launched in 2017 by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council and after the huge success of the event, here we are ready to take on the third edition of the Dubai Fitness Challenge.

Upping the ante on last year’s total engagement numbers, nearly one million people participated in the challenge last year, and this year is set to be even bigger. Running from October 18 to November 16, 2019, gyms, yoga studios and popular resident hotspots will be among some of the many places opening their doors to residents who want to get involved. Offering free classes, passes, sessions and events throughout the month-long event, residents won’t have to fork out a penny but can shed the pounds.

With the aim to encourage people to dedicate 30 minutes out of their day to being active, there really will be no excuse for being a couch potato. From paddle-boarding and group fitness classes to football and cycling, no stone will be left unturned.

Dubai’s 30×30 exercise drive is back in action!

When: October 18 until November 16, 2019

Location: Citywide

Ticket Price: Free

  1. Enjoy a Desert Safari

It would be a mistake to leave this emirate without going on a Dubai Desert Safari. Dubai is generally a desert, but you are not actually experiencing its desert without joining a Dubai desert safari tour.  The tour is engaging and missing the fun would be a lost opportunity.  But, what exactly can you expect in a desert safari tour? 

The tour starts in the afternoon from your hotel in a 4×4 Land Cruiser! A typical desert safari does include dune bashing. It is such a thrill to drive through the desert, drifting over the tall sand dunes and feeling your stomach lurch after a steep drop over the top of a dune. At the camp, you can go for quad biking, camel riding and enjoy a great Arabic dinner buffet before you are dropped off at your hotel at night.

You can also opt for overnight desert safari where you stay in camps or an early morning sunrise safari.

You can check here for more details on Dubai desert safari or to book a desert safari.

  1. Visit the Beach

This weather is perfect to spend the sunny yet pleasant weekends at the beach.

La Mer Is Hands Down One of Dubai’s Most ‘Grammable Spots and the newest beaches in Dubai. La Mer Dubai is a beach destination that offers fun, shopping and entertainment for residents of Dubai. This property has been developed by Meraas and spans over 1.24 million square meters of space. They have even accommodated an underground parking area. In La Mer, you will appreciate the street art and paintings and the design that makes for a nice walk. It boasts of all top restaurants as well that you can find in the city where you can head out after a dip in the ocean. They also have facilities for water sports for the adventurous ones.

La Mer also boasts of a cinema and a water park!

For the perfect weekend, you can visit the Kite Beach, famous for the kites in the area or the famous Beach at the JBR. if you want to avoid the crowds, try Al Sufouh (or ‘Black Palace’) Beach – this spot is a bit trickier to find, but you’ll be rewarded with peaceful waters and beautiful views.

For more details, you can check our blog on Top 10 Free Things to do in Dubai.

  1. Visit the Palm Jumeirah- The Atlantis and The Pointe Dubai

Explore one of Dubai’s Architectural Triumphs- the Palm Jumeirah! It happens only in Dubai that you can see a man-made island in the shape of a palm tree.

Atlantis The Palm, Dubai, the luxury hotel is located on the Palm Jumeirah. This was the first resort to be built on the island and shows distinctive elements of the Arabian world. The hotel has a nautical theme and consists of 1539 rooms.  It is complemented by the Aqua venture water park and the Nasimi Beach, which frequently plays host to concerts and other events.

There are lots of exciting activities that make Atlantis beach resort the epicentre of adventure and the greatest holiday experience ever. You can swim with dolphins at Dolphin Bay or meet the sea lion at the Sea Lion Point or visit the home to 65,000 incredible marine animals in the Lost Chamber Aquarium.

The Pointe is a brand-new promenade for lovely strolls and another spot to watch the gorgeous dancing fountains – the Palm is now transforming from a mainly residential place to one of the top hangouts in the city. The Pointe couldn’t be in a better location, directly across from Atlantis, imagine the views!

And with a monorail running down the ‘trunk’ that connects to the mainland’s tram system, getting to the Palm Jumeirah couldn’t be easier.

  1. Ripley’s Believe it or not- World of Wonder

Let your eyes deceive you- The world-renowned, incredible wonders of Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, make their way to Dubai this season. Take the family down to Wafi shopping complex in Oud Metha to witness the global touring exhibition that focuses on the bizarre, the unusual and the downright weird. Mix up your next shopping trip with a tour of 75 exhibits – for the first time in the region – including dinosaur eggs, giants and a five-legged cow, to name a few. Grab a stamp from each exhibit!

When: September 9 until November 30, 2019
Tickets: Free

 

Coca Cola Arena

Posted by & filed under Dubai, Uncategorized.

If you have visited City Walk lately, you would have noticed a huge arena complex being built- the Dubai Arena now named as the Coca Cola Arena which is set to open soon.

Who has built the Coca Cola Arena?

Dubai Arena is being built by Meeras group, the group who is also responsible for La Mer, JBR and the recently launched Blue Waters Island.

The mega venue’s name was changed to Coca Cola Arena following a sponsorship deal with the soft drinks giant. The chairman of the Meeras group quoted “We are proud to have a company of such worldwide renown as Coca-Cola taking on the naming rights for the arena in the long-term.” The contract between the two companies has been signed for ten years.

The huge arena has the capacity to hold 17000 people with scoreboards, lighting and sound systems, dozens of hospitality suites. The multipurpose arena will be fully air-conditioned, which means that it will be able to host events all year round so now you can attend concerts all year round! It is also, significantly, the biggest multipurpose arena of its kind between Istanbul and Singapore.

Day-to-day operations for the venue will be handled by international venue management company AEG Ogden, who also operate London’s O2 Arena, Staples Centre in Los Angeles, Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai and Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney.

The building of Coca Cola Arena has a state of art LED strip light system that will allow the building to change color.

What technology will the Coca Cola Arena feature?

  • The roof

It will be designed to accommodate the largest of productions. The overall allowed weight load would be 190 metre tonnes across the roof.

  • The drape system

Coca-Cola Arena has a state-of-the-art multipurpose drape system which will allow the arena to be scaled as required depending on the event set up and capacity. An automated system of drapes are in place to close of the top level of the arena when not in use and a backdrop drape system can be rolled down the length of the arena to reduce the floor space as required.

  • IT & AV

Coca-Cola Arena will provide the latest and technologically advanced line array speaker system which will be modular in design and can be deployed in any configuration to cover the arena and to facilitate the most advanced artist or event requirements.

Where is the Coca Cola Arena located?

If you have visited City Walk lately, you would have noticed a huge arena complex being built- the Dubai Arena now named as the Coca Cola Arena which is set to open soon.

Take a stroll into Dubai’s most exciting new urban precinct – City Walk.

Chic shops, al fresco restaurants, beautifully designed outdoor spaces and even a swish boutique hotel in the form of La Ville Hotel and Suites form this lifestyle destination.

City Walk artfully combines shopping with entertainment including standouts such as Hub Zero, Green Planet, Mattel Play! Town, a cinema and a year-round calendar of events. Families will enjoy the European-style pedestrianized boulevards, stretching several blocks from the city towards Jumeirah.

And of course, fashionistas can rejoice in the huge selection of local and international boutiques, arranged around excellent indoor and outdoor dining options including the swag of new hip places that form part of La Ville Hotel and Suites – such as Graze and Chival.

Other popular options include the modern-Indian restaurant Farzi Cafe, French fare at Aubaine, Emirati fusion spot Sikka Cafe, and Cocoa Kitchen for the sweet’s lovers – just to name a few.

 What are the upcoming shows at Coca Cola Arena?

The arena is set to host its first gig in June, with legendary and Emmy winning stand-up comedian Russell Peters taking to the stage.

The next act announced to play is Maroon 5, who will play the Coca-Cola Arena on Friday, June 14, as part of the band’s ‘Red Pill Blues’ tour. Tickets can be bought via www.doneevents.com.

Later in the year and in future, you can expect to see huge concerts as well as sporting events such as tennis, basketball, boxing, volleyball and ice hockey, along with exhibitions, festivals and much more.

To know more about the upcoming concerts in Dubai, check our blog on Things to do in Dubai and Music Concerts in Dubai in 2019.

The arena will bolster Dubai’s status as a year-round global tourist destination and foster the development of Dubai as an all-inclusive modern metropolis for its residents.

Best Souvenirs to buy in Dubai

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

A big part of traveling involves picking up souvenirs for everyone back home and for your own memories. Therefore, it’s important to know the best places to buy good presents in any city one visits. In Dubai, there are a variety of fun souvenirs available, from traditional clothing to stuffed camels. Here are the best places to find them. A lot of businesses have grown in Dubai selling Souvenirs. Here are our must-buy Souvenirs when you are in Dubai. We are sure you would love to add them to your shopping list!

Gallery One

Found in several locations in Dubai such as Dubai Mall, Mall of the Emirates and Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Gallery One is best known for selling beautiful traditional art, from incredible pictures of Dubai to paintings of camels. It is a great place to buy gifts with a traditional theme, often depicting camels and words in Arabic in their designs, making for unique and high-end souvenirs.

Nagwa Design Studio- Candles

Candles from Nagwa Design Studio mix Emirati heritage with contemporary design. When the wax of the candles melts completely, it reveals a concrete base that re-creates the contours of a time-specific Liwa desert sand dune. Your candle may be gone, but you’re left with a contemporary sculpture that you can keep.

The Camel Company

Found in several locations in Dubai such as Dubai Mall, and Souk Madinat Jumeirah, The Camel Company focuses entirely on souvenirs and sells an array of colorful items. It is specifically known for its stuffed camels which come in all shapes and sizes and make great gifts for children.

Chocolates from Mirzam

Dubai has its very own art scene and you can experience it, you should join us on our Art, Jewels and Chocolate Tour of Dubai in Alserkal Avenue. Mirzam is the UAE’s first bean-to-bar chocolate factory, and of the stops on our tour. They have a shop, and café in one where the production of their artisan bars — flavored with local ingredients like cardamom, saffron, and coffee — takes place at their store.  Visitors can see the process for themselves during twice-daily tours at the boutique factory. Even the wrappers are designed locally by UAE-based artists.

Spice Souk

One of the busiest yet the favorite tourist locations is the Spice Souk in Dubai, just near the Gold Souk of Dubai in Deira. Although most people think of the Spice Souk as a place to buy authentic and delicious spices, this touristic spot also sells souvenirs. Around the Spice Souk, tourists can buy magnets, traditional clothing, and even interesting home decorations. The great thing about shopping for souvenirs at the Spice Souk is that it is one of the few places in Dubai where bargaining is common. Therefore, for those shopping for souvenirs in bulk, this is the ideal spot to get more and pay less. Visit the Spice Souk on our Old Dubai and Souk Heritage Walking Tour.

Here you can also buy a bag of “loomi”, if you are really passionate about cooking. These tiny dried limes are lightweight, but once pierced and stewed, they give incredible flavor and fragrance to any dish.

Arabian Incense 

If you notice, Arabs smell great when you walk past men and women. Smelling good is an important part of Arab society. To take the scent of the UAE with you, you can buy bukhoor (Arabian incense) to burn in your home, particularly the amber-based bukhoor. You can buy these in any shop in the Souks or in the malls.

Art Work from Make Art Café/ Store in Al Bastakiya

On our Old Dubai and Souk tour, we also visit the famous Make Art Café where you can find great Dubai and Arab artwork. There are local artist and graphic designer inspired paintings, artwork, light shadows, etc. You can also enjoy a nice coffee while you shop from their café inside one of the houses in Bastakiya.

Tag us on Instagram at dubaibyfoot and let us know what you buy as your next souvenir when in Dubai!

Which Dubai City Pass Is The Best?

Posted by & filed under Dubai.

This post reviews the different tourist attraction discount passes available in Dubai and explains how they could save you both time and money.

 

A Desert Safari is just one of the activities included with these Dubai city passes. Image Source: Pixabay user sharonang under CC0 Creative Commons license.
 


BEFORE YOU BUY

Dubai tourist attraction discount passes come in many different forms. While some will provide easy access to many different attractions, others will allow you to pick the specific locations you want to visit.

This section will provide information about what you can expect from each type of city pass.  Read more »

MyStory- 50 Years of HH Sheikh Mohammed

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The Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and the ruler of Dubai, HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has completed 50 years of service to the UAE.

In honor of his services, HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, released a touching letter and took to Twitter to share a heartfelt congratulations letter, mentioning the ruler of Dubai’s journey filled with giving. The Ruler of Dubai went on to thank Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for his kind words and appreciated the love and appreciation he has received from his people.

What is the book launched by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum?

To mark the milestone event, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, a passionate poet, and writer released a new book titled “Qissati” which translates to ‘My Story’.

“Qissati” includes 50 different stories from the Dubai ruler’s 50 years of service to the nation, including his conversations with the US and personal stories such as conversations he had with his mother when he was a young boy. The book was initially only released in Arabic at the beginning of 2019, but the English version has also been released now.

The first copy of the book was presented to Pope Francis by HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, during his historical visit to Abu Dhabi the first week of February, also celebrating the Year of Tolerance. The first of its kind book features a chapter on each practicing religion in the UAE, including Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, and various Christian faiths.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum published a pledge containing nine articles called “Fifty-Year charter” that aim to develop the quality of life and guarantee a better future for generations. The announcement was made after his 50th anniversary of starting his first mission in serving his homeland and people. The document was announced on January 4, 2019, and he promised that on January 4 each year, the “Fifty-Year-Charter” would be renewed with exceptional projects and programmes in Dubai.

What are the projects for the coming 50 years in Dubai?

1: Dubai Silk Road

The document states that it is Dubai’s destiny to be a hub between the east and west, north and south and a top destination for the world. Dubai is also home to the largest international airport in the world connecting it to more than 200 cities. In the coming ten years, more than a billion passengers will travel through Dubai airport. “Our next step is to build our own silk road in cooperation with brothers and friends. Our region has always been known for its civilization and trade, and we must restore that role. We will work to develop an international system to support our ambitions.”

2: Geo-Economic Map for Dubai

The government will develop a geographical and economic map for Dubai, to turn it into integrated and specialized free economic zones in the coming period. Each geographical-economic sector in the city will have its own board, which runs, promotes, and competes with similar sectors. Each geographic sector will also have its own investment and economic goals, which we will follow up on their implementation in sheer transparency. Each economic sector will also have a governor who will fulfill the goals for which the sector has been set up.

3: Setting up the first virtual commercial city

The first virtual commercial zone will come up in Dubai where Trade licenses will be granted without having to get a residency visa in Dubai. Bank accounts will also be opened, and e-residency visas will be granted according to the highest international and legal controls. The aim is to set up a company with a process easier than the set up of an email account.

4: Central education file for every citizen

Dubai aims to develop an e-central educational file for each citizen, which will document his or her certificates, courses, training, and conferences attended. It will chart out educational plans suitable for each citizen’s health and physical ability, and personal and functional skills.

5: Doctor for every citizen

The city and the government will work to provide medical consultations 24/7 by hundreds of thousands of doctors, specialists and consultants from around the world through a specialized company via smart government applications. “Our end goal is to change the traditional medical system and bring doctors closer to patients, heighten awareness and to utilize the best minds in the medical field in the service of our citizens.”- HH Sheikh Mohammed

6: Free economic and creative zones in universities

Nine-tenth of Dubai’s income source is business. Starting from next year, our national and private universities will be announced free zones where students can carry out their economic and creative businesses and this will be part of the educational system. Integrated creative and economic zones will be established next to universities to support students in education, research, and finance while setting up their businesses. The end goal is not only graduating students but also coming up with companies.

7: Self-sufficiency in Dubai Homes

In cooperation with our citizens willing to create an integrated system to achieve self-sufficiency in water, food and energy in, at least, one-tenth of citizens’ homes to change the lifestyle and maintain our environment. The aim is to create a new economic sector which supports self-sufficiency in water, food, and energy for at least one month or more.

8: Cooperative companies in various sectors

“This is a long-term programme seeking to double citizens’ income and improve the quality of service through the privatization of some public services in addition to setting up cooperative companies to be owned by citizens in a number of vital sectors.”- HH Sheikh Mohammed

9: Annual growth in philanthropy

The spirit of giving and extending a helping hand to others will continue in UAE. The ruler of Dubai pledged to increase Dubai’s humanitarian works and keenness to boost its growth in parallel with its business development.

Sheikh Mohammed’s journey started at the age of 19 when a newly minted graduate from a British military academy began to work for his father, Sheikh Rashid.

His passion to make Dubai the Arab world’s first Smart City is embodied in futuristic projects like flying taxis and the ambition to make a quarter of all journeys in the city autonomous by 2030. In 2015, Sheikh Mohammed unveiled Vision 2021, with national priorities that include world class health and education, and a knowledge-based economy tangible in the forthcoming Mission to Mars and Expo 2020