Think of the Arabian Nights, a convoy of elegant camels ambling their way through the desert and the mystery of the Middle East. Then think of Dubai, the super modern cityscape that rises like a desert mirage. However, it is very real. The most populous city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), it is a city of wealth thanks to the discovery of oil in 1966. Since then, the city has become a powerful global city with some of the most impressive modern architecture to be found anywhere. A visit to this desert oasis is a must for any dedicated traveller. Here are some reasons why.
Dubai has been renowned as one of the world’s finest shopping destinations for at least two decades. Shopping at the Mall of the Emirates is a salubrious affair. Not only is it one of the largest but it’s also a visually stunning building with polished marble floors and a huge skylight, not to mention all the leading designer stores you could possibly want. If shopping malls aren’t your thing, visit a souk and in particular, the Souk Madinat where you can travel from one store to the next by boat.
You’d be forgiven for thinking you stepped into the 23rd century because of the immense and futuristic skyline of this opulent city. Visit the world’s tallest hotel, The Burj Al Arab, or Burj Dubai. It’s an architectural wonder. If you’re brave enough, go to the top floor for a truly breath-taking panoramic view of the city. If you’re impressed by The Burj Al Arab then you have to visit the tallest building on the planet. The Burj Khalifa. Imagine the Empire State Building in New York. Now, think of another Empire State Building on top of the first one. At 2,722 ft (828m), the Burj Khalifa is 163 floors high and will probably maintain its tallest-building-in-the-world status for quite some time.
Golf is a bit like marmite – you either love it or you hate it. If you belong to the former category, then you need to go to Dubai which is totally obsessed with golf. Major tournaments with huge cash prizes are hosted in Dubai every year and there’s plenty of opportunity to get a few rounds in yourself but bring a hat, sunscreen and plenty of water.
The ever growing iconic 5 star accommodation and, beautiful golf courses. Such as the Dubai Creek, the Emirates course and the Els Club to the amazing Earth and Fire courses at Jumeirah Golf Estates, visiting Dubai to play golf in is a truly amazing experience. and one we recommend.
Art galleries and museums
Dubai may not be the first place you think of when planning a cultural trip, however, this city boasts an incredible selection of modern art and is the modern art and design capital of the Middle East. Must-visits are the Dubai Museum for Contemporary Art as well as the beautiful work of Amir Hossein at the Majilis Gallery. The financial district plays host to a number of elegant and slick art galleries while Alserkal Avenue provides edgier design. Dubai Museum and historic walking tours of Al Bastakiya, but others need to be randomly discovered such as the incredible works of calligraphy artist Amir Hossein from The Golden Pen at Khan Murjan and the tucked-away Majilis Gallery and its fine art offerings in the heart of Dubai. As well as all that, there are also a number of art and design festivals like Art Dubai and Design Days to satisfy your creative needs.
Dubai is renowned as one of the world’s safest cities. In fact, crime is almost nonexistent with the city lines. This is a reassuring as all too often, we are warned to beware of pickpockets while on holiday. Fortunately, Dubai is free from this type of nuisance.
Have you been to Dubai? Comment below on why you wanted to visit Dubai and what were your highlights when in Dubai.