September 1, 2020

City Guide: Explore the Future in Dubai

Undoubtedly, Dubai has become a household term and is consistently among the top cities that people want to visit in their lifetime. This shouldn’t come as a surprise because it indeed is a modern city that boasts not only of structures but also of history, culture, and heritage. A widely diverse city, it serves as the glitzy holiday hotspot of the United Arab Emirates that has transformed its deserts into a top destination for work, tourism, and play.

Interesting facts about Dubai

Dubai: view of the Burj Al Arab with a dhow passing by

Dubai is your no-ordinary city. In fact, there are so many interesting facts that will leave you in awe of the UAE’s gem. Here are some of these:

  • People here are income tax-free

Yes, you get your payment in full if you work and live in Dubai. Some of the richest people in the world do business here, and thousands of foreigners have set their residency in the city.

  • Police cars are special cars

It’s not surprising to see police cars scattered around the city. But what is really surprising is seeing Ferrari, Mercedes, and Lamborghini police cars! Yes, these seem to be just ordinary cars in Dubai so get used to it.

  • You get sun almost all year through

This emirate is one of the most famous destinations, especially during the winter because of the sun. Plus, it’s got a good climate with only a few days of rain throughout the year. People from all over the world come to Dubai for a vacation or work.

  • Home to the only 7-star hotel in the world

As of latest, there is only one 7-star hotel in the world, the Burj Al Arab, and you can find that nowhere else but here. But, of course, it doesn’t come cheap as the cheapest room they have costs 1000 euro per night. However, admiring the world’s most luxurious hotel from the outside is free!

  • The population is only 15% local Emiratis

Yes, and the rest of the population is composed of foreigners. That’s how attractive the city is for foreigners.

Most visited destinations in Dubai

1. The Burj Khalifa

Dubai: the Burj Khalifa from afar in the evening with lights on

The world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, is Dubai’s most famous landmark. Standing at 829.8 metres with 124 floors, it is a must-visit whenever in the city. On the 124th floor is an observation deck featuring a multi-media presentation both of the building and of Dubai. To get to the top, you’ll be whisked away in a high-speed elevator so that you can see sweeping 360-degree views of the desert, ocean, and other skyscrapers.

2. Jumeirah Beach

the sand and buildings that can be seen from Jumeirah Beach

What makes this emirate really blessed is that it boasts both desert and ocean. On one side, you’ll be fascinated by unending dunes while on the other, you’ll love the sparkling blue ocean with amazing beaches. One of these beaches is the Jumeirah Beach that features a series of exotic hotels lined up throughout the road. It boasts world-class facilities and a majestic view of the sunset! Makes for the perfect holiday destination!

3. Dubai Mall

facade of the Dubai Mall

You might think you can find malls everywhere, but wait till you see what the Dubai Mall is all about! Aside from providing entry to the Burj Khalifa, it houses the famous Dubai Aquarium with an ice skating rink, gaming zone, and multiplex. It has an area of 500,000 square metres with more than 1,200 stores and 14,000 parking spaces. Of course, it’s known for its shopping extravaganza festivals like the  Shopping Festival and the Summer Surprises. If still, these do not amaze you, then I don’t know what can!

4. Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum

entrance to the Dubai Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum house

You really haven’t been to Dubai unless you have visited the house of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum. Here, you can find the Dubai Museum of Historical Photographs and Documents that give you a peek into the country’s impressive history. Not only does it boast Arabic architecture but it also has a luxurious interior that’s both expensive and opulent.

5. Dubai Creek

dhows docked in the Dubai Creek

The Dubai Creek is a saltwater creek that divides the city into two parts and connects the trading port to the desert. It facilitates tourism in Dubai and supports harbour ships and trading and commercial activities. On this very place, people can enjoy watching the light and music shows, moving dhows, boats, and yachts, and starry waterfront.

6. Dubai Opera

facade of the Dubai Opera

Established in 2016 in the city’s downtown, the Dubai Opera is one of the most radiant and impressive cultural and art centres. It serves as a multi-format performing arts centre with a 2000-person capacity. Interestingly, the structure looks like a dhow or a sailing vessel where various art performances are held including orchestras, ballets, concerts, theatre, conferences, and fashion shows.

7. Wadi Wadi Water Park

entrance gate to the Wadi Wadi Water Park with palms and a waterfall

Bring your entire family to the Wadi Wadi Water Park, which is one of Dubai’s premier water parks. Enjoy innovative rides designed for all ages to give you a unique experience. Its theme revolves around Juha, the character from the Arabian Nights that is also a famous folktale in Dubai. And if you love surfing, you’ll have a great time here, specifically at its surfing facility.

8. Dubai Gold Souk

gold pieces of jewelry in the Dubai Gold Souk

You might have friends who travelled to the Middle East and returned to your city draped in gold jewelry. Don’t be surprised because gold is cheap in this part of the world, including in Dubai. Visit the Dubai Gold Souk, which is also the world’s largest gold souk! Located in Deira, it attracts thousands of tourists and foreigners who are looking for excellent quality and designs of gold. With more than 250 jewellery retailers and stores, this remarkable place gets a restock of at least 10 tons of gold on a daily basis.

9. Palm Jumeirah

aerial view of the Palm Jumeirah

You won’t understand the vastness of what Dubai can do until you see the Palm Jumeirah. Considered as Dubai’s magnificent artificial archipelago, it is a land reclamation project that extends to the mighty Persian Gulf. From above, it looks like a palm tree; hence, the name. It houses some of the top tourist destinations of the city including The Palm, Lost Chambers Aquarium, and the Aquaventure Waterpark.

10. Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo

Dubai Aquarium tunnel with marine life swimming above it

Visit the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo at the ground floor of the Dubai Mall. Be impressed by this stunning attraction that boasts 10 million litres of water within the tank and 33,000 marine life contained in the aquarium. The underwater zoo sits above the tank featuring underwater life that naturally inhabits rivers, oceans, and other bodies of water. Occupying the third section is the VR Zoo that offers thrilling wildlife adventures through virtual tours.

These are just 10 of the widely-visited destinations of Dubai. As they say, this is only the tip of the iceberg as more sites wait to be explored. You might even need at least a week to fully explore these places and have a fill of Dubai’s wonderful offerings.

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