Once a small fishing village, Dubai has today flourished to become the pearl of the Middle East. It offers the unimaginable sight of the world’s tallest building Burj Khalifa and the miraculous 8th Wonder of the World – Palm Jumeirah. Lounging on sandy beaches, visiting exclusive nightclubs, and skiing inside the magnificent indoor ski slope are a few of the many amazing activities that Dubai has to offer. Dubai is where historic Arabic culture, modern skyscrapers, exotic markets and beautiful beaches form the crossroads for an unbeatable holiday.
1 Dirham (AED) = 100 fils
The Gulf Today
The Gulf News
7 Days (free sheet)
Thanks to split-shift staffing systems, many shops are open 24 hours a day while most others stay open until 21.00 or 22.00. On Fridays many shops close from 11.30-12.30 for Muslim holy day prayers. Times are revised during Ramadan.
Dubai Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing
Ground, 8th and 9th Floors, Al Fattan Plaza, Airport Road, Deira Dubai
+971 4 282 1111
If cutting-edge modern architecture appeals to you, then nowhere else on earth can offer such a massive wow factor as does the United Arab Emirates’ largest metropolis. Dubai is growing, fast. On the way to completion is the 700 metre tall Dubai Tower, set to be the world’s highest building, along with the world’s largest shopping mall, the world’s first underwater hotel—Hydropolis—and The World, an amazing man-made series of 250 islands shaped to represent a map of the globe. Already on hand are the iconic sail-shaped Burg Al Arab Hotel—currently the world’s tallest—and the new Ski Dubai indoor winter sports centre at the Mall of the Emirates, where you can snow ski a stone’s throw from desert sand dunes.
It’s a large city and, given the climate, you will be taking lots of cabs and buses, yet a surprising amount of it is walkable, especially around the Creek—an attractive stretch of water that bisects the city. Around 80 percent of the residents are expats, not only from Europe and North America, but from all over the Middle and Far East too, making it one of the world’s most vibrantly cosmopolitan cities.
Dubai is a city that offers many attractions and sites for all types of travellers. Here you can go up the world’s tallest tower or head for a cultural night out at the theatre, swim with dolphins, explore heritage sites, go on a safari out into the sand dunes or even try out indoor skiing. The list is endless, and you will certainly enjoy plenty of things to do and see.
The Lost Chambers Aquarium
Wild Wadi Water Park
Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo
The Dubai Fountains
The Tower Of Arabs (Burj Al Arab)
Burj Al Arab Beach
The Global Village
Thanks to its role as that of a great international crossroads and the truly cosmopolitan nature of its population, Dubai offers cuisine from all over the world. French, Italian, Spanish, Greek and Scandinavian establishments vie with the culinary delights of India, China, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan and Korea.
Then, of course, there’s true Middle Eastern food, with Moroccan, Lebanese, Iranian, Jordanian and other specialities on offer as well as such local Arabic delights as hareis (succulent slow-cooked lamb with cracked wheat), matchous (highly spiced lamb served over rice), fattayyer (bite-sized pastries stuffed with cream cheese and spinach), mehalabiya (a mouth-watering pudding topped with pistachio nuts and rose petals) and esh asaraya (a cream-topped variation on cheesecake). A good tip: for great value genuine Arabic food, try the long-established citywide chain of restaurants called Automatic.
This is one city where in-house hotel restaurants do extremely well – and offer a vast array of choice. Many hotels have six or more different outlets to provide a culinary tour of the world of fine food – and value often matches that of stand-alone eateries. In what is officially a Muslim city, the entirely cosmopolitan nature of the populace means alcohol is widely available and pork and shellfish find their way onto many menus, too.
Lan Kwai Fong
The Noodle House
Rhodes Twenty 10
Cucina Mia Restaurant
If you would like to escape from the hustle and bustle of busy city life, then head over to a cafe, sit down and unwind with a cup of coffee or tea. There is no shortage of cafes in Dubai, many of them are located at shopping malls or adjacent to hotels.
Arabian Tea House
Choix Patisserie and Restaurant
Mama Tani Cafe
Lime Tree Cafe
In Dubai you will experience an extraordinary and unique nightlife scene. The city is full of amazing places such as lounge bars, breezy beach clubs or simply nightclubs - ones like the famous Cavalli Club, for example.
The Library & Cigar Bar
Rock Bottom Café
Biggles English Pub
Chillout Ice Lounge
Cirque le Soir
White Club Dubai
The Music Room
Shopping could almost be described as Dubai’s raison d’êtré. This is real shop-till you-drop territory, with an amazing array of vast, modern air-conditioned shopping malls, street markets, large and small shops, and the renowned gold, perfume and spice souks.
There are plenty of opportunities to use credit cards, but cash is king where bargains are concerned. Tax-free status plus lots of haggling – which, as in all Arab countries, almost reaches the level of an art form – ensures great value and even major stores may come up with special discounts if you ask first, and you should never be afraid to ask.
Sweetmeats and exotic fruits on display in stalls throughout the city are equally enticing and you’ll also find grocery stores that resemble Aladdin’s cave with their bounty.
Souk Al Bahar
The Karama Market
Book World by Kinokuniya
The Dubai Mall
Gold & Diamond Park
Mirdif City Centre
Dubai Festival City
Dubai Shopping Festival and Dubai Summer Surprise
Ibn Battuta Mall
Saturn Textiles and Readymade Garments
Deira Spice Souk
Local post offices, filling stations, shopping malls and many souvenir shops sell postage stamps.
Central Post Office:
Address: Zabeel Road, Al-Karama, Dubai
Phone: +971 4 337 1500
The most convenient way of getting around. Beware of uninsured illegal taxis. The four government franchised official operators have strictly controlled fares. Cabs can be hailed at the roadside, or summoned via telephone or one of the electronic booking machines found around town. Driver knowledge is sometimes lacking, so use a major landmark as a homing device when saying where you want to go.
Phone: + 971 4 331 3913
Pharmacies provide 24hr service on a rotating basis listed in local newspapers.
Maryam Pharmacy LLC is open 24 hours and 7 days a week.
Next To Mashreq Bank
Bank Street, Bur Dubai
+971 4 397 5581
Union Pharmacy is open 24 hours and 7 days a week.
Al Rafa Street
+971 4 393 5619
Dubai International Airport
The Dubai International airport is located 4 km (2.5 miles) southeast of Dubai.
Transportation from the airport is possible by taxi and bus.
Transfer between the terminals takes about 10 minutes using the airport shuttle service. The Terminal 1 Departures concourse (Sheikh Rashid Terminal) is linked to Terminal 1 via a tunnel with travelators. Terminal 2 is used exclusively for business and charter flights.
Taxi service is provided by the government-run Dubai Transport airport taxi, where each cab is meter-run.
Bus service: Bus stations are located opposite both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. Buses run frequently and serve the most popular places in Dubai (www,dubai-buses.com/index.aspx).Tickets must be bought prior to the journey.
You can also take the Metro to and from the airport. The metro runs at ten-minute intervals and stops at ten stations located across the city.
Address: The Dubai International airport, Dubai
Phone: +971 4 224 5555
The bus service in Dubai is an easy, quick and inexpensive way to get around in the city, operated by the Dubai Municipality Transport Section.
Fares are low, and a pre-purchased Nol Card is the most convenient payment option. There are special 24-hour passes available for visitors; these work on all forms of transport and allow visitors to easily reach most tourist sites.
Phone: +971 4 284 4444
There are two metro lines in Dubai, red line and green line. The Red Line runs every 3-4 minutes during peak time and 7 minutes during off-peak hours. Every metro station will have bus connections and taxi pickup.
To travel with Metro you need to buy a Nol card or Nol ticket. You can buy your Nol ticket on the ticket vending machine, ticket office or RTA authorised sales agent. Each time you travel, tap your card at the card reader on the fare gates.
Phone: +971 4 800 9090
More Information: www.rta.ae
Country code: +971
Area code: 04
There are many public phone boxes, mostly credit card operated, but calls from them are very expensive, as are calls from hotel rooms.