"I want Dubai to be a place where everybody from all over the world meets each other, don't think of fighting or hate, just love it, enjoy their sport, and that's it."
Famous Arabic author and philanthropist Mohammad Maktoum wrote this of one of his muses – the city of Dubai. There’s not an ounce of overstatement in the quote presented above, for Dubai is probably the only city in the world, except New York City, that can call itself truly global and truly special.
Dubai is not an ordinary city by any definition of the word. It is a city that wasn’t there on the map forty years ago. What used to be vast expanses of barren sand dunes and wandering caravans of heat-struck traders is now a megapolis that features the world’s tallest building, the best hotel in the world, the most awe-inspiriting examples of modern engineering and most ambitious city planning exercises every thought up.
The moment one enters this city of concrete megalomania, one thing is pretty clear – it is an oasis in the midst of unending stretches of Arabic desert. It certainly has some tranquillity about it, but it doesn’t last for long. The nightlife in Dubai is as vivacious and as lively as it can get in Amsterdam or London and its global cuisine serving posh restaurants are as equipped as Paris and Marseilles.
If you are visiting Dubai, one thing you would probably (and rightly so!) be concerned about is accommodation. So, this post should help those who wish to learn a few tips for their upcoming stay in this city of magic!
Spend Less, Stay in Style
One of the best things about Dubai is that, despite being a mega-city with lavish infrastructure, it offers a number of affordable accommodation options for its visitors.
Cheap hotels in Dubai, however, are not really cheap in comparison with other cities of the region. This is perhaps due to the fact that most of the economy of the modern city of Dubai is based on tourism and sightseeing. That said, a few hotels in Dubai still offer old fashioned and no frills accommodation to travelers who are willing to adjust a little bit in order to make their trip economical.
Among such Dubai hotels of moderate pricing structure, Marina View Hotel is perhaps the best known to travelers on account of its perfect location from the city center. Similarly, Hotel Asiana offers a very comfortable yet economical stay, especially for those who are in Dubai for work or business. Icon Hotel Apartments is a service apartment establishment providing a neat and clean stay for visitors.
The Real Deal of Dubai
The real deal of Dubai lies in a variety of luxury hotel and resort establishments that swarm its skyline at night. The whole idea is enough to make tourists wonder if the city is popular for its sights or for its hotel business.
The unavoidable mention when the discussion ensues about luxurious Dubai hotels is that of Burj Al Arab Jumeirah. The hotel is as royal and as extravagant as the Palace of Versailles. Featured in countless movies and shows, Burj Al Arab Jumeirah has really become an identity of Dubai. But if you wish to stay here even for a night, be prepared to shell out some serious wad of cash.
Palazzo Versace Dubai is another entry in the list of posh hotels in Dubai. Located at a leisurely distance from all the activity, the hotel provides much needed solace to travelers. Similarly, Arabian Court and One and Only Royal Mirage, St Regis Dubai and The Palm pitch in with their shares of utterly enjoyable hospitality.
Things to Do in Dubai
Dubai is a city of money. If money can buy pleasure, Dubai is the embodiment of it all. Burj Khalifa – the tallest building in the world by some height – is a permanent top fixture among all the things that tourists do or love to do in Dubai. The view that one is presented with from the top floor of the hotel is nothing short of mesmerizing.
Dubai Fountain Show offers a great entertainment in the evening as the perfectly orchestrated dance of myriads of fountains soothes your very soul. Aquaventure Park in Dubai also attracts millions of travelers each year. Loaded with imaginative rides, it is a must-visit place if you have kids tagging along with you.
The Palm Island in Dubai is another peculiar attraction that is a result of extreme engineering and indomitable ambition.
Do’s & Don’ts of Sightseeing in Dubai
Prior to setting out on a sightseeing spree in Dubai, you must know that Dubai can be a sort of culture shock to some people. Some of the local rules and laws are completely in contrast with those observed in the western world, and it would do you good to get acquainted with them prior to arriving in Dubai.
Also, while staying in Dubai, make it a point not to look for overly cheap hotels that offer unbelievably good deals, simply because if it is too good to be true – it actually is!
Language barrier can be a problem in some places. So, hiring a local guide-and-mediator can be greatly useful. In the same vein, it must be noted that local dressing codes are very much different to what tourists in the western world are accustomed to. This is true especially in case of women. Hence, adequate information must be sought regarding these points before setting off on a trip to Dubai!
Local Transport in Dubai
Being a world class city, Dubai features a great network of local transport facilities like local trains and buses. However, the geography of the region and widely scattered tourists places mean that you would be better off hiring a private car for the duration of your stay. Tourists should refrain from driving the cars themselves in Dubai because of strict traffic regulations. Hiring a qualified driver can, instead, be both cheap and convenient.
- Top Attractions:
- Burj Khalifa, Dubai Metro, Dubai Creek, Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, Wild Wadi Water Park
- City Size:
- 1,588 mi²
- Average Temperature:
- 72°F (22°C), Wind W at 19 mph (31 km/h), 43% Humidity