5 Must Visit Places in Dubai

26 Feb

Everyone associates Dubai with just world-class shopping. But during my trip here, I realized that but there is so much more to see and experience here than just wandering around in one of its many malls. This city has something for everyone – be it culture, art, history, architecture (modern and traditional), food, etc etc. And based on my own experiences, today I am sharing 5 must see places that should definitely be on your travel itinerary for your next trip to Dubai –

The Dubai Skyline

The Dubai Skyline

Explore the Old Town

A visit to the soul of Dubai, the Old Town, is a must. The Old Town comprises of Deira and Bur Dubai, which are separated by the old and historically significant Dubai Creek. Start your visit by walking through the Bastakia Quarter, which has the traditional houses, two stories high, with large central courtyards and the wind towers (for cooling in hot climate). The traditional carved doors with wooden bordering and beautifully crafted hanging lamps will definitely take you back in time. This area today represents the arty / crafty side of the city, with small museums, art galleries, heritage houses, souvenir shops, spice stores and cafes. Then continue your walk and visit the small Dubai Museum (a must for Dubai history and how it has grown over the last 2 decades), then walk and shop through the traditional textile souk, on to the promenade along the creek and finally take a dhow (a local wooden boat) to cross the creek and visit the Diera area. In Diera, visit and shop at the spice and gold souks, see the Heritage House (for a glimpse into the history and earlier way of life in Dubai), the Al-Ahmadiya School and finally finish the day with a dhow cruise while watching a splendid Dubai sunset.

A dhow

A dhow

Visit Jumeirah Mosque

The Jumeirah mosque is the only mosque in the UAE which is open to the general public and women. The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) opened this mosque to the public to raise awareness about the local culture, customs and religion of the UAE, and to thereby increase cross-cultural dialogue with guests. During this visit a local volunteer takes you around the different parts of the mosque, explains the customs and rituals and then answers all your queries on Islam. This is also a fantastic oppertunity to clear all your queries on Islam and its customs and see the interiors of a mosque.

Inside the Jumeirah Mosque, Dubai

Inside the Jumeirah Mosque, Dubai

Go up Burj Khalifa

In Dubai a visit to the Burj Khalifa is a definite must. This visit showcases the various architectural, design and engineering feats associated with this truly iconic building, which is the tallest building in the world. A visit to its 124th floor (Observation Deck) shows you some fantastic views of the Dubai skyline and some amazing photography shots.Though a word of advice – this visit is extremely popular and hence the tickets are sold out pretty fast. Hence make sure to book your tickets way in advance.

Burj Khalifa

Burj Khalifa

Spend a day at the Atlantis and the Palm Jumeirah

The Palm Jumeirah is an artificial cluster of islands, created and arranged in the form of a giant palm tree – complete with a trunk, a crown, 16 fronds and a crescent to complete the outline. At the tip of this is the Hotel Atlantis that houses numerous shops / boutiques, fine dine restaurants, spas, beaches, pools etc. However the novelties here are – an aquaventure park, the dolphin bay and the lost chambers aquarium. You can spend an entire day here and sample a bit of everything that this property has to offer.

The murals in Atlantis Dubai

The murals in Atlantis Dubai

Desert safari

A desert safari is a quick and easy way to experience the traditional Bedouin lifestyle in the deserts along with the adventurous “dune bashing”. A typical desert safari takes half a day and includes a pick and drop from Dubai, fun-filled dune bashing, camel riding, belly dance performances in a desert camp, sheesha-smoking, Arabic coffee and dinner (under a star filled sky). But do check on the reviews and rates with a couple of travel agents before finalising your trip.

Tips for the Trip –

1. For booking your flight to Dubai, be sure to check out fares on the Emirates for fabulous deals and connectivity from anywhere in the world. They also process a tourist visa for the trip.

2. Dubai has numerous choices for places to stay in and you can decide on a hotel based on your budget and proximity to things you want to see.

3. This city also has a fantastic public transportation system and provides good connectivity to all touristy sights and interest.

22 Responses to “5 Must Visit Places in Dubai”

  1. Rajiv February 26, 2014 at 11:07 #

    I don’t like Dubai at all!


    • getsetandgo February 26, 2014 at 11:09 #



      • Rajiv February 26, 2014 at 12:57 #

        Oh, I found it to be an urban nightmare, and without soul


      • getsetandgo February 26, 2014 at 21:08 #

        Thats why I recommend a walk through Old Dubai


  2. Daisy Prado February 26, 2014 at 11:12 #

    Never knew about these places in Dubai! It is an overall exquisite place.
    Happy Travels,


  3. sangita February 26, 2014 at 12:10 #

    Very Nice and detail writeup about Dubai.It will guide new travelers to plan properly. –Sangita


  4. MayZ February 26, 2014 at 12:13 #

    Thanks for sharing, will keep this mind when I travel there one day 🙂


  5. perch February 26, 2014 at 17:48 #

    Thanks for the tips – heading there soon and looking forward to it (:


  6. leggypeggy February 27, 2014 at 18:22 #

    This is perfect timing. We have a few days in Dubai in May. Thanks.


    • getsetandgo March 9, 2014 at 11:13 #

      you are welcome and do let me know if you have any questions for your trip 🙂


  7. Juliana Lightle March 2, 2014 at 20:46 #

    If I go Emirate Airlines to Ethiopia this summer, I will have a lay over in Dubai so long that I can look around. This makes a lot more sense to me than shopping. Thanks!!


    • getsetandgo March 9, 2014 at 11:20 #

      Wow, I look forward to hearing your stories and impressions of Ethiopia. Been wanting to visit for a while but nothings worked out 😦


      • Juliana Lightle March 13, 2014 at 07:11 #

        I am going with friends–a couple. His family lives there; he is from there so an ideal situation. He has not seen all of his own country so we are going on a road trip. I will definitely take photos, keep a journal, and blog it all. I blogged my trip to Costa Rica, but Ethiopia is ancient and diverse and well…


      • getsetandgo March 18, 2014 at 13:12 #

        Yes, and very little has been written about it. It would be fun to experience it digitally with you 🙂


  8. sahilkgmc March 7, 2014 at 10:15 #

    beautifully described, one should visit dubai every 5 yrs and see it changing fast. the only thing that i missed was going inside jumeirah mosque. keep writing…. nice post


    • getsetandgo March 9, 2014 at 11:22 #

      Thanks and thats a fabulous idea… And added to my travel basket 🙂


  9. cewinta April 18, 2015 at 17:12 #

    Great post about Dubai! We are going soon to Dubai..and this post is very useful. Thanks for sharing 🙂


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