“Whoever said winning isn’t everything doesn’t know Dubai.”
Do you want to know what you should see/ visit in Dubai?
With a little bit of help from the locals, for who knows better all the wonderful places than them, I will give you a few tips:
1. Mall of The Emirates – big, grand, gigantic. And with a sky slope incorporated. In the middle of the desert!
One might find here absolutely any store that crosses your mind, with countless sales and the nicest salesmen. It is here as well where you can find a decent exchange office.
Note! Everywhere you will pay in local currency – Dirham (DHS, AED).
2. Inb Battuta Mall – a very interesting aspect is the fact that every part of this mall is presented as all the countries that the explorer Ibn Battuta has trekked down.
3. Atlantis Hotel-Palm Island – the area which the girls will insist on visiting, due to the well known Sex and The City Movie. Let’s not forget about the boys who can take delight in the view of mesmerizing cars parked in front of the hotel.
Entrance fee: 100 Dirham (if accompanied by a local the fee is only 75 Dhs).
Here you can find all species of ugly fish-man they’re ugly; I might say that is actually the main attraction of the place. And it’s well worth visiting but during the first part of the day.
After lunch hour it will be the battle for survival and for a parking place.
– First train departs at 10:00 and runs every 23 minutes-daily schedule.
– The last to Atlantis departs at 21:53 and leaves the hotel at 22:03.
5. Madinat Jumeirah– and also the place where I have seen the most spectacular sunset, a place worth visiting especially after lunch hour. It’s more crowded than you could imagine, but nothing compares to well deserve coffee at dusk.
A coffee and a bottle of water only 30 Dirham.
6. Miracle Garden – to get to see some of the most colorful flowers in the coolest shapes you could ever imagine, you will definitely need a car.
Preferably choose weekends (Friday or Saturday). The address is: Al Barsha South 3, Barsha; the entrance fee 20 Dirham per person.
7. Dubai Creek – You should know that ‘Dubai’ actually means ’two brothers’ (Du-Bai) and that the city was born on the shore of the natural canal named Creek. The two brothers are represented by the two shores of the Creek: Deira (the old city, built in a less extravagant manner), and Bur.
Further on you can take a boat – Abra to cross the canal – 1 Dirham; private boat for a half an hour ride – 60 Dirham or for 1 hour – 120 Dirham. I chose the last option, but I think half an hour will do just fine for what Dubai has to offer…’at sea’.
8. XVA Cafe & Art Hotel – in the BUR part of the city ( Bastakiya)- a place where it is simply a must to enjoy your morning coffee, at the shade offered by the interior back yard of that place that represents at the same time the Museum, Art Hotel an Coffee Shop.
The prices are a bit steep: for a bottle of sparkling water, a cup of tea and a glass of carrot juice I paid the lovely amount of 65 Dirham.
9. If you’re not much fans of scorching on the beach, you have at your service two water-parks:
– Wild Wadi Water Park, Near Burj Al Arab – 100 Dirham/person/per day.
Food/drinks will cost you 50 Dirham.
– Atlantis Lost World Water Park, on the Palm Jumeirah, part of the Atlantis Hotel, 200 Dirham/person/per day.
10. Barasti– where does everybody who wants to have fun in Dubai go? To Barasti, Dubai Marina!
A Coke is 16 Dirham, a RedBull is 25 Dirham. I can’t tell much about alcohol, but I suppose it’s double the price.
“Dear Santa, it was Barasti’s fault!”
11. Dubai Mall – the biggest, grandest mall in the world, with over 1000 stores. Because indeed, in Dubai there is this ‘culture’ of the grandest, the most beautiful and so on.
It ‘ranges’ over 1.124.000 square meters. The biggest window in the world, obviously; found at the Aquarium. This weighs 245 tons. So if you are planning on spending a few hours here, you must definitely not miss the aquarium, you couldn’t possible miss it.
Plus, it has the biggest SweetShop – Candylicous – 930 square meters.
12. Burj Khalifa – At the top – some say that the view from here is absolutely spectacular. Hmm… I’d rather keep this for myself.
What is so wow about Burj Khalifa? Maybe the fact that you can reach floor 124 (452 m) in less than 1 min. Or maybe the fact that at the 123th floors you can find Armani Hotel?
How much does it cost?
– ticket bought online: 50 euro – 250 Dhs.
– at the counter: 100 euro – 500 Dhs. If you are planning on staying a few days in Dubai, and you want to visit Burj Khalifa and haven’t called for a reservation, you must go there on your first day to get this ticket. Or else all is lost.
Tip: arrange to visit it at 17:00, and so you will have dodged two bullets, see both day and night.
Pieces of information one must know before getting to Burj Khalifa:
– The construction of the building that we nowadays know as Burj Dubai started in 2004, when the tallest building in the world ranked among Taiwan’s cities – Taipei 101 (101 floors and 500m tall), and ended in 2009.
– Sheikh Mohammed of Dubai then decided to build something that would leave everybody in awe with a height of over 800 meters. Unfortunately, running out of money, he had to ask for help to his friend, Sheikh al Abu Dhabi, and that’s where the name: Burj Khalifa. And so, in 2010, the tallest building in the world made its way into the world.
– for completing this job, 12000 workers were needed.
– the building has over 28.000 glass windows and 57 elevators – the fastest in the world – 10 meters per second.
13. The ‘Dancing’ Fountains of Dubai, really impressive especially when seen from the top. For the tallest ones, they use explosive – the idea of a Romanian engineer!
Other tips and tricks:
- You have to know that wrapping your luggage is about 20 Dhs;
- Since March 2014 you (as a Romanian citizen) don’t need visa anymore. Just go to the airport and make a run for it. Simple as that;
- According to the recently enforced law, the cab cannot be shared with someone else, although going the same direction, unless they have the same stop as you. Besides this, there are no other cab stations except airports and malls. The gas being so cheap, it’s more advantageous to pick up people on their way than waiting for orders;
- Fridays till 13:00 o’clock, you will not find any subways running (they must also be at prayer);
- A ride with the Gold Class Metro –up front, from where you can film/photograph is 3.5 Dirham.
- You have to know that wrapping your luggage is about 20 Dhs and at the airport you can get by bus F55 from Ibn Battuta.
For more information about your trip to Dubai, read here.
<I could say about myself that I have a rather audacious sense of humour, summed up by the words of Laurell K. Hamilton: “When in doubt, ignore and be horribly unimpressed”>