Dubai is a city of superlatives, home to the world’s tallest building, the largest mall, and the only 7-star hotel. Located in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Dubai is a city that seamlessly blends traditional Arabian culture with modern amenities and world-class attractions. Here is a guide to planning a trip to Dubai:
Getting there: Dubai is serviced by two airports, Dubai International Airport and Al Maktoum International Airport. Dubai International Airport is the busiest airport in the world in terms of international passenger traffic, and it is a hub for Emirates, the national airline of the UAE. There are direct flights to Dubai from many major cities around the world, and the airport is well-connected to the city by public transport, including the metro and buses.
Visa requirements: Citizens of many countries, including the United States, Canada, and most European countries, can obtain a visa on arrival in Dubai. The visa is valid for a stay of up to 30 days and can be extended for an additional 30 days. It is important to check the visa requirements for your country before traveling to Dubai.
Where to stay: Dubai has a wide range of accommodation options to suit all budgets. There are luxury hotels located in the heart of the city, as well as more affordable options in the suburbs. Airbnb is also a popular option for travelers looking for a more authentic experience.
Things to do: Dubai is a city of endless entertainment options. Here are a few must-see attractions:
- Burj Khalifa: The tallest building in the world, standing at 828 meters (2,722 feet). You can take a tour to the observation deck on the 148th floor for breathtaking views of the city.
- Dubai Mall: The world’s largest mall, featuring over 1,200 stores and 150 restaurants. It also has an indoor theme park, an ice rink, and an aquarium.
- Dubai Creek: A historic waterway that runs through the heart of the city. You can take a traditional wooden boat, called an abra, across the creek for just AED 1 (about $0.27).
- Dubai Fountain: A mesmerizing water and light show that takes place in the evening at the base of the Burj Khalifa.
- Palm Jumeirah: A man-made island in the shape of a palm tree that is home to luxury hotels, villas, and apartments. You can take a boat tour around the island to see the iconic skyline.
Food and drink: Dubai is home to a diverse range of cuisines, reflecting its cosmopolitan population. You can find everything from traditional Arabic food to international cuisine in the city’s many restaurants and cafes. Alcohol is widely available in Dubai, but it is only sold in licensed venues such as hotels and bars.
Weather: Dubai has a hot desert climate, with temperatures reaching over 40°C (104°F) in the summer months. The best time to visit is during the cooler winter months, from November to March, when temperatures are more pleasant.
Shopping: Dubai is a shopper’s paradise, with a wide range of markets and malls to choose from. The city is famous for its gold markets, and you can find jewelry at prices much lower than in other parts of the world. The Dubai Mall is a must-see for those looking for designer brands and high-end stores.
Safety: Dubai is a very safe city, with a low crime rate. However, it is important to be aware of local customs and laws. For example, public displays of affection are frowned upon, and it is illegal to consume alcohol in public. It is also important to dress