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Dubai has transitioned from a humble pearl-diving settlement to a premium world destination in less than two decades – and continues to evolve at an astonishing rate. Visit the Burj Khalifa or explore the traditional souks and winding alleys of Deira and Bur Dubai for the "real" Dubai.
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This area in "old Dubai" is a remarkable contrast to Downtown’s shiny newness. Be prepared to haggle in the traditional souks offering spices, textiles and gold jewelry. Wander along the port to watch fishermen transporting their catch on traditional dhows. Deira City Centre Mall has dining and entertainment for the masses.Accommodations in Deira
Dubai Marina is on track to become the world’s largest man-made marina, with construction to be completed in the next few years. It’s a luxury waterfront destination with high-end commercial and residential buildings, including Cayan Tower, the world’s tallest high-rise building with the famous 90-degree twist, and Marina Mall.Accommodations in Dubai Marina
Sheikh Zayed Road is known as the 12-lane E11 Highway, connecting Dubai and Abu Dhabi. It covers several miles of pristine coastline along the Persian Gulf, with high-end hotels and luxury residential apartments along the way. If you’re driving, you’ll pass by the Dubai International Finance Centre, Burj Khalifa and Dubai Mall.Accommodations in Sheikh Zayed Road
This spectacular man-made island is a feat of engineering genius. Resembling the fronds of a palm tree, each one is lined with luxurious private villas and apartments, resorts, exclusive hotels and restaurants, in an area larger than 1,212 football fields. The Atlantis Hotel is the jewel on the crown, awe-inspiring in design and scope.Accommodations in Palm Jumeirah
The 2,723-foot Burj Khalifa is the world’s tallest building. Dubai Mall, the world’s largest, is a harmonious collision of 1,200 mid-to-high-end European and American brand-name stores, including Bloomingdales. Visit Souk Al Bahar for traditional food or wares, or dine out in style at the eateries on Sheikh Mohamed Boulevard.Accommodations in Downtown Dubai
Walk in the shadows of the enormous Jumeirah Beach Residence in this mile-long waterside district. The buildings are a fusion of Arabian and Mediterranean-style architecture, offering views of Dubai Marina and the Persian Gulf. Walk along the promenade to enjoy high-end shopping and family-friendly cafes and restaurants.Accommodations in Jumeirah Beach Residence
Bur Dubai is an important legislative center. You’ll find the Al Fahidi Historical District and the Dubai Museum nearby – a rich collection that chronicles the city’s development. Visit the Grand Mosque with its enormous minarets, or the traditional textile souks, restaurants and shisha cafés lining Dubai Creek.Accommodations in Bur Dubai
Dubai Creek was once used for pearl cultivation and remains the city’s main thoroughfare for trader boats and docking. In just a few decades, it's evolved from a saltwater creek into a mini-city that services the world’s elite. There's a fusion of old and new Dubai on either side of the creek, which you can cross by water taxi or bridge.Accommodations in Dubai Creek
Al Barsha is a newly developed residential area and home base for many expats who work in nearby Dubai Internet City. The Mall of the Emirates is a huge attraction in this area, with Ski Dubai, the region’s first indoor ski slope with real snow. Inside, there are movie theaters and high-end international department stores.Accommodations in Al Barsha
Business Bay's fortunes faded after the global recession, but it’s emerging stronger than ever these days – it’s poised to become Dubai’s central business district in the near future. The area is filled with many residential and high-rise buildings in close proximity to the Burj Khalifa, Dubai Mall, Downtown, and the Meydan Racecourse.Accommodations in Business Bay
Oud Metha is a large residential area only 10 minutes from Dubai International Airport. The designers of Wafi City and Raffles Hotel took some inspiration from ancient Egypt when designing the buildings at this shopping, dining and entertainment complex, which are shaped like pyramids. Recover from retail therapy with a day wandering in Wonderland Theme and Water Park.Accommodations in Oud Metha
Jumeirah is primarily a residential area, but it's also home to the lively Madinat Souk (a traditional Arabian market). The area is filled with low-rise villas. It’s fun to rent a bike and ride along Jumeirah Beach, with its 30 miles of pristine (and private) coastline – head to Jumeirah Beach Park for a publicly accessible area.Accommodations in Jumeira
Ay caramba! Al Karama does a roaring trade in replica goods. Burrow through its bustling backstreets and “secret rooms” to peruse endless arrays of “Prada” handbags, “Rolex” watches and “Gucci” shoes. When it comes to food, the neighbourhood is 100% genuine. Pop into Pakistani restaurant Ravi to savour spicy Biryani chicken and sweet lassi yoghurt.Accommodations in Al Karama
Umm Suqeim is a quiet community located along Jumeriah Beach. Wild Wadi Waterpark offers family fun in the form of slides and simulated surfing, and Jumeriah Beach is perfect for getting some sun. Madinat Jumeirah Souk is an Arabian market that’s great for antiques, oils, art, and more. The 7-star Burj Al Arab hotel is also in this area.Accommodations in Umm Suqeim
This elaborate complex represents a fusion of Arab and Mediterranean-style architecture. There are dozens of entertainment options here, including Dubai Festival City Mall featuring 400 outlets and 75 restaurants and cafés. Hard Rock Café Dubai and Al Fanar—the only authentically Emirati restaurant in town—are here.Accommodations in Dubai Festival City
The Emirates Hills gated community is known for its palatial properties inhabited by wealthy residents, earning it a reputation as the "Beverly Hills of Dubai." It’s also known as a quiet haven for recreation, particularly equestrian sports and golfing. A major highlight is the Montgomerie 18-hole championship golf course.Accommodations in Emirates Hills
The palatial villas of the Arabian Ranches are occupied by Dubai’s elite. After shopping at the Village Community Centre outlets, visit the Dubai Equestrian and Polo Club with its 336 horse stables and world-class instructors. The nearby 18-hole Arabian Ranches Golf Club is a magnet for wealthy patrons who’ve come to perfect their swing.Accommodations in Arabian Ranches
Beach lover Gauhar is never happier than when spending time with friends in the great outdoors.
The Egyptian-themed Wafi Mall is famous for its laser and light shows, such as the Return of the Pharaohs. State-of-the-art sound and lighting effects create spectacular projections across the mall’s central courtyard and Egyptian pyramids – great fun for the whole family!Accommodations nearby
A 4-year Dubai resident, Loma loves taking her two little girls to petting farms and parks.
My girls love playing with the animals and birds at Posh Paws. This sanctuary has rescued an array of creatures which children can stroke, hold or feed – from ponies and goats to sloths and porcupines. It’s free to get in, although donations of money or animal food are gladly received.Accommodations nearby
An avid beach goer and recent gym convert, Huda gets her shopping fix in Dubai’s vast malls.
RAWKS is a wetland nature reserve tucked away on the outskirts of Dubai. Home to over 500 species of flora and fauna, its salt flats, mangroves and lagoons provide a critical habitat for migratory birds. It’s a perfect spot for bird watchers or nature lovers looking to escape the city.Accommodations nearby
Sun-seeker Dana can spend hours on the beach, but enjoys being outdoors whatever the weather.
One of my favourite places to eat out is The Farm at Al Barari. This elegant restaurant nourishes both body and soul with its delicious food and peaceful setting – it’s easy to relax and enjoy a leisurely meal while surrounded by landscaped lakes, waterways and botanical gardens!Accommodations nearby
Tony is new to Dubai, and loves living in different countries and exploring new cultures.
Of all the places in this area, I enjoy Barasti the most. It’s calm during the day, and you can enjoy a drink right next to the sea and relax with a good book. The vibe completely changes at night, and you can enjoy a variety of music and some great DJ’s.Accommodations nearby
Already 13 years in Dubai, Ghassan loves football, music and taking care of his lovely family.
Enjoy Brazilian barbeque on the 35th floor of the Ramada Plaza. Whether you sit indoors or on the outdoor terrace, it’s a great place to relax and enjoy the scenic views of Dubai Marina and Palm Jumeirah. There’s also shisha, drinks, snacks and free Wi-Fi!Accommodations nearby
Haitham feels at home on the high seas and loves sailing, photography and gaming.
Here’s a great tip for people traveling to Dubai – some stores and outlets offer special discounts for expats on items that are not already on sale. To take advantage of the offer, you’ll be asked for your address and phone number in your home country.Accommodations nearby
Hussam has lived in Dubai for 19 years and loves discovering new cultures and cuisines.
I recommend this popular nightclub for great music and international DJS, as well as world-famous performers. There are also fantastic 360 degree panoramic views of the city. There is a stylish dress code and table reservations are required.Accommodations nearby
Maya appreciates the safety and multiculturalism of Dubai and has lived in the city for 8 years.
One of the best things you can do in Dubai is go on a desert safari. Many companies run these trips, usually between 3 pm – 9 pm. Some of the activities you’ll enjoy are dune bashing, sand boarding, camel rides, and belly dancers – plus dinner underneath a beautiful sunset.Accommodations nearby
Curious Ibrahim loves to tinker with things until he understands them – especially cars and computers.
Starting just after the 611 Emirates Road flyover, this bicycle path is around 54 miles long and has great views of the desert and a very serene environment. There are restrooms, snack shops and multiple shaded rest stops along the way. You can also rent bicycles at the rest stop area.Accommodations nearby
Booking.com asked travelers...The beach means different things to different people. What did the beach in Dubai mean to you?
Dubai has long beaches with great facilities which is not available in the most famous beached in the world like san tropez and malibu beach, you can swim in JBR public beach and you can find famous restaurant chains next to the beach like cheesecake factory and a lot of other famous brands, thats all besides out door cinema and gym. for me Dubai is the safest beach as there are no sharks or so animals and the temp is encourging you to visit the beach all year times.See all 68 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Describe what other people like you would like about shopping in Dubai.
Dubai has many malls. The biggest being Dubai Mall and Mall of The Emirates. Both are perfect for any type of shopping you want to do, whether it's high brand shopping like Louis Vuitton or Mulberry, or if you want the high street fashion like Topshop or Miss Selfridge. You are bound to find something for everyone in either of these malls. The Souk Madinet is perfect for the more authentic shopping and the art work there is beautiful.See all 173 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...What makes Dubai the best place to max out your credit cards?
Dubai = Do Buy ! So that is why ! Variety of choices,modern venues, exciting atmosphere,glamorous places, exotic oriental culture and location... Oh the list can go on & on... I love Dubai for the extraordinary courage of its rulers that built out of sands one of the most exciting, modern cites on earth. Congratulations.See all 53 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Is there more to shopping in Dubai than just brand-name stores?
Get away from the Malls! Wander the marina, travel up Dubai creek by Abra for 2 dirhams, have a coffee in the Old souk, go on a desert safari by 4x4, eat local (all of the Arab and Levant world to choose from), go inland to Al Ain - see mountains, the oases and eat local dates.See all 142 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Tell us a bit more about an adventure you experienced...
I used to explore the city using metro and bus coz that way you could save a lot, although not all areas are accessible thru train or bus, so taxi can also be an answer.See all 33 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...How can you enjoy the sights in Dubai while avoiding the crowds?
Use the metro system as it takes you to all the main attractions without having to que for tour busesSee all 52 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...Tell us about your most relaxing moments in Dubai.
watching the dubai fountain at sunsetSee all 46 answers
Booking.com asked travelers...How do you fit in some sightseeing when you're in Dubai on business?
It is worth to visit.See all 41 answers
Dubai International Airport has 3 main terminals. The fastest way to get to central Dubai is a cream-colored official taxi, which takes 20-25 minutes to get to the center and costs around AED 50-70. The government-owned RTA operates all public transportation, and the Metro is the cheapest way to leave the airport. You'll find stations at Terminals 1 and 3. There are also buses outside Terminals 1 and 2 that stop within walking distance of most hotels.
Dubai's Metro system is very efficient and the two main red and green lines connect most districts. Metro stations are easily identifiable by their golden oval roofs. Purchase a ticket at the machines in the foyer. Metro trains run between 6 am – 11 pm from Monday to Thursday, from 2 pm – 12 am on Fridays and 6 am – 11 pm on weekends. Tickets cost between AED 2 - 6 per single journey; you can also purchase a re-loadable 'Nol' card from machines or ticket offices.
Dubai has an extensive air-conditioned bus service that connects most of the city. There are 9 main bus stations and lots of stops throughout the city. The buses are bright red with 'Dubai Bus' emblazoned on the front. Tickets can be purchased on board (or you can check in and out with a 'Nol' card). A journey from one side of Dubai to the other typically costs around AED 4.50 one way. It’s best to take the metro if you're traveling during peak hours (7 am – 10 am or 5 pm – 7 pm).
Taxis are a comfortable way to travel in Dubai and taxi fares are reasonable when compared to many western countries. Official taxis are cream with colored roofs (pink for women-only cabs) and are plentiful throughout the city. Drivers are generally very courteous and helpful. The minimum fare is around AED 10 and may include additional charges for road tolls. Taxis can be reserved by sending a text message or by booking online - including services for travelers with special needs.
Although Dubai's roads are in great condition, driving around here can be difficult for the inexperienced. Traffic jams are common, drivers tend to speed and frequent construction makes using a GPS difficult. If you decide to drive, there is metered on-street parking and parking buildings are clearly marked (and free for limited periods at most malls). There is a zero-tolerance policy for driving under the influence (the same goes for the rest of the country).
Thiptara, an Alfresco dining experience with views of Burj Khalifa and the Dubai fountain.It is beautifully decorated with Thai decor and wooden archtecture providing a romantic Thai dining atmosphere.
The cafe's comtemporary design,coupled with an unbeatably warm ambience, provides the perfect setting to relax and enjoy the company of family and friends. Provides great selection of Jordanian traditional dishes, burgers coupled with great shisha
Offering a family friendly ambiance, Reem Al Bawadi is well known for it's traditional Arabian dishes and delicious shisha. It serves a variety of options for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Lebanese-style eating, however, the menu offers little twists such as lobster in the falafel and lemongrass in the chicken shawarma.
Providing live entertainment and direct views of the Dubai Fountain, Asado features premium meat cuts prepared in Asado Criollo-style on an open Parrilla grill in the centre of the restaurant.
Featuring an outdoor patio with direct views of the Dubai Fountain, Abdel Wahab offers authentic lebanese dishes and delicious shisha. Try the soujok with hot fresh pita bread and hummous.
Scoozi is well known for its famous mix of Japanese and Italian cuisines. Overlooking the Dubai Fountain, Scoozi offers a familiy friendly and a romantic atmosphere with delicious, pasta, steaks, pizza and sushi.
Distinctive with a centrepiece of 2 enormous gold hands, Louis's is a lebanese trendy restaurant and shisha cafe. It has an outside patio with a direct view of Burj Khalifa. The menu offers burgers, pasta, Medeterranian dishes and sushi. Try the Calamari or for the Loui's speciality coffee.
This Chicago franchise offers delicious sandwiches, soups and salads. All ingredients are prepared daily and each sandwich are baked individually. Offering a variety of healthy options, Potbelly provides a casual environment and good subs for all tastes.
The boulangerie opens early morning with freshly-baked breads, viennoiserie and a light breakfast menu. Lunch, salon de the and dinner are all served throughtout the day.
Not only a mix of Japanese and Italian delicacies, Fazaris also serves an international buffet breakfast for all tastes. You can dine in the outdoor terrace panoramic views of Burj Khalifa.
This Texan chain restaurant offers a lively and fun atmosphere for families. Its steaks and ribs are one of the best in Dubai Mall.
Real pizza from Naples. small but cozy pizza cafe. must try one of their pizza sandwiches, and you will want to come back to this place again and again.
Having an automotive theme, Burger Fuel offers New Zealand gourmet burgers. It is a laid back atmosphere and freindly staff. Try out the Hot Rod Burger and Spud Fries. For dessert cravings, The Black Ice ice-cream with creamy vanilla and hazelnut with chocolate chunks.
This dining outlet in downtown Dubai features a wide selection of succulent Middle Eastern cuisine, including popular Lebanese appetisers. Also for shisha enthusiasts, this is a great place to hang out. During weekdays, great lunch offers are provided.
Located in Dubai Mall and overlooking the Ice Rink, this Australian franchise offers great value for steaks, seafood and chicken dishes. With a variety of side dishes and specialty sauces, Ribs and Rumps is one of the family-friendly popular steak houses in Dubai Mall.
Persian, Middle Eastern, Arabian cuisine. Featuring an arebesque decor, this family freindly restaurant serves delicious middle eastern delicacies such as fattoush, tabboulehs , lamb shanks with jasmine rice and spiced kebabs. Table reservations are recommended
British, Indian, Pakistani cuisine. Decorated with modern decors, this kebab themed restaurant offers a casual experience for families who want to savor a variety of delicious kebabs and grills. Must try the chicken tikka masala and mutton kebabs. Home delivery options are also available.
Egyptian restaurant and cafe in business bay Dubai have the Egyptian village decoration and uniform look and feel with delicious food and nice lake view taking into consideration comfortable seating, kids playing area.
Rooftop bar located on the top floor of the Oberoi Hotel, this bar will give you breathtaking views of Business Bay, Down Town Burj Khalifa and Sheikh Zayed Road, all while having a great drink.
This restaurant offers authentic Lebanese Cuisine. They have the best shawarma and arayes. It has an outdoor seating area where you can enjoy your food and shisha
Kitchen 6 is an all-day dining restaurant featuring international buffets, Asian woks, Middle Eastern grills, European breads and Indian Tandoors glowing through glass walls. The open kitchen invites watching Chefs at work creating gastronomic delights.
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