I am excited to publish That Girl Away’s first guest post from Neha at Dubai Wikia! Dubai is somewhere that I haven’t been able to time to yet and I don’t see myself being able to get there anytime soon (thanks, COVID!) so I thought Neha‘s take on the city would be of interest. Below you’ll find her top things to do in Dubai for first time travelers. If you’re interested in writing a guest post on That Girl Away, please send me an email at email@example.com!
Dubai is an inimitable city abuzz with imposing landmarks, plentiful of dining/shopping attractions, finest leisure choices, and of course, pretty much everything you could imagine of and beyond. So it goes without saying that it’s not really a cool task for first-timers to pick out the most amazing experiences once in Dubai. That’s why we’ve created this list of essential things to do in Dubai for first time travelers.
Take to Burj Khalifa & Admire Marvelous Skyline Views
Dubai is mainly identifiable for its jaw-dropping and towering architectural fineness and the highpoint of all is the tallest of its kind Burj Khalifa (at an altitude of 828 meters). That’s not all; an ascend to its vertigo-inducing At the Top observation deck on 124th or 148th level would promise you a refreshing standpoint over the city skyline as well as its contrasting landscape with desert and ocean.
Set Sail on a Dhow Cruise
Sailing down Dubai’s water ways along Dubai Creek or Dubai Marina is one of the best ways to slow down and melt away your stress. Kicking off mostly after sunset, this relaxed cruise in an atmospheric wooden dhow will glide you by the city’s impressive terrain and celebrated sights. Add to this scrumptious food and awe-inspiring live shows which make your evening out in Dubai one to treasure forever.
Enjoy Striking Shows in a Marvelous Setting
No other place in the Middle East does show bigger and grander than Dubai! So don’t miss to experience it for yourself while in Dubai. We assure that Dubai’s entertainment scene would entice even the most uninterested visitors. Theater and opera lovers can head to the lavish Dubai Opera (near Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Mall), while the fans of exotic and premium shows can make their way to venues such as the recently opened Rotunda Dubai (in Caesars Palace Bluewaters Dubai) or Al Habtoor City’s Atrium where the breathtaking La Perle by Dragone show is conducted. How about some quality fun time with animals? Visit Dubai Dolphinarium at Dubai Creek Park where you can enjoy up close the brilliant acts of dolphins and seals.
Walk Through Old Dubai
The majority of Dubai’s neighborhoods are the trendiest of its kind with the most stylish and vibrant sights crammed into it. And a surprising yet revitalizing ode to this is the quaint, timeless sand-colored structures across Old Dubai, in Bur Dubai, Deira, Creek, and Shindagha regions. One of the most significant among them is the 19th century Al Bastakiya Quarter; take a walk through this historic neighborhood in Bur Dubai where its old-world allure is painstakingly preserved with its charming art cafes, thoughtful galleries, and intriguing museums. Another must-experience is an abra ride across Dubai Creek and this can be done for just AED 1. Moreover, take in all lively action and fun happening across the Al Seef area and be sure to discover its souks where you can experience shopping like never before.
Dubai is a desert city where its sprawling and unspoiled desert landscape is a national treasure. So what’s your maiden Dubai visit without experiencing it? While a self-drive across desert sands is not a bad idea, it’s most recommended to take a guided desert safari. This gives you ample options (in the form of morning, evening and overnight desert safaris) helped by convenient hotel transfers and flexible upgrades. With an expert team in tow, this allows you to make the most of your Arabian Desert trip with 4X4 dune bash, camel ride, quad biking, henna tattooing, Shisha smoking and falconry to name a few.
Explore the Dubai Mall & Watch Dubai Fountain Show
More than a massive mall with over 1000 high-brand outlets, it’s an iconic Dubai landmark with so much to do and experience under its roof. Located next to Burj Khalifa at Downtown Dubai, it’s where you can shop to your heart’s desire, dine almost everything your taste buds crave for, and expect to see the most exotic attractions. It is home to the largest of its kind Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo and offers loads of exciting options for all age-groups, such as KidZania Dubai, VR Park Dubai, Dubai Ice Rink etc. And finally when you step out, be sure to watch Dubai Fountain show where water, music, and lights are interwoven together to create a spectacle like no other.
Discover Palm Jumeirah & Visit Burj Al Arab
One of the world’s most iconic islands, the man-made Palm Jumeirah is a top attraction to visit on your first Dubai trip. And it is as astonishing as it appears on the ubiquitous Dubai images littered across web. Go on a monorail ride, stroll across its stunning Boardwalk, and visit its main attractions including Atlantis, The Palm, and Aquaventure Water Park. But, if you don’t want to miss its iconic palm-tree design with a crescent on its top, taking to heights on a helicopter ride or sea plane tour is the only way to capture it in its real majesty and magnificence.
Resplendently set on its own private island, Burj Al Arab is another iconic attraction in the vicinity that is unmissable in Dubai. This is easily recognizable for its classic sail-shape structure and is regarded as the world’s only seven-star hotel.
Have a Snow Day Out in the Desert
Visit Ski Dubai inside the Mall of the Emirates and forget that you’re in the middle of the desert city for a few hours. Yes, this is a true winter wonderland where you can expect to try all your favorite snow activities including skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, etc. It’s completely set indoors means you can visit here any part of the year, and of course, make a great place for a strong burst of icy breeze during the summer months.
Check Out Dubai’s Newest Neighborhoods
Most of the above attractions are timeless and hence finds a sure-fire spot on any Dubai travel program. Along with these, Dubai in recent times has grabbed all attention for its crop of cool neighborhoods which all are super classy and a true haven for those looking to escape from the usual or ordinary. One of the must-visits among them is CityWalk Dubai which has now become a hotspot for superb dining, entertainment, and leisure with attractions like Green Planet, Mattel Play! Town etc. You can further travel to Bluewaters Island; you’ll definitely fall for this waterfront destination surrounded by the most spellbinding sights including Ain Dubai (which is the world’s largest observation wheel).
Visit Dubai Parks and Resorts
It’s the country’s first integrated resort and is the city’s ultimate place that is dedicated to theme park-based fun and thrills, thanks to four amazing parks within its lavish grounds. The largest of all is Motiongate Dubai where all rides and attractions are inspired by popular Hollywood movies. Its Bollywood Parks is also themed around movies, making it a favorite of Hindi cinemagoer. Finally, both LEGOLAND Dubai and LEGOLAND Water Park are the first of their kind in the region, being exclusively created for families of kids from 2 to 12 years.
Travel may be still perilous in this current pandemic time, but Dubai is one of the world’s fewest cities which have pulled it through with the most appropriate measures in place. So if you’ve an impending travel on the cards, Dubai is a place to consider – it’s safe, easily accessible, and mostly, full of cherished attractions and activities.
Thanks again to Neha for writing this post and if you’re curious about traveling to Dubai, check out her blog or their tourism site for more information here. If you’re interested in writing a guest post on That Girl Away, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!