Dubai is a beautiful city located in the United Arab Emirates. It is known for having extravagant architecture, luxurious resorts, and exciting nightlife. Dubai has some of the best shopping malls in the world with stores like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Dior, and Versace all available to shop at. This vibrant city also offers many different activities that you can do on your vacation such as scuba diving or visiting one of their enormous aquariums. If you are looking for somewhere to visit this year then Dubai should definitely be on your list.
The Burj Khalifa
The Burj Khalifa in Dubai, United Arab Emirates is the tallest man-made structure ever to be created. It measures 829.8 meters (2,722 ft) and was developed by Emaar Properties. Construction began on September 21st, 2004 with an opening date of January 4th, 2010.
The Burj Khalifa was officially opened by Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE on January 4th, 2010 during a ceremony where fireworks were seen all over Dubai to celebrate its opening. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum also attended the ceremony, he is the ruler of Dubai and Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE.
There are 163 floors in the Burj Khalifa and the hotel that is located on it has 160 floors with 38 different lifts to use as transport between them. The building also holds 8,808 windows and its exterior is covered with more than 25,000 m² of glass.
Local artists were commissioned by Emaar Properties to design the Burj Khalifa; they came up with a design that is meant to represent Dubai’s desert flower. This design was created using the Islamic tradition of geometric patterns and Arabic calligraphy which goes back centuries before Christ was born! It took only 5 years to build this amazing structure which cost $1.5 billion USD.
As well as being built for luxurious living, the Burj Khalifa was also built as a tourist attraction. There are 200,000 people that live here and 100,000 people visit on an annual basis. The Burj Khalifa is one of the world’s most visited attractions – hosting over 2 million visitors every year – all because of its huge size! People from all over come to see it and take a look around Dubai too while they’re there.
The Burj Khalifa was opened by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum on January 4th, 2010 where 120 new buildings were lit up including the 128 stories Burj Khalifa. In 2012 Dubai won Destination of the Year for Tourism in London which was awarded by Trip Advisor through a public vote.
The Dubai Mall
The Dubai Mall is an enormous indoor shopping center that opened in March of 2008. It has more than 1200 shops, the world’s largest hemispherical dome, and numerous restaurants. On entering the building visitors are tantalized by a view of the underground ice rink to one side and glass elevators to another – both already filled with skaters and shoppers!
The Dubai Mall has 1 million square feet (92,900 square meters) of space, 94 percent of which is devoted to retail. With 11 levels including two basements, it offers abundant space for customers to wander about when searching for just the right item at just the right price. Some free events that take place in various areas around the mall include live music, fashion shows, children’s creative workshops, and traditional Arabic entertainment.
One might think that Dubai is too hot for ice skating, but the rink inside the Dubai Mall stays at 35 degrees Fahrenheit (2 degrees Celsius). The mall has 200 surveillance cameras that are constantly monitored. With so much to offer visitors – international shops not found elsewhere in all of the Middle East plus restaurants offering cuisines from every corner of the world – it’s no wonder why this shopping center attracts an average of 40 000 people every day.
The Dubai Fountain
The Dubai Fountain is a spectacular musical fountain in downtown Dubai. It’s perhaps one of the most iconic tourist attractions that can be found in the city, and with good reason too! It’s renowned for its synchronization abilities to music being streamed from nearby Burj Khalifa radio. This beautiful scene is particularly amazing at night when enthralled crowds have formed inside the amphitheater-style area surrounding it so they can get a closer view of this magnificent spectacle of light and sound.
The Dubai Fountain is also a wonderful location to take photographs because of its expansive size and bright colors. Many picturesque moments have been shared here by tourists using their cameras to capture what they want, but you’ll find that many others are content just leaving their cell phone cameras on the automatic setting that comes with it all. So, if you’re someone who’s more into taking quality photos than just using your phone’s camera as a quick fix, then this location might not be the best place for you; especially late at night when everyone else is out here trying to snap their own pictures!
There are large fountains on three sides of The Dubai Fountain and each one can shoot water up to 5 stories high sometimes. They first start off on low levels but soon enough they begin cascading over the structure itself until they reach 180 feet in height towards the end of their show. This attraction is an awesome way to spend some time because there are new songs being played every day, so you can come back numerous times and still see something new.
The Dubai Fountain is located on the main boulevard of Downtown, on Kudaah’s waterfront facing Burj Khalifa. It’s open daily from 9 am until 12 midnight, but if you’re into tourist attractions then it might be best to arrive soon after it first opens up because that way you can avoid the overwhelming crowd of people who will come flooding in as time passes until 10 pm. There are some great stalls nearby with local food so don’t forget to bring your wallet along before taking off on this sightseeing trip.
Deira District and Its Souks
The Deira district has many things to offer. One of these attractions is the Dubai souk which was first established in the 18th century and now includes over 40 streets and 4,000 shops (City Guide 2016). This area includes dozens of fruit stalls selling locally grown fruits such as melons, grapes, bananas, pineapples, and strawberries. The Dubai souk is also home to many spice stalls selling a variety of different spices and ingredients such as cardamom, coriander, turmeric, saffron, cashews, and roasted almonds (City Guide 2016).
The Deira district offers foreign visitors an authentic taste of Arab culture through its traditional food stalls which can be found all around Dubai. One of these traditional foods is shawarma which is an Arab flatbread that has lamb or chicken, tomatoes, and cucumber wrapped inside (City Guide 2016). There are also several western restaurants located in the Deira district which provide foreign visitors with the opportunity to eat familiar food such as pizza, pasta, and sandwiches (City Guide 2016).
Bur Dubai is one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city, located just across from Deira on the other side of Dubai Creek. You can cross with an Abra boat (1 AED per person), which takes only 10 minutes and will allow you to see Dhows and enjoy a great view.
The old buildings and souks in Bur Dubai and its proximity to the Creek make it a popular destination for tourists. People come here to watch Abra ferries passing by and take photos of the brightly painted boats that supply people with goods from all over the world.
The tourist district is easily accessible from Sheikh Zayed Road, where you can catch buses or taxis.
Atlantis Hotel / The Palm Jumeirah / Aquaventure Waterpark
For the past few months, an upcoming hotel has been stirring up social media with its unusual design. Now that it’s open, our readers are taking to Facebook and Instagram to tell us how they feel about this building.
Those who have visited The Atlantis Hotel, know that it is more than just a hotel! Stretched across 45 acres of land, this luxury hotel is home to Aquaventure Waterpark, a member of the world’s top 10 best waterparks.
The building which takes the shape of a hand holds more than 1200 rooms divided into various towers connected by underwater tunnels. It also boasts two theme parks with 37 attractions including some of the world’s largest slides.
I must admit I was intrigued by this unique design, so I took the opportunity to experience it first hand during my stay last month.
From check-in to check-out, there is always something new and surprising around every corner. It’s easy to navigate through the hotel using their efficient transportation system including boats and underwater tunnels. Having your own private butler is an experience no luxury hotel can beat.
You never know what you will find inside the rooms; whether it’s a room with fixtures that blend into the décor, an aquarium, sunken bathtub, or even a view of sea life through your window.
The Atlantis Hotel has managed to create luxury on another level. Treated with a personal touch, guests have commented that they never experienced such luxury. In fact, it is so far beyond the usual extravagant amenities, that this hotel has been ranked #1 in Travel + Leisure’s Top 20 Hotels in the Middle East.
I must agree with them! After having visited The Atlantis Hotel I can safely say that this is one of the most luxurious hotels in Dubai.
Dubai Marina is a neighborhood of Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The area is located on an artificial canal built to resemble a coastline.
This district is home to several artificial islands off the coast, which were once used for transportation purposes but are now either vacant lots or being developed. Until 2008, there was another island in Dubai Marina called Amwaj which was used to house low-income people. The land that Amwaj island is on is also being developed into the high-end The Palm, Jumeirah Islands.
It was designed by EMAAR Properties, one of Dubai’s real estate developers, in association with Aedas. Beaches along the area are artificial, but the water is real.
Dubai Marina has also been home to The World, an artificial archipelago of over 300 islands constructed in the shape of the world’s countries, one island for every nation recognized by the United Nations. Dubai Marina houses residences including some high-rise buildings while its outer fringes are dominated by several mid-rise buildings and a large number of villas.
There is a long harbor on the Dubai Marina where boats can be docked. There is also an automobile underpass that connects to Jumeirah Lake Towers (JLT). Near the waterfront, there is a park with fountains and walking trails as well as restaurants and cafés. The Dubai Marina also houses some golf courses.
Dubai Marina was designed to accommodate about 80,000 residents and 40,000 working professionals with a future capacity of 120,000 inhabitants in its 20 million square feet of built-up area. It is one of the most expensive places in Dubai to live in, similar to the Palm Jumeirah.
In 2010, Dubai Marina was the most expensive place for expatriates to live in Dubai, based on monthly rent costs. Homes at the tip of The Palm were also the most expensive places to live in Dubai overall, with one-bedroom apartments costing US$12,500 per year (£8,100).
Dubai Marina is also home to many high-rise luxury apartment buildings with beachfront properties. The New Years’ Eve 2010 Fireworks was among the world’s most extravagant fireworks displays, involving over 88,000 fireworks and 4 km (2.5 miles) of wire.
A new project in Dubai Marina has brought more than 100 international fashion and lifestyle brands to The Dubai Mall; one of the world’s largest shopping malls.
Dubai Marina also has an extensive range of international restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops designed for different tastes, offer a wide selection of cuisines from around the globe. The vibrant nightlife includes bars & nightclubs located in hotels as well as many independent venues.
The Dubai Marina is also notable for its luxurious super-yacht marina, hosting some of the world’s largest and most expensive yachts. The area has an active nightlife with numerous nightclubs including Escobar, Gold Diggers, and Billionaire Mansion. The Trump International Hotel & Tower, Burdines Waterfront Hotel, Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Royal Mirage Hotel are all in or near Dubai Marina.
Entertainment options in the area include the Dubai Marina Mall and The Dubai Fountain & Burj Khalifa Observation Deck at Souk Al Bahar. There is also a good selection of sports clubs including golf courses, marinas, and tennis clubs.
There are many activities available including dhow cruises on the Palm Jumeirah, jet skiing, water skiing, and windsurfing. The Dubai Marina Mall has some film theatres including Vox Cinemas and Reel Cinemas which both offer 3-D movies as well as 10 MPX theaters. A number of cultural events are hosted throughout the year including the Dubai Shopping Festival and National Day (UAE).
There is a wide choice of international schools in Dubai Marina attracting families with children. Examples include Jumeirah International School, Gems Wellington Academy, GEMS Cambridge International School, The Indian High School, and Al Ittihad Private Schools Group.
The Burj al-Arab
The Burj al-Arab, in Dubai, is a hotel of outstanding dimensions and design. The sail-shaped building stands out from its surroundings by sporting a gigantic golden dome on top of the highest level.
The Burj al-Arab is one of the few 7* hotels in the world. In fact, this hotel has 7 stars, but it wasn’t included in the star rating system by the American Automobile Association.
Burj Al Arab is an international 5-star deluxe hotel located in Dubai’s artificial island Jumeriah. The Burj Al Arab Oriental, as it was originally named, was designed by multi-award-winning architect Tom Wright at Aedas and opened in December 1999. It is quite possibly the most expensive hotel ever constructed: Everything about this luxurious hotel is superlative.
In 2004 the hotel was featured in a Guinness World Record as the “Most Over-The-Top Hotel Suite” as a part of their series showcasing luxury hotels from around the world, which you can see below:
The Burj Al Arab hotel has been developed by state developer Nakheel Hotels & Resorts, part of Dubai World.
Dubai Museum / Al-Fahidi Fort
Formed by several houses and wind towers, Al-Fahidi Fort was built in the 19th century. It hosted the ruling family of Dubai until 1966.
Since then it has become part of the Dubai Museum. Around 50 people live here, including restorers, archaeologists, and other professionals who work for this museum that contains more than 40 rooms (and a lot of roof rooms).
It is located in Al Fahidi District, Bur Dubai. If you enter from the land side, it’s at your right. As soon as you see a pool on your left, you can’t miss it! The entrance costs 5 AED for an adult and 3 AED for students under 12 years old.
You will discover former fishing boats, objects from the nomads’ daily life, weapons, and archaeological remains that are displayed in old houses. The museum is very interesting and allows you to get a good grasp of how the city looked like before its impressive development.
For instance, there were only small palaces made of mud at the time before the exploration of oil in the 1960s. Dubai’s development took off in the 1970s when foreigners came to live in this city based on trade.
Some traditional houses are still standing that remind us of this time, with their terraces overlooking the Creek and their wind towers designed to catch any breeze coming from the sea. However nowadays, one of the first buildings you see when arriving in Dubai is Burj Khalifa, the tallest building on Earth.
The museum also explains the city’s history and culture. Emirati women used to wear their traditional clothes but they stopped once tourism started flourishing in Dubai (and foreigners seemed more interested in Western fashion). The museum wants you to discover how difficult it is to preserve the traditions in this cosmopolitan city.
It also presents some old weapons, including a long wooden saber called ‘mashed. It was used by soldiers who were part of the ruling family. And it was especially chosen because of its impressive shape but also because it’s made from wood which is very rare nowadays as most weapons are made of metals.
Please note that some rules apply to visiting the museum, like taking cameras or video cameras inside (but not phone cameras). You don’t wear shoes inside either!
Dubai Museum is open every day from 9 AM-12 PM and 3 PM-7 PM (Sat, Sun 10 AM – 2 PM).
“Dubai Museum is located in Bur Dubai, in Al Fahidi Fortress.”
“Around 50 people live here, including restorers, archaeologists, and other professionals who work for this museum that contains more than 40 rooms (and a lot of roof rooms).”
The Dubai Frame
The Dubai frame, one of Dubai’s newest tourist attractions, is already very popular!
You can go to the top of this huge 150 meters high photo frame and enjoy a panoramic view over the 2 parts of the city: the Old Dubai on one side and Downtown Dubai (the Burj Khalifa) on the other.
To make things even more exciting, part of the floor is made of glass. You can see everything that’s happening under your feet!
The Dubai Frame was opened to the public in November 2018 and it’s already one of the top 10 attractions in Dubai! It has been awarded “Best Tourism Experience” by the international travel media company Lonely Planet.
The Dubai Frame is located at the site of the former Al Ahmadiya School, one mile (1.6km) from the Burj Khalifa in downtown Dubai. It can be reached by public transport or taxi from Downtown Dubai and it’s close to the Jumeirah Mosque.
The best time to go is at night! The city lights give the Dubai Frame a very different appearance and you can see both sides of the city from close up because this photo frame offers a 360° view. On weekends there are concerts in the evening with a laser show and special lighting effects which make for a magical experience.
The city is huge, so it’s important to have a general idea of what you want to do. Dubai has something for everyone! We hope this info helps you plan your trip and make some great memories while visiting one of the best places to visit in Dubai! Remember that if there are any questions or concerns about anything discussed in our article, feel free to leave us a comment below. We would love to hear from you!