ShareA quick guide for someone visiting Dubai for the first place.The weather is just right now and I'm sure many are planning to visit Dubai around this time.

The ideal time to visit this place is Nov-Mar. The weather is beautiful and gets even more wonderful in Dec and Jan. It’s also the time when the festivities begin - the Dubai Shopping Festival in Jan, Food Festival and Dubai International Film Festival.

Places one must not miss:
Desert safari:
The magnificence and harmony of the desert can be experienced in a choice of exciting half-day, full-day and overnight safaris. These action-packed trips cover varied topography ranging from desert to mountain and take in remote camel and goat farms and isolated villages.
The sand dune bashing followed by Arabian camp with sheesha, camel ride, kebabs and biryani, arabic coffee, photo sessions in local dress , henna and finally belly dancing! This is a must on every Dubai tourist’s to-do list. The weather is perfect. My experience 4 years ago here

Shaikh Zayed Road :
The striking new Etisalat head quarters buildingis taking shape close to the Dubai World Trade Centre roundabout beside Shaikh Zayed Road. There is no part of Dubai more impressive than Shaikh Zayed Road, which stuns newcomers to the city with its glitzy designs. Among the most impressive buildings is the Emirates Towers office and hotel complex.

 Burj-Al-Arab :
The world’s only 7-star restaurant built on the sea. It is Dubai's most famous landmark. If you are ready to make a hole in your pocket, you must try the lunch at the 27th floor Al Muntaha Restaurant. The view and the menu is just worth the money.
The name Burj Al Arab in Arabic, meaning "Tower of the Arabs"; has become an iconic symbol of Dubai. The hotel resembles a dhow (Arabian sea vessel) with a billowed out sail.

Dubai is blessed with a beautiful beachfront, and the city's sultry heat makes nearly every day ideal for a trip . Beach activities in Dubai include snorkeling, scuba diving, jet skiing and fishing, and there are many outlets in the city where gear can be rented.
Dubai BeachDubai's main beaches run along Jumeirah Road. In truth, it is one long beach divided up by hotels and private clubs, interspaced by a few public access beaches. The Jumeirah beaches have soft white sand that slip into the shallow warm turquoise waters of the Arabian Gulf.

There is also a public beach at Al Mamzar Park on the Deira side of the Creek. The public facilities include playgrounds, barbecue sites, food kiosks, and picnic areas for families.

Jumeirah Road Drive : Drive along the Jumeirah road at night and enjoy the posh area in Dubai – the villas, the cafes, the restaurants, the beach park and the lovely mosques.

Dubai Creek Cruise/Ride:
 The Dubai creek is the foundation from which Dubai grew. It originally served as a port for trading vessels plying to and from India, Africa and the Middle East. Today a bit of the old shipping culture still remains. In and around the creek one can see some of the original buildings that have served as customs houses and defense structures. You can book a ride on the creek with a dinner cruise or even rent a private boat to take you on a hour long ride up and down the creek.
You can also try theAbra – the open one and the AC one. The open one is cheap and looks scary. It’s Dubai’s waterbus that ferries people across the Dubai creek from Dubai to Deira and back for as cheap as AED 1/-. It’s fun experienc e. The AC one costs AED 4/- and is more sophisticated.

Ski :
 Dubai  has its own snow skiing centre. Located in the new Mall of the Emirates (MOE), on the Sheikh Zayed Road, it offers both skiing and snowboarding. All equipment is available for hire. Although it is -4°C inside, you don't need to bring a jacket because they supply pretty much everything.

Dolphinarium at Dubai Creek:
The Friday morning shows come real cheap. The dolphins and seals are a delight to watch and truly worth the money.

Discovery Centre and Aquarium@ Dubai Mall:
Various species of the water world have been kept in the best possible environment. You will be amazed at seeing the size of some crabs and fishes there.

Lake Fountain at Dubai Mall:
Fountains that rise up to 150 mts with the 170+ storied Burj Dubai in the backdrop. The musical show is free and lasts for about 10 minutes replayed every 20 mins once the sun sets. It’s not to be missed.

Malls :
 Dubai Festival City (Take a walk along the waterfront and a free ride in the small Abra there) , Ibn Batuta ( The different displays of different countries are very well done),The Dubai mall,Mall of the emirates,Diera city center.
These are just a few of the lot which are must sees.There are many many more.

Dubai Metro:
Though only ten stations operational this is a must ride for all. The ride is pleasant. It runs parallel to Dubai’s best highway – The Sheikh Zayed Road and offers a great view. There are stations at the 3 famous malls of Dubai – Deira City Centre, Mall of Emirates and Burjuman. So hop in and shop and enjoy this joy ride.

Must Try The Arabic Specialities:
Shawarma ( This is a chicken sandwich) at roadside cafeterias
Arabic – Hamoos, khaboos, Fatoosh & Falafel at any Arabic joint
Iranian Kebabs
Lebanese Food (Karam or Arz Lebanon Joints)
Dubai also has an amazing number of thai,chinese,Indian and continental restaurants with reasonably priced menus.

Must Shop:

Stolls/Shawls/Pashminas @ the textile market near Bur Dubai Creek. You can get some awesome bargains.
Gold at Meena Bazaar or Deira Gold Souq
Spices at Iranian shops near the Deira Spice Market
Antiques and Dubai souvenirs at Al Jaber Gallery in Madinat Jumeirah/Mall of Emirates
Candle Stands/Tea light holders at IKEA, Lifestyle stores and Home Centre
Electronic items at the hypermarkets like Carrefour/ Hyper Panda/ Sharaf DG which give some good offers and are way too cheap compared to India.

So enjoy your trip to Dubai !!!

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