A METROPOLIS WITH NO LIMITS
The exterior is acquisitive beyond anyone’s imagination and by delighting every visitor like a VIP, they often respond by spending like a VIP. This is a city that quite literally invented the ‘shopping festival’ (Dubai Shopping Festival), with the basic idea being to get people to come to Dubai and spend money. With heaps of shopping malls, huge and vibrant souks selling everything from clothing to jewellery, designer shops a plenty, a mind-boggling selections of dining options, ostentatious hotels and bouncing clubs and bars, it’s all over-the-top but it most definitely works! Spearheaded by Sheikh Mohammed, a man who doesn’t let much get in the way of a big idea, people across the world are rocking up to this metropolis in growing numbers with the assurance that Dubai is like no other city, and Sheikh Mohammed is delivering.
Most of the hotels on offer are 5-star and it seems like every year there are bigger and better ones opening. They are all very well-equipped and you can opt for beachside properties or city-based hotels. The service levels are impeccable and the dining options throughout Dubai are amazingly varied, from fine dining restaurants under the banner of world renowned designer chefs to legendary fast-food outlets and everything in between.
The city is also sport mad and the sporting calendar throws up some exciting spectator events, whether its golf, rugby, tennis, horse racing or cricket. For those wanting to participate rather than watch, then there are 7 superb golf courses to choose from plus an array of racquet courts, watersports, shooting clubs and archery etc.
This is truly a “marmite” destination and most visitors either love it or hate it. However, despite its brazen nature, under the surface another Dubai lives. Head to the Heritage Village during Ramadan or the Shopping Festival and you’ll see a different Dubai, where Emirati’s sing and dance, joyously proud of their traditions and heritage. Relax by the creek; watching the dhow (traditional wooden boats) and the abras (water taxis) drift along the waterway while enjoying some sheesha. Walk the streets through the multicultural Karama or Satwa, or serenely reinstated Bastakiya area. This is a Dubai firmly far away from the consumer madness of the glitzy hotels. Whatever you desire, Dubai is a unique experiment like no other.
Dubai enjoys almost year-round sunshine with blue skies and only a little amount of rainfall in the winter months (November to March). The heat and humidity can get very high in the summer months (July to September) with temperatures reaching 40°C. In the winter you can enjoy temperatures of around 25°C.
BEST TIME TO TRAVEL
The winter months between November to April are the best time to go to enjoy pleasant daytime temperatures around 25°C. If you can stand the head and humidity then there are excellent deals to be had in the summer months between July and September. Note that during the holy month of Ramadan that the sale of alcohol is prohibited until after dusk.
Health & Vaccinations
We recommend that you are up to date with all of the usual vaccinations – Typhoid, Polio, Hepatitis A & B, Tetanus and Rabies. Please contact your local GP for full advice at least 3-4 weeks before travel.
Passport & Visa
British passport holders must be in possession of a full 10-year passport and must have at least 6 months validity beyond the date of the return journey back from the UAE. British passport holders do not need a visa to enter into the UAE.
WHERE TO STAY