Dubai City Information Site

Taking the Best Holidays to Dubai




Forget about the manmade archipelagos, the tallest buildings, underwater hotels and buildings, 7 star properties, what Dubai is known to create is Headlines!

The city is graced with an unrivalled geographical location on the golden coastline in the Arabian Gulf, where the cobalt blue waters of the sea meet the desert.

Dubai is a premier playground, and its innate ability to satisfy the most discerning tourists from across the globe with its high rise oasis simply keeps piquing their curiosity. No matter what time of year you visit Dubai or how short your trip, you’ll have no shortage of things to do.

 Things not to do in Dubai:

As an Arab influenced city, Dubai has its own share of flaws.

Crime levels are average, far less than other cities in the Emirates and Gulf Region.

Sometimes it’s the political unrest in the Middle East region that contributes to rebutting your travel plans to visit Dubai. However, if you plan for a safe trip and ahead of time, visiting Dubai is an unrivalled experience.

Dubai is one of the most liberal cities in the Middle East, where both expats working there and visitors enjoy a ton of freedom that they couldn’t enjoy anywhere else in the region.

Besides the bells and whistles, Dubai is a Muslim city and hence it is expected that people respect the local laws and tradition. However, Dubai has no moral police walking its street such as its neighbor Saudi Arabia, and all they ask of you is that you do not misuse the freedom given to you.

Wearing modest clothing is always a good idea in any country especially Dubai. Bikinis are permitted on the beach, but are restricted in other public areas or while travelling back and forth. Men should not walk around without a shirt and wearing revealing clothing such as spaghetti strap tops and short skirts are considered inappropriate. Topless activity is denounced and you could end up with a hefty fine or in jail.

If you’re travelling as a couple or will be befriending someone in Dubai, the rules are even more stringent. For starters, kissing in public or even petting is not permitted, no matter what country you arrive from. However, holding hands as a couple is acceptable, but having sexual relations while unmarried is not even in your lavish $3000 a night suite. Nevertheless, you won’t find the Dubai police knocking on room doors, but it is recommended that you maintain utmost discretion if you engage in such activities.

Exchanging Currency

Although you may be tempted for reasons such as convenience, it is not recommended to exchange currency at street vendors. Doing so may invite attention to thieves, fraudsters or dangerous situations. Always exchange your currency at a certified vendor such as a bank or hotel, where you are also guaranteed the best rate.

Voltage in Dubai

Electrical sockets of 13 amps, 3 pinned are standard throughout the Emirates, but it is a good idea to get an adapter should the need arise.

Drugs, Prescriptions, Alcohol and taking Photos in Dubai

It’s common sense but substance abuse including prescriptions is prohibited in Dubai and if caught, the punishment is severe and could lead to deportation.

It is best to check with your local embassy if your prescribed drugs are permitted without warrant or if you need to carry your physicians note justifying their use. While public drunkenness is denounced, you can however purchase alcohol in bars, restaurants and pubs in Dubai.

You cannot have more than 4 bottles of alcohol in your possession at any given time, and as a tourist, you can get your quota at the Duty Free Shop at Dubai International Airport. To purchase alcohol in Dubai, you do need a liquor license, which is not granted to tourists at this time; you just have to deal with the exorbitant prices of alcohol served at the hotels.

No matter how surreal the ambience maybe or how tempted you are, think before you click! Avoid taking pictures of Muslim women and men especially those sporting cultural attire, government buildings, mosques, military installations, airports and people you’re not travelling with unless prior permission is granted.

Driving in Dubai

There are plenty of commuting options in Dubai, but if you still insist on taking the wheel, there are certain rules to follow. First, you will need a valid international drivers license, and then acquaint yourself with the driving etiquettes of the city. If you happen to get into an accident, don’t panic, just stay in your vehicle and wait for the police to arrive, which is rather quick in Dubai.

Health Insurance and Visas

While citizens of some countries are granted a tourist visa upon arrival, it is recommended that you check if you do make that list. Others will need a valid UAE visa before arrival, which can be obtained at any of their affiliated processing centers abroad.

Most visas do demand that you have valid health insurance that covers you for a certain amount while travelling so ensure you have coverage before you leave from your home country, even if you’re are on the list of visa upon arrival countries.

Things to Do With Kids in Dubai

Although the options for kids in Dubai are literally endless, here are our top 5 picks.

  1. Visit the Atlantis the Palm hotel, which is the ultimate playground for kids, adults and couples. Women can spend time at any one of the expansive spa areas, while men indulge in a round of golf and kids rejoice at the ultimate onsite waterpark. This waterpark spans 42 sprawling acres of pure fun to include shark filled lagoons, exciting themed adventures and water cannons.
  2. Take the kids to the Dubai Autodrome, where they can experience the best of driving pleasures in a safe environment. There are many experts at the dome to teach your kids basic and advanced skills of driving.
  3. Located alongside the pristine shores, Wild Wadi Waterpark is one of the largest waterparks in the UAE, and is suitable for young and old and everyone in between. Some of its attractions include roller coaster rides, state of the art wind tunnels and much more.
  4. Head to Dubai mall, where you can catch a movie while your kids are across the hall at Kidszania. This indoor theme park has a variety of activities ranging from rides to educational fun.
  5. Take a road trip to Ferrari World, where there are racing simulators and kid friendly activities to indulge in.

Things to do for Adults in Dubai

  1. The desert safari and sunset barbeque is a trip you must book prior to your visit to Dubai. This thrilling experience includes roller coaster rides over the dunes, and a tantalizing barbeque at Bedouin Camp.
  2. The Dolphin encounter at Dolphin’s Bay at the Atlantis the palm Hotel is a must see for both kids and adults.
  3. Enjoy a Dhow Chinese cruise
  4. Dubai Balloon Adventure
  5. Ski Dubai – In a country where temperatures can be ardent, Ski Dubai at the Dubai Mall gives you the ultimate indoor skiing experience. In fact, it is one of the largest indoor skiing arenas in the world.

Dubai is full of exciting options to see and do, and you can easily plan your days there by either visiting the travel desk at your hotel or the information bureaus strategically located across the city. 

Of the seven cities that make up the Emirates, Dubai is the least blessed with oil. Despite that, it has largely built its wealth with its tourism, real estate, financial services and vibrant harbor.

Although you won’t find many historical sites, given the country has been conceived only two decades ago, you will experience a thrill of a lifetime.

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