A holiday between beaches, sea and adventure
Dubai is an ideal city for spending a holiday by sea, any time of year. The city is situated in the Arabian Desert, and from October to May, in the winter months, it has a mild climate of between 20°C and 35°C, perfect for enjoying the sun and the countless attractions which make the trip an unforgettable experience.
Arriving in the city, at first glance, you are taken aback by skyscrapers that seem to caress the sky but, gradually, more traditional neighbourhoods can be discovered, as well as incredible artificial islands that look out over the beautiful coast of the Persian Gulf.
Throughout the Emirates, hotels and residences offer luxurious hospitality and spectacular views of the lively cosmopolitan city or the crystal-clear sea. The beautiful golden sandy beaches are both private and public; such as Kite Beach where kite surfing enthusiasts congregate, which is also perfect for all water sports.
There are many beach clubs in secluded private areas along the beach, such as Cove Beach, with its minimalist environment, where you can enjoy a spectacular panoramic view of the Burj Al Arab. The coastline overlooking the Jumeirah Beach Residence is another public beach which is lined with beach umbrellas, open-air restaurants and markets. The beaches of Palm Jumeirah and the promenade should also be visited. Busy and full of life with many restaurants, they are ideal for tasting traditional or international dishes.
A cosmopolitan city for a travel experience that combines sea, desert and skyscrapers
With great hospitality, beaches, sea and culinary variety, the city offers a truly vast choice and of great quality. After spending time on the beach, Dubai’s leisure-time activities are unbeatable; from the Burj Khalifa to Palm Jumeirah.
The Burj Khalifa
Some of the tallest buildings in the world can be found here, such as the Burj Khalifa, which dominates Dubai’s skyline from the top of its 828 metres. It houses offices, private homes, the Armani Hotel and the At the Top, a 124-foot observation point, and the ultra-panoramic At The Top Sky Lounge, the 148-foot platform.
Here, you can also go shopping in the Dubai Mall, right at the foot of Burj Khalifa, which boasts 1,200 stores, or visit the Dubai Aquarium and the Dubai Ice Rink, combining leisure and shopping. At night, at the foot of the Burj Khalifa, you can enjoy the spectacle of the Dubai Fountain, a system of dancing fountains with colourful, illuminated water jets.
There are almost one hundred shopping centres in the city, including the Ibn Battuta, the Mall of the Emirates, the Wafi Mall, the Burjuman Center, the Dubai Marina Mall or the open-air boulevard: The Beach. A more relaxing shopping experience is offered by the Mercato Shopping Mall, a shopping centre inspired by the Italian Renaissance, with cobblestones, squares and over a hundred stores.
Open squares and London-style streets full of boutiques can be found in the City Walk, between Downtown and Jumeirah Beach, where you can shop in European style with a nice view of the Burj Khalifa. The Mercato Mall, instead, is inspired by Italy. It is decorated in a Renaissance style, with stores, bakeries and bars.
Dubai also amazes for its historic neighborhoods and its enchanting surroundings
To discover old Dubai you must instead head to Al Fahidi which houses the Bur Dubai area, one of the oldest parts of the city, with historic districts dating back to the early twentieth century with gardens, narrow alleys and the traditional wind towers. Art lovers can go to the Alserkal district in Al Quoz which offers eclectic art events, pop-up stores and restaurants, art galleries and a theatre.
Located in the heart of downtown Dubai’s cosmopolitan district, the Dubai Opera House, designed by Danish architect Janus Rostock, houses big names in opera, dance, theatre and classical music. Culture and history of the Emirates can also be explored with a visit to the Heritage Village and the Museum of Dubai, inside the historic Al Fahidi Fort.
Nature lovers can visit the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve to admire the views of the majestic desert, or visit the Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary to observe its flamingos.
Try trekking in the desert dunes of Dubai sitting on a camel where you can spot falcons, oryx and gazelles in their natural habitat.
The warm waters of the Persian Gulf
Those who love the sea can leave the Dubai skyline to take a cruise in a dhow or sail in a boat to the World Islands, either for sunbathing or snorkelling but also to try their hand at fishing on the high seas in the warm waters of the Persian Gulf, which is teeming with snappers, kingfish, groupers, barracudas, albacore tuna and giant mako sharks.
Younger children can enjoy a close-up experience with dolphins at Dolphin Bay at Atlantis The Palm.
To take a look at the future of the city, just head south to Jabel Ali, where work is underway for the World Expo 2020 or at D3, the new Dubai Design District which will host a fashion quarter, design studios, luxury apartments, hotels and high streets for shopping.
Where to sleep in Dubai
Dubai is a welcoming city and offers different possibilities for accommodation.
To find the ideal hotel and the best offers you can do a search for the stars but also for districts or landmarks.
Texts by Nicolò Villa
Photos: Sisterscom.com, Shutterstock
Published on Avion Tourism N65; N1/2018
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Discover the city, the main tourist attractions, the most important museums to visit and tours not to be missed, selected for you by the Editorial Staff of Avion Tourism.
WHERE TO GO
In the old city, the ancient district of Deira features narrow streets and traditional houses with wind towers, used in the past to freshen the air in the rooms and often still working.
At the end of the nineteenth century, the district was inhabited by Persian merchants who traded their wares in the city souks. Today, it houses museums, art galleries and characteristic restaurants.
Symbol of the modern city, is a skyscraper 828 meters high, built with glass and steel. Some 330,000 cubic metres of cement, 39,000 tonnes of steel and 142,000 square metres of glass were used in its construction. Thousands of workers put in 22 million hours of labour, and the most advanced technologies and best creativity were involved to complete the project. The Armani Hotel Dubai is located on the 37th floor.
A great example of modern Islamic architecture, the Mosque is the subject of many a photographer. Its stone structure, typical of the Medieval Fatimid style, is illuminated at night with suffused lights that enhance the fascinating profile of the exquisite twin minarets and majestic dome.
This imposing building of wood and sand-coloured stone was renovated in 1998 and today has the highest minaret of the city. It has 45 small domes together with 9 larger ones decorated with stained glass panels that, from a height of 70 metres, communicate the call of the muezzin to prayer.
SARUQ AL-HADID ARCHAEOLOGY MUSEUM
Housed in a historic building in the Shindagha Heritage District (one of the oldest quarters of Dubai) and built in 1928, the museum tells the story of one of the most exciting archaeological sites in the Emirate. The house is one examples of traditional architecture in Dubai, built with local materials such as coral stone, gypsum and wood.
DUBAI MUSEUM AND AL FAHIDI FORT
The building, a former military construction, later a residential palace and finally a prison, was restored and turned into a museum in 1971.
The permanent exhibition depicts Dubai before the oil era, and includes the art of fishermen.
SHEIKH SAEED AL MAKTOUM HOUSE
A city museum since 1896, the Sheikh Saeed Al-Maktoum House houses a rare collection of historic photographs, coins, stamps and documents on the history of the city. The building was constructed using traditional methods that keep it cool even when the temperatures outside are extremely high.
In the historic Bastakiya district, inside an old wind house, is situated Xva, a gallery that exhibits the work of contemporary Middle Eastern artists and shares the spaces with a cafe and delightful hotel.
A shopping centre with 1,200 shops, the Dubai Mall is situated in Burj Khalifa, the highest building in the world. The most original area of shops is the Gold Souk with over 200 specialised stores. For entertainment, the Ice Rink and Aquarium with Discovery Centre are the most interesting attractions. The Dubai Ice Rink can hold up to 200 people and boasts modern equipment, while the Aquarium is in the Guinness World Records for having the largest acrylic panel in the world. Over 33,000 species of marine animals are kept here.
MALL OF THE EMIRATES
This shopping centre has 426 shops, an Arab souk and a street dedicated to luxury shopping.
Inaugurated in 2005, it is famous as the site of the Ski Dubai ski resort. Here you can ski all year round, getting the feel of a winter environment while remaining in the desert. The resort offers 5 runs of various difficulties, snow caves and an area for snowboarding.
Dubai is destined to become the most exciting entertainment destination in the world. There really is something for everyone. Visit the IMG Worlds of Adventure, the world's largest indoor amusement park, or experience the adventures of Motiongate Dubai, Legoland Dubai and Bollywood Parks Dubai with the family in Dubai Parks and Resorts.
IMG WORLDS OF ADVENTURE
The world's largest indoor theme park for thrill-seekers.
Theme park ideal for families and children of all ages.
Theme park inspired by Hollywood for action lovers.
Theme park dedicated to the world of Bollywood cinema.
Water park for adults and children at the Atlantis, The Palm.
Dolphin Bay at the Atlantis The Palm offers one of the unforgettable dolphin experiences.
Hatta, a oasis situated in the Hajar mountains, is famous for its cool, dry climate, the wonderful panorama and natural pools that lie along the rocky canyon, making it an excellent destination for a trip outside the city.
SAFARI IN THE DESERT
Less than a 20-minute drive from Dubai, you can experience a desert safari and experience the adrenaline of off-road driving, quad biking and sandboarding.
Texts by Nicolò Villa
Photos: Sisterscom.com, Shutterstock
Published on Avion Tourism N1/2018
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