I admit, I judged Dubai. I was anxious because of all the hear says and negative blogs about the whole middle east, but I was wrong. Their culture is rich and something to be proud of, the places were clean, they have their own rules and manners they strictly implement. And I believe that these are the reasons why Dubai is prosperous before until now.
Release your worries and meet Dubai! 😊
- EMIRATES AIRLINE: The airfare ticket from other airlines might be cheaper but for a stress free and smooth visa application, Emirates is the choice to be. My visa transaction was handled fast just for additional USD95 which you can process thru their website. Of course, you have other options on how to get your visa: you can book your accommodation at a 5 star hotel for a way waaay higher price and ask them to process your visa, get a travel agent in Dubai or the best option ask a friend or family member for sponsorship. I’ve been flying with Emirates for quite some time now, hence choosing them is not difficult at all.
- SAVOY SUITES HOTEL APARTMENT: This is another life changing travel tip. Accommodation in Dubai is not economical at all! We stayed in Dubai for a week and to find a low-cost hotel without compromising our stay was a struggle! Thank God for Savoy! Savoy is a group of hotels (Crest, Park, Central and Suites), we chose Suites because they ONLY have fantastic reviews. It is located in Bur Dubai, 6km from the airport, 5 minute walk to Burjuman mall (where Jollibee is), walking distance to the metro and all other Filipino restaurants. They have all the facilities you need. It provides free shuttle with mat and towels to Jumeirah beach everyday. The executive apartment is first rate, spacious with equipped kitchen, living room, toiletries and bedroom. To top it all, the hospitality of the staff from the receptionist to housekeeping is remarkable, truly first class! I’m telling you, they are the nicest in Dubai! http://www.savoydubai.com
- UBER and TAXI RIDES: Since, we only used the metro once, I can’t give you a decent advice on that. We used taxi and UBER which was pretty dependable. It’s not expensive as you think, as we all know UAE is the top oil producer. So riding a taxi will not tear your pocket. What will tear your pocket is when you lose your patience waiting for one and end up in a limousine taxi. There was this one time that we were so tired of looking for a taxi and no UBER available, and MJ just gave up and rode one, only good thing was the free water and candies and he had a good nap — STILL HIGHLY INADVISABLE!
- JUMEIRAH BEACH: Not the best beach in the world but good enough if you want one in the middle of a desert. We rented the blue umbrella with chairs and towels which was a good remedy for very warm sand and scourging heat. My favorite part of the place was the view of the Burj Al Arab. Awesome!
- GLOBAL VILLAGE:The best choice is to take a taxi to Gobal Village. It is not accessible by metro, maybe bus can do but it will take a long time. The place is impressive for only AED15 you can appreciate the whole world. My only hassle moment was I had to buy leggings (which was readily available outside the village) for the reason that my dress was 2 inches above my knees. Absolutely my fault knowing that I am in a conservative country but take note I only experienced this at Global village.
- THE DUBAI MALL: Known as the largest mall in the world. What I like about the mall was they have classy brands to mid-range. We did not intend to shop and go around a 13 million square foot shopping center. It’s no surprise that they have their own underwater zoo, colossal ice rink and more. Our only agenda was to have breakfast with the Burj Khalifa as our view. I commend IHOP for great view and delish pancakes.
- THE GOLD SOUK: One of the main attractions and pride of UAE is gold. Therefore, missing this traditional market located in Deira is unacceptable. Important tip in buying gold jewelries is know the karat price per gram for the day of your visit and understand gold weight conversions. You have multiple options that even the unimaginable gold pieces can be found here!
- BURJ AL ARAB: Anyone would like to stay for a night or even forever in Burj Al Arab! The most luxurious hotel in the world. A 7 star hotel that fits for royalties, only Rolls-Royce and the grandest cars occupies the parking area. The inside of the hotel is incredible and unbelievable. Burj Al Arab is a highly private resort and only guests can freely enter and enjoy its extravagance. It was a coincidence that I wanted to dine and celebrate my 27th birthday at Gold on 27, as usual it was a part of my bucket list. Moreover, the number 27 has a significant meaning for me and UAE played the biggest part in that 27! Cool experience to be surrounded by only gold-plated materials. Reservation is a must, book as early as possible for the sweetest spot. We got a great view, excellent service and succulent meal.
- OBSERVATORY AT DUBAI MARRIOTT HARBOUR HOTEL & SUITES: From the 27th floor of Burj Al Arab to the 52nd floor of Marriott hotel, the marvelous view of The Palm. I am not an adventurous type of traveler and I deeply appreciate places that doesn’t risk my life or would not dread me out. We would like to visit Atlantis but we opted to admire it from afar. If you are like me, pay a visit at Observatory, good drinks, less crowd and a spectacular view.
- AL SAFADI & ZEPHYR ROOFTOP LOUNGE: As you noticed, we were eating Filipino food the whole time. Well, we don’t have any authentic Pinoy restaurant in Norway and to be in Dubai its just right to treat ourselves with food we crave everyday! Finally, one night we tried Lebanese cuisine, it was shockingly good. Try their hummus and grilled meat. Few steps from Al Safadi at Financial Centre is the Warwick Hotel where the Zephry Lounge is based for another impressive view of the Burj Khalifa while having a glass of wine.
- THE WALK & YACHT MARINA: Dubai never run out of splendid locations with stylish shopping spree and countless restaurants. One of these is JBR and I’m glad that we had a day to discover this side of Dubai. To walk and enjoy the beach in JBR was probably one of the most relaxing thing we did the whole week. At one moment, I thought I was in Hawaii.
- DESERT SAFARI: It would be the biggest regret of my UAE trip if I did not expereienced an Arabian night, to ride a camel, visit a desert and try dune bashing. I was in awe to see and witness the rich culture and warmness of people in this Arabian desert. Bar, henna tattoo, dance, BBQ buffet and more activities in one memorable night. For your reliable and cheap desert safari: http://funtoursdubai.com/
- DUBAI MIRACLE GARDEN: Thousands of beautifully arranged flowers and plants in the middle of a desert.. if that is not a miracle, what would it be? Surprisingly, the garden is worth your AED40 ticket price. Many instragammable corners, startling concepts that I didn’t expect to be wonderful. Only bad side, it was super hot!!!
- DANCING DUBAI FOUNTAIN: Be ready an hour before the show to seal the best spot for yourself outside the Dubai mall. Its big and tall enough, you’ll never go wrong from which ever side you would watch the fountain. Exceptional and extraordinary. For time schedule of the show: https://thedubaimall.com/en/entertain-detail/the-dubai-fountain-1
- BURJ KHALIFA: Icon of Dubai, megatall skyscraper, the tallest building in the world. Do I need to say more? I was amazed of how it was strategically constructed and how high tech the building was but I was more impressed of how smart and brilliant the people behind the Burj Khalifa was. Tickets are not cheap so maximize your stay. Take numerous photos! 😊 https://tickets.atthetop.ae/atthetop/?_ga=2.87425368.1340736611.1507239934-708928306.1507239934