Dubai embodies both the grandeur of the Arab region as well as the sophistication of the modern world. At the same time, it has this amazing vibe that attracts travelers from different parts of the globe. These are the excellent reasons why the City of Gold has become a popular location for weekend getaways.
Dubai is a city of possibilities. There are stunning beaches nearby, and the vast deserts offer various kinds of adventure. However, in a short weekend, how can you get the most out of your stay here? Here are some ideas to consider.
1. Stay at a luxury hotel close to the popular tourist destinations in the city.
Search for the top-rated hotels in Dubai and opt for one that is in a highly strategic location. If you want to explore as many attractions as you can during your weekend stay, a hotel that is in close proximity to the areas that you want to see will help you do that.
Aside from the strategic location, a superb hotel will likely have its own menu of offerings to delight you. For instance, an Arabian-themed hotel that’s close to Dubai Airport is known for being the home of beloved gourmet restaurants and luxurious spa and wellness services. If you want to squeeze some well-deserved R&R into your weekend getaway, it’s all possible when you stay here.
2. Head to the beach.
Get a taste of the sun, sea, and sand of Dubai. Hike, get a tan, swim, and sign up for different beach activities during your weekend visit.
There are different public beaches in Dubai, and they are all worth spending a morning or afternoon at. The Jumeirah Beach Park, for example, is the most famous public beach and it boasts of golden sand and gorgeous blue waters. You can learn to paddleboard here and even meet other holiday-makers from other parts of the world.
3. Try the local restaurants.
Emirati cuisine may not be a huge buzz in the culinary world just yet, but it is certainly worth trying out while in Dubai. It’s wonderfully healthy and it makes use of the freshest ingredients endemic to the region.
Sample the different kinds of spiced-rice dishes, camel meat, and the sweet doughnuts tourists always fall in love with. Be sure to also try contemporary Emirati offerings that tend to feel familiar but are made using mostly traditional ingredients. Remember, you will not fully experience a place unless you eat the well-loved local food.
4. Go shopping.
Shopping is considered a national pastime in the UAE, and Dubai’s shopping malls are among the most famous destinations for this activity. See the latest trends from the world’s most renowned fashion houses when you visit The Dubai Mall or the Dubai Festival Mall.
Do not miss the opportunity to shop at the souks as well, especially if you wish to purchase affordable souvenirs, fresh spices, rugs, gold, and kitschy items. You can practice your haggling skills here and get the best bang for your money.
5. Head to the desert.
Do not leave Dubai without joining a desert safari tour. Traveling to a desert city is not complete without experiencing the majesty of the desert. Sign up for a thrilling 4×4 ride, a camel ride, and large dinner banquet where there’ll be plenty of singing, dancing, great food, and camel’s milk.
Shop around for desert tours. The more generous your budget is for a desert adventure, the greater the number of activities included in the package.
6. Get a glimpse of the locals’ way of life.
Visit local museums that share the history of Dubai and how Emiratis have always lived. The Heritage Village is a wonderful place to visit if you wish to understand Dubai’s rich culture and history.
There’s singing, dancing, and different kinds of demonstrations to showcase the impressive artistry of Emiratis when it comes to jewelry-making and blacksmithing.
Obviously, a weekend is rather short to explore everything that Dubai has to offer tourists or holiday-makers. But with thoughtful planning, you can pack as many exciting and enriching activities and sites as possible during your stay, and have a truly memorable time.
Habib Khan is a seasoned Hotelier, currently the CEO of Planet Hospitality and General Manager of Arabian Courtyard Hotel and Spa. Khan has more than 30 years of diversified international experience in the hospitality industry. He is an expert in developing, transforming, and managing hotels, with an ability to analyze and solve problems in a challenging work environment.