Advantages Dubai is a safe place with very good quality of life. There is universal brotherhood everywhere.
Disadvantages None for me, but the hot weather for tourists who are not used to this.
|Value for Money|
|Ease of getting around|
I had written the original review on 25th March, 2001 and updated the same as below:First update marked * *
Kindly read below.
It was Friday, the 24th January 1975, when I first landed at Dubai International Airport by Kuwait Airways. The airport looked small with sand stretching on the sides. I had left my motherland for the first time and I felt a twinge in my heart for leaving my dear ones back at home. There was a sandstorm while I was moving along the roads of Dubai and my spirits further descended to low ebb. But that was the beginning of a new chapter in my life. Days transformed into years and my family joined me and my children grew up here and Dubai was growing, too, and slowly but surely reached the prime youth. Even though when I look at the mirror every morning, an old, no, older man stares at me, I never repented on my decision to come to Dubai for greener pastures. Because Dubai made me, and Dubai is in me.
If you feel that Dubai is an oasis in the middle of a desert with a few palm trees and some camels, it is high time that you change your notion. Dubai of today is an ultra modern metropolis cosmopolitan in all respects. It can vie with any European or American City. Rich in oil, Dubai is a trading hotpot. As history would unveil, it has been a bridge connecting Asia and Europe. Goods are re-traded from here to different parts of the world.The city is an example of proper town planning with high-rise buildings and villas with the most modern architectural vistas. The roads are well laid and neat and clean with planted greenery and trees. Litterbugs will have tough time, as there are stiff penalties for littering. The parking facilities are very satisfactory. There are many parks and gardens like Safa Park, Jumairah Beach Park, The Creek Park, etc. The meadows transform the desert sand into cool and eye-catching lush green carpets.
Dubai International Airport is a very well managed and a most modern airport. Mostly all the airlines of the world operate in here. The facilities at the airport are vast and varied and it is one of the friendliest airports of the world. Once you land, the immigration and custom formalities take very less time and the officials at the airport are very friendly and helpful. There are taxis available at the terminal and hotels operate their buses to collect passengers. Car rentals are readily available at the airport, if you choose to drive. The airport has a Duty Free shopping area, which is one of the best in the world, and the range of shopping is very vast. Dubai has its own Airline, Emirates. Voted as one of the best in the world, Emirates caters to the passenger comfort and is a well-sought airline. It has connections to all major cities in the world.The seaport is away from the city at Jebel Ali where many ships can dock at a time. Also at Jebel Ali, there is a free zone area for manufacturers, who can invest and do their manufacturing business.
* PRESENT VISA RULES OF UAE *Tourists other than those from Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman and Saudi Arabia ( AGCC Countries) do not need visa to enter the UAE. All other visitors are required to have a visa sponsored by a Hotel or an individual or a company. Two types of visas are issued, 14 days' Transit Visa and 60 days (can be renewed for a period of further 30 days) visit visa. British citizens with the right of abode in the UK will be issued 30 days' visit visa on arrival at the airport. German and US citizens can obtain visit visas from the UAE Embassies of their respective countries. Israelis and travellers whose passports bear Israeli stamps are barred from entering UAE.
* HOTELS *Dubai has a chain of well-managed and high quality hotels, suiting to everybody's purse. The restaurants in and around town are of very good standard and cater to various ethnicities. Dubai offers an extensive range of restaurants with cuisine from around the world and a varied nightlife - bars, cafes, nightclubs and discos. Some of the hotels are as below:
Airport Hotel, Astoria Hotel, Al Khaleej Palace Hotel, Al Bustan Rotana Hotel, Crowne Plaza, Deira Sheraton, Dubai Inter-Continental, Hyatt Regency, Jumariah Beach Hotel, JW Marriott, Le Meridien Dubai, Le Meridien Jumairah, Marco Polo Hotel, Ramada Hotel, Rydges Plaza Hotel, Sheraton Hotel and Towers.* SIGHT SEEING *
Various standard package tours are available, covering the city, the desert, East Coast, the mountains, and neighbouring emirates. Helicopter, boat and dhow tours are also available. Dubai has very neat and clean beaches and there is lot of scope for swimming.* SPORTING *
A variety of sporting activities are the other attractions of Dubai. It ranges from watersports - sailing, fishing, windsurfing, water-skiing, scuba diving to squash, tennis, horse riding, cycling, ice-skating, shooting, archery and golf. A Dubai Open Tennis Tournament and World Cup in Golf and Horse Riding are other international sporting activities.* GENERAL *
For movie buffs, there are many cinema complexes in Dubai screening English, Arabic, Hindi and South Indian language movies, with the latest digital sound system.** CUSTOMS **
No duties are levied for personal belongings. CD's, video cassettes, printed matter, etc. will be checked at the Customs. Video and audio tapes of pirated nature and illegal computer software will be confiscated, as stringent copyright laws are enforced in the country.** BURJ AL ARAB **
No review of Dubai will be complete without the mention of BURJ AL ARAB, one of the stunning landmarks of Dubai. Acknowledged as the best in the world, BURJ AL ARAB resembles a billowing sail, a 321 metres (1053 feet) tall architectural marvel. At night, choreographed colour sculptures of water and fire surround this all-suite hotel. The sight is magnificent and unforgettable.Its image adorns the licence plate of cars, T-shirts and almost everything. The hotel with its very beautiful suites stands high in great abundance and the levels of service are truly remarkable. It has some of the most superlative restaurants in the world, a spectacular atrium magnificently decorated with fountains and one of the most amazing spas in the world. A fleet of Rolls Royce cars is available for the use of the guests. The atmosphere is one of tranquility and every one's personal interests are attended to, in a royal and special way.
BURJ AL ARAB adores the Dubai coastline majestically, making the residents of Dubai as proud as ever.*** THE MALL OF THE EMIRATES ***
At the World Travel Awards in London, THE MALL OF THE EMIRATES was adjudged as the World's Leading Shopping Mall. It has an area of 6.5 million square feet. It houses facilities for entertainment, recreation and dining and has the first ski indoor resort in the Middle East. Offering a wide range of locally made handicrafts, a traditionally designed Arab Souk (Market) is one of the attractions. A number of stores are accommodated in a spectacularly designed building, with its Mediterranean and Middle East architecture which will stun the visitors. There is an astounding dome roof of glass, 42 metres (138 feet) high which spreads sunlight throughout the Italian piazza below. There is a 14-screen cinema complex and a Magic Planet Entertainment Centre which offers indoor thrill rides and simulators.Ski-Dubai is an indoor themed ski resort having real snow. It has a slope height of 80 metres (263 feet), having a capacity of 1500 persons and has five ski slopes, snow-covered hills and chairlifts. At the midstation there is the Avalanche Café which offers beautiful views of the slopes.
Visitors can do very good tax-free shopping in Dubai. The price can be bargained for all items like hi-fis, videos, cameras, watches, coffee pots, rugs, silverware, etc. Shopping centres are the main hubs of activities in Dubai. There are many big, medium and small shopping centres in town. The list is very long. Some of the shopping centres are as below:Al Ghurair Centre, Burjuman Centre, City Centre, Hamrain Centre, Wafi City, Lamcy Plaza, etc.
You can buy virtually anything and everything under the sun for very reasonable prices. Lovers of the yellow metal will never be disappointed, as there is a gold market(Gold Souk)from where the purest of gold and gems can be purchased.In the month of March every year, there is a Shopping Festival sponsored in Dubai, for 30 days. The visa rules are relaxed during this period and many tourists throng to this city to avail the special sale offers. The city always is in a festive mood during this time.
The best time to visit Dubai is from October to April. The minimum temperature during winter is 8-10 Celsius. The city gets rains during December- February. Summer starts from May and extends up to September. The maximum temperature goes up to 48 Celsius and relative humidity reaches 100%, very uncomfortable.There is a free market in UAE and all currencies are available. The national currency is Dirham. Dollar, GB pound and German Mark are the other popular currencies. Any currency can be exchanged here.
The official language in Dubai is Arabic. With the presence of all nationalities, other languages are too many. But for all of them there is only one common language:THE LANGUAGE OF LOVE
Dubai is waiting for you with its granary of LOVE. Please visit Dubai and enjoy this feeling. Dubai is a City of Joy and Dreams.Thanks and Cheers!!!
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