Dubai is a usual place. Most of the city is just 20 years old, and construction work is almost continuous. The actual footprint of the urban area, though, is surprisingly small. It’s not an ancient metropolis, like London or Shanghai. Rather, it has a boutique feel, even the local sheiks have been peppering it with the world’s tallest skyscrapers in recent years.
This post takes a look at some of the reasons why people visit Dubai.
It Has A Great Airport
People don’t visit countries to go to the airport, but it helps to know that Dubai has a great one. Most aircraft park up in bays off the main runway. Then buses come and shuttle you to the main terminal to catch a connecting flight or go through immigration. There are people en route, directing passengers and ready to answer any questions if you have them.
But that’s not what makes Dubai airport special. What makes it so amazing is the enormous 50-foot indoor waterfall that stretches along its entire length. It also has incredible (and somewhat pointless) changes in elevation as you make your way through the terminal building, adding a bit of excitement to the experience.
It Has The Best Skyline In The World
You might think that New York or Hong Kong would have the best skyline in the world. After all, both of these cities sit on crowded islands where space is at a premium. But the real winner is Dubai. That’s because local planning has carefully constructed the city from a master plan. When you observe the place, you can see what they were going for.
Being in the desert, Dubai is a flat place. Because of this, skyscrapers look like they stretch on for miles.
There are plenty of places from which you can observe the city, but the Burj Khalifa is arguably the best. It’s the tallest building in the world and gives you a commanding view of the surrounding city in every direction.
It Offers Endless Entertainment
There isn’t an awful lot to do in the desert, so Dubai makes up for it with the entertainment in its mega malls. You’ll find these all over the city, including one that’s the second-largest in the world.
Dubai builds most of its attractions around malls and sweet food. The idea is simple. First, you go shopping. Then you indulge in some entertainment. And after that, you go for a sugary meal. Just don’t forget to clean your teeth afterward and protect your gums.
Dubai’s mega malls are exciting. Hosts are constantly running competitions where you can win big prizes, like gold bars or fast cars. It’s all as flashy as you might expect, designed to cater to the tastes of the ultra-rich who go there and, occasionally, make a normal person’s day.
It Offers Accommodation To Die For
Luxury apartments for rent in Dubai are like nowhere else on Earth. There’s an appreciation for opulence you will struggle to find in other great global cities like London and Tokyo.
Dubai takes luxury concepts and then adds to them in its own inimitable style. It isn’t afraid of ostentation at all. In fact, it celebrates it as if it were normal.
When you arrive in your suite, teams of staff are there to facilitate your every wish. If there’s something you need, they’ll go out of their way to get it for you, even flying it in on emergency delivery if necessary.
They’ll also prepare the best food for you of any cuisine. Just tell them what you want and teams of highly trained chefs will do your bidding.
It Has Desert Skiing
Sand skiing in Dubai wouldn’t be that weird. (And you can go sand surfing if you want to). But, amazingly, Dubai offers a fully-fledged indoor ski resort with real snow. At more than 85 meters high and covering over 22,500 square meters, it’s one of the most impressive venues in the world.
It’s only possible, of course, because of the incredible technology available in Dubai. Massive refrigeration units and clever insulation technologies keep the indoor temperature below zero even as Dubai residents bake in the 45°C heat outside.
It Has A Great Food Scene
Dubai is an immigrant city. More than 95 percent of people who live there are from other places. That feature gives it one of the most interesting food scenes on the planet. Dubai is a melting pot of Arabian, Filipino, Japanese, British, Chinese, Indian, and Pakistani food influencers. Therefore, you can find just about any meal or cuisine you want, all within relative walking distance.
Plus, the standards are so high. There are no dodgy restaurants here that are going to give you Delhi belly. You’re free to gorge yourself however you want and try different things on each night of your stay.
It Has 1,000 km Of Beaches
For all the glitz and glamor of Dubai, people forget it’s home to more than 1,000 KM of beaches. They stretch across the entire length of the city and well beyond, offering access to the Persian Gulf. Here, you’ll find 7-star hotels and man-made islands, such as Palm Jumeirah. These provide tourist and residential opportunities unlike anywhere else in the world.
Of course, you can travel out of the city and along the coast to find lesser-known spots to sunbathe. But be careful: the sun is ferocious and the weather can get incredibly hot, even along the coast.
It Has Many Modern Art Exhibits
Modern art is another major factor in drawing people to the city of Dubai. Specifically, galleries are popping up in the Al Quoz area of town with others sprinkled around the Dubai Financial Center.
The art you’ll find here isn’t quite at the level you might see in New York, London or Paris, but it is exceptionally good for this region of the world. Other than Abu Dhabi, there really is nothing like it nearby.
It Is A Cultural Melting Pot
Besides the food, there are numerous other cultural aspects of Dubai that make it a genuine “world city.” 90 percent of the population, for instance, originate from outside of the country. It’s a cosmopolitan city because it is so new. You’ll find people from all over the world here, making it difficult to really pin the place down.
Sure, there are Arab overtones, but those disappear quite quickly once you arrive. It’s both western and eastern and has elements of both the Global North and Global South. Perhaps the only continent that isn’t represented is Antarctica, and that’s because no one lives there.
It Has One Of The World’s Largest Artificial Islands
The Palm Jumeirah, built between 2001 and 2006 is one of Dubai’s crown jewels and, incidentally, among the biggest artificial islands in the world. The structure is home to dozens of multi-million-dollar mansions, owned by the super-rich of the world. And you can stay there in one of its many five-star hotels, including Atlantis, The Palm.
It Has An Old Quarter
If you want to see what Dubai was like before the oil wealth arrived in the 1970s, you’ll want to visit the old quarter in Deira and close to Dubai Creek. The area now has many modern buildings, but you can still find traditional markets and gold dealers if you know where to look.
Perhaps the most impressive part of Old Town is the Grand Souk. This area has a traditional feel like you’re being transported back in time hundreds of years.
It Has Unbelievable Land Development
Lastly, if you want to see some of the most impressive land development anywhere in the world, Dubai is the place to go. Projects here are like nowhere else on earth which is why the city is home to more modern wonders of the world than anywhere else.
We’ve already mentioned the tallest tower, the Burj Khalifa, and The Palm, but there’s so much more to see. There’s the Burj Al Arab, which looks like a giant sail, perched on its own artificial island, The World islands in the middle of the Persian Gulf, and the residential towers which are also the tallest in the world.
It’s Close To Abu Dhabi
Amazingly, Dubai isn’t the only spectacular city in the local neighborhood. It’s also close to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the Emirates. It’s only fifty miles away, so you can travel through the desert and visit it for a real Arabian experience.
Those looking for more adventure can take Jeep trips to the Saudi border. Here, you can experience the fierceness and vastness of the Arabian desert yourself. The place is totally empty and devoid of civilization, which will be an eerie experience for some people.
It Has An Oasis
You could say that the entire city of Dubai is an oasis. But it is also home to the Dubai Miracle Garden, a collection of flowers and shrubs, touted as the biggest in the world. It’s not quite Kew, but it’s still impressive, especially considering that virtually nothing grows naturally in the area.