Ever had the feeling that you just want to get up and go? Perhaps the #wonderlust bug has bitten. It can be a tad bit tricky concerning visa and travel plans but can you believe that in less than a week my daughter Deshnie and I managed to secure our travel plans and head on over to Dubai!
If there stunning pics and sheer opulence doesn’t grab you how about that it’s the perfect balance between luxury and old world history that will ensure you grab a bargain or two.
Making those travel plans:
- Flights: Yes Emirates may just be the go to airline but Qatar does offer affordable deals all year long. We simply logged onto (http://www.qatarairways.com/global/en/homepage.page) and paid for our flights direct. Download the app to track your flight and if you still have any queries the call centre staff and super friendly.
- Accommodation: This is simply down to your personal preference. Whether you choose to Air BnB or Luxe it out at the Palm, there is no shortage of hotels to suite your budget.
A few days before my trip I spent hours researching things to do and places to visit and was simply mesmerized by the various options and could hardly contain my excitement.
One particular website that I simply loved was Time Out Dubai (http://www.timeoutdubai.com/ )
From daily deals and discounts to the trendiest places to visit this site is a must read!
The weather: Can you say hot! Sunscreen is a must-have 24/7, please. Also you need to stay dehydrated. The first thing that I noticed when we were met at the airport was how extremely hot it was in Dubai. Although I was told that it was hot I certainly did not expect the slightly uncomfortable heat but this was not going to damper my enthusiasm at all.
After checking in and freshening up we met with the the hotel concierge who filled us in on the transport options as well as the free shuttle service that the hotel offered.
So which is the cheaper route? We managed to find a hack! The Big Red Bus (http://eng.bigbustours.com/dubai/home.html) or the Hop On Hop Off tourist bus was our saving grace. R1000 buys you about 4 days worth of rides and these busses have multiple routes that run all over Dubai. You simply find the bus with corresponding colour of your route and hop on. Free water, open air roof top seats and a guided tour – what more do you need?
As much as we wanted to use Uber it works out much more affordable to use their metered taxis which are so safe.
Dubai is divided by the creek into the old and charming Dubai and the bustling new age Dubai with its grand architectural buildings and modern malls. There is so much to see and do in Dubai and a week had certainly not been enough to visit and experience it all.
I have learned that it is ok to do things out of your comfort zone and it is such a fun experience exploring foreign destinations with great company whether it is your daughter or a best friend.
Highlights of my trip:
- Boat trip down the creek to old Dubai
- Shopping at The Dubai Mall and the Mall of Emirates
- Visit to The Marina and The Marina Mall
- Visit to Jumeirah Beach
- Fun filled day at Atlantis The Palms, a luxurious resort on the Jumeirah Island
- A visit to Burj Khalifa , the tallest building in the world
- Exploring the city on the tourist bus while taking in the views from the upper deck
- Dining in the local restaurants and sampling the divine dessert
So how long should you stay for?
I suggest between 4 – 6 days. You can balance these out between water sports, historical visits, desert adventures and the shopping!