When you think of amazing travel destinations, you may think of places like the Riviera or Cancun. However, there is one city you may have overlooked that has certainly become a luxurious tourist hotspot in recent years. That is Dubai, the largest and most prosperous city in the United Arab Emirates. Below are just a few reasons why Dubai is an incredible place to visit.
The World’s Tallest Tower
Dubai has become the economic and technological center of the Middle East. One thing that certainly showcases this rapid progress is the Burj Khalifa, which translates to Khalifa Tower. It is currently the tallest structure made by man on the planet. It soars to a height of 2,722 feet. That’s almost twice the height of the Empire State Building. It’s also a very new architectural wonder, only having opened in 2010 as part of Dubai’s new exciting downtown. Features of the tower you’ll want to visit include the amazing 124th floor observation deck and the spectacular Dubai Fountain at the base of the tower that perform a continuous water, light and music show to entertain guests.
The Palm Islands
Another thing that may surprise you about Dubai is that it also contains a tropical island paradise in the middle of the arid Middle East. This paradise is known as the Palm Islands. The Palm Islands consist of two islands, Palm Jumeirah and Palm Jebel Ali. Both of these islands were created artificially. Construction to create Palm Jumeirah was finished in 2006, and Palm Jebel Ali will be completed soon. The name of the islands comes from the fact they are shaped like leaves on a palm tree. It is truly something you have to see to believe. On Palm Jumeirah, you can stay at the beyond luxurious Atlantis Resort. The marina and shopping malls are also great places to visit while on the island. As development continues, more resorts and even theme parks are on schedule to be built on these man made wonders.
The Souk Markets
Another excellent place to visit in Dubai is the souk markets. Souk, or souq, is an Arabic word that refers to an outdoor marketplace. Another common name for this type of market you might know is a bazaar. The souk is very integral to Arab culture. If you are visiting Dubai as a foreigner, one great way to experience the local culture is by visiting the souk markets. The tradition of souks in Dubai goes back more than 100 years. While there are modern shopping malls in Dubai, you can’t quite get the same experience as an authentic souk market.
There are, in fact, souk markets for many different kinds of commerce. Popular options include the gold souk, spice souk and textile souk. You’ll be able to find many exotic delicacies as well as handmade jewelry and crafts. One excellent choice is the very handsome and Arabic looking hand stitched rugs for sale. Use the right rug cleaning methods to be careful from damaging the hand-stitched designs.
There are plenty of great opportunities for entertainment while in Dubai. You can spend your time having fun in the water at two of the most cutting edge water parks in the world, Wild Wadi Water Park and Aquaventure Waterpark. You can even go skiing. While this may seem impossible due to the arid climate, an artificial ski resort exists at Ski Dubai. This enclosed resort produces artificial snow and allows you to ski down the only slopes in the Middle East. If you wish to have a more authentic experience, you can choose to take a tour of the desert by camel or SUV.
Overall, Dubai is one of the wealthiest cities on the planet and has plenty of great things to offer tourists. The above list only scratches the surface of the many great travel experiences you can have in this wonderful Middle Eastern gem.
source: Jennifer Livingston