After galivanting around the city for a week, I gathered my thoughts on what to expect when visiting Dubai. The good, the bad and everything in between. There is not perfect place, every has it’s pros and it’s cons.
Love – Transportation
Whether by bus, boat, train, taxi or limo – there’s always a transportation option available. Our hotel provided a shuttle to nearby malls and attractions. We also took Big Bug Tours all over the city. There were a few times we took boats to our destination, the old traditional Abra ride across Old Dubai Creek was my absolute favorite!
Hate – Haze/Smog
There always seemed to be a luring fog over the city. In the distance, you could see a haze over the city. I can imagine it’s from all the millions of vehicles, oil rigs and constant construction. At the end of the day, when I got back to the hotel I could run a tissue across my face and see a gray residue.
Love – Bigger is Better Idea
There’s so much to see and so much to do. Something around every corner, things you’ve never seen before and things your mind couldn’t even imagine. I felt like I didn’t have enough hours in the day to do see everything I wanted to, so I never ran out of things to do. For example, I was at the mall and decided to have dinner at The Cheesecake Factory and my table view was of an indoor sky center, Ski Dubai.
Hate – Construction
There was construction going on around the clock. Actually, they were building a board walk in front of our hotel and another hotel right next door. So all night long we could hear the beeping of trucks and engines revving. At one point, our room became unbearable because we were being awoke by the noise. In photos there was always a crane or some type of construction equipment obstructing the view. It made it hard to see the beauty beyond all the noise and mess.
Love – Safety
There was never really a point where I ever felt I should be concerned about my safety or scared for any reason. Plus there were cameras everywhere – in the taxi, on the bus, at the stop lights, in the malls. Whenever I looked up, there was a camera watching. Creepy… but it made me feel secure, so I felt comfortable going out by myself to do tours and see attractions.
Hate – Traffic
At times during the day, the traffic was a complete stand still. Typically to get from one destination to the next, even a few blocks away, it would take a minimum of 20 minutes. Because of the massive amounts of traffic and unpredictable, we were late and missed tours we had already paid for.
Love – No Taxes
Whatever the price tag says, is the price you pay. Since I’m American this is something I’m not used to. Usually we have to do the math in our head to figure out what the actual price will. And often times we’re surprised with the higher prices at check out. That’s definitely not the case in Dubai.
Hate – Black Rain
One day the sky became grey and overcast. About 30 minutes later it started to rain and shorty after it began to hail. People were running for shelter and screaming, kids were crying. We hid out in a bus stop. When the bus came we got on, it was standing room only because so many other people had the same exact idea. As we drove, it rained harder and harder. The streets began to flood, the bus had two floors with an open roof and rain started running down and flooding the bus. This is when I noticed the water was black. Everything I touched turned my hands black. I looked in the mirror and my face splatter black, like mud.
Love – Everywhere Delivers
Literally, anywhere and everywhere. You name the food, it can be delivered. It was a little overwhelming at first when we looked up delivery options and have a list of 100 to choose from. One night we had Thai food delivered to our room, another night we were just exhausted so we ordered Burger King. Also, they deliver by motorcycle so they’re able to get the food to you rather quickly, while it’s still hot!
Hate – Expensive
Dubai is a glamorous city, so it’s no surprise that things were more expensive than average. An order of water at restaurant was normally $5 or up, depending how nice the establishment. I’m American, so that was a brand new concept for me, when we order water at dinner, it’s free.
Have you been to Dubai? Is there anything I missed on my list?
Thinking about visiting? Let me know if you have any questions!
When visiting another country, like UAE, it’s very important to consider the culture, religion, practices and rituals. Even more important is respecting those beliefs, even if they may differ from your own.
I recently returned from a week in Dubai, UAE. This was my very first trip to the Middle East. When I return from trips, I like to reflect on what was unique to the location and the visit. Every city is different, the food, the language, sometimes it feels the complete opposite of home. Those are the elements I travel for.
When I reflect on my recent trip to Dubai, there are so many moments that stand out in my memory, but I shortened the list to just 5.
These are My Dubai Top 5:
There are many activities in Abu Dhabi. deciding which ones to do, where to go and how to get there, is a little tricky.
Your best bet, is getting a 48 hour Big Bus ticket. Technically the tour begins at Marina Mall with 16 stops and can be finished in a day. There’s also a separate Yas Island route which would be ideal for day two.
With the 48 hour ticket, you could probably finish the entire tour in that amount of time. But if you’re limited for time, I would recommend:
Observation Deck 300 in the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers
With your Big Bus ticket it costs $10USD. The views are incredible from the 75th floor. It’s the highest public viewing area in the city.
China has a very interesting culture and history. Just like anywhere in the world – there’s some things you absolutely love and some things you could really do without. So here’s what you can expect when heading to China!
Ancient cities are all throughout China! There are so many incredible buildings and monuments, many dating all the way back to 600AD, like the Tianning Tower. Today, it is still standing and functioning, and has been for over 1400 years. Just imagine if those walls could talk!
My next extended trip will be to China. My trip will span 10 days and my time will be spent mostly between Beijing and Shanghai. I think the #1 attraction to China for most people is the Great Wall, but here are plenty of other reasons to go!
I’m pretty certain I will eventually return to China for a second time. With so many incredible places to visit and things to see, there’s no possible way I’ll see everything I want to this time.
I’m sure 5 or 10 good reasons is sufficient, but I thought I’d really over do it and find 25 very convincing reasons to visit China. Let me know which ones really stick out to you!