Exploring Dubai – The City of Gold, Through The Eyes Of A Native

Dubai has developed over the years to emerge as one of the world’s most prestigious and well-known tourist destinations. Fabulous all-inclusive lodging options, splendid dining establishments, shopping at the Dubai Mall, pristine beaches, deserts, and adrenaline-pumping activities all contribute to Dubai’s appeal as an amazing holiday destination.


The Dubai we know today was formerly a tiny fishing community whose livelihood was primarily based on fishing, pearl diving, and boat building, as well as providing lodging and food for traders passing through to sell gold, spices, and textiles. But in 1820, Britain reached a maritime agreement with regional leaders, ensuring that trade routes would remain open and that commerce could flourish. With the start of constant communication with other nations, Dubai became a hub for important activities.

Dubai started to prosper under Al Maktoum’s reign from 1894 until 1966. A new set of regulations that exempted foreigners from paying taxes in 1894 gave the local economy yet another uplift. Due to this, the city experienced a massive inflow of foreign workers. Even though this was a relatively prosperous time in Dubai’s history, the economy was still heavily dependent on fishing, trading, and pearl diving. In contrast, the 1950s Japanese invention of artificial pearls threatened the economy’s downfall.

What seemed to be a downfall suddenly turned into an uprise with the discovery of oil in 1966, Dubai’s fortunes abruptly changed, and the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum started the city’s expansion. From a small group of settlements close to Dubai Creek, he started developing the area into a cutting-edge port, metropolis, and commercial centre. Among the significant projects finished during the period were Rashid Port, Jebel Ali Port, Dubai Drydocks, the enlargement of Dubai Creek, and the Dubai World Trade Center.

The city’s development was hastened by visionary leadership and the revenue from the oil industry. The city has grown from its humble origins as a port in the desert to a huge metropolis with thriving communities, world-record-breaking structures, and extravagant shopping malls in just half a century.

Customs and Culture

Given that Dubai is an Islamic country, its culture, traditions, and way of life are strongly rooted in Islam. It’s a liberal Arabian city despite its conservative culture that appreciates and accepts many international cultures and customs in general. With the blending of many cultures, Dubai has a distinctively international flavour.

Important Facts About Dubai

  • One of the United Arab Emirates seven emirates is Dubai (UAE).
  • It is the UAE’s second-largest city after Abu Dhabi, which serves as the nation’s capital.
  • The ruler of Dubai is HH Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. He serves as vice president and prime minister of the nation.
  • The local language is Arabic.
  • Less than 20% of the population are Emiratis; the other 80% are expats from more than 150 other nations.
  • The native currency is the UAE Dirham or AED.

Top places to visit in Dubai

  1. Burj Khalifa

This is the highest building and structure in the world, with a height of 829.8 m (2722 ft). In honour of Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the president of the UAE and the ruler of Abu Dhabi, the structure was given the name “Burj Khalifa.” This 163-story structure not only holds the record for being the tallest in the world but also for having the most storeys, inhabited floors, outdoor observation decks, and service elevators in the world.

  1. Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo

Thousands of aquatic creatures from more than 140 different species are housed at the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, which is on the ground level of the Dubai Mall. This tank houses around 300 sharks and rays, including one of the world’s biggest collections of Sand Tiger Sharks, which are housed in 10 million litres of the water tank.

  1. Global Village

Global Village Dubai is a key tourist attraction that promotes tourism by drawing millions of tourists from all over the world each year. One of the most well-known international ventures, it unites several nationalities to deliver entertainment and retail locations. The event is a part of the Dubai Shopping Festival, where many pavilions represent other nations by modelling replicas of well-known monuments from those nations. It is the ideal location to take in street entertainers, international food, and exciting rides. It starts in late October and ends in April.

  1. Bastakiya Quarter

The Bastakiya Quarter, or Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood, are one of the best places to visit if you want to learn more about Emirati culture and history. Wind towers and conventional courtyards compliment the historic sand-coloured houses at this well-preserved cultural property. You can enjoy an abra ride around Dubai Creek in addition to visiting the city’s biggest attractions, such as the Dubai Museum and Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding.

  1. Palm Jumeirah

Palm Jumeirah, a man-made island structured like a palm tree, is a must-see for anyone looking to live a high life. Palm Jumeirah is a fantasy packed with stunning architectural wonders and exhilarating activities, from five-star hotels and resorts to the gorgeous Palm Jumeirah Monorail and The View at The Palm.

  1. The Dubai Mall

Dubai Mall, with an area of over 500,000 square metres, is one of the world’s largest retail malls and the ideal family entertainment destination with The Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, the Olympic-sized Dubai Ice Rink, the children’s zone called Kidzania, and a large indoor cinema complex.

  1. Desert Safari

One of the finest ways to experience Dubai’s pristine desert scenery is through Desert safari. Visitors in Dubai may have an exciting evening in the desert that includes bumpy camel rides, belly dancing, Arabian cuisine, sandboarding, and the thrill of donning traditional clothing. A desert safari in Dubai is a memorable experience because of the varied adventures and nonstop fun.

  1. Burj Al Arab

The Burj al Arab is one of Dubai’s most recognised landmarks and one of the country’s tallest hotels, situated on an artificial island off Jumeirah. It was built in 1999 in the shape of a structure supposed to mimic a ship’s sail and is claimed as the world’s only seven-star hotel.


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