Dubai, UAE

Location:

Cruise ships dock at Port Rashid. Taxis are plentiful, but are only permitted to pick up fares at the port’s entrance. The drive to Dubai Mall is about 10 minutes. Around 5 Euro. Walking in the port area is not permitted. Taxis are very cheap! If you take a taxi anywhere in the UAE, ask for the meter to be switched on even if you make a tour by taxi.

 

Hop on/off buses will be at the terminal, transporting you to a point where the red and blue lines meet. Here you can take an hop on/off bus. This bus will take you back to the port. It is recommended to buy the 48 hour ticket, if you want to see most of the sights.

 

The Port of Dubai cruise terminal is located in a spacious temporary facility.

 

A second Cruise Terminal is being constructed.

 

From the cruise terminal to Dubai airport is about a 15 minute drive. About $15 per taxi.

 

Only Canadians must be in possession of a visa to visit the United Arab Emirates. You must obtain an expensive visa prior to arrival in the UAE.

Sightseeing:

Known as the City of Merchants, Dubai is the second largest of the seven Emirates that make up the UAE. In the entire Gulf, there is no place quite like Dubai. Its history began in the 1830s when the city broke away from Abu Dhabi and became a center of commerce and trading in its own right. In fact, Dubai’s wealth is founded on trade, not oil. When oil was discovered in 1966, it merely contributed to the city’s prosperity and sped up modernization.

 

Modern development began at the turn of the last century with heavy import-export trading, mainly in gold. What opium was to the growth of Hong Kong, gold was to Dubai.

 

As the leading center for business and tourism in the Middle East, Dubai offers a fascinating kaleidoscope of contrasts in a distinctive blend of modern city and timeless desert, east and west, old and new. As an exotic destination with a cosmopolitan lifestyle, Dubai combines the comfort and conveniences of the Western world with the unique charm of Arabia. Even with a high degree of tolerance for different lifestyles, Dubai remains close to its heritage.

Dubai’s souqs and huge shopping malls are crammed with goods – at some of the world’s best prices.

 

But there is more to the city than shopping. Visitors find an outstanding museum and superb recreational facilities, ranging from golf and water sports to desert safaris and dhow cruises.

 

As the sports capital of the Middle East, Dubai boasts four championship golf courses; it is a regular fixture on the European and Asian PGA circuits and hosts the Dubai World Cup – known as the world’s richest horse race. An endless array of restaurants and nightspots offers a wide choice of cuisine and entertainment.

Dubai is a place of fascinating contrasts, a distinct blend of modern city, timeless deserts, rugged mountains and miles of sandy beaches. The streets are clean and safe. With so many attractive attributes, it is not surprising that Dubai rates highly with world-class travelers, businessmen and the international jet set.

 

Dubai Museum This excellent museum features a great collection of interesting artifacts from Dubai’s pre-oil days when the city was known as an important pearl diving and trading center. The museum is air-conditioned and exhibits are labeled in both Arabic and English. Since its renovation, the museum has become one of Dubai’s main attractions. On Fridays, the museum is closed in the morning.

 

“Old Dubai” is best viewed at the Creek. Around bus stop 10 (red route) one will still see ships completely loaded by hand. A huge contrast in this city of glamour, but surely a photo opportunity.

Tours/Excursions/Transportation:

 

Travel on foot is not recommended: too hot and the sights are too spread out.

 

A new marine station opened by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) at Port Rashid will enable ferry and water taxi services between the cruise terminal and Al Ghubaiba station. The ferry and water taxi trips will be available only when ships call at the Port. A one-way silver-class trip on the route will cost Dh50, while a round trip will cost Dh75. A one-way trip in the gold class will entail Dh75 and a round trip will be available for Dh100.

 

The big thing to do in Dubai is to go to At The Top, the viewing platform of the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building. Don’t do this on a shore excursion – it’s too rushed. Instead, on the night you’re in port in Dubai , go it alone. It’s easy. Tickets are time-controlled so book online a long way ahead and time your visit for sunset. It’ll cost you 100 dirhams (about 18 Euro). Take a cab from the port. Wander round the shops and market, watch the spectacular musical fountains and then head for At The Top to watch the sunset.

 

While you are there visit the Dubai Fountain, the world’s largest dancing fountain and one with a very enticing display – a definite must see. The show takes place at the Burj Dubai Lake. Easy way to approach it is via the Dubai Mall. Daily 1 pm and 1.30 pm and from 7 pm to 11 pm every half an hour.

Shopping and Food:

Dubai is a shopper’s paradise due to its free port status, low import duties and no taxation. Modern, air-conditioned shopping malls are found throughout the city. The more traditional souqs can be a place for bargains, ambiance and entertainment. Interesting buys include everything from gold jewelry to designer creations, cameras, electronics and oriental rugs. Shops at the malls are open from 10 am till late at night.

The Mall of the Emirates even offers the largest indoor ski slope in the world. You have to see it to believe it!

Dubai Mall boosts over 1200 stores and eateries, a walk through aquarium, huge waterfalls, an ice skating rink and the magic fountains in front of the Burj Khalifa.
For automobile aficionados: just watch the worlds most beautiful cars being parked around the entrances of the mall.

Currency:

The currency is the United Arab Emirates dirham (AED, local abbreviation dhs). Conversion rates are 3.68 AED for 1 USD, 4.5 AED for 1 EUR and 6.8 AED for 1 GBP. The Dirham is pegged on the USD, so rate variations with this currency are unlikely.

Communication:

Free Wifi facilities in the terminal. When the crew members are using the facilities in great numbers, speeds are very slow. Early evenings are the best times for rapid connections.

Opening Hours and Holidays:

Shopping hours Daily 0900-1300 and 1600-2100, but many and all mall shops are open all day. Shops sometimes close for prayers Fri 1130-1330.

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Place Categories: Cruise Ports

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