10 Things to Do in Dubai on Your First Visit

Rent a luxury car

Example of a luxury car you can rent. Photo by Felipe Simo on Unsplash
Example of a luxury car you can rent. Photo by Felipe Simo on Unsplash

Anyone who comes to Dubai knows the city has the most stylish cars. It is almost impossible to not see a luxury car on the road at least multiple times an hour. The high living standard here is due to well-paid jobs, low tax rates, and easily available car loans. This allows the residents to own nice cars, but many of them still rent luxury cars because of their affordability. This is a perfect way to spice up your vacation too. Go ahead and rent that flashy yellow Lamborghini for a day and drive through the city in style. Rentals can start as low as $300. For the best prices, check out Renty.ae and make sure you have an international license.           

Visit Dubai Miracle Garden

Dubai Miracle Garden. Photo by Ali Raoufian on Unsplash
Dubai Miracle Garden. Photo by Ali Raoufian on Unsplash

Not only does Dubai have the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa, it now has the largest flower garden with an area of over 780,000 sq.ft. Opened on Valentine’s Day in 2013, Dubai Miracle Gardenis home to more than 60 million flowers and attracts millions of visitors every year. You will feel like walking into a floral wonderland, the perfect location to up your Instagram game. The garden’s style changes every season to ensure that visitors are never seeing the same thing more than once. Note that the gardens are closed during the summer months from June to September when temperatures can go up to over 40 degrees Celsius. However, this is a must-visit spot for winter.

Shop at the Dubai Mall

The Dubai Mall is located right next to Burj Khalifa. Image by Kon Zografos from Pixabay.
The Dubai Mall is located right next to Burj Khalifa. Image by Kon Zografos from Pixabay.

Shopping is more of a habit than it is an option when we are on vacation. This is why Dubai is one of the best destinations in the world for the ‘shop till you drop’ experience. Located right next to the Burj Khalifa is Dubai Mall, which spans across one million square meters and hosts over 1,200 shops. It was opened in 2008 and considered the most visited building on the planet in 2011. The mall also offers a tour of the Burj Khalifa, and you’ll be able to travel  all the way to the top of the building.     

View Dubai from the Dubai Frame

The Dubai frame offers a full view of the city. Photo by Shreyas Gupta on Unsplash
The Dubai frame offers a full view of the city. Photo by Shreyas Gupta on Unsplash

This beautiful piece of architecture is the best place to see a 360-degree view of the city. It has exhibitions showcasing Dubai’s culture while also giving a glimpse of the city’s technological advancements. When you reach the top, you will feel like floating on air by walking on a see-through glass. You can even have your pictures taken by a professional, courtesy of the Frame.

Visit the souks

Spices seen at a Souk. Photo by Martijn Vonk on Unsplash.
Spices seen at a Souk. Photo by Martijn Vonk on Unsplash.

If anything screams Middle East, it is the bustling and aromatic souk. Going to at least one of the souks should be on the list, not only because of the new experience it offers but also for the amazing steals. You can bargain your way through these markets that offer UAE-made goods. The gold and spices are all an integral part of Middle Eastern culture and these souks will allow you to immerse in it. Check out Dubai Gold Souk, Dubai Spices Souk, and the Bur Dubai Souk Market.

Go on a desert safari

Burj Al Arab. Photo by Andreas M on Unsplash
Burj Al Arab. Photo by Andreas M on Unsplash

Another way to explore Middle Eastern culture is to go on a safari in the desert. Driving along the sand dunes is an exhilarating and one-of-a-kind experience. This adventurous ride leads you deep into the desert where a small outpost is set up with food, music and entertainment. Here, you can spend the evening relaxing and watching beautiful belly dancing and fire shows. This is an excellent way to experience UAE’s geological features. You can book your safari through tourism company Desert Safari Dubai, which offers many deals and best prices to choose from.        

Spent an evening at the Burj Al Arab

Burj Al Arab. Photo by Andreas M on Unsplash
Burj Al Arab. Photo by Andreas M on Unsplash

Dubai has an air of luxury and you know that just by looking at its various architectural wonders. Burj Al Arab is one of those spectacles. It stands on its own artificial island and is one of the tallest hotels in the world. While this hotel may be out of budget for many, you can still dress up and go for a drink at its Skyview Bar. The Bar sits on the 27th floor and offers a panoramic view over the city. There is a minimum spend of $68 but it’s worth the experience.

You can also get dinner in the underwater Al-Mahara restaurant. The walls are glass panels, allowing you to see the sea life while eating.  

Visit the Museum of the Future

Inside the Museum of the future. Photo by Agnieszka Kowalczyk on Unsplash.
Inside the Museum of the future. Photo by Agnieszka Kowalczyk on Unsplash.

This calligraphy-covered structure invites everyone to imagine a hopeful future where wonders are possible. The building has windows that look like written words of a poem by Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed about his vision for the city’s future. The museum has interactive art and other exhibitions to make visitors dream about endless possibilities. There are four floors, each dedicated to different aspects of the world: future technologies, resource development, spirituality, and human development. This is a one-of-a-kind museum and a must visit. The exhibitions change every year.

Swim with the sharks in Dubai Aquarium

Dubai Mall is the ultimate retail therapy and entertainment destination. The mall has a huge aquarium that hosts a wide range of marine animals, including sharks. It’s the perfect way for families to enjoy an adventurous underwater experience at an affordable price. What better way to seek thrill than swimming with sharks?

Immerse in the culture at Old Dubai

Dubai Creek. Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash
Dubai Creek. Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Despite the towering skyscrapers, Dubai still retains its charm from the old times. Old Dubai is the area you need to be in if you want to learn about the city’s history. You can book a walking tour that will take you to the Al Fahidi District neighbourhood, one of the city’s oldest heritage sites and a trading hub in the 1800s. You will learn about the traditions and customs that made this city. During the tour you will also visit the Coffee Museum, Dubai Museum, the famous souks, and take a traditional Abra Ride (wooden boat) across the Dubai creek.

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