A short break in Dubai is really something special. It’s an ultra-stylish place, with cutting edge architecture and fashionable shops, restaurants and people. There is plenty to do for group holidays: walk, shop, swim, dance, ride a camel… the choice is yours!
Top of everyone’s list of things to do in Dubai is the world’s tallest building, the 825-metre-high Burj Khalifa (but book ahead online if you want to go to the 124th-floor observation deck). Try to make time to visit the Persian quarter (Bastakiya) and you will find old buildings housing cafes and art galleries, with markets in the narrow streets during the winter. The souqs (markets) of Deira are worth a visit to pick up souvenirs in the many stalls. For more varied shopping, try the malls of Madinat Jumeirah where you can also relax at one of the many coffee shops, restaurants, pubs and bars. There are also beaches to visit and you’ll be able to tell your friends back home that you have swum in the Arabian Sea: Umm Suqeim is a good choice. There are several parks, with Creekside Park being one to consider. For some planned activities, there are walking tours, balloon trips, seaplane rides and spa days to look into.
Eating in Dubai can be expensive: Reflets par Pierre Gagnaire is an example, but the superb Moroccan food and music means it’s worth every penny. But there are plenty of more affordable options too, such as one of several Noodle House restaurants. Drinking is banned in public areas, but you can drink in hotel and club restaurants (but not general restaurants) and in bars and clubs. This means that the nightlife is as good for lively stag weekends and hen weekends as it is in most cities. Great bars include Bahri Bar, The Irish Village (a very authentic Irish pub), and the stylish Cu-Ba and 360°. The club scene in Dubai is often ultra-chic with the emphasis on delivering a VIP experience. Many clubs are found as part of hotel complexes. Clubs to consider include A-Club, Chameleon Club, Sensation Club and Zinc.
There is no shortage of 5 star hotels in Dubai for some real luxury, with Raffles Dubai being an example. Affordable places to stay are also available of course and chains such as the Holiday Inn Express and Premier Inn are worth considering. The Asiana Hotel and the Centro Barsha are additional hotels typical of the style and value on offer.
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