Thursday, September 2, 2010

Assalamu Alaikum, Dubai!

Do you remember this comment I wrote in my last travel post “Inshallah.....am going to Dubai sooon!!!!”? Well, it finally came true!!! I spent my one week holiday in the Magical City of Dubai!!! It was a beautiful experience!!! I wish I stayed for one more week….but hey, I didn’t have money for one more week. But I def still had loads of FUN!!!! I went alone. Some people think that travelling alone as a tourist is not fun. Honestly, it could be a bit lonely. But YOU can create your own fun! Believe you me……And I did have FUN!!! Sorry, am repeating that but….AAAAAAAAH! It was FUN!!! Looooool!!!

Travelled on Qatar Airways, very comfortable and lovely service. The trip was for about 7 hours altogether: 6 hours from Lagos to Doha, Qatar and about an hour to Dubai from Doha. I spent my 7 days in Admiral Plaza Hotel, a simple but comfortable three (3) star hotel located in heart of the shopping place of Bur Dubai.
For my first tour, I went for the Dhow Cruise with a dinner buffet. I recommend this tour for couples. It has this romantic evening feeling. The Arabic boat has two deckers, below was the dinner place and above was for people to seat down and watch as the boat sails on and on. Got a panoramic view of Dubai city’s glittering landscape by night as the freshness of the sea breeze blew at me. As you watch the beautiful city up the deck, you are served “al-shay” (tea). It was for about two hours or so, can’t remember…I was enjoying the peaceful sailing.


I went for a Half Day Dubai City Tour aka “Jewel of the Persian Gulf” for my second tour. I learnt that out of the seven states, Dubai is the second largest Emirate in the UAE. It is proudly called the “City of Merchants”. First stop was at the Jumeirah Mosque, a beautiful example of modern Islamic architecture. This is the only mosque, as I was told, that allows non-muslins to go in, but I could not go in because that day was the beginning of Ramadan. Sad, but I def took a photo in front of it. Next, we went to the Islamic Art Centre. This was where I wished I had enough money on me. I was mesmerized by the variety of Arabian and Asian outfits I saw in display. You find beautiful handmade artworks that showcase the beauty of the middle-east. Drove past the beautiful house of the ruler, Sheikh Mahammed Zayed Al Maktoun. It was magnificent! Could not take a photo of it because it is prohibited. Then went to the famous and only seven (7) star hotel in the world, Burj Al Arab. A sight to behold, I tell you. Went to the Dubai Museum in Al Fahidi Fort. I enjoyed taking photos with realistic life size static displays which provided an insight into the traditional life of ancient Dubai. It was a lovely journey which displayed their commercial and domestic life in the desert and on the sea. Lastly, we stopped at the Dubai Creek and enjoyed a ride across in a water taxi called “abra” to the Deira side of Dubai. Entered the gold and spice souk (market). I enjoyed the smell of the spices and the glittering shops that displayed gold jewellery.




The third tour was the Desert Safari tour. That was one of my best tours in Dubai. You cannot go to Dubai and not try this tour. It would mean you never went to Dubai at all!!! I was picked up with other tourists with a jeep in the afternoon. The journey to the desert was quite far. Arrived at the edge of the desert where the jeep (with other jeeps) stopped to deflate the tyres for a dune ride. Now this ride is a heart leaping ride, where the jeep speed drives through the undulating landscape of the desert. It was exciting!!! After the dune bashing ride, we stopped in the middle of the desert to sightsee. I enjoyed sitting on the sand and watching the wind blow the sand on my face. Later, we drove to the camp, which is the Bedouin Village. There I rode on a camel, ate dried palm dates, had a traditional barbecue dinner, got a henna design on my left hand (Ladies, try this when you get there. It lasts for only two weeks *wink*) and took a photo with a traditional Bedouin outfit and a falcon with its owner. It was an experience that I would advise anyone to go for. However, I did not get to see the belly dancer. I was told that during Ramadan, dancing and singing is not allowed. :(

The last tour was at the Wild Wadi Resort. This was my other best tour. Yeah, I saved the best for the last! This is the best place to get wet all day! I got a ticket to spend all day in Wild Wadi. Always read instructions when you are there. There is a watch-like access they give you at the entrance after submitting your ticket. That watch can be used to upload money to avoid having to carry money and getting it wet. I made sure I participated in all the water games. One of the most exciting things I did at Wild Wadi was the FISHO Spa. This is a health spa where toothless fishes called Garra-Rufas fish, are used to treat your skin by removing the germs and dirt from your feet. It was a tickle and daring experience, I’d say! lol! With the weather of about 40°C, Wild Wadi was a great place to cool off.


Spent my last day touring Dubai alone. Went shopping, took a ride on the train and bus (Very organized! You can buy a Road Transport Authority (RTA) card and top it up with money. You pay for the train and bus using the RTA card. Cashless transport, I’d call it…lol!). Also made sure I took my last ride on the “abra” taxi water. *wink*
Dubai is a great place to spend a holiday. There is so much to do and so many places to go to. I also would recommend Ski Dubai, which is a place that is filled with snow. You’d think you are in snow land with snow men, sleigh and reindeers :). And Dubai Aquarium & Underwater zoo is another wonderful place to explore the sea kingdom.
Three advises I’d give you while planning your trip to Dubai:
(1) Don’t go during July and August unless you know how to catch your fun! That period is Ramadan. And during Ramadan, you cannot eat or drink outside from the morning till 7pm in the evening. You can eat inside though, but restaurants would not open till 7pm. If you are caught, I was told you would pay a fine! So beware! Shops open around 9am and close around 2pm to re-open by 7pm.
(2) The weather is HOT during July/August!!!! One time it was about 46°C!! I was dehydrated!
(3) Never go alone unless you know how to create fun for yourself. If not, you may not enjoy some of the tours. There is more fun painting a place “red” with a friend or a relation.
Tour Brokers International did my Dubai package for me. And sure was it a wonerful package. I advise that you try them *wink*.
I love this song by Carmen Rasmusen – “Nothin' Like The Summer”. It was my theme song for my summer break. Lol! Enjoy!!!



Saw this song on "One Dubai", a TV station in Dubai...very interesting!!! :) Not a fan of Snoop Dogg though....nah!!!!

Akshay Kumar & Snoop Dogg - Singh Is King

8 comments:

  1. u did it!! u FINALLY did it!!!!!!!! nd im next online! :D

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  2. Yay nene i've been reading ur blogs n i jus realizes now that i could comment lol(bush girl)well alright first off i'm so proud oh u having this interesting blog and sharing ur ever so adventurous ideas i'm really inspired to actually have one...... and yea u went to dubai n fufilled my dream for myself wish we cudav gone today wot fun aye but yea i'm glad u got d experience and hope der r many more to come.Keep up d good work my dear God be with you!

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  3. @Kiki: Yes,o! I finally did it!! dont worry, by God's grace we wud travel togeda for my next trip.....*wink*
    @Eggirl: am glad u are inspired. Grab the bull by the horn,dearie!!!

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  4. Check ma blog...Emmy in CHAD....proud of ya hunny...

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  5. lol! Are u serious??? Some blog...he!he!
    Thanks dear.

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  6. Nice blog, Dubai is simply a magical city in the United Arab Emirates...
    Yacht Charter Dubai

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  7. Thanks Shezaa. I'll try the Yacht Charter when ever I come to Dubai again.

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  8. This blog post has left me with so much nostalgia, I love Dubai and I miss Dubai.

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