Wanderlist: Abu Dhabi & Dubai

The UAE has been on top of my Wanderlist for a long time. I still can't believe that I have crossed this one off. Unlike our trip to Sri Lanka, which was very spontaneous, Dubai and Abu Dhabi were not on a whim. The thought of standing in the middle of the desert, feeling the breeze in my hair and seeing nothing but sand around me, seemed too good to pass it on. We started planning our trip around Christmas time last year, and in no time we were boarding a plane to the United Arab Emirates. This was my very first time visiting a country whos culture was vastly different than my own, and I love how much I've learned not only about the Emirate people, but also about myself during such a short period of time. If you would like to get to know this beautiful place yourself, I have some words of advice and suggestions on how to make your trip the most memorable.

Best time to travel
The good thing about the UAE is that the weather is always warm enough to go to the beach, which makes it easy to plan your trip. From my research aifare was the lowest during our winter and spring time. We visited in April and the weather was perfect, warm enough for the beach but not too hot to sightsee or visit the desert.

The first thing to figure out is how you plan on getting around. Although both Dubai and Abu Dhabi are very modern and metropolitan cities, you may notice that it can be a struggle getting from one place to the other without a car and the prices for taxis in Dubai can be quiet steep. We were lucky enough to have a driver who picked us up at the airport and friends that we able to drive us anywhere we needed. But don't worry, bublic transportation is also available, there local buses as well as buses that go between the two cities and are fairly reasonably priced. One thing to keep in mind if you are traveling with someone of the opposite sex, men and women sit separately on buses, women are genrally seated in the front and men in the back of the bus. 

What not to Miss
The Dubai Mall
Burj Khalifa & Singing Fountains
Barasti Beach Bar

Abu Dhabi:
Dessert Tour/Camel Ride
Sheik Zayd Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi
The Yacht Club
Emirates Palace

What to keep in mind
Don't forget that you are in a foreign country and need to abide by local laws. This includes PDA, that's right try not to hold hands or kiss in public as this is against the law. Also, make sure to dress appropriately. Although you are not required to be fully covered as a female, you should show respect to the local customs and think twice before you throw on a mini skirt. This also depends on where you are going, for example you may be asked to leave the mall if your outfit is considered too revealing or disrespectful. If you are planning a trip to the mosque you need to be fully covered and wear a head scarf, I would suggest that you read the dress code available on their website. On the other hand if you go to one of the beach bars where most people are expats and tourists you a free to wear your bikini and the dress code is more relaxed. 

As far as language barriers, this was never an issue, most people speak English and are very helpful and friendly. 

Normally I suggest to convert your currency prior to arriving to the country of your choice, but in this case we only converted a small amount of currency at the airport and the rest at a local bank upon arrival. The reason I would suggest doing this in the UAE is because most local banks will not charge you a conversion fee. So far this is the only country I have been to that did not charge a fee for the service, way to go UAE.

And lastly here are just a few pictures of my adventure...

1 comment:

  1. We enjoyed the Desert Safari Tour very much. It was amazing and so much fun! We also did the Dubai city tour and had lunch at the Burj Al Arab Hotel. Unforgettable stay and great memories that we won’t forget a life-time.


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