City of blinding lights-Dubai

Tripoto
23rd Apr 2017
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Day 1

My cousin and I departed from the Cochin airport and reached Dubai in the most undesirable time - around 12 noon in the afternoon. Sun was merciless and we were searching for cover, we soon found shade inside a pretty nice spot id say, my uncle's brand new land cruiser. Got to his home and had a good biriyani and chicken kebabs.

Most striking thing about Dubai- noticeable as soon as you step out of the airport would be the luxury and sports cars. Dubai is a car lovers paradise, you could ogle at the roads for hours and still not get bored at myriads of cars that cruise through the roads of Dubai.

First stop was at The palm, Atlantis, located at the tip of the Palm island. To get to this artificially made "Palm island", you gotta drive through an under water tunnel.
You are surely gonna get bewildered thinking how these men managed to create this wonder.

The Atlantis - A magnificent 5 star hotel, facing the sea.  Nice pavement has been made opposite the hotel and you could take a nice evening stroll, lots of small vendors and mobile cafes available to serve you snacks and drinks. Nothing much to do here except that you can absorb the grandeur of the structure in front of you.

Moved on to see another iconic structure of Dubai, another 5 star hotel and called as the Burj Al Arab. However, it's no match for the external looks of the Atlantis.

Spent the rest of the evening at the Jumeriah beach,
Blue waters, clean white sand, well maintained beach! However a bit overcrowded and bustling with life. Parking could be tight here. The beach also provides a great view of the Burj Al Arab.
As the sun dipped into the Persian Gulf, I pondered upon the immense cultural and racial diversity that Dubai hosts- I could see Indians, Africans, Europeans, Chinese all soaking the sun at Jumeirah. In a world fighting over religion and race, it's good to see places where people of different colors and creed live together in peace and harmony.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Day 2

Good place to start your Dubai tour is the Dubai museum. It showcases the history of Dubai and it's growth from the days when locals used to trade spices and deep sea dive without any equipment in search for pearls - fortune did favour the brave. Dubais growth as an economic powerhouse and one if the world's most sought after tourist destinations is beautifully portrayed in the museum. For those who have lots of money to spend, make it a point to visit the souvenir shop.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

The magical world portrayed in Arabian nights was something which fascinated me as a child. Though you could find only sky scrapers and shopping malls these days, there is a small oasis which retains the old beauty of Dubai- Bur Dubai. Streets filled with shops and traders selling cloths, perfume,souvenirs etc.
Nearby, you could take a 1 dirham ride on a boat on the Dubai Creek, with its emerald waters and old buildings by the shores, this trip is sure to take you back in time.

BurDubai shopping

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Dubai Creek

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Stopped by a sherwarma shop for lunch (probably the best shewarma i had till date)
Next stop was the Dubai mall. The biggest mall iv ever been to! All the fashion brands, food joints, sports gear, perfumes, jewellery, clothing, you name it ... This mall even has a skating arena inside it and also is connected to the Burj Khalifa.
To go to the top of The Burj Khalifa, you gotta take tickets, we got it prebooked thanks to my uncle.
Enroute you would see a miniature but spectacular model of the burj in all its glory.
Way up is through the fastest lift in the world ..
Climbs up hundreds of floors in a matter of seconds.
At the top you get a spectacular view of the city and even "the palm" and "the world".
After absorbing the sights from the top of Burj, you can get your fancy photos taken- one which might look like Tom cruise from mission impossible.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Spent rest of the evening exploring the Dubai mall and visited the downtown area of Dubai. There was musical fountain show in front of the Burj. The Burj was all lit up and shimmered in the night in all its glory, I had to take a mandatory selfie with the Burj Khalifa and here it is ..

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Just as we were about to exit the mall, something uncanny happened- total blackout at the Dubai mall. Rumors spread it was a part of some terrorist attack and people started to panic, frantically exiting the mall. We kept our cool and everything was restored in about 2 hours. Yeah, the news came in the papers next morning.

Day 3

We stayed at the Discovery gardens near Jabal Ali and took this day out to discover few nearby malls. Like the Ibn Battuta mall- named after the legendary muslim scholar who travelled around most of the middle East and Asia. The mall is unique with sections displaying themes of the regions that Ibn Battuta explored eg. Egypt, China, India, etc..
It's also much less crowded and has magnificent works on the walls and ceilings, which is a treat to the eyes -like the Egyptian section displaying hieroglyphics for instance.

A metro station is located inside ibn Battuta mall so we caught the metro and took a ride. Running parallel to the Sheikh Zayed road, you can get some great views of the city from the metro train and it's definitely a good alternative to roam around given the rush in the road and the high taxi prices.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Ibn Battuta

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Ibn Battuta .. china court

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

The Dubai metro

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Day 4

Went to Karama, the ultimate shopping centre for Indians. Saw a lot of malayalees in here, this place also has branches of legendary restaurants back home like the calicut paragon. Perfumes are also available at cheap prices here and I got one for my fiance. Lots of counterfeit goods and first copies of luxury watches and shades are available here. People can tell by the look of you that you are from kerala so many traders introduced themselves to us in malayalam! I'd call this area a little malabar in Dubai.

Trying on few shades at Karama

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

We had booked our desert safari today- somewhere in a desert near sharjah- we were transferred there in a van on a shared basis. Reached the desert in the afternoon around 4 pm and the most popular sport here is the Dune bashing. They take you in a Toyota land cruiser and hit the sanddunes to get a roller coaster kind of ride.
Well pretty reckless sport indeed and I'm thankful we survived it. After the dune bashing we went to the programme area where met the falcon. To hold the falcon they charge you 10-20 AED and photos cost extra.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

They had arranged an area for photoshoot in the Arab costume. After a lot of bargaining, we got the photoshoot done and I would certainly call this the most hilarious moment during the tour
The clothes and the weapons did make us feel like real Arab men, ready to do their thing!

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Soon the entertainment begun! First one was an dance form called the tanoura, which is basically going on spinning for like 15 minutes and changing the skirts while doing so - pretty impressive. Dinner was provided and the seating was traditional style, 360 degree around the stage. As we munched on the kebabs, an Arab beauty got on to the stage and performed a belly dance. Beer is also available but slightly overpriced.
That summed up a great desert safari. Lived a day like an Arab and indulged in their pleasures. On the way back, again visited the Atlantis, a totally different sight in the night.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Day 5

Its the trip to Abu Dhabi today
Takes a drive of around 1 and half hours from Dubai. It was a hot day and needs some serious air conditioning  in car to keep cool. First stop was at Yas island where the ferrari world is located. Its located adjacent to the Formula 1 circuit and is an amusement park and a pilgrimage spot for Formula 1 enthusiasts from all over the world. We loved the 4-D experience as Sebastian vettel, the current formula 1 driver for ferrari us took us on an intro ride around some narrow streets and  circuits. One of the first games we took was the formula 1 cars tyre change at the pitstop and it was an awesome experience actually doing the out stop routine which you only get to see in television. As you roam around you can see all the iconic models of previous ferraris on display and being an ardent fan of ferraris I took selfies with most of them.
Ferrari world is also home to the fastest roller coaster in the world. Gathered all the courage and somehow survived it (not gonna ride that storm again- I swear)

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

In Abu Dhabi you also have to visit the Grand mosque. Be amazed at the sheer amount of wealth that has been thrown in to build this monument of modern times. The only structure i found worth comparing it to was the Taj Mahal. Such was the grandeur and elegance of the marble work. Had a great pizza and coffee from the nearby cafe.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan

Dinner cruise is another activity that's a must do in Dubai. The Cruise through the Dubai Marina indulging in the gourmet dinner provided made me realize that one could find solace in the heart of a bustling city.

Our Stomachs full but souls still hungry. Headed to explore some nightlife in Dubai and boy did we have fun! Spare sometime ti visit the pubs and dance bars and experience Dubai's nightlife- 2nd to none.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Day 6

Time to pick our bags and head back home. Dubai has opened my eyes to a whole new world. I will make it a point to come here again whenever possible. On the way back, visited the wafi mall- you could trick your friends that you visited Egypt  by clicking pictures from here. They even have real mummy caskets.
Very unique mall which is worth a visit.
Returned back with a ton of memories from Dubai to cherish forever.

Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
Photo of City of blinding lights-Dubai by Vaisakh Krishnan
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