Dubai is a city that caters to all ages, moods, and tastes. Whether you’re looking for food, culture, adventure, luxury or shopping, Dubai has it all. So, if you’re lucky to have a 24-hour layover or even just a few hours to show yourself or visiting friends around the city, below is just one of the many ways you can get the complete Dubai experience before going to your next destination.
Breakfast in Dubai
Start your day bright an early at around 8 am and enjoy a morning stroll on The Walk at Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR). At this stylish waterfront, strip discovers dining and shopping outlets along with enviable city views and plenty of good places to have a hearty breakfast such as Eggspectations.
After that take a short trip to The Palm Jumeirah, a manmade island resembling a palm tree. Here you’ll find many hotels, mansions, and the world-famous Atlantis. Great for photo opportunities, at the Atlantis admire the decor and get a quick look at The Lost Chambers before heading out.
Tip: On the weekend JBR can get very crowded. For a more quiet breakfast experience tryout ‘Raju Omlet’ located in Al Karama, Sheikh Zayed Road, and Sharjah. If you plan right, you can order in before starting your day, find the closest branch or take away a scrumptious egg-based breakfast before setting off to explore the city.
Head down to Jumeirah Beach Road, one of Dubai’s famous shopping, dining, and residential districts. Here, enjoy the city’s sparkling blue water and sandy beaches, along with a host of activities. For watersports, we recommend you hit Kite beach which even has a running track and for a chilled suntan session check out Sunset beach where you can admire the Burj Al Arab in the backdrop. For a family experience, La Mer is your best option as it has something for everyone. At these beaches discover activities such as water parks, food trucks, skate park, outdoor trampoline, paddle boarding, kayaking and so much more.
Tip: Get finger-licking food at the Fishing Harbour near the beaches in Umm Suqeim 2 and eat at one of Dubai’s hidden gems called Bu Qtair Fish Restaurant It’s not the most luxurious dining experience, but count on the seafood to stimulate your taste buds. Keep in mind, the restaurant only serves seafood and there’s no menu cause it’s based on the catch of the day. Also, make sure you give them a quick call to check their opening timings as they might be closed during the season.
After getting a taste of Dubai, take a quick trip to Dubai Mall located in the Downtown district (it’s easily accessible by car and metro which directly stops at the Mall). Here, you’ll get a taste of Dubai’s glamorous side and get a chance to view a few of the city’s top attractions. This part of your day might take a few hours as you have options to shop, dine, view the aquarium, take pictures in front of the Burj Khalifa (the world’s tallest tower) or simply admire the dancing fountains. Check the website for show timings as they generally start around 6 pm and change during Ramadan.
[Read more about the dancing fountains and other Dubai’s lesser-known attractions]
Keep in mind this is one of the busiest parts of town, so it’s probably not the best idea to carry around your luggage. If you have no other option, make use of the locker available at the Concierge Lounge in Dubai Mall.
Tip: Dubai Mall is massive and can be tricky to navigate around. Make sure you have a gameplan of what you want to see and for how long or else you’ll end up spending the entire day here!
Old Dubai sneak peek
Based on how much time you have left, take a taxi or metro to the Dubai Creek (also known as Old Dubai). If you wanted, you can pretty much spend a few days in this area because it’s culturally rich. To get a quick look and avoid traffic, walk down Al Seef Street (Dubai Heritage District) and get a quick Arabic coffee, then hop on the Abra for a small tour of the Dubai Creek. It’s probably the best way to quickly view old Dubai architecture and the stunning boats parked at the harbor.
Before you drive down to the airport, stop by at one of Dubai’s oldest outdoor pubs, Irish Village in Al Garhoud. Set around a tennis stadium, here you’ll find a number of restaurants (mainly in Century Village which is right next door) and a pub with a lively atmosphere. Unwind and relax as you enjoy the pleasant weather over a delicious meal such as the famous fish and chips and dance to live music that’s guaranteed to keep you entertained.
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