Different facets of Dubai – Shopping, Partying and Much More!!
I have been thinking to write about Dubai in my travel blog multiple times but somehow always fell short of words. The first time I visited Dubai was in 2012 and in the course of 5 years I have lost the count.
I clearly remember my first trip as I was super-duper excited just with the thought of being able to visit one of the most happening place in the world. Air Arabia landed in Sharjah and the three of us made our way to our apartment in Bur Dubai. “Three of Us”; because it was a business trip and me and other two colleagues of mine had a very important meeting lined up for next two days!!
So yeah it was 2 days of meeting and then the fun took over. I was glad that my friend cum sister and her husband was living in Dubai and we were equally excited to see each other. She had already planned things and the first place I visited the day I landed Dubai was Barasti Beach Bar. It was her favourite place and apparently it happened to be my favourite too!! Great place, great ambience, great music!! There were few more friends of theirs joining us and in no time we were in a group. The More the Merrier!! Awesome way to unwind with awesome people. You can relax and enjoy your drink near the beach or dance your heart out in the dancing floor, it’s absolutely your choice. Best part of this beach bar is that you don’t have to think too much about your attire. You can choose to wear your high heels or be your comfortable self, absolutely up to you!!
I have visited this place again in some of my other visits and every time I did so, I have thoroughly enjoyed it.
Next day morning we went for the meeting and I must say it went pretty well; challenging but definitely fruitful. Anyways, let’s not talk about business… I had another very good friend of mine waiting for me in the evening. There was a time when we used to loiter around the Delhi streets couple of years back and I couldn’t believe we were about to loiter around the Dubai streets too.
Very soon we were sitting at one of the Creekside Restaurant overlooking the Dubai Creek and people traveling by Abra. Abra ride is still pending and I hope to ride that next time whenever I get an opportunity. There are multiple restaurants besides the creek and you can sit in any of them and enjoy the food, smoke shisha, drink morocco tea, have a relaxed and great evening with friends. Shisha and Moroccan tea is one of my all-time favourite. It was indeed a really good experience. If you ask me to what extent I like that place, my answer would be; I would prefer to go there every time I visit Dubai.
Next day the meeting was over and my sister’s super loving husband had booked an apartment for the two of us to give us the “girls time”. What could have been better than that?? So yeah.. I packed my bags, checked out from the hotel in the evening and checked in to the next one where again the Barasti gang met and ofcourse, needless to say… had a great time 🙂
My flight was in the evening from Sharjah the next day and we had one full day before it was time for me to say goodbye. Again, one of her friend decided to take a day off so he could drive us through and am still grateful as I visited most of the attractions of Dubai in a single day!!
We left our apartment at 12PM and by 9PM I had to be in Sharjah!! There were lot of places to visit and very less time. We would not have rushed had we known that it was just the beginning. So, yeah the excitement was high! Started with Ibn Battuta Mall, strolled around for a while, had an Arabic lunch and moved on to the next point. My sis had the list of places she wanted me to see before I leave and I was just the follower… and definitely I was simply loving it. Just the thought of it has brought a smile on my face 🙂
I guess from there we went to Jumeirah Beach, not for sun bathing as we didn’t have time but just to have a look. My first visit ended with just clicking few pics but am glad I did get a chance to go there again.
In the evening you’ll see lots of people playing with the waves and it sure it a pleasant sight. You too can indulge in the activity and am sure you’ll have fun. For me; I love sitting beside the sea shore and enjoy the sound of the wave.
Coming back to my first trip; after a brief visit at Jumeirah Beach we went to Souk Madinat. Souk Madinat is an Arabian themed market area which has premium shops and restaurants and bars. It has an amphitheatre too with nice fancy seating. Good place to stroll around and spend time with friends and family.
Clock was ticking and before I leave for Sharjah I had to visit Burj Khalifa!! I couldn’t have missed that. I still remember the excitement I had felt when I first saw the tallest structure right in front of me. I have no words to express what I had felt then, but when I see it now; it is just a tall building and nothing else.
Anyways, visiting Burj Khalifa and watching the Dancing Fountain was incredibly exciting. There were people from different countries assembled to see the Fountain Show and the entire area was so lively and full of energy. People taking pictures standing in front of the Burj Khalifa and trying their level best to capture the entire building. That is tough… Lol.. you have to lie down on the floor and click if you want to capture the entire Burj Khalifa in the pic. I have one though.. me and Burj Khalifa!!
Smiling faces, high on energy is what I remember of that place!! Hence for people traveling to Dubai for the first time Burj Khalifa and the Dancing Fountain is a must visit.
After visiting all these wonderful places, we left for Sharjah to catch my flight back to Delhi. I didn’t feel like leaving as I had thoroughly enjoyed and simply loved the place… but few things are not in your control. Thinking about it now, it’s good that I spent those 2 days like the way I would never visit Dubai again. I tried to enjoy every second and lived to the fullest. My first trip ends here with me bidding adieu to my sis and catching a flight back with lots of memories that I cherish till date.
Since all my clients are from the Travel Companies, one of them booked a Dhow Cruise Dinner and Desert Safari as a good will gesture on one of the weekend. Being a Tour Company both of these sightseeing was organized by them, hence they even offered me to take my friends along. I’m glad that my sis was available and ready to join me.
Dhow Cruise Dinner is a two hours’ sail through the Dubai creek overlooking the skyscrapers. You can enjoy the music and the tambura dance show as you have your dinner. It is a great way to have a relaxed evening with friends and family.
Next day we had Desert Safari waiting for us. Hotel pick and drop was provided by the tour operator. It was fun screaming inside the vehicle when the driver drove through the dunes!! After the dune bashing, the driver stopped the vehicle in the middle of the desert and gave us time to walk in the desert, click some pics and play with the sand. Multiple vehicles took a halt there and everyone was enjoying the sand and clicking pictures!! You can also choose to pay and experience quad biking if you want.
It finally ended with BBQ dinner in a camp organized by the tour company. You can buy souvenirs from the shops inside the camp if you wish. Definitely smoke shisha and enjoy the buffet dinner. Oh I forgot to mention, belly dancing and tambura dance will definitely keep you entertained!! The 4X4 drive is thrilling and super fun and definitely a must experience.
Besides these “MUST DO” activities in Dubai, I would definitely want to mention the fantabulous clubs to party. The city never sleeps and for party animals you have ample of choices to choose from. If you are looking forward to enter a high end club, make sure that you are properly dressed. Stag entry is NOT allowed; you can be in a mixed group though. I still remember the night when we were denied entry at Cavalli Club. That is because I was alone accompanied by three of my colleagues. I admit I felt sad; after all I was dressed up for Cavalli.. I don’t even remember the next club we hit that day; I was least excited to go anywhere else.
Anyways the very next day we hit another high end club. This time we played smart; I saw a girl coming alone and approached her to request if she could join us. Thankfully she was “okay” and 2 girls and 3 guys were definitely not an issue. That moment when we entered “Armani Prive” is still fresh in my mind. It felt like an achievement . It was a rocking night with DJ Soulplay!!
However, in one of my other visits I did get a chance to enter Cavalli Club. My colleagues were already in Dubai for their meetings and I landed after few days. I remember it was about 12:30AM when I reached hotel. I called them and got to hear that they were clubbing. LOL.. I dumped my suitcase, changed into a party wear and hit the club around 2AM. This time there was no question of being denied … OHHHH I loved being there.. finally!! My personal experience, I felt Cavalli Club was better than Armani Prive. Other nightclub we visited was “People by Crystal” at Raffles Dubai. Had heard a lot about this place too so wanted to explore, however the day we visited was a Bollywood Night so I somehow could not enjoy much. The place was nice though. So yeah.. for the party lovers “DUBAI” has lots to offer.
Lastly, just to mention a pint of beer in all of these clubs is about AED45 – 50, which is as good as any high end clubs in Delhi, so not much of a difference.
Anyways, that was the fun part of it but I definitely want to mention about the shopping too. What excites me the most is the shopping part of Dubai. I remember after being at work the whole day, I had to catch an Air India flight to Delhi at night. I was already super tired and after clearing a really long queue as I was about to approach the counter, Air India announced that they were overbooked and could not take any more passengers. There was commotion at the Airport with people being denied boarding. Air India staff was trying to calm the crowd saying they would provide accommodation and assure the next day flight but nobody was listening. People had further plans and it was being hampered because of the Airline’s miscalculation. They simply overbooked the flight and announced they won’t be able to accommodate anymore. The security at the Airport had to intervene to calm the frustrated crowd. Everyone was sent to Sharjah but I insisted to book me a hotel in Dubai and they did. Why I’m narrating this experience is that for me Air India came as a blessing in disguise. The flight was at night and I had the whole day in Dubai. Wondering what I did?? Shopping!! I spent almost 6 hours in Deira City Centre as it was the nearest mall from the hotel. Air India had organized a pick up and the best part is an upgrade to Business Class. I wouldn’t mind getting denied boarding for that again 🙂
I prefer Dubai Mall too as you’ll find lots of brands and good collections. If the sale is going on, you’ll easily land up spending 6hrs and not know about it. You can also visit Mall of Emirates (MOE); a high end mall with high end brands!! All I’m saying is, I love Dubai for the kind of shopping experiences that it provides.
For now, this is all I have to say. You will never miss Indian food as there are lots of Indian and Pakistani restaurants. Go to “Ravi” a Pakistani restaurant if you are a non veg lover. Food is finger licking!! I bet you’ll love it.
- Dancing Fountain
- Burj Khalifa
- Dhow Cruise Dinner
- Desert Safari & BBQ Dinner
- Definitely restaurants at Dubai Creek
Last but not the least; Party Hard and Shop till you Drop!!
Hope you enjoyed reading.