If there’s one thing you can be certain of when it comes to Dubai, it’s that it’s certainly not afraid of ambition. The city has pumped billions into its economy and positioned itself as a business hub and tourist mecca, and you could easily accuse Dubai of being somewhat of an over-achiever or attention seeker.
This is a city that has literally sprung from the desert over the past 20 years, and things happen extraordinarily quickly. When you look past the mega malls and 5-star hotels, you’ll find that there’s much more to Dubai than first meets the eye, including a continually changing food scene, a thriving design and art ecosystem, and a cultural diversity that’s hard to match since the city is almost completely made up of foreign expats.
Dubai has one of the world’s most incredible skylines, and the Marina has 4 of the 5 highest buildings (for residents) in the world, literally standing amongst the clouds.
Almost 200 nationalities call Dubai home, and a huge 90% of the population was born outside of the country, making it one of the world’s most cosmopolitan cities. Unlike London and New York, where expats have been living there for hundreds of years, most of Dubai’s expats are the first generation, bringing with them diversity and a wealth of interesting cultural traditions.
This diverse population has ensured that the city has a huge range of food styles, including American, British, Chinese, Japanese, French, Filipino, Indian, Persian, Arab, and more- including both high-end and humble choices. There are many different food festivals happening throughout the year, along with plenty of pop-up eateries to choose from as well.
Another big draw to Dubai is the fact that it sees more than 300 days of sunshine every year, and with more than 1,000km of coastline to explore, it’s easy to find somewhere to get a tan. And if you haven’t yet seen photos of the Palm Island, you must have been living under a rock, as the largest artificial island in the world has been seen on the cover of travel magazines around the world since 2006, and is home to many different 5 star, luxury hotels, and multi-million dollar mansions.
Like to shop? Dubai is the place to go, and you’ll find the biggest mall in the world here, and high-end retail stores almost everywhere. If you’re a fan of the sales at home, you’ll enjoy the month-long shopping festival in Dubai, complete with giveaways and concerts, and the chance to win gold and cars.
Along with all of the above, you should definitely in Dubai. This includes visiting the traditional gold souk, going skiing in an indoor ski resort, partying at some of the best nightclubs and beach bars, heading out to the desert to ride a camel, and much more.
If you’re stopping over in Dubai, or even thinking about going for a holiday, be sure to take some time to see the many things the city has to offer.