After our road trip in South Africa we had a stopover in Dubai. As Dubai was definitely on my must-visit-list, we decided to stay there for 3 days. A little too short if you want to visit the desert and Abu Dhabi too, but long enough to discover Dubai itself. We stayed at the wonderful Majestic Tower Hotel which I found for a quite cheap price thanks to Booking.com.
We landed in Dubai at 5.15 am local time and reached our hotel at 7 am. Dubai has a very easy self-driving metro system and with some help from the locals it was easy to find our hotel. When I opened the curtains in my room I couldn’t believe my eyes, I could see whole Dubai, the Burj Khalifa included! Majestic Tower Hotel also has a great rooftop pool so we first took some rest at the pool.
After a short nap we took the metro to Damac Properties to visit the beautiful Mandinat Jumeirah Souk. A beautiful souk with restaurants and shops where you have the most beautiful view on the famous Burj Al Arab.
After enjoying the wonderful souk we decided to take a walk on the beach in the expectation of finding a nice place to lunch as the restaurants in the souk are expensive. To be honest, it wasn’t as nice as it sounds because the heat was killing me and we had to walk at least half an hour before finding a place to eat. After eating a hamburger on the beach I thought swimming in the sea would be a nice refreshment but I found out the seawater in Dubai is as hot as a furnace.
You can’t go to Dubai without visiting the famous Dubai Mall, the biggest mall in the world. It’s easy to reach, as the metro and buses have a stop right in front of the mall (called ‘Dubai Mall’ of course). The Dubai Mall is a nice place for people who love to shop but it’s also a great place to have some fun activities such as visit a play ground, skate on the ice rink, enjoy the aquarium and water park zoo or going to dine in nice restaurants/cafes. PS: free WIFI is available.
The most impressive thing for me was the huge floor to ceiling aquarium smack in the middle of the mall with thousands of sea creatures swimming around. You can take photos, walk under the aquarium or even scuba dive inside the tank!
We got a front row position at 6.30 am at the Dubai Fountains (just outside the mall) and enjoyed the music and light show as the fountains literally danced in front of us. The Burj Khalifa stands overlooking the show and adds to the drama and spectacle. Not to be missed! It runs every half hour in the evening.
We ended our first evening by going out in the disco inside our hotel, The Music Room. A nice place to go out, especially when you’re a hotel guest.
As a snowboarder I couldn’t withstand snowboarding at Ski Dubai, a ski slope inside The Mall of the Emirates (not the same as The Dubai Mall). The indoor resort features an 85-metre-high indoor mountain with 5 slopes of varying steepness and difficulty, including a 400-metre-long run, the world’s first indoor black diamond run. Ski Dubai is also the place to be for people who want to spot penguins. I took a 2-hour pass because the entrance is quite expensive, but I could easily spend my whole day in there.
After my snowboard adventure I wanted to see Dubai from above. Right, I went on top of the Burj Khalifa. It’s a good idea to book your tickets in advance. I decided to go up at 6.30 pm so I could watch the sunset. It turned out to be a great idea, the view was stunning, especially when the Dubai Fountains started to dance again.
I loved Dubai so far, it’s a wonderful, fancy and clean place. It was when searching for a restaurant I found out Dubai also has a dirty, old and decrepit side. I regret not taking pictures of it. Of course I still love Dubai, I just didn’t expect it after spending two days in the beautiful area.
We wanted to spend our last day in Aquaventure Waterpark, the best water park in Dubai, packed with world first, record breaking rides. The park is situated on The Palm which makes the view awesome. You can reach the park by a special train. It’s impossible not to find your way. I just loved the park, what else can I say?!
There’s no better place to go for dinner than on the Marina Walk, a beachfront paved walkway with 305 outlets and 69 restaurants. It’s wonderful at night and you’ll bump into the famous Cayan Tower, a luxury apartment building with a striking helical shape, turning 90 degrees over the course of its height.
I flew back to Brussels together with al these incredible memories.