Modern Dubai


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We remember reading the news reports when Ski Dubai opened in 2005. An indoor ski resort in the middle of the desert is so over-the-top that we had to check it out. Located in the Mall of the Emirates south of the newer Downtown Dubai development, Ski Dubai is the world’s largest indoor snow park and and features the world’s first indoor black diamond run.

While in the area, we also took in several other symbols of modern Dubai, including the Burj Al Arab, an opulent hotel fashioned after a boat’s sail; Palm Jumeirah, a massive man-made island built in the shape of a palm tree; and Dubai Marina, an artificial canal city bristling with high-rises.

Below are trip highlights from November 18th, 2018 in Dubai, UAE. Click any image for a larger view, or click the position to view the location on a map. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at mvdirona.com/maps

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Metro
Alighting from the Dubai Metro that we took from the Dubai Mall to the Mall of the Emirates. When we arrived at the Dubai Mall station, the train was there so we jumped right on board. We soon noticed everyone giving us sidelong glances and that James was the only adult male in sight. We’d inadvertently boarded a car for women and children only, so quickly changed cars at the next station.
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Ski Dubai
We remember reading the news reports when Ski Dubai opened in 2005. An indoor ski resort in the middle of the desert is so over-the-top that we had to check it out. The 242,187 sq ft (22,500 sq m) facility at the Mall of the Emirates is the world’s largest indoor snow park and and features the world’s first indoor black diamond run. Pretty bizarre.
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Courtesy Policy
Most Dubai malls post a courtesy policy, not universally followed by foreigners, stipulating that shoulders and and knees be covered in particular. We generally followed this policy when out in public, away from the hotels and resorts.
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Madinet Jumeirah
At Madinet Jumeirah for lunch. The five-star three-resort complex is the largest in the country. The facility is built to resemble an Arabian village and has over 40 restaurants and bars spread across 98 acres (40 hectares), all linked with 3.3 miles (5.4km) of waterways complete with water taxis. Just visible in the background is the iconic sailboat-shaped Burj Al Arab hotel.
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Burj Al Arab
A decadent lunch surf-side at Shimmers in Madinet Jumeirah with an excellent view to the Burj Al Arab. The opulent hotel, fashioned after the sail of a dhow (traditional Eastern Arabian sailing vessel), has been a symbol of modern Dubai since its completion in 1999.
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Rescue
Fair-sized waves were breaking against the beach and the many lifeguards on duty were keeping people in the safer areas. One swimmer strayed into the breakers and called for a lifeguard, who responded instantly. You can just barely see the lifeguard swimming out towing a red float, halfway between shore and the person with their hand up having troubles. Our waiter told us it was the second time that day the same person had to be rescued.
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Abra
Riding a traditional wooden water taxi, called an abra, through the Madinet Jumeirah waterways toward the entrance.
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Souk
Built into the center of Madinet Jumeirah is replica of a souk, a traditional Arab marketplace with wood-framed walkways.
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INTERPOL General Assembly
Security was high in the area due to the INTERPOL General Assembly that kicked off today at the Madinet Jumeirah Conference Centre. Two of the countries we visited while crossing the Pacific, Kiribati and Vanuatu, became INTERPOL country members at the conference.
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Atlantis
Our next stop for the day was the Atlantis The Palm resort to visit the Lost Chambers aquarium. This is looking at the resort’s two accommodation wings, linked by The Royal Bridge Suite (available for USD $27,000 a night). The resort is on the tip of Palm Jumeirah, a massive man-made island built in the shape of a palm tree.
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Breakwater
The size of the breakwater along the seaward edge of Palm Jumeirah gives an indication of the sea conditions in rough weather.
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Jellyfish
An excellent jellyfish tank at Lost Chambers aquarium in the Atlantis The Palm resort on Palm Jumeirah.
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Eel
The Lost Chambers aquarium is designed around a theme of the Lost City of Atlantis and is particularly effective for this Honeycomb Moray Eel display.
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Ambassador Lagoon
The highlight of the Lost Chambers aquarium is the 2.9 million-gallon (11 million liter) Ambassador Lagoon, one of the top ten largest aquariums in the world and home to over 65,000 marine animals. The aquarium has multiple viewing windows, some accessible only to hotel guests—we spent ages taking in the display.
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Lemon Mint
Mint Lemonade is a popular and delicious drink in Dubai. We’ve drunk gallons of it since arriving and purchased a couple of Starbucks-branded bottles at the Atlantis.
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Monorail
Waiting for the monorail that will carry us down the trunk of Palm Jumeirah and back to the mainland.
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Frond
Looking down one of the residence-packed fronds of Palm Jumeirah.
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Tram
Riding the city tram south from Palm Jumeirah to Dubai Marina Mall.
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Marina Mall
Marina Mall is a development south of downtown Dubai built around a man-made marina. The design was inspired by that of Concorde Pacific Place at False Creek in Vancouver, Canada. Almost all of these towers were being built at the same time when James visited here over a decade ago on a recruiting trip. The area now bristles with high-rises, but many more are being built.
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Dubai Eye
Sunset off the 689 ft (210 m) Dubai Eye. When completed, it will of course be the largest Ferris Wheel in the world.
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Rooftop Terrace
One of the things we’d wanted to do, but couldn’t quite fit into our itinerary, was to have a drink or a meal on a rooftop terrace in Dubai. But we ended up scoring a great rooftop seat at Soul in the Movenpick Hotel Jumeirah Beach hotel as we were walking around Marina Mall looking for a place for dinner.
Show locations on map Click the travel log icon on the left to see these locations on a map, with the complete log of our cruise.

On the map page, clicking on a camera or text icon will display a picture and/or log entry for that location, and clicking on the smaller icons along the route will display latitude, longitude and other navigation data for that location. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at mvdirona.com/maps.

 
 


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2 comments on “Modern Dubai
  1. RIchard Koller says:

    Hi
    It seems you saw a lot of the sights. How long were you in Dubai for sightseeing? Would you have liked more time?

    • Richard, we were in Dubai for four days and that seemed just enough for the major sights. A couple of things we wanted to see, but couldn’t quite fit in, were the souks north of Dubai Creek and the new Dubai Water Canal, particularly to see the fountain there at night. Four days was more than adequate, and six or seven might be even better, but I wouldn’t think you’d need much longer.

      Jennifer

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