The Palm Jumeirah

Dubai: Cultural, Modern, and Innovative

Desert...and Snow?

Ski Dubai

Only in Dubai would you be able to have a beautiful view of the desert, and also have the opportunity to  ski on snow. As my sister and I are snowboarding fans, it would be an amazing experience to be able to snowboard in the Middle East's first indoor ski resort. Who knew?

One can enjoy skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing, bobsledding, and tubing at the attraction. Ski Dubai is such a unique and innovative idea, and it brings many tourists and residents of the Middle East to the city.

The Desert Safari

The Desert Safari in Dubai

On my trip to Dubai, it is vital that my sister and I take a desert safari tour. Touring the desert is not something that everyone has the opportunity to do- this is what makes Dubai such an amazing place to see!

I would take an evening desert safari trip, where the following would be included, while watching the sunset:

  • Pick up by a 4x4 wheel drive
  • Drive through the desert
  • Dune driving
  • Photography of beautiful sites
  • Camel ride
  • Belly dancing 
  • Henna painting
  • Buffet dinner and barbeque

I find this would be such an adventure, as well as an exhilarating experience, much different than anything I've ever done!

A Short Getaway to Abu Dhabi

During my vacation to Dubai, I would love to make the trip to the beautiful Abu Dhabi. The easiest and cheapest way to travel to Abu Dhabi from Dubai would be to use the Emirates Express bus. The city is approximately 124 kilometers away and would take around two hours to get to the Abu Dhabi destination. Buses run from 6 AM to 9:30 PM, leaving every forty-five minutes.

I would love to take a day trip to Abu Dhabi, as it is part of the United Arab Emirates that is booming and gorgeous with much to offer. The city is rich in resources, and has both sea and desert right at your eyesight.

When my sister and I visit Abu Dhabi, we would want to go to the Liwa Oasis. The Liwa is a large oasis area with freshwater pools and date plantations. The oasis is known for its friendly and welcoming local residents.

There are various stunning gardens and beaches in the city as well, making it a very popular destination for tourists visiting the United Arab Emirates. Traditional culture remains alive in the emerging, modernized city, where one can find wonderful artwork and handicrafts in the city, which include weaved shawls, gown embroidery, baskets, rugs, and pottery.

Photographs of Abu Dhabi:

The City of Gold

The Gold Souk in Dubai

The Gold Souk is the infamous gold market in Dubai, and would be a definite "must-see" while visiting the city . The word, souk, is any market or place where goods are bought and exchanged. If you want to buy cheap gold, you will most definitely find it in this market! The souk is located in the heart of the commercial district of Dubai, and consists of over three-hundred jewelry retailers. All gold is minimum 18K and one can bargain for an even better deal than displayed. The gold pieces range from rings, earrings, pendants, necklaces, and bracelets. Not only does the souk sell gold, but it also offers a variety of diamonds, platinum, and sometimes silver.

The World's Tallest Building

During my vacation to Dubai, I plan on going to the Burj Khalifa, which is the world's tallest building. The structure, 828 metres and 160 stories high, is more than just a tall building. Not only does this infamous architectural piece have an astonishing view of the city, but it also has a fine dining restaurant, 900 residences, 37 corporate suites, 144 private residences, a park with water features, and a fitness club.

The building also holds a hotel, the Armani Hotel Dubai, which is another elegant and chic place to stay. The hotel was designed by Giorgio Armani, a famous Italian designer. His hotel brings class, fashion, and sophistication together.

The Burj Khalifa is symbolic in Dubai and is an emblem for the new, dynamic, and prosperous Middle East. Inspiration came from the Hymenocallis desert flower, and the tower's wings extend from the central core, just like the petals from the stem.

The structure is most definitely a site to see. During my trip to Dubai, I would like to dine at At.mospere Burj Dubai, one of the city's finest restaurants.

The Hymenocallis Flower

The Burj Khalifa

Luxury at its Finest

The Burj Al Arab

The Burj Al Arab is by far one of the most luxurious hotels in the world, having a 7-star rating.  Not only is it known for its extreme architecture, but also for its various incredible features, which include:
  • Reception desks on every floor
  • Rain showers and Jacuzzis in every suite
  • Butler service around the clock
As a dream vacation, I plan to stay in one of the finest suites that the Burj Al Arab has to offer. Although the resort offers suites that only those who live in royalty would stay in, I would most likely choose to stay in the Panoramic Suite for my duration of the trip.

The Panoramic Suite has a view of the Arabian Gulf from the floor to the ceiling glass windows, as well as has two levels, offering plenty of lounge space. By viewing the hotel website, the rate for this suite is $2, 080.12 Canadian per day, therefore the total amount for the eleven day trip would be $18, 721.07. Below is the suite summary in Canadian Dollars.

The Panoramic Suite

Just to add another fantastic feature to the resort- There is a Rolls-Royce fleet, as well as helicopters available to bring you to a chosen destination. Is this truly reality?

Since my sister and I would be arriving in Dubai at approximately 7 PM, we would most likely check into the hotel, and relax for the rest of the night, as the flight is long, and there is a major time difference.

Things to Know Before Taking the Trip to Dubai


Dubai Currency

In Dubai, the currency used is the United Arab Emirate Dirham (AED).

1 Canadian Dollar = 3. 59380 Dirham 

Toronto, Canada is 9 hours behind Dubai. 


The National language in Dubai is Arabic. As Dubai is a very economically well-rounded place, the English language is also used. Some basic Arabic words are:

Hello- Marhabbah

Goodbye- Maasalaamah

Please- Min Fudluck

Thank you- Aafwaan


When visiting the United Arab Emirates, it is very important to wear conservative clothing. Additionally, the temperature can become extremely hot, thus it is vital to wear lightweight clothing. Dubai is modernized, compared to other parts of the United Arab Emirates, therefore it is okay to dress more Westernized.


The culture in Dubai and in the rest of the United Arab Emirates is so different than in Canada, and we must be aware of proper body language. In Dubai, it is important to not display the sole of your foot, as well as to not stare or initiate physical contact, when dealing with females.

It is also important to refrain from taking photographs of Muslim women and any military or government organizational buildings.  

    The Beginning of My Journey

    Map of Dubai

    Information on the trip:

     I am twenty-one years old and will be traveling with my sister, Cassandra. If we are to take this trip, we will be departing upon my graduation, as well as after the school year has finished. Thus, my sister and I will be leaving Toronto, ON on Monday, May 9th, 2011 and returning to Toronto on Friday, May 20th, 2011, for a trip total of eleven days. 

    Flight Information:

    Using Travelocity, I found the flights to Dubai at $1, 514.00 Canadian per person.