We arrived in Dubai at 6.00am having raced across the Arabian Sea, through the Gulf of Oman and around the Straight of Hormuz. The pirates couldn't keep up with us!!!! The shoreline here is very flat, as it is mainly reclaimed land, with skyscrapers on the skyline.
We left the ship full of anticipation and excitement.
Our tour was a mixture of the old and the new of Dubai.
The old was the Bastakiya area, one of the oldest in Dubai, with its ancient houses bedecked with wind towers. These towers provided ventilation in the days before air-conditioning. Next a visit to the Dubai Museum housed in the 18th century Al Fahidi Fort. Here were realistic displays, giving a fascinating glimpse of the historical links of the city with trading and pearl diving. It was rather spoilt as it was very crowded as a Costa cruise ship was also visiting. Tourists are such a nuisance ! Finally we boarded an Abra (old water taxi) across the creek to visit the aromatic Spice Souk and then the extensive Gold Souk, with the most exquisite pieces on display. I couldn't ask Chris for anymore, as I had already been lucky in Hong Kong.
The tour of the new city was a drive first to the Jumeirah Mosque which is a superb example of modern Islamic architecture, and onto the Burj Al Arab, the iconic sail-shaped hotel, which is the world's tallest water-based all-suite hotel. Then a drive along Sheik Zahedan Road, the 'Manhattan' of Dubai, with it's high rise glass buildings, passing the Ski Dubai, the region's only indoor ski dome offering fresh real snow all year round, and then viewing, from a distance, the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world.
We both enjoyed our visit here, however, as this was our first visit to an Arabic city, we did not feel the city as a whole was Arabic. Our guide was German , and our driver was Indian. In fact there are many Indian workers here particularly in the building industry.
However, a Girly weekend here would be fabulous!?! Plenty of 6 star hotels, spas and of course shops.