Many visitors come to Dubai for the shopping, and one of my favourite malls is Wafi. Someone with more money than sense decided to recreate the Great Pyramid of Giza, Abu Simbel and other Egyptian monuments and turn them into a hotel and shopping complex, and – if you ignore the obvious ridiculousness -it’s actually quite impressive! Amongst the entertainment (every Dubai shopping centre provides entertainment!) are free movies under the stars at their rooftop gardens. Meanwhile Mall of the Emirates houses Ski Dubai where you can pet penguins, go zorbing in the snow or hit the slopes on five different graded runs.
Once you’re shopped out you can hit the beaches and Dubai has miles of well kept, sunny spots to enjoy. Jumeirah beach park is one of the city’s finest containing 12 hectares of landscaped kid’s areas, BBQ spots and of course a sizeable beach and the gloriously warm Arabian Gulf. Another great spot is Nasimi Beach which is at the Atlantis Hotel on the Palm Jumeriah. Most tourists just come to take their picture in front of the hotel but why not enjoy a swim and, lack of sandstorm permitting, panoramic views of the city.
Sounds crazy but most ‘tourists’ are too busy shopping and sun baking to visit the enjoyable and eye opening Dubai Museum. Housed in an old fort close to the souks it’ll give you a good idea of what Dubai was and how people lived before they were glued to mobiles, driving sports cars and sipping lattes. Just a short walk away is Bastakiya a charming labyrinth of alleyways and small shops, where you can take a great walking tour. From here go to the creek where you can see all the Abras: traditional Arabic boats still used to transport goods, there are various stops where you can hop on for a relaxing cruise across the creek.