Me and my wife visited Dubai for the third time between 20th December, 2023 to 2nd January 2024 to celebrate Christmas and New Year in Dubai. I have already covered a number of spots to be visited in Dubai in my previous posts. Dubai keeps surprising with new attractions. I never knew that there are so many more left out. I will cover them here:
MORE PLACES TO SEE IN DUBAI
Posted by A G Aranha | 19-1-2024
1. Khorfakkan, Fujairah, Sharjah
Located in Fujairah, an emirate located at about 100 kms from Dubai, Khorfakkan has three attractions. First, the rest area at Al Suhub, then the artificial waterfall and the third is the amphitheatre. The Al Suhub Rest Area is atop a hill and provides a panoramic view of the city and mountains around. Popularly known as Cloud Lounge, this rest area has a circular structure with two floors, green spaces and fountains. The place is very well maintained, attracting a number of tourists.
After the rest area, we had lunch at Bahari Grill, Miramar Resort at Fujairah. This resort is a sea-facing property making for an excellent space to enjoy the outdoors while having lunch.
Next we visited the created Khorfakkan waterfall. This is modelled on Roman architecture with a seating capacity of over 3000. Built in 2020, it is designed to host outdoor events and overlooks the Khorfakkan beach. There are popular art installations, restaurants and cafes in the premises.
Next to the Khorfakkan waterfall is the Amphitheater. This is modelled on Roman architecture with a seating capacity of over 3000. This is designed to host outdoor events. There are restaurants and cafes in the campus.
2. Habtoor Christmas Market, Dubai
This is a market place specifically for Christmas shopping and celebrations. It is located next to Hotel Habtoor Palace, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai. A huge Christmas tree with lighting is created here for the benefit of tourists. We did some shopping here.
On the way back, we saw a golden Ferrari parked at Hotel Habtoor Palace.
3. The View, Palm Jumeirah
This is a glass framed observation tower located on the 52nd floor of the Palm Tower. It is the only panoramic view of The Palm Jumeirah and Arabian Coast. The Palm, designed in the shape of a palm tree, encompasses a five star hotel, luxurious apartments, restaurants and infinity pool. The View provides a 360 degree view of Dubai from the glass frames. It also provides a fascinating view of the sunrise.
4. Dubai Butterfly Garden
Located in Al Barsha locality, this butterfly garden is a wonder by itself. It is the world’s largest indoor butterfly garden with thousands of butterflies of 50 different varieties. The tourists are excited when the butterflies sit on their body. Some of them are huge in size compared to the normal butterflies we see.
6. Atlantis at the Palm
This is a 5-star hotel located inside Palm Jumeirah. It has adventure sports, world class dining, entertainment, wellness. It was well decorated with lighting during Christmas season. The walkaway across the Atlantis at the Palm makes it a popular attraction to enjoy the sea view, watch large cruises, take photos and take a stroll soaking in the view.
7. Dubai Frame
This is the largest frame in the world at a height of about 150 feet. It has golden coloured walls. There are two lifts to carry the tourist from the entrance to the top and back. It contains an observatory, a museum and a monument. An immersive exhibition displays Dubai’s history, growth and vision for the future. The glass walkway at the top in the observatory is very popular among the tourists. The Dubai Frame stands in the middle of two sides of Dubai. On one side of the frame you can see Old Dubai with the pearl diving history and on the other New Dubai skyline with Burj Khalifa standing tall.
8. Fireworks at Al Seef
Al Seef is a waterfront promenade along the bank of Dubai creek. It recreates a historical district with modern amenities. During Christmas season, they carry out fireworks from a boat inside the creek. Large numbers of tourists witness the fireworks which are a treat to the eye. In 2023, Al Seef hosted the Gulf region’s tallest Christmas tree at 39 metres with 6,800 lights. Its magnificence had to be experienced.
9. Al Nafoorah Restaurant, Zabeel Saray
This restaurant serves Lebanese food. With a beautiful outdoor venue and lavish indoor décor, the sea-facing restaurant located at Zabeel Saray is made for an enjoyable experience.
10. Wasit Wetland, Sharjah
This is a nature reserve housing and hosting over 60 species of resident and migratory birds. There are aviaries to watch the birds like Glossy Ibis, Purple Swamphen and interactive exhibits for children to learn more about their habits, habitat and patterns. It also has a vast preservation area where bird watching centres are established. You can watch migratory birds during the season. When we visited in December, there were hardly any birds but during the migration season, a lot of birds can be watched. The entire area can be covered only through buggies provided at the Centre. We saw an Arabian Oryx during our ride.
11. Madfoon Al Khaima Restaurant
This restaurant in Sharjah is very well-known for Mandi, which is the local Arabic delicacy of meat and rice blended with spices. Served with lentil soup, salad and best enjoyed with Laban (local version of buttermilk), it is a must-have in the UAE. Their Ayran curd prepration is the best.
11. Global Village
Located on the outskirts of Dubai, this attraction is very popular among locals and tourists for the reason that it houses cultural ethos of each of the countries in the world, from shopping for items made at these countries, to the different food items. The Floating Market within Global Village is renowned for street food items of different countries. There are a large number of shows and events carried out here daily.
12. Dubai Hills Mall
The latest addition to the malls in Dubai, this is a spacious shopping and entertainment complex that had various Christmas décor and Christmas trees to add to the festive cheer.
13. Zou Zou
This restaurant serves Turkish-Lebanese fusion food and it was extremely delicious. Offering specialities of the diverse Turkish cuisine, it was a feast with salads, meat preparations and desserts.
14. Expo Lake, Al Qudra
The best spot for witnessing sunrise. Located in the desert area, this spot has been developed to make it possible for families and tourists to camp here with tents and watch the early morning sunrise. When we visited, there were so many families with tents set up who had camped for the night and on the wintery morning, watching the sunrise and cooking a breakfast for the family members. There is a lake here with curvature roads wherein the tourists can walk through. In the lake you could see fishes of different colours and sizes right on the shore. Watching these fishes in the twilight is a sensational experience. On the way we also caught sight of gazelles basking in the early morning sun.
15. Brambles Café
This café is hidden inside the Citadines Metro Central Hotel Apartments at Barsha Heights. We had breakfast at this café. The décor is elegant and they provide very good breakfast options including vegan options of smoothies.
16. Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary
This is a free and open-to-all wetland reserve that hosts over 200 bird species. Located at the end of Dubai creek, it is the first Ramsar site in the UAE. There are observation decks built to watch the birds at very close quarters. Watching the migratory Greater Flamingos in a quiet space was a wonderful experience.
17. Calicut Notebook
Located inside the LuLu Mall, this South Indian restaurant provides a thali which is very delicious and filling. A typical Kerala cuisine can be experienced here.
18. Dubai Marina Mall
One of the biggest malls in the world, this mall needs more than a day to shop. Housing a large number of brands covering floors together, it is a shoppers paradise. Tourists from all around the world flock here for shopping. I have covered this mall in detail in my earlier post.
19. Allo Beirut
This restaurant serves Lebanese street food like shawarma, mezze, tahina kabab and slow-cooked lamb. Trying different Arabic cuisines is a must-do when you visit Dubai.
20. Marina Walk
Just outside the Marina Mall, this promenade around the man-made marina is a tourist relaxation area. The 7-km walk takes you along the waters as you watch the huge buildings around, boats and cruises in the water. A number of restaurants are located along the promenade to provide refreshments to the tourists.
21. Pond Park
Located at Al Barsha, this park with a walking area of about 1.1/2 kms is the best place to walk either in the morning or at night. We did the night walking here. The place is absolutely quiet and you could see a number of locals and tourists walk around the lake. The walk along the pond located in the middle of the park make it a very enjoyable experience.
Looking at the different spots in Dubai - created in the desert land, the greenery, the discipline, safety, hospitality, infrastructure and fun and frolic, this is one destination not to be missed and to be enjoyed at least once in a lifetime.
Three cheers to Dubai !!