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A Comprehensive United Arab Emirates (UAE) Tourism Guide

access_time January 9, 2019 chat_bubble_outline 1 comment 8459
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Spellbinding the world with its incredible architecture, sky-touching structures, aristocratic hotels, magnificent mosques, astonishing museums, terrific malls, famous man-made islands and an impressive coastline, United Arab Emirates is unquestionably every traveller’s dream. And if you want to make your dream come true by visiting this luxury holiday destination, here is our UAE tourism guide to help you know everything.

Luxury at its very best - UAE Tourism Guide

Luxury at its very best

UAE Tourism Guide

Table Of Contents

 

Best Time To Visit UAE

UAE Tourism Guide - Dubai

Celebrate Chinese New Year in Dubai

Wondering what is the best time to visit United Arab Emirates? Well, the country witnesses a tropical desert climate with very hot summers and relatively cool winters. And the best time to visit UAE is undoubtedly during the winter season, between November and March. That being said, let’s have a look at the different seasons the country observes.

Interested to tour UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages

Spring

The spring season starts in the month of April and lasts till about May. The weather is dry and pleasant which means that you will not have to deal with extreme sweltering and humid conditions. Spring is considered as a low season as most of the winter crowds leave the country making it a good time for those looking for hotel and flight deals. You can explore the museums and cultural hubs in Sharjah, Bur Dubai and spice and gold markets without any rush. You can also enjoy the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair and the famous Abu Dhabi Motor Rally that takes place during this time.

UAE Tourism Guide Tip: Be sure to carry light cotton clothes and an umbrella.

Summer

UAE Tourism Guide - beach

Enjoy the gorgeous beaches of Dubai in summers

The summer season hits the country in the month of June and extends till August. The weather is extremely hot and humid. This is a good time for travellers looking for lucrative deals as a lot of hotels and resorts in UAE offer great discounts. However, you can visit places like Burj Khalifa and the stunning Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque that are quite vacant as compared to the peak seasons. Adventure enthusiasts can head to Jumeirah Beach and other beaches towards the East Coast for great diving opportunities. The summer season is an excellent time to enjoy festivals like the Dubai Food Festival and Dubai Summer Surprises in Dubai and SummerFest and the Liwa Date Festival in Abu Dhabi.

UAE Tourism Guide Tip: Be sure to keep yourself hydrated.

Autumn

September and October marks the autumn season in the country. It is still hot but the weather starts cooling down. This season is also quite popular among tourists looking for a good deal in accommodations. You can have the benefit of enjoying festivals such as Abu Dhabi Film Festival, the Emirates International Date Palm Festival and the Dubai International Trade Fair.

Winter

UAE Tourism Guide - winters

Winters in UAE is quite pleasant and offers amazing view

The winter season starts in the month of November and extends till March. It is the best time to visit UAE as the weather is cool and pleasant making outdoor activities much more enjoyable. Tourists can make the most of festivals like Qasr al Hons Festival, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Abu Dhabi Triathlon, Dubai Winter Festival and Dubai Shopping Festival. This is also an admirable time to explore the desert safari and enjoy camel rides into the deserts.

UAE Tourism Guide Tip: Since winter is a high tourist season, it is advisable to book your flights and accommodations in advance to avoid last minute hassle.

The country is bustling with life all through the year and promises to offers incredible experiences no matter when you visit it. All you need to do is just start planning your UAE trip!

Interested to explore UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages

 

Travel Documents For UAE

UAE Tourism Guide

UAE brims with spectacular monuments that are treat to the eyes

Travellers require the following documents for their UAE tour:

  • Passport: Passports should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into the UAE.
  • A passport scan: Be sure to scan your passport in JPEG format.
  • UAE visa: Indian nationals can apply online for an iVisa.
  • Return ticket: A confirmed return air ticket is required.
  • Sufficient funds: Sufficient funds to support your stay is necessary.
  • Travel insurance: Travel insurance for a safe travel is essential.

Also Read: Top 3 Dubai Souks You Must Visit

Top 3 Dubai Souks You Can’t Afford To Miss On Your Tour

 

Where To Stay In UAE

Walk around on the sparkly streets under starry skyscrapers in surreal Dubai

Walk around on the sparkly streets under starry skyscrapers in surreal Dubai

Hotels in UAE come in all categories, from incredibly out-and-out luxurious 5 star hotels to budget hotels and cheaper guesthouse and hostel accommodations. The United Arab Emirates is popularly admired for high-end magnificent hotels and resorts offering unparalleled luxury. And if you are looking to experience opulence, Abu Dhabi and Dubai hotels such as Emirates Place and Burj al Arab will spoil you with their extraordinary hospitality and services. Tourists looking for trouble-free access to public transport, shopping centres and malls should consider staying in hotels located in city centre such as Capitol Hotel, Rove City Centre and Pullman Dubai Creek City Centre.

UAE tourism guide

Options are endless, but one thing is for sure that whatever you choose you are bound to have a great time holidaying here!

For all those who want a quiet and relaxed holiday, hotels and resorts located by the sea are the best bets. UAE resorts such as Anantara the Palm Resort (Dubai), Madinat Jumeirah Resort (Dubai), Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel and Villas (Abu Dhabi) and the St Regis Saadiyat Island Resort (Abu Dhabi) are a great combination of luxury and family-friendly. Apart from these there are a number of budget hotels in the United Arab Emirates like Capitol 14 (Dubai), Downtown Hotel (Dubai), Majestic City Retreat Hotel (Dubai), Ramada Abu Dhabi Corniche (Abu Dhabi), Grand Continental Flamingo Hotel (Abu Dhabi) and Oryx Hotel (Abu Dhabi).

Interested to tour UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages

 

Travelling Within UAE

Getting around the United Arab Emirates can be very simple and hassle free. Let’s have a look at all options.

Air

There are regular flights that link Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. In fact, flights can also be chartered as there are small landing fields throughout the country.

Bus

UAE tourism guide - city

UAE is undoubtedly, the modern cultural paradise of the Middle East

There is a large network of buses in UAE. Buses are clean, comfortable, air-conditioned and some of them even have mini bars, televisions and massage chairs. The biggest bus networks are in Dubai and Abu Dhabi with Dubai having 112 routes and Abu Dhabi having 75 routes. Etihad offers an express service between Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Al Ain. There are also several bus companies offering a hop-on, hop-off sightseeing trip around Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

UAE Travel Guide Tip: You can make use of Nol Card, Hafilat Smart Card and Sayer Card to pay for the buses in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah respectively.

Taxi

Taxis are probably one of the best ways of getting around in United Arab Emirates. They are super quick and very convenient. Most taxis have a fare meter and you can hail a taxi in the street, or from taxi stands or simply book one over the phone. The best part of taxi rides in UAE is that they are very economical. Rates obviously depend upon the distance, traffic and time of the day, but usually the fares are quite low as compared to other countries. Booking taxis through phone apps has become very popular. Careem is a regional app for calling a taxi and follows the same procedure as Uber.

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Car

UAE roads are very well maintained and visibly labelled. However, driving can be difficult due to heavy traffic and troublesome parking.  Most international car hire companies like Thrifty, Hertz have offices at airports, hotels and malls. To hire a car you will need your passport, credit card and a valid international driver’s licence.

Metro

UAE tourism guide - metro

UAE is very well connected and offers easy and fast commuting options

Dubai is the boss of UAE when it comes to public transportation.  It is the only city that has a metro and tram network. Metro is undeniably the most economical way to get around Dubai. The metro operates above the ground providing passengers with awesome scenic views. The Dubai metro network has two lines- a red line and a green line. Both the lines jointly service about 50 stations, including the airport. You can pay for your trips with a Nol Card, which is valid on Dubai’s metro and buses. Nol Card is available at all metro stations. The metro usually operates around 5:30 am in the morning and runs until midnight.

Dubai Tram

Dubai Tram has become a huge success. At present, the track is 10.6km long and serves 11 stations with two lines including the Marina Mall, The Beach at JBR and The Walk at JBR. It also connects with the Damac and DMCC metro stations. The tram operates from 6 am to 1 am from Saturday to Thursday and from 9 am to 1 am on Fridays.

UAE Tourism Guide Tip: On Fridays, the metro trains operate at 10 am.

Abras and Ferries

UAE tourism guide

Travellers and tourists can experience a scenic boat ride in UAE

Apart from buses, taxis, cars and trams you can also travel over water using abras and ferries. Water taxis allow tourists to experience a scenic boat ride and is quite a pleasure. The Dubai abras are small motorised traditional wooden water taxis that take you over the Dubai Creek. Abu Dhabi has a ferry service that not only caters to pedestrians but also to cars.

Discover UAE with us!

See UAE Tour Packages

 

Places To Visit In UAE

1. Dubai

Soak in the splendid skyline of Dubai with your significant other by your side!

Soak in the splendid skyline of Dubai

Dubai – its big, its flashy, its ostentatious, it’s a city that has it all! Fundamentally a desert city, Dubai is without a doubt the most famous of the seven emirates that combine together to form the United Arab Emirates. This global city is a hub of extreme modernity, fantastic architecture, utmost luxury, towering skyscrapers, world class white sandy beaches, expensive cars, crazy malls, breathtaking amusement parks and a plethora of tourist attractions. The city is forever bustling with a hotch-potch of cultures from all corners of the world and showcases a multitude of moods with a sandy coast and a shimmering skyline.

The World’s Highest Tennis Court at Burj Al Arab, Dubai

The opulent Burj Khalifa, Dubai Fountain, a captivating water music and light spectacle, top-notch Dubai Mall and Atlantis and The Palm Resort with water and marine animal parks are among the top tourist attractions in Dubai. The city is also renowned for its adventurous stripe with exhilarating activities like Desert Safari, desert camping, climbing and hiking, sky diving, kite surfing and wakeboarding. The city promises to have something for each and everyone which makes it one of the best places to visit in UAE.

2. Abu Dhabi

Enjoy the best of both the worlds at the happening yet cultural Abu Dhabi.

Enjoy the best of both the worlds at the happening yet cultural Abu Dhabi.

Entrancing culture, awe-inspiring luxury, invigorating adventure and the affection of Arabian hospitality awaits you in Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates is a perfect amalgamation of a luxurious metropolis with richness of traditional values combined with modernism. It is the largest of the seven emirates and is known for its modern yet historic architecture. Feel awed by the stunning Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Qasr Al Hons, the oldest stone building, Ferrari World, Marina Mall, Yas Waterworld, affluent restaurants and insanely priced hotels. With so much to see and do Abu Dhabi is certainly a lively capital with a dynamic calendar including vibrant trade fairs, World Cup of Sailing, Grand Prix, international art, music, gourmet and cultural festivals.

3. Sharjah

Sharjah – the smiling emirate!

Sharjah – the smiling emirate!

Unlike its flashy neighbours Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Sharjah is exceptionally subtle and an amazing city to explore the rich culture and traditions of the United Arab Emirates. The city is known for preserving its culture and flaunts its history and heritage through its landscapes, museums and conventional way of living. Sharjah is packed with wonderful museums, beautiful mosques, Souks and several parks. Sharjah Science Museum, Sharjah Heritage Museum, Sharjah Fort, King Faisal Mosque, Al Qasba Park and Arabian Wildlife Centre are the major highlights of the city. Sharjah is also a shopper’s ecstasy and tourists can buy rugs, carpets, furniture, Arabic perfumes, gold, silver and precious stone jewellery. Although it is a dry emirate, which means that you cannot even bring alcohol here, the city brings lots of excitement as there are many interesting shops, restaurants and attractions at almost every corner. Moreover, the friendly and welcoming atmosphere makes it one of the best tourist places in UAE.

Interested to tour UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages

Must Read: Why You Should Visit Dubai’s Tradistional Souks

Dubai’s Traditional Souks – Why You Should Check Them Out!

 

Things To Do In UAE

1. Burj Khalifa

Visit Burj Khalifa, Dubai, which takes sight seeing to new heights all together

Visit Burj Khalifa, Dubai, which takes sight seeing to new heights all together

Burj Khalifa is the world’s tallest building and a wonder in itself. The 360 degree observation deck on the 124th floor gives an awesome panoramic view of Dubai. The tallest freestanding structure in the world, the elevator with the longest travel distance and the highest observation deck in the world make Burj Khalifa one of the best things to do in UAE.

2. Desert Safari

desert safari is certainly one of the finest things to do in Dubai

Desert safari is certainly one of the finest things to do in Dubai

Your trip to UAE is incomplete without experiencing the adventurous desert safari. Have a great time riding through the desert while soaking in the picturesque views and get a chance to enjoy a camel ride, sand boarding, sand skiing, hot air balloon ride and Bedouin style BBQ dinner. Make the most of your time here by indulging in hookah and cultural shows like fire dance and Tanura dance. With an overabundance of attractions, desert safari is certainly one of the finest things to do in Dubai.

3. Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

UAE tourism guide - Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is an incredible beauty to watch

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is an incredible beauty to watch

Located in Abu Dhabi, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is a perfect example of Islamic architecture and incredible beauty. With grand interiors adorned with abundant gold, mosaic tiles and elaborate glass work and its exterior in absolute milky white stone, the mosque truly blends modern and ancient architectural styles.

4. Wild Wadi Water Park

UAE tourism guide - water park

Splish-splash in this thrilling water park

Nestled in Dubai, this famed outdoor water park has 30 fun filled rides with 17 water slides, 3 heated wave pools and two artificial surfing machines. The thrilling rides like Flood River Flyer, Tunnel of Doom, Jebel Lookout, Thunder Rapids and Tantrum Alley surprise kids as well as adults. There are separate changing rooms for men and women with lockers.

5. Ski Dubai

Have you ever thought of skiing in a desert? Well, Ski Dubai is the first indoor ski resort and one of the city’s most popular attractions. Apart from skiing, snowboarding and tobogganing there is a penguin enclosure, movie theatre complex and restaurants.

6. Yas Island

UAE tourism guide - Yas island

Yas Island in Abu Dhabi offers you holiday experiences that are bound to inspire you

Yas Island is a man-made island and definitely one of the best things to do in Abu Dhabi. The island promises to have something for everyone and people of all ages can enjoy here. Relax at the Yas Water Park or take a cruise around the Marina or simply drive a Ferrari on a private test track, you are bound to have a fun time here.

7. Dubai Frame

UAE Guide - Dubai frame

Be mesmerised by this breathtaking Dubai frame

The Dubai Frame is the latest addition to city’s already impressive skyline. Overlooking the entire city, the exceptional architecture of this building allows you to enjoy 360 degrees views of old and new Dubai from a height of 150 m. Connecting the two parallel vertical towers to create a picture frame like structure, the 93 metre long bridge features a 25 sqm glass panel. Stepping onto the pristine glass gives the enlivening feeling of walking out into thin air with the whole world just beneath your feet! Sounds like super fun, isn’t it?

Interested to tour UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages

 

What To Eat In UAE

Dubai souk - Dierra

The spices, herbs and flavours of UAE are MUST buy

The United Arab Emirates is known to be one of the top dining destinations in the world and the food you will find here will be unlike any other food you have ever had. Inspired by Asian and Middle Eastern delicacies, the Emirati cuisine cooks up an assortment of several hearty dishes.

  • Start your UAE journey by tasting Shawarma or grilled meat wrapped in Arabic chapatti along with pickles, fries, garlic sauce and tomatoes.
  • Harees is one of the most popular Emirati dish and a Ramadan favourite. Meat and wheat are cooked together along with a pinch of salt, cinnamon and pepper in boiling water for hours until it looks like porridge.
  • Tabbouleh is a great dish for vegetarians. It is a salad like dish made with lots of fresh bulgur, parsley, mint, tomatoes and onions.
Shawarma

Gorge on delectable Shawarmas, they are simply amazing!

  • Thareed is a popular soupy stew with succulent meat and slow roasted vegetables like potatoes, tomatoes and pumpkin. Rigag or the Emirati flat bread is generally placed at the bottom of the dish and the stew is layered on top of it.
  • Other celebrated delicacies include Khuzi, Machboos, Falafel, Esh Asarya, Stuffed Camel, Ghuzi, Hummus, Dates, Warak Enab, Luqaimat and Balaleet.
  • Apart from these there are several Indian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Thai, Italian, Russian, American and European restaurants.

UAE is a food lover’s paradise and no matter where you go you will always get very good food.

Interested to explore UAE?

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Nightlife In UAE

UAE nightlife

Whether you want to dance, drink or party, UAE has it all

The United Arab Emirates has a huge range of bars and nightclubs which gives the right kind of atmosphere to have a safe and a wild experience. With extremely talented DJs, gorgeous crowds and thumping music, the party scene here starts from Thursday, since in the Gulf region Friday and Saturday are considered as weekend. Due to strict alcohol laws, most venues are located in hotels and resorts.

  • Nightclubs in Dubai that promise an unforgettable night are White Dubai, Cieque Le Soir, Cavalli Club, Armani/Prive and Billionaire Mansion.
  • Happening nightclubs in Abu Dhabi are Mad, Yas Island, Blue Marlin Ibiza, Empire Yas Bar, The Exchange Night Club Le Meridian, Hysteria Abu Dhabi and Sax Lounge and Club Le Royal Meridian.

Boat parties, beach parties, live music, DJ nights or simply rocking nights, UAE spoils with choices when it comes to thrilling nightlife. So, when in UAE, it is definitely the time to disco!

Also Read: Discover Dubai, Beyond The Burj Khalifa

Discover Dubai, Beyond The Burj Khalifa

 

Communications And Connectivity In UAE

UAE guide

With its full-throttle development and existing charm, the United Arab Emirates has become a favorite for many globe trotters

In case you are planning to get your own mobile phone, the best way is to set your phone with a basic international calling data plan and modify it according to your needs. Alternatively, getting a prepaid local SIM card is also a good option. SIM cards are widely available; you just need to make sure that your mobile phone is unlocked. Du and Etisalat are the two most well known telecom service providers in UAE.

Interested to tour UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages

 

Money In UAE

The Gold Souk; probably the best place on earth for gold enthusiasts

The Gold Souk; probably the best place on earth for gold enthusiasts

The official currency of United Arab Emirates is UAE Dirham (AED). Notes come in the denominations of 1000, 500, 200, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. All major credit cards and debit cards such as American Express, Visa, Diners Club and MasterCard are widely accepted. ATMs are widespread and are found all across the UAE. Currencies can be easily exchanged at hotels, banks, shopping malls and at bureaux de change.

 

Tips For Your UAE Tour

At this fest, all that glitters will be gold; tourmet.com

At UAE vibrant bazaars and fest, all that glitters will be gold; tourmet.com

  • Although Arab is the official language, but English is widely spoken.
  • It is illegal to smoke, drink or eat in public during daylight hours of the holy month of Ramadan.
  • Travellers can carry a maximum of AED100,000 or the equivalent amount in foreign currency. Anything over this amount must be declared at the customs.
  • Dress modestly to stay away from unnecessary attention.
  • Refrain from kissing or hugging in public.
  • Drinking and driving is a punishable offence.
  • Tourists are not allowed to photograph local people without their permission.
  • Certain chemicals and drugs are banned in UAE. In case you are carrying medicines it is best to check and ensure that the medicines do not contain the banned substance and always carry the doctor’s prescription.
  • In UAE, you must drive on the right side of the road.
  • UAE uses electricity at 220-240 Volts and 50 Hertz.
  • In case of an emergency, dial 999.

Already started dreaming? Wake up! UAE, your dream holiday destination is still waiting for you. Hurry! Start planning your dream holiday and do keep our UAE tourism guide handy.

Want to tour UAE?

See UAE Tour Packages
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Cox & Kings

Cox & Kings is the longest established tours and travels company in the world. Established in 1758, we are headquartered in Mumbai with a presence in over 13 countries worldwide. Our services include destination management, domestic and international holiday packages, luxury travel, business and MICE, NRI and foreign exchange solutions, as well as insurance.

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1 Comment

  1. Arpit Rathi
    January 13, 17:04 Arpit Rathi

    Hi ,
    Great Info , Very thankful to coxandkings . keep it up .

    reply Reply this comment

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