United Arab Emirates…

We said, let’s draw a route, let’s live the heat and sun to the full during the cold semester days, lets warm up, let’s shop and not go too far away, Let it be not too difficult to get a visa, also let it be a place different from the places we have seen before.

When we put all these pieces together, let’s see what they say; Answer: Dubai !

OK! we solved the hardest part. After this just a little research on the internet. As soon as I looked at the map, I realized that Dubai was on a beautiful travel route. On the way to Maldives! Dubai would be a good reason for the Maldives, one of Özlem’s biggest dreams.

If you are planning to go to the Maldives one day, Dubai is a great place for you. There is both a new and unusual stop on your way, as well as numerous and reasonable flight alternatives from Dubai to the Maldives. Thanks to this good information, we loved Dubai before we even visit it.

Immediately, we rolled up our sleeves and the preparations began.

The First issue is visa.  Is it required or not?  A visa is required to enter the United Arab Emirates, but the good thing is that you can get a visa online without going through a laborious process.

Many airlines and tourism companies fly from our country to the United Arab Emirates and can also help you with your visa.  Your visa comes to your e-mail address shortly after you pay the money and scan and send your passport and photo.  All you need to do is print your visa in colors and present it at the time of entry.  We sent our visa documents and after a short time it was approved and sent to my mail.

Next up is the plane ticket.  The journey takes about 4 and half hours.  Flights are usually direct, non-stop.  There is quite a company alternative from our country that flies to Emirates.

Even that we are going at the end of January, we are still enjoying it.  Of course, there are some questions that come to mind when preparing our bags.  I wonder if we will be able to wear such comfortable dresses, shorts, low-cut shirts and bikinis.  We are relieving ourselves by consulting Sabri, who lives in the live scene. We learn that there are some necessities for local people but it’s not a problem for foreigners so we continue to prepare our bags from where we left off.

It’s time to go, we’re getting on the plane in the evening, 4 and half hours, and since they are 2 hours ahead of us due to the difference in the time, we arrive at the first lights and coolness of the morning.  It is 18 degrees.  Who said Dubai was hot! But that’s normal as its desert climate; there is a lot of difference between day and night degrees.  It’s extremely hot during the day and cool at night.  No problem, after all, we are in a warmer place than Ankara.

This time we were very lucky to be able to use the friend option for accommodation. However, I searched for accommodation alternatives just in case. Dubai, whose main income is tourism, has options for everyone and every budget. In addition to hotels, home options are also quite successful. It is possible to find places that are not similar to any of the houses you have stayed in before.

For example, if we didn’t stay with our friend, we would already have rented a house on the 77th floor where we would stay above the clouds, but it’s the love of friends. We go home and immediately start our excursions by having a delicious breakfast prepared for us. Our first plan is to get a nice camera. We put getting it from Dubai in the first priority, as it is a tax-free paradise for electronics and start taking shots as soon as possible.

We jump in a taxi to the Emirates Mall, which is close to where we were staying. Taxis are naturally cheaper in the United Arab Emirates, where oil is cheaper than water. As we were always used to pay a fortune for taxis and finding cheap taxis was are a source of happiness for us, and instead of using public transport, we always used taxis. How comfortable is taxi life!

There is Dubai shopping festival which that makes Dubai a shopping paradise, with lots of discounts, campaigns and sweepstakes. This festival is held during the 1-month period, from December to the end of January.

With the excitement of catching up with the last two days of the festival, we enter the shopping center immediately, but we were bit late as many products were sold-out. As we learned later, this festival is being followed from all over the world and people are flocking here just for this. In the early days, when there is so much demand, the products already run out.

Nevertheless, I found the machine i liked and bought it with my credit card. Credit card usage is quite common. If you’re a cash-spender, it’s a good idea to have dirhams, which is the local currency, or dollars which you can use anywhere. It will be much easier to exchange dollars instead of Turkish Lira to get dirhams.

After a while, we realize that we have bought quite a lot from the weight of our bags. Another mall to visit is Dubai Mall, but we decide to leave what we bought in the house before heading there.

Just as we were leaving, our eye hits an interesting place. Those guys has built a the ski slope in the mall and the folks are skiing with pleasure! And we began to realise what was the answers to the question of how they were able to earn this much from tourism, i wonder what else are we gonna see?

Dubai Mall is the largest shopping center in the world. Therefore you will be given a map when you enter. The inside is really big and crowded. Inside, it is home to the world’s largest, one-piece glass aquarium. Very nice place for kids. I think if Mete were with us during these periods, we wouldn’t be able to leave for a long time.

Dubai Mall is so big that we are getting tired. For now, we’ll take a break from our shopping trip and head to the fountain right in front of it to watch the Dubai Fountain Show, which starts at 18 o clock. We head up to the balcony of the one bookstore upstairs where you can enjoy watching from a high level and get away from the crowd. Thanks to Sabri and Nilay, they who discovered this place. The scene is really great! by watching the dances of the waters sprinkles from the fountains accompanied by music We forget all our tiredness and keep watching.

Tourism in Dubai is so professional that almost everything to please tourists is thought about. One of them is a system that has both a mobile application and a booklet.

Yes, this system deos not only exist in Dubai, but is very good in terms of the content richness compared to many other places. The operation of the system is as follows; You purchase this app or booklet with money. Then you start visiting Dubai.

If you bought this application or booklet you can get discounts and benefit from the coupons that you tear from it. It could be used in activites, cafes, museums, tours, etc. And every other thing that comes to your mind. Discounts are actually useful, when you enter almost 3-4 restaurants, 1-2 cafes you already save as much as you payed for the booklit. After that you start earning.

But the coupons are not unlimited, for example in x restaurant there are 3 coupons, it means that you can use coupons at that restaurant up to 3 times. We used the booklet and we actually did get profit from it. I would recommend using it for people who are going to stay at least 4-5 days or more. (You can find it here www.theentertainerme.com)

Saying come on, lets enjoy the warm air and go out for a swim in the sea, we head out. On recommendation we go to JBR beach. In January, the water is a bit chilly but we say whatever and jump in. During the year there are 8 months that you cannot enter the sea from the excessive heat. We wont complain that we did not enter the Persian Gulf anymore. The sand is beautiful golden yellow and, and the sea is also quite clean.

After our activity at the beach, we head to Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, which I had already booked a reservation for online. This building is so high (829 meters) that it can easily be seen from all over the city. It is important to book in advance. Because of extreme demand, you have to stick to the limited capacity. Especially the sunset hours are getting a lot of attention and if you have a plan of exiting at this time, I say don’t waste time.

Looking from the 124’th floor, the city is under your feet. This floor is prepared specially for viewing and is very crowded. Instead, you can head to the a one floor down this one which is the 123’th floor. Which is logically better as it contains a restorant where you can have food and enjoy the view at the same time. I suggest you to go there. You can get the details here http://www.atmosphereburjkhalifa.com/ .  Please do not ignore the details especially the part related to  the children’s guest, as there is a minimum age of 10 for the lounge area from 12pm to 17 hours and a 21 age limit for between 17 and 02am. In the restaurant section, there is no age limit for breakfast but there is a minimum age limit of 10 for lunch and dinner.

Is it even an option that we don’t take a sighting photo of Burj Al Arab hotel, one of Dubai’s most known landmarks? Again based on recommendation we go to the Jumeirah Al Qasr hotel, as the it is one of the best places to see Burj Al Arab in the background and is one of the most beautiful and best place to take a break. There are so many luxury cars at the door, it’s like we’re at a Ferrari or Lamborghini factory visit. We eat,drink and take a lot of pictures here. Remember, in Dubai you can only drink alcohol in hotels and some restaurants, and this is where they are only sold.

The Palm Island, which I admire very much that I watched it’s documentary, is our plan today. We reach the island by car, which seems to be a small place on the map, but is a very large place when seen by the eye.

The mansions and luxurious hotels, each of which is a monument of wealth, are astonishing us. Really amazing! While heading to Atlantis hotel at the very end of the island we take plenty of photos and go around before we leave.

We go home and wait for the vehicle of the desert safari tour company that will come to pick us up at 15.30. A huge Landcruiser jeep arrives at the right time and we set off with 3 more people from the neighborhood.

For example, we used buy 1 get 1 free voucher for this tour, which was almost the reason to pay off on its own. After a 1-hour trip, we reached the desert. It was the first time we’d seen the desert and we got shoked.

With the arrival of other vehicles, they started to drive the big vehicles doing maneuvers that I still do not understand how it was happening on the sands. We couldn’t understand whether the skill was in the car or the driver, but we had so much fun. An extraordinary experience!

If you have discomfort such as Motion sickness and panic attacks, or if you have young children, I recommend you to stay away from this tour. By setting the sun in the desert, we all go together for the marquee where we’ll have our evening meal. Here, as well as buffet dinner, we get to watch belly dancers and fire shows. Afterwards, they take us back to the places they took us from during the day with the same vehicles.

We’ve come all this way, so can we go without seeing Abu Dhabi? We’re jumping to the car Sabri gave us. We have an hour’s distance. The roads are 6 lanes and almost large enough to land a plane.

After a pleasant journey we reach the Ferrari World theme park. We also come in with our coupon from the booklet. This is a great entertainment center for all ages. We came here especially to see Ferrari closely and get on the fastest roller coster in the world.

We’re moving forward to the roller coster line. When our turn, the adrenaline rush starts! It needed a crazy courage from us to sit in the front seat as Özlem has motion sickness even when I go a little fast on turns with my car. Here I recommend you to watch videos on the internet as I can not find the words to describe it! There is no such thing it isn’t even real! We spend the rest of the time enjoying other activities in the park.

We happily leave on time and and take the road to Sheikh Zayed Mosque. We enter into a mosque wondering how different could it be. But when we go in, we can see the different architecture and the beauty of the décor which will make you fascinate with it. After the mosque, we go to the marina in Abu Dhabi one of the symbols of wealth, and walk in the view of the yachts, then we have some food.

After all, this place is dominated by desert and  has desert climate. We ask each other in this heat, whether we see a mirage in the middle of the desert. It is a magical garden like its name where the flowers are grown carefully and presented in different molds. A little distance from Dubai center, but no problem, taxis are at your demand.

Getting enough of flowers, we reach the place where there are many beautiful cafes and restaurants where you can take pleasant walks called Dubai Marina. It is really enjoyable to walk in this beautiful place which is located just under the skyscrapers reaching  the clouds. When the sun goes down, we jump on a boat tour in the marina to see the city which gets a different atmosphere at that time.

If you are interested in gold, textiles, spices, authentic and local products, I suggest you go to Deria, the oldest settlement in Dubai, where we can’t go because of our limited time. This place is much more affordable than other places in terms of price, and there are many products that are unique that  you can only find here.

We love the United Arab of Emirates. We were wrong to think that it wasn’t a place where that we’ll make us  feel much excitement before, because it was overshadowed by the Maldives. We have seen that the “most in of everything’’ is here and what can money do. When we left here, we understood that the concept of “luxury’’  we both knew was not luxurious enough.

Come on passengers to Maldives! Goodbye Dubai, goodbye United Arab Emirates…

Goodbye Sabri and Nilay

Short short;

1.

  1. Places that we did not visit but I recommend you to ;

Dubai Atlantis Aquaventure Waterpark https://www.visitdubai.com/en/pois/aquaventure

Dolphinarium Dubai (The entertainer valids) https://www.dubaidolphinarium.ae

Butterfly Garden http://www.dubaibutterflygarden.com/

Global Village  http://www.globalvillage.ae/en/

The Green Planet Dubai http://www.thegreenplanetdubai.com/en

Souk Madinat Jumeirah https://www.jumeirah.com/en/hotels-resorts/dubai/madinat-jumeirah/facilities/souk-madinat-jumeirah/

Meraas http://www.meraas.com/

Al seef http://www.alseef.ae/

2. Places you can swim in the sea and enjoy the beach

JBR Beach, Kite Beach (kids friendly), Black Palace Beach El Mamzar Beach Park, Hidden Beach ve Umm Sqeim Beach

3. Alternative shopping places where you can shop to the max ;

The Emirates Mall, Marina Mall, Dubai Outlet Mall, Gold Souk, Ibn Battuta Mall, Spice Souk, Boulevard Dubai

4. Art Galleries:

Alserkal Art District, Al Quoz Hotspots

5. Places that are child friendly where you can spend time with your children;

IMG Worlds of Adventures, City Walk, Hub Zero, The Green Planet, Bounce Dubai

6. Theme Parks

Motiongate Dubai, Legoland Dubai, Bollywood Parks, Riverland

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