A Tour of Dubai
Dubai Travel Blog› entry 13 of 41 › view all entries
Monday was a fantastic day in Dubai. It was just fabulous. I saw and learned a lot about Dubai. Dubai was discovered in the 1800s as a fishing and pearling village. The waterways that surround Dubai, and Dubai’s location has made it such a critical gateway to other Arabian lands.
First of all, on Sunday night Josy called me at about midnight and she couldn’t sleep. So she came over and we talked for a while. I don’t get to see her often at all, so it was good to catch up with her. We had girl talk till about 2 am. She left and we agreed we’d meet up around 8 or 9 am to see the sights in Dubai together with Pascal via the Hop-on, Hop-off Bus.
Monday morning, Josy called me at about 7 am, and mentioned she had trouble sleeping and was just getting to bed. We then decided we would meet at lunchtime. I got up and got ready and decided to tour the city via the Big Bus tour on my own. It was good to just get out and see the sights on my own. I like traveling by myself sometimes (though it gets lonely) cause I can go at my own pace. So I did just that. I stopped at the Dubai Museum, took lots of pictures. I toured all around “Old” or historical Dubai. It really did look “old”. I saw merchants by the Dubai creek, selling fish, gold, and spice. The boats looked ancient. I’m not sure I’d feel comfortable going out to sea in one of those. Then I got to see Jumerai Beach, and other neat spots.
At lunchtime, I met Pascal and Josy at the Burj Al Arab for lunch. The outside of the building itself is stunning. It’s just beautiful. The guards at the gate were strict and would not let us in without a reservation number from the restaurant. Pascal, luckily called the restaurant on the spot and made reservations. We were able to obtaina reservation number.
We took tons of pictures from the restaurant. Josy and I even went into the bathroom and took pictures in there. We behaved completely like tourists.
After lunch at the Burj Al Arab, we caught a cab to the Palm Islands and visited the Atlantis. It was huge! We went inside and took pictures by the aquarium. We walked around there a bit, then caught another cab to the tallest building in the world, whose name evades me right now.
Josy and Pascal crack me up. I find so many things amusing! But I guess that’s not so bad. When we were at the tallest building, I took pictures of Josy and Pascal with the building in the background. Then Pascal took the camera to take pictures of Josy and me and he was all bent up. He was like a contortionist trying to find the right angle. At one point he was even practically laying on the ground.
Speaking of tourists…. I don’t think I met one local while there. All our cab drivers were from Pakistan. Seriously! I’m not kidding. It must be the Pakistani thing to do. No… but seriously. We asked all the cab drivers questions to try to learn about the local culture here, and we learned that all the locals live outside Dubai. Dubai has become tourist central. Everyone in Dubai arrived seeking economic opportunity. Either that or they were tourists.
After the trip to the tallest building, Josy, Pascal and I went to have some coffee. We relaxed a bit before I headed to the airport to catch my flight to India.
I will miss them, and I wish we lived closer. We always have such a good time together when we see each other. Josy and Pascal are friends of mine from when I studied in Paris. The three of us livedi n the same building in Paris in 1999. Josy and Pascal hit it off and got married years later. So we’ve stayed in touch and I am so glad they were so willing to visit Dubai while I was here. It was such a delight to see them and catch up with them.
Overall, my experience in Dubai was good. I enjoyed the company. I don't know that I would return to Dubai. I know for sure I would return to South Africa, but Dubai was one of those places that if I had to come back, I'd come back but otherwise, I wouldn't return. At least I saw it, visited, learned about it and so now…
Onward to India!