Sleek and Spectacular Dubai
From spectacular skylines, sleek architecture, amazing beaches and stellar shopping malls, Dubai dazzles and impresses visitors. Situated along the beautiful southern coast of the Persian Gulf, Dubai epitomises the ultimate global destination with a list of must-see superlatives.
Dubai climate, holidays and festivals
Despite its subtropical weather, Dubai is a year-round tourist destination. The pleasant and cooler months from October to April are the best time to visit. During this period, the temperatures range from 25°C-35°C. In the sweltering summer months, the temperatures can increase to 45°C.
The National Day Festival occurs on 2nd of December. Dates for Islamic holidays vary. Eid represents the most important Islamic festival and marks the end of Ramadan (the ninth month of the Islamic calendar).
Basic facts to know on arrival: local tips, cost of living and time zone
During the holy Ramadan month, eating, drinking and smoking are not permitted in public during the day. The UAE has very strict regulations on drinking alcohol. The cost of living in Dubai is generally cheaper than London's. Dubai restaurant prices are approximately 45% cheaper, and electronics are also less expensive. Purchasing European imported goods is more expensive in Dubai than it would be in the UK. Haggling in the iconic souks is a must-do experience. Dubai is three hours ahead of London time and is on GST (Gulf Standard Time), which is UTC/GMT +4.
Getting around: transport to centre, accommodation and public transport vs. taxi
For Dubai International Airport's Terminals 1 & 3, the Red Line metro stops here every 10 minutes. The Green Line stops at the Airport Free Zone, located near Terminal 2. Both the Red and Green Metros run Saturday-Thursday from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. The Friday schedule is from 1 p.m. until midnight. Approximate prices for the different metro zones are as follows: 1 zone = 4 AED, 2 zones = 6 AED, 3 zones = 8.50 AED.
The Red rechargeable tickets are both convenient and cheap for tourists, usable for a maximum of 10 journeys with a 90 day validity. Local buses (bus numbers 4,11,15,33 and 44) make regular stops at all terminals from 6 a.m. until 10 p.m.
For affordable stays, budget accommodation in hostels start at around 100 AED. Single hotel room rates begin at around 800 AED. It is best to book early as the peak tourist season from September to May can be very busy.
Public transport in Dubai is inexpensive, starting around 4 AED for a single ticket on the metro or bus. The fare is half price with the red ticket. Taxi prices are higher than public transport but less expensive than in the UK as petrol is cheap.