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Affordable Dubai - Dubai in five days

Affordable Dubai

Day 1

Take the day to explore around Dubai. A day pass valid for unlimited rides on the metro and buses costs less than US$4. On option is to choose one of the most valuable routes for visitors is Line 8 (bus), which begins at the Gold Souk, takes the tunnel under Dubai Creek to Heritage Village, and then sets off down Jumeirah Rd (parallel to the beach) and all its hotels and malls, up to Burj al-Arab and Wild Wadi. Line 8 ends near the Internet City and Mall of the Emirates. This local bus ride costing less than US$2 will help you take in the iconic buildings and attractions of cosmopolitan city of Dubai.

Head to the Dubai Museum (located in Al Fahidi Fort, Dubai), the oldest existing building in Dubai. The museum presents the traditional way of life in the Emirate of Dubai and showcases local antiquities and artefacts. The cost is less than US$1.

In the evening, drop into Al-Mallah restaurant in Satwa for some shawarma, a local’s favourite for cheap and authentic Arabic food. After dinner, you may wish to experience the sheesha pipe like an Arabic local.


Day 2

Spend the day immersing yourself into Arabic culture and history. Visit the Jumeirah Mosque, a monument that pays homage to the sacred, religious customs of Islam and fascinating history of Dubai that is located on Al Jumeirah Road. The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding hosts visits of the Grand Jumeirah Mosque every Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at 10am. No booking is required, but you must arrive at the main entrance to the Jumeirah Mosque by approximately 9.45am. Modest dress is preferred; however traditional attire can be borrowed from the Mosque. Approx cost is US$2.5.

Look out for air conditioned shelters and take a local bus to Madinat Jumeirah Souk. Enjoy lunch overlooking the mythical Arabian architecture, Venetian-style canals, and Burj Al Arab followed by an afternoon of window-shopping if you can resist the urge to splurge! Or head to the Dubai Outlet Mall to take advantage of the discount on premium fashion brands. Relax on the Umm Suqeim beach for the rest of the day while overlooking Burj Al Arab and rest your tired feet from all that walking!


Day 3

Start the day by exploring the contemporary art at Dubai's galleries. Beautiful examples of modern Arabian and traditional Islamic arts can be seen at art galleries in Bastakiya. Visit the Basta Café, XVA Gallery and the Majlis Gallery in the Bastakiya neighbourhood. Explore the atmosphere of Bastakiya, one of the oldest traditional Emirati neighbourhoods in Bur Dubai. The old Bastakiya district is a bustling market and cultural area, with narrow lanes and tall wind-towers; experience the "Old Dubai". The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding offers experienced guides to explore the area (prices from US$15 per person).

In the evening, head to the Dubai Mall to watch the free fountain and light show. The awe-inspiring Dubai fountain in the huge, 30-acre Burj Khalifa Lake stands in the shadows of the world’s tallest building and shoots water jets as high as 150 metres. Accompanied by music, the marvellous water and light show can be seen from more than 30 kilometres away. The first show starts at 6pm and last show is 11 pm, the show is repeated every 30 mins. Try one of the many café’s surrounding the fountains or alternatively dine at affordable Arabic eateries such as the Conservatory and enjoy Arabic delicacies in a quaint courtyard in the heart of Downtown Dubai at Al Manzil Hotel Downtown Dubai. Or try authentic Pakistani cuisine at Ravi Restaurant in Satwa.


Day 4

A visit to the Dubai Mall is a must to have a close-encounter with exotic marine life. The Dubai Mall Aquarium allows you to get up close and personal with more than 33,000 aquatic creatures, bringing you face-to face with enormous tiger sharks, stingrays and schools of fish. Entry into the Aquarium is at a low cost (Tickets start from US$15 for different combo packages) and is free to view the aquarium from outside with daily feeding times.

There are several parks in Dubai with free entry. Mushrif Park offers many activities such as swimming pools, horse riding and camel rides. Experience the beachside adventures Dubai has to offer. Jumeirah Public Beach offers free access and boasts clean, white sand and crystal seawater. The adjacent Jumeirah Beach Park is also a perfect place to have a picnic.


Day 5

Travel across Dubai Creek in an abra (a traditional wooden water taxi) for one dirham (US25c) and take in the scenes of Dubai’s coastal landscape. Spend the rest of your last day shopping and bargaining for souvenirs and memories of Dubai to take home with you. Head to the Gold, Textile and Spice Souks and browse the displays of gold jewellery, lush silks and fabric and sweet aromas of traditional spices.


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  • City and shopping breaks
  • After Dark
  • Dubai, Beaches and Beyond
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13 Jun 2016 | Virgin Holidays