Dubai Travel Guide for First-Time Travellers

This Dubai travel guide will give you important tips on the best time to visit, places to see, things to do, how to travel, and what to wear. Check out this guide to make your Dubai holiday stress-free.

Disclaimer: This post is a collaboration

The prospect of visiting Dubai for the first time is indeed exciting. The development of Dubai is astonishing. From a simple fishing village, it has grown into a stunning metropolis with the greatest number of world records under its belt. But still, visiting a new city can be nerve-racking as well. There are innumerable things to see and do in Dubai. Moreover, the rules of the city are different from your own. To make your Dubai holiday stress-free, you must know everything about the city. Here is a comprehensive Dubai travel guide that will aid first-time visitors.

Best Time to Visit Dubai

November to March are the best months if you consider the weather of the city. These months mark winter season in Dubai. Although the days are warm, you can still explore the outdoor locations. Moreover, the evenings are cooler. Also, all the seasonal attractions open during this time. You can also be a part of the Dubai Shopping Festival during this time of the year(December-January). The downside of visiting during this time is the crowd. Also, as it is peak season, a holiday in Dubai will be very expensive. If budget is a concern, shoulder seasons like (September-October and March-April) are good times to visit Dubai.

Best Places to Stay in Dubai

Dubai is home to some of the most luxurious resorts and hotels. In fact, it is said to be the only city that has a seven-star hotel (Burj Al Arab). That said, you will find plenty of mid-range and budget-friendly hotels here. The place you choose would depend on your budget and the area you want to explore. As a tourist, it would be best to choose a hotel in Downtown Dubai because the most popular attractions are in this location. Dubai Marina, Palm Jumeirah, Jumeirah Beach area, etc., are a few other places that will give you a glimpse of the luxurious lifestyle of Dubai. For budget-friendly hotels, Deira and Bur Dubai are your best bets.

Best Places to See in Dubai

Here are some of the must-visit places in Dubai for a first-time visitor.

Burj KhalifaGetting on the top-most observation deck of the Burj Khalifa on the 148th floor is a must for first time visitors. From the top of the tallest building in the world, you will get a 360-degree view of the whole city, including its tall skyscrapers, the vast desert, and the Persian Gulf.

IMG Worlds of Adventure: Your visit need not be only about sightseeing. Get tickets to the largest indoor theme park in the world for a day of thrilling rides and amazing fun. The IMG Worlds of Adventure is divided into different zones that will take you back to your childhood.

Museum of the Future: Museum of the Future is a one-of-kind museum, as it does not take you to the past but rather to the future. Shaped like an eye, Museum of the Future will take you on the journey into the future and the limitless possibilities achieved through science and technology. Book your Museum of the Future tickets online to gain quick entry.

The View at the Palm: It is the only observation deck in Dubai that will give you an aerial view of the iconic Palm Jumeirah. If you want to see the manmade island in all its glory, the View at the Palm on the 52nd floor (240 meters above ground) of the Nakheel Mall is a place you must visit.

Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo: This aquarium and underwater zoo is inside the Dubai Mall. Comprising the largest acrylic aquarium tank in the world, it houses more than 33,000 marine animals. The underwater zoo is filled with some interesting species like King Croc, penguins, otters, etc.

Things to do in Dubai

These are some of the amazing things you can do in Dubai.

Try Extreme Adventures: Adventure lovers will have the time of their lives here, as Dubai offers some of the most amazing extreme adventures. Some of these include skydiving, bungee jumping, hot air balloon riding, skiing (indoor adventure), helicopter riding, etc.

Go on a Desert Safari: Dubai is associated with desert safaritour. The experience includes adventures in the form of dune bashing, camel riding, etc. There are also entertainment programs, gorgeous desert sunset view, and a delicious BBQ dinner at the Dubai desert safari.

Indulge in Water SportsDubai, being a coastal city, has numerous beaches, where you can try some water sports. Jet skiing, paddleboarding, kite surfing, kayaking, etc., are some of the water sports to try. You can also try scuba diving, snorkeling, and deep-sea fishing here.

Dine on the Dhow Cruise: Dhow cruise Dubai sails on both Dubai Creek and Dubai Marina. These traditional boats turned into restaurants serve delicious food along with entertaining programs and some great views of the city.

Important Tips for First Time Dubai Visitors

• Check if you need a visa or if you are eligible for a visa on arrival. If you fall in the former category, apply for a Dubai visa at least 2-3 weeks before your holiday.

• Book your hotel reservation months before your Dubai holiday, especially if you are visiting during the peak season.

• Book tickets to the attractions you want to see online, in advance. Most attractions are so popular that they get booked quickly. Moreover, you will get some cool discounts and deals on tickets online.

• Pack lightweight, cotton clothes even if you are visiting Dubai during winter season. Carry a jacket for the evenings and if you are spending time indoors, as almost all indoor attractions are fully air-conditioned.

• Dubai has reliable public transportation. The city is well-connected by buses and metros. You can also use taxis to travel around the city. Private cabs are also available.

• If you plan to shop, Dubai has the most enormous shopping malls like Dubai Mall, Mall of the Emirates, Dubai Marina Mall, etc., which are home to some of the popular international and local brands. If you want to shop for souvenirs, spices, local products, and precious jewelry, you can visit the souks.

• Refrain from public display of affection, as it is not only frowned upon by the locals but is also illegal.

• Drinking in public is also illegal in Dubai. You can drink in licensed restaurants, bars, and lounges and in the privacy of your room.

As tourism brings major economy to Dubai, the city is built to make the life of tourists better. Still, knowing some basic things like the rules of the city, the best places to visit, how to navigate, etc., will make your trip to Dubai easy and hassle-free.