5 Interesting Facts about Dubai
Home to some of the world’s tallest buildings, an abundance of luxury cars, and gold galore, Dubai literally has it all. It’s a place that lures both business travelers and tourists, having become home to a substantial expat population and melting pot of over 200 different nationalities.
Dubai has gone from a simple fishing village to one of the world’s finest travel destinations. This true oasis in the desert offers up endless five-star hotels, fine restaurants, manmade islands, vibrant gardens, impressive fountains, water sports, skydiving, nightlife, and endless shopping for whatever your heart may desire
It’s no secret that Dubai embraces opulence, but at the same time cherishes and promotes its cultural heritage. A city that is one of the most progressive in the Middle East and one where the sun shines most days, there are endless reasons to plan a visit. Here are just a few of the more interesting reasons to visit Dubai.
For centuries, gold has been valuable due mainly to the fact it’s a limited resource and it has been used as currency as early as 550 BC. While we may no longer be carrying around gold coins in our pockets, gold is still used regularly around the world for making jewelry, computer chips, dentistry, bullion, and more.
Dubai has a special relationship with gold and it’s as plentiful here as there are bricks in any major European city. Gold seems to cover Dubai and flow in its waters. The residents of Dubai definitely are not shy to flaunt their status and gold is one way to do it. Gold is used here to flaunt wealth, given as gifts whether of a business or personal nature, in religious ceremonies, and more.
Gold has become Dubai’s second most exported item after oil, with the city’s gold trade raking in more than $40 billion dollars annually. That equates to roughly 30-40% of the world’s gold stocks that are traded worldwide each year.
Many tourists and business travelers make a point to pick up something gold during their visit to Dubai, a great deal choosing to visit the famous Dubai Gold Souk in the CBD. Not only can you visit nearly 400 different gold dealers, gold is tax-free for tourists visiting Dubai.
If you decide to join the countless others who pick up something gold to remember your trip by, just remember to research how much gold a tourist can take from Dubai to the USA or wherever country you’re from. There may be restrictions on taking gold from Dubai to your home country, so be sure to check any customs regulations.
In Dubai the dress codes are about respect. This is where most people may get the wrong idea about this city. Because the city is rather progressive and is aware of tourists and the traditional clothes they wear, Dubai is actually a very open country in regards to clothing.
That being said, you should always respect the local culture when visiting any destination. When visiting Dubai, you are expected to dress modestly while in public places whether it be shopping, eating at a restaurant, and especially visiting mosques.
According to Travel Mocha, the Burj AL Arab has a dress code that can be followed by most places you go to.
“smart casual” dress code for common areas, and a “dressy casual” dress code for many of their restaurants.’
– Travel Mocha
As we have said, Dubai is made up of literally hundreds of nationalities, which means you will notice a great variety in the way people dress here. What you will notice most have in common is that they respect local culture by covering their shoulders, knees, and often entire arms and legs while in public.
You can wear what you please while in the comfort of your hotel room and definitely slip into some bathers while swimming. You may wish to stick to lightweight, loose-fitting clothes in order to deal with the heat but it isn’t expected that tourists dress in traditional Emirati clothing.
You may of course notice many locals who do wear native dress. For men, that entails wearing a white kandora or dishdasha that reaches down to the ankles. This is accompanied by a head covering called a ghutrah wrapped with a black agal cord.
Traditional dress for women involves wearing a long robe-like dress called an abaya. They also drape a shayla over their head. Underneath their abaya, they may wear more westernized clothing or a local full-length dress known as a jalabeya.
You may be asked to dress more strictly in locally appropriate clothing when visiting places of worship, but such required clothing is often provided for those coming without. And remember that shoes are typically left outside.
Aquarium & Underwater Zoo
Dubai offers the chance to witness the largest suspended aquarium on the planet. Found in the Dubai Mall which just so happens to be the world’s second largest, the aquarium holds an impressive 10 million liters of water.
This is an amazing exhibition filled with thousands of creatures covering over 140 species of marine wildlife that includes the world’s largest collection of sand tiger sharks. Most visitors gaze at the species from the nearly 50-meter-long tunnel, while others enjoy glass-bottom boat rides or a bit of cage snorkeling and diving.
The zoo located above the aquarium offers up even more animals including Australian saltwater crocodiles and Amazonian piranhas. You can also book animal encounter experiences that allow you to get up close and personal with penguins, otters, rays, and others.
A World-Record Pool
One of Dubai’s newest attractions, Deep Dive Dubai allows you to dive into the depths of the world’s deepest swimming pool. Not only is the pool an incredibly fun attraction, it also embraces the local culture in that it is shaped like an oyster which is symbolic of the local pearl diving.
From beginners to pro divers, there are experiences for everyone in this 60-meter-deep pool that holds even more water than the previously mentioned aquarium. You can explore the abandoned underwater city or take freediving and scuba diving courses. There are even special dry air pockets where you can take a breather from diving.
No need to worry about being chilly either, since the pool is kept at a consistent 30 degrees Celsius. The pool also acts as an underwater film studio so you may end up seeing the pool pop up in movies soon.
And just in case you were wondering just how deep the pool is, they recommend you abstain from heading up to the top of the Burj Khalifa for at least 24 hours due to safety issues after being so deep underwater.
Luxurious Police Cars
Usually you want to avoid being placed in the back of a police vehicle but it Dubai you may actually wish to consider it. This is because the UAE’s police force has more high-end supercars than any other country, and of course a great deal of those can be seen around Dubai.
Dubai’s luxury police fleet includes Ferrari, Bugatti, Mclaren, Bentley, Mercedes, Maserati, and Lamborghini just to name a few. This is a far cry from most countries where police vehicles are typical sedans the general public can afford.
For instance in Australia, it’s simple Ford Falcons and Holden Commodores that are the top choice for squad cars while in the US it is the Ford Taurus Interceptor which is most commonly used.
Dubai’s police cars are so popular that they regularly receive phone calls from tourists asking where they can be seen to take photos. While luxury vehicles may be part of the feet of police cars Dubai uses, they often save their appearances for special events, marathons, and parades.
Dubai was also one of the first places to add electric vehicles to their police fleet such as Tesla and Renault Zoe, with Tesla’s new Cybertrucks looking to be added soon. They also use W Motors Ghiath Smart Patrol vehilces with incredible features that include numerous exterior surveillance cameras, facial recognition, drone, and 360-degree periscope.