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With many friends and family stopping over in Dubai on their way East or West I am often asked what is best to do with just a short break. I put together my top tips for a quick stop over to get a little bit of the best of Dubai. Hopefully it will encourage you to head back for a longer break to see all the other delights Dubai has to offer.

Note :

  • May to October the temperature rises and could be challenging to do some of the outdoor suggestions.
  • Conservative and correct dress to respect the culture.
  • local currency is AED (official abbreviation) Emirati Durham, although almost all outlets accept credit/debit cards now.

My Suggestions.

Stay in the Downtown area and there are hotels to suit most budgets 

  • Al Manzil and Vida Hotels  both situated on the boulevard with Burj Khalifa views and walking distance to Dubai Mall.
  • The Palace Hotel Downtown  Situated right on the fountains with some great restaurants.
  •  The Rove Hotel slightly more affordable hotel, within walking distance of the down town area but situated on the financial district side of the Dubai Mall.
  • The Steigenberger Hotel  Located in Business bay a short walk to the Burj Down town area but right next to the Dubai Water canal

The Downtown area is just a 25min taxi ride from the airport and it pretty self sufficient when you stay here.

Day 1

A morning trip to the Burj Khalifa get there early to get a great photo, no crowds and lovely light before 10am when the mall opens. Then head up to the top of Burj Khalifa for stunning views Book Your tickets in advance 135dhs per person.

Burj Khalifa view Dubai Photographer

After a long walk around Dubai mall viewing the the aquarium , ice rink and lots of shopping I suggest some time out. My favourite afternoon tea spot in al Bayt The Palace Downtown the perfect place to sit back and relax and take in the stunning views of the worlds tallest tower.Afternoon tea the palace downtown Dubai

In the evening  not to be missed is a walk down by the boulevard to view the the fountain show and see the boulevard light up with masses of twinkling lights. Along the way there are many places to stop and eat.

  • Fine dining Thai style Thiptara Retaurant  – another personal favourite with stunning fountain views.
  • Or for the perfect burger try SALT outdoor eating station right next to the fountain show. If you love burgers you will love SALT.
  • On the Boulevard an excellent choice is The Bosporus which takes you on a magical journey to Turkey.

Day 2

Today I suggest you can move away from the modern glitz of new Dubai and head for the Creek side and old Souk area to discover what Dubai was like in days gone by.

Just a 25 min taxi ride or you can take the Metro from the Dubai Mall station but be warned it is a long walk to the metro through Dubai mall and then on several travelators to reach the train, however it is a great way to view lots of Dubai.

It is very enchanting to spend the endless moments taking in the sights of the Old town of Dubai.

The Al Fahidid mosque is not to be missed on the banks of the Creek waters.

Al Fahidi Mosque Bastakia

Take an abra ride across the creek for just AED 2 – one side is the textile souk and on the other side the Gold and old spice souk.

Trip on an abra DubaiDSC_0135

Grab some little gifts from the old textile souk area, great for pashminas and spices, be sure to barter the merchants in this area enjoy to engage in some haggling.

The Dubai Museum  and Al Fahidi fort is also located just around the corner from the souk and certainly worth a visit, only a small museum but very informative and amazing to see how far the UAE has developed in just 50 years.

And one place not to miss a visit to the Arabian Tea House Dubai a traditional Emirati tea house the perfect place to sample real local food.


After a morning /afternoon discovering the traditional souk area there is just enough time left to head out to the Dubai desert and enjoy an evening sunset BBQ in a traditional Bedouin camp along with rides up and down the dunes, locally known as “Dune Bashing” Book your tour on one of the Desert Safari Tours with Arabian Adventures. the perfect end to a 48 hour stop over in Dubai.


After this brief encounter with some of Dubai’s favourite spots I hope you will be heading back to the airport feeling you have discovered a little of the charm this amazing city has to offer and taking lots of wonderful memories with you.

To be sure you take back the very best memories to treasure why not try a vacation photographer to capture you images.

Safe Travels







  1. movers dubai says:

    You have brought up a very wonderful points , thankyou for the post.

  2. Lisa Wells says:

    like this travel blog. shring very helpful inforamton .

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