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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Dubai

Dubai & United Arab Emirates Holidays

The extravagant Dubai, as well as the Emirates surrounding it, does everything on a large scale, from the hotels and shopping malls to the long, stunning beaches where you can unwind or try your hand at watersports. Dubai holidays offer activities for all ages, plus gourmet restaurants and lively nightlife.

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Experience the luxurious pull of stunning Dubai

Package holidays to Dubai offer the ultimate in luxury, as everything here is done with no expense spared and a larger-than-life glitzy flair. This is why it's earned the affectionate nickname the 'Vegas of the Middle East'.

There are glorious sandy beaches, sleek yacht marinas, exclusive hotels and exceptional manmade areas such as Palm Jumeirah and the Burj Lake, which houses a huge fountain display. Dubai also boasts an incredible skyline with a host of impressive buildings, including the tallest building in the world – the Burj Khalifa – at 830 metres and 163 floors high..

Quick Tips

  • Islam
  • Emirati dirham
  • Arabic
  • GMT + 4

Paddle in the Persian Gulf and relax on fantastic beaches

A top destination for beach holidays, Dubai has miles of beautiful sandy stretches. Popular resort communities here include Jumeirah Beach and Dubai Marina, and many beachside hotels have their own private beach areas. If you're planning your All Inclusive holidays to Dubai, look out for any private beach options that come with your hotel.

While western swimwear is perfectly acceptable on private beaches, visitors heading to public beaches should be respectful of local culture and make sure that shoulders and knees are covered up, even when swimming. Wearing a T-shirt and swimming shorts is recommended.

For a quieter way of exploring Emirati beaches, holidays around Ras Al Khaimah in the north are becoming popular. Affordable luxury in modern surroundings awaits on the peninsula surrounding Marjan Island. While Al Hamra further inland offers a more classically authentic Arabian experience that still keeps you close to action like camel racing and ATV rentals.

Shop, eat, catch a film and play at the amazing malls and souks

Shops of all kinds dominate Dubai. There are several spectacular malls and pedestrian shopping precincts to choose from and all of them offer something a little bit different.

The Mall of the Emirates is a huge complex of shops including some familiar names such as Harvey Nichols and Marks and Spencer. The Dubai Mall is another huge area where you can browse for haute couture designer items at places like Tiffany & Co. and Chanel. This is also where you can take trips to the top of the Burj Khalifa, skate at the Dubai Ice Rink and watch one of the spectacular Dubai Fountain shows.

For a more open-air shopping experience try the Dubai Marina Walk, which has restaurants, shops and the Covent Garden Market where you'll find artisan soaps, souvenirs and beautifully hand-crafted jewellery. And, if you'd like an authentic Arabian style of shopping, head for the Souk Madinet Jumeirah. It has colourful stalls, winding streets and restaurants that stay open until the early hours.

Beyond Dubai, you'll find activities close to Marjan Island that keep the thrills and spills coming. Both Dreamland Aquapark and Ice Land Waterpark are within 20 minutes' drive, offering some of the Gulf's most exciting waterslides, log flumes and tube slides to take on.

Join in the lively nightlife in the fantastic restaurants and bars

The nightlife in Dubai is vibrant and fun, with plenty of choice on where to go for a delicious evening meal, a few drinks or a late-opening club. You'll find a wide variety of restaurant options in Dubai, from casual diners serving tasty falafel to opulent fine dining venues such as Buddha Bar Dubai. There's an excellent international range of cuisine available too, from Lebanese, Chinese and Indian to familiar family favourites such as McDonald's.

For places to relax with a drink you'll find laid-back English style pubs, chic bars and amazing roof-top lounges with breath-taking views. There's also the 2,000-seater Dubai Opera where you can go for a classical concert. Or you can take a look to see what's on at the enormous 15,000-seater Dubai Media City Amphitheatre.

Dubai is usually a sunny destination where tourists are warmly welcomed. It's worth being aware that local laws and customs in Dubai are quite different to the UK, so make sure to read up on local ways of life before you go, so you get the most out of your stay.