T – Things Nobody tells you about Dubai | #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z
By now, through the previous 19 posts, we have discussed where to shop, which restaurants to visit, which malls to go to and some of the major attractions to cover in Dubai. Today I am going to highlight some of the things, for which not much is written or spoken about but people look for.
Everybody who travels to Dubai keeps asking me about the places they can consume liquor. Well, there are a plethora of options where you can get a drink but I will tell you a couple of places where you are going to get at the best prices in town along with complimentary food. If you are around Al Karama, head to President Hotel, just beside it there is a small place by the name of ‘The Cowboys’. Till today it is my favorite place to head to for a round of beer and a game of pool.
Another place, where you are sure you to find some offers in their happy hours, is in Ambassador Hotel – George and Dragon bar in their ground floor has good music, decent food and some really cheap cocktail and beer options. If you are into live music then head to the Ramee Royal Hotel in Karama – The Times Café is a huge sports bar where you will find great music with some wonderful deals on liquor.
The Arabic world is also famous for its ‘Sheeshas’ that forms a part of their traditional heritage. A sheesha place is not far away in Dubai and you can always locate one in your vicinity. Though my personal favorite is ‘Koyla Lounge’ in Al Karama for their amazing ‘hookahs’ and ‘sheeshas’ and affordable food with great music. QD’s is another favorite hotspot – enjoy the sheesha sitting alongside the creek.
Being touted as the sin city of the Middle East many people travel with the expectation of finding places like in Vegas or Amsterdam. If yes, then you will be highly disappointed; Dubai doesn’t have any strip clubs.
Almost all the major hotels have dance bars in Dubai. Don’t get confused with the dance bars that you might find in India. These are sophisticated places where you occupy a table and watch dancing moves from a distance. You will find a lot of women in the audience as well. It is compulsory for you to order something. Some of the best places include Antakshari in President Hotel in Al Karama and one in Ambassador hotel in Bur Dubai. Make sure you don’t make anyone uncomfortable with your gestures.
Massage parlors are like pan shops in India. Sometimes I feel it is difficult to get water in some places but a massage parlor is only a throw-away. If you like to pamper yourself, do try their Moroccan bath – that’s quite famous.
VOIP access is limited
If you are traveling to Dubai, make sure your international roaming is activated otherwise calling through Whatsapp and Skype won’t work. There are other proxy apps that might work but the reception would be patchy and would invariably require an Internet connection.
Lost and Found
If by any chance you forget or lose a valuable thing or some cash, be assured most of the time you will find it back.
You can even buy gold directly from an ATM in the Dubai Mall. Amazing, isn’t it! The prices are updated every 10 min and are in sync with the current market prices and all you have to do is swipe your card and a gold bar will pop out.
Precautions while driving
Apart from following traffic rules, one has to be very attentive and aware while driving about the road exits because if you miss one it might take you another 20 min to find another. The roads can get really confusing sometimes.
Carry warm clothing
Wherever you traveling to and in any climate, it is advisable to carry warm clothing or a jacket with you. Although you will be in the desert every place in Dubai is air-conditioned and you might find the temperatures in malls and offices freezing.
I know I should not bring this out, but if for some reasons you get into an altercation with an Arab, the police might appear to be soft on them. Suck up your pride and move on – the Best thing is minding your own business. Please follow the rules.
Spot a Tiger
In most of the countries, it is very common for someone to see a dog peeping out of a car window, well Dubai is known for its tigers. Don’t be surprised or shocked if you find a tiger staring at you at a traffic light. That’s completely normal.
Road closures are quite normal for maintenance work in Dubai. Don’t get too attached to a particular route and always learn alternative options because you will definitely come across a couple of road closures very frequently.
Meeting the Sheikh
If spotting a tiger was surprising for you, imagine what if you are crossing the road along with Sheikh Mohammad. He lives a normal life and it’s not uncommon to find him traveling via metro, simply using a zebra crossing, standing right behind you in a mall queue. In our part of the world where the VVIP culture is predominant, he sets some exemplary standards.
With Dubai, all I can say is always be prepared to be shocked, awed, surprised and be ready for unpredictability in all sense.
For all those who were looking for alcohol places,
For all those who love sheeshas,
For all those who love to pamper themselves,
For all those who wanted to know things, nobody tells about…
It’s not a goodbye,
But it’s a GOOD BYE.
Manas ‘Sameer’ Mukul
This is the 20th post for the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z. My theme in Travel Category is ‘Dubai – the City of Gold’, where I would be covering everything about the city in the course of 26 posts.
Read the Previous post here: Dubai – City of Gold
Please do visit tomorrow for the next post with the letter ‘U’
I am also taking part in the #AtoZChallenge #BlogchatterA2Z using another theme –‘IPL – Indian Parliamentary League’. If you are keen on following key issues pertaining to the upcoming General Elections head over to the Politics Theme and share your feedback.