Dubai

I’ve only been to Dubai a couple of times so I'm sure there’s lots more to explore, but I thought I'd put this blog together about my experience as I was pleasantly surprised by the place. I always saw Dubai as somewhere to live the high life at a price but it never really inspired me as a holiday destination, it’s fair to say after my second visit I’ve definitely changed my mind.


I’ve included some video links throughout the blog but here is a link to the playlist I created for Dubai on my YouTube channel. 

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLCFXjGIoZCPmQ5Oc6VKwXfIiy7dD5Yqic

I visited at the end of October and in November so I guess coming out of the really oppressive temperatures, and although it was still hot, everywhere caters for the heat so you actually don’t notice it. Air conditioned buildings, cars and playing golf in buggys makes it all bearable and obviously appropriate activities at appropriate times of the day. 


A prime example of this is being able to play night golf! I have only played The Emirates Golf course but I have played it both day and night. It’s cooler at night time and I enjoyed the novelty of playing in the floodlights.


We spent time at the beach too, Kite Beach is beautiful and you have views of the Burj Al Arab, which claims to be the world's only 7* hotel. Dubai has the most creative landscape. I would recommend afternoon tea at the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa.

The views are unbelievable and the whole experience is well worth it, make sure you book tickets for the experience you pick. There are lots of options and all reasonably priced too.



One of the best activities I’ve ever done was with a company called Arabian Adventures. We were taken into the desert for a sand dune jeep ride which was more exhilarating than I expected. Our driver Nadir also stayed with us for the whole experience, he offered us all kinds of knowledge about Dubai.

After the drive we took a Camel ride to a secluded part of the desert where we were waited on with our private chef and the most delicious BBQ. We watched the sun go down and I’ve never felt so relaxed; the silence, the soft music playing, just the two of us and the sound of the flames that had been lit was so romantic. Once the sun had gone down we were treated to flame throwing and belly dancing! Despite having our jackets with us we stayed until the chilly night air got to us.

After the drive we took a Camel ride to a secluded part of the desert where we were waited on with our private chef and the most delicious BBQ. We watched the sun go down and I’ve never felt so relaxed; the silence, the soft music playing, just the two of us and the sound of the flames that had been lit was so romantic. Once the sun had gone down we were treated to flame throwing and belly dancing! Despite having our jackets with us we stayed until the chilly night air got to us.









Another place that could take you from day to night is Blue Waters Island. Here there are shops and lots of great restaurants by the water, we ate in The Selfish Bull and the steak was unreal! There’s a walking bridge across the water from here to a beach area with sun loungers and more restaurants. There are also some fun activity stations dotted about too which definitely add a bit of fun to a casual stroll.



I also loved visiting a place called Deira, here I felt like I got to appreciate the culture more rather than the more clinical areas of Dubai that I’d seen. This place had an atmosphere! We had a look around the Spice Souq which smelled amazing and had lots of foods to try before you buy. There were also some beautiful scarves. However be ready to haggle if you want something as products are still expensive and each and every stall owner will try to engage you with their sales patter. All good fun and part of the experience.

We then took a very short ride on an Abra across Dubai Creek from Al Sabkha (Deira side of the creek) to Shindagha (Bur Dubai side). The boats come and go every minute and they only cost 1 dirham. Here we stopped in a quaint little cafe and ate to the sounds of prayers from the mosque.





One of the best things to do in Dubai is eat out, my favourite place to go for food is the Atlantis resort, on The Palm Jumeirah. At night the place looks incredible, no surprise it’s one of the most instagrammed holiday destinations. Nobu was delicious but the best experience and food I’ve had was at Ossiano underwater restaurant.

Here they offer a 9, 11 or 13 course tasting menu (£181, £208 or £250 pp). Each course has a story from the chef and this is explained by your host. It’s a great way to try lots of different flavours and with so many courses it doesn’t matter if a couple don’t tickle your tastebuds. We had 11 courses and this was plenty. Adding to the experience is the level of service you receive, the live music, stingrays, sharks and fish swimming past you as you eat.

This is an experience we will always remember so it was well worth it although be careful with drinks, we had a white wine cocktail and liked it so much we drank a fair few, we didn’t realise it was £40 a drink!



In terms of our evening plans we wanted to experience events rather than eating out every night so we visited Dubai Opera house and saw the fabulous Mica Paris in concert. We also saw La Perle by Dragone which is Dubai’s first permanent Las Vegas style show based in Al Habtoor City complex in downtown Dubai. The show is incredible, within the purpose built aqua stage there are acrobatics, motorbikes and special effects. Basic tickets are about £88 and the show lasts 1hr30 but there are lots of restaurants and bars so you can make more of a night of it.



The only hotels that I have stayed in are the H Hotel and Zabeel House The Greens, both very different but both equally as nice. To be honest for the amount of time I want to stay in a hotel as long as I can sleep properly and the staff are helpful, it’s not the kind of thing I would pin a lot of importance on in Dubai. Most hotels will have all of the basics to a high standard for example restaurants, gym, pool area etc. For a night in the H Hotel you’re looking at about £230 for a basic room and at Zabeel House about £133. The other thing I found is that if you want to explore a taxi is usually required, so I wouldn’t place too much importance on location of a hotel unless you enjoy a particular view or you want to do the same thing most days.


Lastly, part of my trip involved flying First Class with Emirates for the first time. I had a rough month and Brian surprised me. I think if you can do it just once you should, I didn’t really want the flight to end! The only problem now is it’s ruined all future flights! :) Here is a little video of my seat on the flight.



This website signals a new chapter in my life and although I miss teaching dearly I am super excited to see what the future holds. I am incredibly lucky that I get to work alongside my partner Brian and that we get to share many incredible experiences together.

The aim of my blog is to share all of this with you, I hope my honest opinions might prove useful to you in some way, give food for thought or even a little bit of inspiration!

Most of all thank you for joining me!

Dani x

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Photo Credit: Helen Boast Photography

@helenboast

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Made by Jump, 2020

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