Dubai

Known as the Pearl of The Arabian Gulf, Dubai is strategically located on a 7 mile long creek. The discovery of oil in the 1960s led to a boom. The Emirate decided to use its resources to diversify into tourism and since the conclusion of the first gulf war, the population increase and the building of hotels has been unprecedented. Dubai is a city that manages to combine pioneering developments and sky scrapers with traditional Arabic themes. It manages to encapsulate the dichotomy of this beautiful stretch of coastline.

With an average high temperature of 25 degrees in February it is a perfect winter getaway. An ideal break for 5 or 6 days or a stopover destination en route to the far east or Australia.

Our hotel was the 4* Al Marooj Hotel. Rated within the top 50 hotels in Dubai on Tripadviser and with nearly 500 to choose from the standard was never in doubt.

We choose to pay a little more each night and stay on the club floor. This gave us access to the Rotana Club Lounge where drinks and nibbles were complimentary from 4pm until 6pm, there was free wifi and a daily free breakfast.

The rooms were luxurious and beautifully appointed, thankfully the air condition worked a treat. There was 7 restaurants to choose from one of which open 24 hours. A relaxing pool area with complimentary fresh towels. The staff were courteous and really couldn’t do enough for you.

The hotel also boasts a “pub” style lounge totally dismissing the myth that alcohol is not freely available. As long as the bars are affiliated to a hotel then the drink can flow! Don’t be surprised at the rather expensive bill though!

The hotel although boasting 11 floors was absolutely dwarfed by its neighbour the world record holding tallest building in the world “The Tour Khalifa” at only £22, a visit to the top is a trip not to be missed during your stay. The high velocity lifts speed at 2 floors a second and you feel your ears pop as you race to the top. You then experience the 360 degree views across Dubai, The Gulf, The Palm and the iconic Burj Al Arab hotel making the outlay worth every penny.

Take time during your stay to embark on a fun filled catamaran cruise. Get close up views of Atlantis the Palm and The Jumeirah Beach Hotel. Enjoy a sumptuous bbq and swim in the lovely warm gulf waters.

If you are a fan of aquatic fun, a must do is a visit to The Wild Wadi  water park. 12 acres of park and over 30 adrenalin fuelled rides. Or try a desert 4 wheel drive safari.

For sports fans Dubai is an increasingly popular destination. You can take in Rugby and cricket at The Sports City Arena or the “Ring of fire” as it is known locally. Several top golf courses , horse racing and of course just 45 minutes away is Abu Dhabi, which will be home to the final F1 motor race of this season. Skyplane have local agents able to arrange tickets and your tee times.

So whether you just want fabulous weather, a relaxing spa break, shop at some of the largest shopping malls on the planet or just enjoy the sheer opulence and service levels, Dubai really is a recommended destination.

Flights are available from Norwich via Amsterdam or direct from London in a little over 6 ½ hours

Prices start from £595pp low season for 3 nights flights and hotel.

Contact the team at Skyplane Worldchoice for up to date availability and prices. The staff have travelled extensively around The UAE and will be delighted to answer your questions.

FACT FILE

Location: Directly on the Arabian Gulf

Size: 83,600 square km, 32,278 square miles

Journey time: 6.45 hrs from UK

Time difference: GMT +4hours

Currency: United Arab Emirates Dirham

Electricity: 220V AC 50Hz (Northern States); 240V AC 50Hz (Abu Dhabi)

Languages: Arabic, English

Visas are issued on arrival for stays up to 30 days

No vaccinations needed

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