Staff Travel Diaries: Dubai
Hi Claire, tell us a little about yourself, what you do at Barrhead Travel and your trip to Dubai?
I work within the Business Development Team and I was given an amazing opportunity to see Dubai. I spent 4 nights in this amazing place and was literally blown away with every hotel and place I saw.
I had always wanted to visit Dubai but was always concerned that it may not be for me. I was wrong! Dubai has something for everyone. Whether you are looking for a family holiday, culture, city break, nightlife, beach Dubai has it covered. It really is one of the safest and cleanest places I have ever been.
What did you get up to while you were there? What attractions did you see?
There is so much to see in Dubai one of my favourites is the sundowner desert safari. Watch the sun go down as you drive through the dunes to arrive at our traditional Bedouin style camp where a delicious dinner awaits. The trip included:
- Leave your hotel and the city behind, drive into the desert in a four-wheel drive Land Cruisers
- Enjoy the fun of a dune drive in the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve
- Stop to watch a falcon display
- At sunset, stop for photos from the top of a dune
- Arrive at our Bedouin-style camp where desert activities and a bonfire await
- Try a camel ride, mini sand-boarding, and henna hand painting or relax on large carpets and cushions with an aromatic shisha
- Move to the seating area and sample an Arabic style, three-course buffet
Another must is Dubai Mall - Make sure you allow plenty time to see this place. You can do some serious spending here and you can access the Burj Khalifa and the Fountains from here so really is worth a visit.
What did you think of the hotels you stayed in?
Jumeirah Zabel Saray - Stunning luxury hotel on the palm. The infinity pool is beautiful and the spa is one of the best I have seen. Would suit families and couples. This hotel even has its own cinema room. Food is fantastic with a great choice of restaurants.
JA Ocean View - On Dubai Walk close to the Marina, smaller pool though great beach access hotel will even supply a beach bag and umbrella. Good location for eating out.
Shangri La Hotel - On Sheikh Zayed Rd so more of a city feel. Close to Dubai Mall and the Burj Khalifa. Great pool area which is also home to Icandy which hosts a great brunch and is a great location for an evening drinks.
Jumeirah Beach - Great family hotel with Wild Wadi Water Park attached. Amazing views over the Burj hotel. I felt this hotel had more of a relaxed feel. Very bright and airy.
Jebal Ali Hotel - A great hotel which would suit families and couples. In a quiet location around 30 mins from the downtown Dubai. Has its very own 9-hole golf course and a wealth of activities. This hotel has an all-inclusive option and even a swim up bar.
Atlantis the Palm - Amazing huge hotel and a must see even if you aren't staying here. With so many facilities from its very own water park, aquarium and beach club it really has it all. The eating options in this hotel are fabulous.
What would you recommend someone packs when visiting Dubai?
I was surprised at how relaxed Dubai actually is in terms of dress code. Of course visiting any religious areas, malls, souks, eating places etc you are required to dress more respectfully elsewhere was like any other holiday destination that I have been too.
What are your top tips for someone visiting Dubai?
- Look out for Ladies nights - It's usually a Tuesday night and ladies get free drinks in most places.
- Dubai isn't cheap so I would recommend half board as eating out can be expensive.
- Stay at the Jumeirah Hotels and get free access to the Wild Wadi water park.
- Taxis are so cheap, safe and accessible.