Being a tourist in Dubai

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Sep 7th, 2012, 02:26 PM
  #1
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Being a tourist in Dubai

I just returned from a trip via Emirates Air to Africa with a stopover in Dubai. I want to warn tourists that Dubai is NOT tourist friendly. All those beautiful and famous sights you saw on the internet? You can only see them from the outside. To get into the Burj al Arab, for example, you must make a reservation for an very expensive dinner. To get into the tallest building in the world, you must make a reservation at least 30 days or more in advance (unless you want to go up after dark). To get into the Sheik's palace hotel in Abu Dhabi, you must reserve ahead of time for a $150 English high tea. I was very disappointed, to say the least. It appears that the Emirates are for the wealthy Arabs and/or the international jet set. Lowly tourists must suffer through 115-120 degree (F) temperatures in the summer - only to have a glance at the outsides of buildings they've been wanting to explore. Sorry, Dubai. It seems that you're really set up for the very wealthy and/or inveterate shoppers with tons of money.
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Sep 9th, 2012, 02:00 PM
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Good to know in advance. Who wants to go there just to see shopping malls?
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Oct 4th, 2013, 08:47 AM
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We were there in FEB last year and it was only a couple days wait for the tallest building. 30 days really?
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Oct 4th, 2013, 05:43 PM
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We loved our three day stop over in Dubai and didn't mind not going into the buildings you mentioned. We were happy to see them from the outside - we could see Burj Khalifa from our balcony, and a picture of Burj al Arab from the outside sufficed for us.

We roamed through the gold souk, the spice souk, went for a ride on the abra (the boat that crosses the river in Old Dubai) checked out the beach, and went on an incredible dessert safari with Platinum Heritage Tours - an incredible company.

True we spent lots, but it was not unaffordable & it was fun.
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Oct 5th, 2013, 11:46 AM
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Tall buildings - even living in NYC, I have no interest whatsoever to be 'up hi' anywhere. These buildings look fine from the outside or a stroll thru a lobby. I wouldn't even work in a building above the 9th floor (as high as fire ladders extend)... my mom didn't raise any fools.

As far as reservations to visit certain sights/buildings... this is not at all unusual. Many places around the world require them as Robben Island in South Africa, The WTC Memorial in NYC, others. And if I had (which I wouldn't... too hi up) been enjoying dinner at the Burj, sure wouldn't be keen on noticing 'lookie-sees' wandering around.

Kind of reminds me of some shops/designers who don't have on offer for sale or make anything for a women over a size 8.

Welcome to the world!
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Dec 7th, 2013, 05:42 AM
  #6
 
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When you are in New York you pay $27 to go up the Empire State Building. When you are in London you pay £25 to go up the Shard. In Paris you pay to go up the Eiffel.Not in one of these cities can you wander into any great hotel just to stare. This is the way things work.
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Dec 7th, 2013, 06:13 AM
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"Not in one of these cities can you wander into any great hotel just to stare. "

Pretty much anywhere in the world you can walk into any hotel lobby. I sometimes do it when I need a toilet, or when I want to see how the day tours on offer compare to those in my own hotel, or for a recommendation for where to get my hair cut. Wandering around the rest of the building, not so much, but the lobby is a public place.

I agree that if you're eating, especially if it's a special meal, you don't want a bunch of sweaty tourists with cameras spoiling the ambiance. I remember eating afternoon tea at the Raffles in Singapore, and finding the tourists who just showed up to take photos annoying.
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