Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Our Holiday Part 1 - Hello Dubai

So it's 2 months late, but this is the post about our holiday. Finally...

Emirates airlines was running an amazing special at the beginning of the year, and I had promised the boys I'd take them back to Thailand this year (it's become an every 4-year habit for me now, one I am more than willing to keep repeating!), so even though I'd barely paid up the Namibia holiday, I bit the bullet and booked! I had planned to go more towards the middle of the year, but the special required a departure before end of March and so we booked to go between my 2 big races. THE ARGUS and THE TWO OCEANS HALF MARATHON.

So on term 1 break-up day, and Angelique's birthday, we boarded our plane and jetted off at 6pm.
First stop was Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, we landed at 5am. We had decided to spend the day there and delayed our onwards flight to Bangkok till that night. Dubai visas are not cheap. In fact NOTHING in Dubai is cheap, or very friendly either. The airport staff are strict and very no-nonsense.

We caught a train into the city and walked all around. The most interesting and fun for me were the fabric, gold and spice markets. These were quaint and characterful, but not many bargains were to be had. It was also pretty hot and we were quite tired.

We went on to explore the Dubai Museum and the other side of the river a bit and then decided we'd 'done' the old town. So we headed off to the newer city and to the HOOOGE Dubai Mall. Dubai Mall is in the shadows of the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa. We had hoped to go up the Burj, but at around R800 each (and a looong wait) for a 1.5 min lift ride we decided it wasn't worth it. Especially since it was a hazy day and visibility would not have been great. It was still impressive from the bottom.

The mall really is gigantic and very flashy and commercial. Pricey too. If you are a shopper it would be super awesome. I am not, so it was interesting but not particularly exciting for me. The boys however were super excited about SEGA REPUBLIC. They were instantly no longer tired when we found that, and galloped around for at least 2 hours like enthused maniacs. They LOVED it. In fact we went and had a calm and quite adult coffee while they rampaged around in there.

We had a meal in the giant food hall, where pretty much anything you could imagine was on offer. I was most drawn to the sight and smell of the Thai food, but forced myself to order something else since we were going to be in actual Thailand soon enough. So I had a vegetarian curry with dahl and sambals.

Then we went outside to see the musical fountains. We had to wait about 45 mins for the 'show' to start. Having been up and walking around for over 12 hours, and not really sleeping on the plane the night before we were tired. We nodded off while sitting waiting and within minutes security guards arrived and told us to get up and leave. Nice! We promised to stay awake, and stayed. Dubai is not the friendliest place. I also find that the Arabs don't tend to smile or engage with you at all. You get ignored, unless you do something wrong and then you get told off.

The fountain show was good but not spectacular - perhaps I was too tired to be impressed. But by 9pm when we went back to the airport I was pretty much done with Dubai. I am glad I saw it, but I wouldn't go out of my way to go back. We were soon on our plane and off to Thailand... but first we had a much needed nap on the plane!

Dubai photos on Facebook: HERE
Dubai Museum
Burj Khalifa
Spices in the Souk
Browsing the Ware in the Souk in the Old Town
The Burj Khalifa - very very tall!
Next up Bangkok!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your experience with us. Yes, its true that Dubai holidays are not cheap holidays. It is expensive because of its stunning attractions. you guys looks great!!! Cheers..