Going to Dubai? 7 Reasons To Go Immediately

Dubai - 7 Reasons To Go - Long term travel

Going to Dubai? 7 Reasons To Go Immediately

Going to Dubai? Dubai is an interesting place. There’s more money than most people know what to do with, so you get the situation that we see stereotyped today with many residents selecting which Ferrari to drive each day, using phones plated with gold and jewels, and the practice of keeping some of the most exotic pets in the world. The flip-side of the coin are the ‘slaves’ who have to build the grand buildings and do the labour, often at great personal expense, among other things. I hear from various expats that living in Dubai is a bit like living in Singapore, but on steroids, so everything you love or hate about Singapore is kind of amplified in Dubai – less tax, even more Ferrari’s.

Agree with the politics or not, no one can deny the fact that going to Dubai is an incredibly interesting experience. It’s the perfect test case for what happens when you have vast amounts of cash, too much time on your hands and the plenty of space in a desert.

One of the cool things about the UAE is that fact that it’s really easy to get to from almost anywhere in the world, especially with the number of flights that now stop through in Dubai and Qatar as part of an international itinerary as mine did when I quit my job and started travelling the world. This also means that it’s not hugely expensive, for example, I’ve had a look and from the UK you can travel to Dubai for about £500 ($700 USD) with return flights and accommodation.

So you’re going to Dubai? (even if you’re just passing thorough, it’ worth a visit at least once) Here’s a quick list of some of the cooler things about Dubai you can check out.

Reason 1 For Going To Dubai – Ridiculous Cars

This one hardly needs explaining if you’ve seen anything much about Dubai in recent years, but you know you’re rich when the only colour you opt to paint your car is gold.. like legit gold.. as in gold plated cars.. There are some things that you can really only see in Dubai.

There are also a ridiculous number of super-cars on the roads, which also include those rather famous Dodge Viper and Ferrari police cars that did the internet circuit a few years ago. Regardless of if you’re a ‘car person’ or not. When the see a gold plated car, you can’t help but stare (then quietly judge them too of course).

Long Term Travel - Going to Dubai - Crazy cars
Just your average gold plated car..

Reason 2 For Going To Dubai – Man Made Islands

Yep, humans have been reclaiming land for ages, but not like this!! It says something about Dubai that instead of just building an island, they built an island in the shape of a palm tree, just because they could. Still, partially under construction, the series of islands contain a vast array of residential and entertainment facilities. If you’re going to Dubai and you want to have a bit of a look, the best way would actually have to be by jumping out of a perfectly good plane, as you skydive from 3 kms above the city. Enjoy, you crazy kid you!

Going to Dubai - Skydiving in Dubai
Going to Dubai? The best view is from the air!


Reason 3 For Going To Dubai – Ultra Modern Buildings

If you’re going to Dubai, you can’t miss that it’s is famous for its modern architecture and there are a couple of very iconic buildings that make the destination uniquely recognisable. The Burj Al Arab hotel, modelled on an Arabian sail, is the first. With rooms that can cost up to about $25,000 USD per night, staying there could be a rather expensive experience. Best to just admire this one from a distance I think. Not sure that there is a best time to book hotel rooms at this bad boy.. but you can try!

The second thoroughly ‘Dubai’ icon is the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, standing at an enormous 830 meters. Can’t really argue with the spectacle of it, the building dominates the landscape with views that are more akin to helicopter rides than office space. Just in case that view doesn’t tie your guts in a knot already, being the tallest building in the world it attracts a number of daredevils who enjoy nothing more than swinging off it’s railings, dancing on it’s cranes and generally doing things that make my hands sweat thinking about, check out a few examples here.

Long Term Travel - Going to Dubai - Burj Khalifa
World’s tallest building… I get it.

Reason 4 For Going To Dubai – Exotic Pets

Who hasn’t, at some point in their life, wanted to own a tiger or a lion instead of your average house cat? I for one have already thought of names and practised a few sufficiently calculating poses I can use when 007 pops up in the heart of my lair and tries to kiss my wife. If you’re going to Dubai, keep a look out for the type of pet that most people try to avoid. It might not surprise you that the same people who brought you gold cars and diamond-plated phones also enjoy the company of these kinds of exotic pets. Agree with the practice from an animal welfare point of view or not, it makes you double take when you see a cheetah on a leash instead of a dog. There’s also not a small part of me that really wants to see what happens when ‘Phillip the pet Cheetah’ decides he’s had enough of being dragged around on a string and wants to eat his owner.

Tigers, Lions, Cheetahs you name the animal, someone in Dubai’s already done it. Where’s Ace Ventura when you need him?

Long Term Travel - Going to Dubai - Dubai Pets
Just picked up a stray cat.. I mean Cheetah.

Reason 4 For Going To Dubai – The Beaches

So you’re going to Dubai, a country that is roughly 98% sand so how could you not want to lay down and chill on the part where dirt meets water? Dubai has some fantastic beaches, (although many of them are not public), you can still find a whole lot of sand with which you can compliment with the application of your sun-ripened body. JBR is a popular destination simply because of it’s convenient proximity to the CBD.

Long Term Travel - Going to Dubai - Dubai Beaches
Nope, you can’t sit here, there’s not enough sand..


Reason 5 For Going To Dubai – Snow and Sand Boarding on the same day. 

What do desert dunes and snowy mountains have in common? You can board on them.. and if you’re going to Dubai, you can do both. The dunes are a no brainer, desert + wind = dunes and dunes mean sand boarding, and there’s more sand here that you can shake a Land Rover at, but the snow? Well, apparently Dubai got sick of the heat and decided to build a giant indoor ski slope which means, you can ski and snowboard all on the same day if you felt so inclined.

Long Term Travel - Going to Dubai - Skiing in Dubai
It’s 45 degrees out and there’s snow!

Reason 6 For Going To Dubai – Markets and Shopping

I love a good market and Dubai has a good mix of the interesting combination of modern shopping with traditional ‘Souqs’ (traditional Arab markets), scattered about the city. If you’re going to Dubai and you just wanted to you know, buy some gold head, like you do, to the Gold Souq. This market has 130+ shops packed together with nothing but sparkling, shining gold and jewellery kicking about. Want gold, but just can’t be bothered hitting the old gold market? Just use one of the conveniently placed ‘Gold buying ATMs’ for your convenience..

Long Term Travel - Going to Dubai - Dubai Gold markets
Gold? Sure… there are even ATM’s.

Final Thoughts on Dubai

Like the engineering and the idea behind the city or loathe it, going to Dubai is an incredibly interesting experience, whether it’s voluntary or not (given half the flight schedules int he world seem to go through the place). When you have so much wealth all on once place, your reputation has no choice but to proceed you. There’s definitely a bit of a dark side to the place, that you can see if you look a little deeper which often gets hidden behind the glittering glass of the buildings and the gold plated cars. However there’s nowhere else like it around so if you’re going to Dubai, even just as a stopover as part of a longer trip,  I really can recommend checking it out, even just to see it once.

For more stories about long term travel and adventures around the world start at the nomadical sabbatical homepage

About Author


Hi, I'm Pete, an ex-cubical slave and corporate love monkey currently writing my way around the world. My background is in branding, digital marketing, media and I'm probably about a level 10 at moustaches.


  1. I am convinced! Dubai is a dream destination!

  2. edu

    The photos are simply breath taking

    1. Cheers mate!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *