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How to Spend 72 Unforgettable Hours in Dubai


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Photo credit: Michaela Loheit

A spectacular skyline, historic buildings, vibrant nightlife and a growing contemporary art scene, Dubai is where high-end style meets the old world charm.

Dubai has become the second largest and most populous city in the United Arab Emirates, and spending 3 days here will allow you to explore the city, sea and land with plenty of adventurous day trips and breathtaking walking tours.

Photo credit: Maher Najm

Whether you decide to spend your time wandering around and exploring the old city, or spend your money on the latest luxury fashion amongst the audacious new architecture, Dubai will leave an everlasting impression. To help you enjoy all of what this dynamic city has to offer, we’ve created this 72-hour guide.

Day One


Photo credit: Holiday Inn – Al Barsha

After your flight you will check in to your hotel in Dubai. To stay in a central and convenient location Holiday Inn Dubai – Al Barsha is a great option. It is located close to the Mall of The Emirates, so you will only be a few steps away from the best shopping in Dubai. Before heading out on your adventures, you might also want to wash off the flight and enjoy a refreshing swim in their rooftop pool. Or visit their awesome sports bar The Q which is one of the finest in Dubai. Some great upcoming events are – IPL (7 April – 27 May 2018) and the FIFA World cup 2018 (14 June – 15 July 2018).

Photo credit: Guilhem Vellut

As your first meal in this historic yet busting new city, it seems fitting to have a local and cultural experience at none other then Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding. Here they serve a traditional Emirati lunch in their wind tower house in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Bur Dubai. While here, you will not only have a chance to taste a traditional meal, but you also get an opportunity to chat with an Emirati host about UAE culture, customs and religion. This is a perfect way to prepare you for touring around old and new Dubai.


Photo credit: David Jones

Now you are ready to begin exploring, and why not start off by going back in time and head to the old part of the city. A great way to truly feel the heart of the old town is by joining a Wander with Nada Old Dubai Cultural Walking Tour. The authenticity of this tour will allow you to emerge yourself into the spirit of old Dubai. You will sail across the Dubai Creek on a traditional wooden abra boat, and a local guide will show you around the old streets of Dubai, where you will soak up the atmosphere, meet some locals, maybe haggle for a souvenir or two in the souks, and then finish the tour by enjoying another delicious local meal.


Photo credit: Folly by Nick and Scott

To end your first day and rest your tired legs after a great walking tour you might want to enjoy a nice cold beverage with a good view. For this you can head to Folly By Nick and Scott for a few drinks and a bite to eat before bedtime. This restaurant and bar is owned by world renowned chefs and offers gorgeous views while you drink a glass of wine, craft cocktails or even share one of their signature punch bowls. This is a perfect way to end your first adventurous day in Dubai.

Day Two


Photo credit: Love Boats

Start day 2 with a thrilling tour on the water and give your legs a little rest. The sea has become an integral part of Dubai’s amazing architecture and skyline, so it seems fitting to see the city from the sea as well. The Love Boats Ultimate Tour takes you by all the signature landmarks like the Dubai Marina, Burj Al Arab, Palm Jumeirah and Atlantis the Palm. You can feel the fresh ocean breeze in your face, while gazing up at the endless jaw-dropping modern architecture. It doesn’t get much better than this.

Photo credit: Tribeca

After some fun adventure on the sea you will probably be ready to enjoy a good, fresh lunch. For this you can head to the stylish and lively restaurant Tribeca, which offers wholesome and slow food, so you can fuel up your body on some of the best and freshest ingredients Dubai has to offer. If you’re feeling thirsty, don’t miss out on their great organic signature cocktails specially prepared by their talented bartender.


Photo Credit: A Free Tour By Foot

Once your body is refueled you can continue exploring the high-end vibe of the newer Dubai by doing A Tour By Foot of the modern town and all of its glitz, glamour and modern architecture. Once you’ve had your fix, squeeze in a little shopping to really live it up and truly experience the luxurious part of Dubai’s downtown. This is where to find the latest and hippest fashion, perhaps in all of the Middle East.

Photo credit: Peter Gronemann


End your day in style as well and book at table at Waka for a fine dining experience enjoying a fusion of Latin American flavors with Japanese seasoning. Your taste buds will go on their own adventure while your tired legs get a chance to relax. This is also a great place to feel the lively nightlife in Dubai.

Photo credit: Waka

Day Three


Photo credit: Robert Haandrikman

Since you started day two by sea, head inland on your final day in Dubai by joining Rayna Tours on their early desert tour. If you book an early enough departure, you’ll get to experience a sunrise in the desert. It doesn’t get much better than that! Imagine starting your day in the quiet desert seeing the colours of the morning sun playing in the sand dunes. Even though you have to get up early for this tour, the feeling of the first rays of sun in your face will fuel you up for the rest of the day.

Photo credit: Dubai Aquarium

Once you’ve had enough sand dunes and sun rays, head back to your hotel for a quick change and a little rest. Afterwards, continue to the Dubai Aquarium where you can try the glass bottom boat, simply walk around and be amazed, or give it a go with their “underwater” yoga.

Photo credit: Dubai Aquarium

Once you’ve had enough sand dunes and sun rays, head back to your hotel for a quick change and a little rest. Afterwards, continue to the Dubai Aquarium where you can try the glass bottom boat, simply walk around and be amazed, or give it a go with their “underwater” yoga.


Photo credit: M.A.D.Gallery Dubai

To stimulate all your senses and get a feel for the growing contemporary art scene in Dubai, join a walking art tour, or go explore on your own and see anything from Mechanical Art Devices at M.A.D. Gallery to world class comtemporary art at Art Sawa.

Photo credit: Art Sawa


Photo credit: 3 Fils

A perfect way to treat yourself for your final dinner in Dubai and to end your mind-blowing Dubai adventure, go enjoy a unique dining experience at 3 Fils. Book in advance to ensure you get to join the 4 Seats Table where you will have a meal right at the Chef’s Counter. This is a once in a lifetime experience, and you can kick back while watching someone cook for you after 3 great days of non-stop touring around.

Photo credit: Dubai International Hotel

After an action packed last day you’ll be ready to head back to your hotel. If you have an early flight out, you might also consider staying at Dubai International Hotel at the airport which will be nice and convinient when you’re flying out. The chill and relaxing atmosphere here will make you feel comfortable and right at home. While you are at the airport you must not miss out on the restaurant The Gallery. They offer an international buffet with exciting cuisines. They also have a la carte options and great wine. And the best part is that they’re open 24 hours.

You’ll be happy and content, ready to depart with a suitcase of memories after 72 great hours in Dubai.


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