Flights to Dubai
Looking for decadence, style and sunshine? Dubai has it all
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Big, bold and decidedly glitzy, there’s no other city in the world quite like Dubai. A place where visionaries and entrepreneurs accomplish their greatest goals, Dubai has, in less than 100 years, developed from a small port town to a major capital of tourism, infrastructure and luxury. Skyscrapers grow up from the sand, manmade islands float on the ocean and the coastline shimmers with lavish luxury hotels. Catch your breath and dive beneath the city’s sparkling surface to discover another world of Arabian culture, hospitality and adventure. Follow us to see Dubai like a local.
Must do recommendations
A trip to the top of the world’s tallest building offers an aerial view of the city, the coastline and the dancing Dubai Fountain directly below.
The historical heart of the city, Old Dubai lines Dubai Creek and is full of busy souks, fascinating museums and cultural attractions.
The desertscape surrounding the city is an adventure playground with ample opportunity to test your limits or learn a new skill.
Al Quoz Art District
Follow Dubai’s creative residents to the artistic Al Quoz neighbourhood to discover modern art in industrial spaces.
Dhow boat cruise
Sail back in time and discover historical Dubai by taking to the seas in a traditional wooden ‘dhow’ boat.
Dubai from the sky
From hot air balloon rides to seaplanes, alternative sightseeing tours offer a fresh perspective of the city.
Food and drink
Arabian hospitality is the stuff of legends. Experience it for yourself with a meal at one of Dubai’s many Arabic restaurants, which bring together cuisines from across the Middle East, often served with a side of belly dancing.
With its opulent lifestyle, multi-cultural society and stunning urban and desert landscapes, Dubai has long been a muse for novelists, filmmakers and musicians looking for a fresh story or an inspiring location. Get a head start on your next UAE getaway with these famous books, movies, and tunes.
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Films, 2 of 3
Music, 3 of 3
Did you know?
While Dubai isn’t the oldest city in the world, it’s one of the most innovative and multi-cultural (almost 90% of the population are expats). While the city is vocal about its record-breaking accomplishments, it still has a few surprises up its sleeve guaranteed to intrigue and bewilder even the most seasoned traveller.
1. Camels may be among Dubai’s most iconic animals, but you can still sample camel meat across the city. Burger joint Switch offers a camel alternative to the traditional beef burger, while The Farm serves a variety of camel dishes, such as camel stir-fry.
2. Dubai has appeared in the Guinness book of records so often that organisers have opened a Guinness World Records office in the city to process its record attempts, of which more than 150 have been successful so far.
3. At over 828 metres (2,716.5 feet) and more than 160 stories, the Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world – and from top to bottom, the lifts in this building travel the longest distance in the world.
4. There are no street addresses in Dubai. People here navigate by landmarks and receive post at their offices rather than their homes, as the postman simply wouldn’t know where to find them.
5. In 1991, there was one set of skyscrapers on the Sheikh Zayed Road (the World Trade Centre Towers) surrounded by desert. Now there around 900 high-rise structures in the city, and the numbers just keep on growing.
- The Dubai Shopping Festival: Kicking off on Boxing Day, the biggest retail and entertainment event in the Middle East runs throughout January. Look out for unmissable deals, daily raffles and celebrity performances.
- Dubai Marathon: One of the first sporting events on the city’s annual calendar, the race takes advantage of the cooler weather. The route passes by the Burj Al Arab, Old Jumeirah Beach Park and the Grand Mosque.
- Dubai Desert Classic: Part of the European Tour and referred to in golf circles as the ‘Major of the Middle East’, the Dubai Desert Classic attracts some of the biggest names in the golf world.
- Dubai Food Festival: the extravaganza starts in late February and celebrates Dubai’s position as an exciting gastronomic destination. Experience fine dining restaurants, street food trucks and beachside canteens.
- Dubai International Boat Show: Held annually at the Dubai International Marine Club, the show offers a chance to ogle super yachts and other sailing craft and see how the other half live.
- Art Dubai: The Middle East’s leading international art fair features a curated but diverse selection of about 90 galleries from the UAE and across the world.
- The Al Marmoom Heritage Festival: This popular camel racing event sees thousands of highly trained camels of all ages and breeds compete to win their owners significant cash prizes.
- The Middle East Film and Comic Con: The three-day event is billed as the largest festival of pop culture and cult entertainment in the Middle East.
- The Dubai Tango Festival: This increasingly popular festival attracts performers, DJs and Tango lovers from across the globe. Expect dance workshops for all levels, expert performances and a sought-after gala dinner.
- The Al Gaffal Dhow Race: Honouring the UAE’s pearl diving past, the race is one of the most traditional sporting events in the calendar. Spectators can either board a specially chartered ferry or watch from the shore.
- Dubai Sports World: The world’s largest indoor sports event is a great way to keep active while avoiding the searing summer temperatures, with pros on hand to help you master your skills.
- Ramadan in Dubai is a time of worship and reflection, when Muslims in the city submit to daytime fasting and prayer. At sundown, join locals at one of the ornately decorated Ramadan tents and experience some traditional local delicacies.
July, August and September
- Dubai Summer Surprises: This annual summer festival has been running for almost two decades, with a line-up of exhibitions, concerts, fun entertainment and children’s activities throughout the city’s numerous luxury shopping malls.
- Modhesh World: Held at the Dubai World Trade Centre and also part of Dubai Summer Surprises, this family-friendly event brings a host of favourite cartoon characters together under one roof, plus a thrilling line-up of rides, games and interactive experiences.
- Dubai Design Week: Conceived to highlight Dubai’s role as a leading design hub, Dubai Design Week showcases the work and talent of more than 150 designers from the Middle East and around the world.
- Fashion Forward Dubai: Taking place at the Dubai Design District, Fashion Forward Dubai includes catwalk shows, couture, ready-to-wear and accessories presentations, and a host of seminars and panel discussions led by fashion industry experts.
- Dubai Motor Festival: With an exciting series of events and motoring experiences, the Dubai Motor Festival brings together petrolheads from around the world in a citywide celebration of all things cars.
- Dubai International Triathlon: The first half-iron race of the season, the Dubai International Triathlon features a 1.9km swim followed by a 90km bike ride, then a 21.km run. Easy peasy!
- Dubai Rugby Sevens: One of the best known Sevens events in the rugby calendar, this popular tournament attracts more than 100,000 fans who relish the party atmosphere, fast-paced action and world-class entertainment.
- Dubai Winter Festival: Held every year at the Media City Amphitheatre, the Winter Festival is as Christmassy as it gets. Pay a visit to Santa’s Grotto, watch the tree lighting ceremony, and yell “He’s behind you!” at the festive pantomime.
Weather and local info
What will the weather be like?
Before you set off, take a look at our Dubai International Airport guide.
The flight time to Dubai from London Heathrow is approximately 7 hours.
The local currency in Dubai is the United Arab Emirates Dirham (AED).
There are plenty of ways to travel around Dubai. The bus network is reliable and reasonably priced, as is the metro. Taxis are the easiest, most popular way to get around.
The voltage in Dubai is usually 220/240 volts and 3 pronged British style plugs are used.