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Snowworld Dubai


Nieuwbouw Dubai


Hoogbouw Dubai


Crossing Dubai Creek


The old city




17-10-07 t/m 19-10-07


Oké, de 17de is uiteindelijk wat overdreven. Na een vertraging van 5 uur in Teheran, ben ik pas om 22 uur in Sharjah. Ik vlieg met een low budget maatschappij, Air Arabia, dus alleen water is gratis. Het vliegtuig is een A320 en redelijk nieuw, dit is te verwachten voor de Emiraten, maatschappij is eigendom van de sjeik. Het eerste wat opvalt is dat een hoop dames gelijk hun hoofddoek afdoen, zodra ze aan boord zijn. Na een maand van Chadors en hoofddoekjes is dat voor mij: Wauw, vrouwen hebben haar! Vlucht duurt maar 1,5 uur. In Sharjah geld pinnen, is de Dirham en na de paspoortcontrole op zoek naar een taxi. Nou, je weet gelijk dat je in een rijk land bent, luxe nieuwe auto met meteren ijskoude airco, beleefde chauffeur en goede wegen. Ik heb een hostel geboekt in Dubai, wat vlakbij Sharjah ligt. Om half 12 heb ik een bed in een dormitory, praat met een knul uit Engeland en ga nog even naar de Mac voor wat eten. Nou ga ik me dit keer niet uitweiden over wat ik in Dubai gedaan heb. Dat is simpel, ik heb geshopt. O.a. wat kleren, boeken, lens voor m'n camera, extra batterij en dat soort dingen. Nee, dit keer wat meer over Dubai in het algemeen, maar wel  in het engels voor al die anderen.


So what about Dubai?

Well, first of all, it is an expatcity. About 80 to 90 percent are from other countries, mainly from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka etc. But also lots and lots of westerners, working there (dressed normal) or on a stopover (dressed in shorts and tops). So what can you do in Dubai? Well simple shop, or go on dunesafari. There is not a whole lot to do if you're only there for two days. Okay, you can go on the sightseeingbus for a couple of hours and visit the old cty.



Skiing in Dubai


Now, as I said, I was there mostly to shop, so I went to several huge shoppingmalls, who have everything. Designercloth, audio and videoshops, Chadorshops, jewelshops, booksshops, coffeeshops etc, in the biggest one you good even go skiďng, all set in modern surroundings. Some malls haven a theme to it, as the Shouk market, which is a modern build bazar with a lot of Persian souvenirshops, restaurants at the water and other expensive stores. This one is also closest to the most famous building of Dubai, I call the Sail or Ship with a hotel under water. Unfortunately you can't get close 'cause the whole beach area is private. In the old city there are shopping streets, selling the same things as in the malls, but without the airco. There are also some old buidings, a fort and the, worth doing, ferry crossing Dubai Creek. You can spent a few hours walking around, including shopping.

Now to get to al these places you can take a bus, but they only go twice an hour and even then they pass when half full. So you just have to take a taxi, which luckily is not so expensive. But, going in or through the centre means trafficjams. Outside the centre it is better, but the city is big so it still takes some time to go from one place to the next. Besides that it is a growing city which means lots of detours. Now they are building a Metro system which will be finished somewhere in 2010 and hopefully finishes the trafficproblems. Next problem with taxi's is the number of them. Though there are a lot, still between 17.00 and 20.00 o'clock you won't get a taxi without a lot of luck. Leaving a shoppingmall at night I had to stand in line  for one for 75 minutes. So transport in Dubai is no good, unless you have your own car.

As I said, Dubai is a growing city. Being one of the richest oilstates in the world, money is no problem. Besides that, a lot of foreign companies want to and do invest in the city. So you see buildingsites everywhere.



Hoogste gebouw ter wereld.


At one place they are building about 60 new skyscrapers, including the biggest one in the world, going up to over 800 metre. To make it more special, they also build in the sea, like The Sail.



The Sail en Shouk mall/hotel


But that is not enough, so they created the Palm Resort. These are small islands made in the sea in the shape of a palmtree. Rich people can buy their own island. But this is still not enough, so now they work on The World and a next one is also on the way. Making Dubai a populair place for the rich and famous to buy property here.

Next thing about Dubai are the people. As Dubai is an Islamic country the same rules apply here as in other Islamic countries, people officially have to wear the appropriate clothes. Meaning for men long trousers and for women the Chador. But, being a country full of foreigners, outnumbering the locals ( about 3 miljoen locals against 6 or 7 miljoen expats), they allow just about everything, though I was told that following the rules of the Ramazan were more strict than in Iran. So you will see women wearing chadors and even



Bhurka's and men wearing the Arabic dresses and headcovers. But mostly you see people wearing western clothes, men wearing shorts and t-shirts, women wearing shorts and tops and no scarf or something like that. In busses man and women mix and nobody cares. In that way, it is an headeness Islamic country.

So what do I think of Dubai? Well it is a great place for a stopover and do some cheap shopping. I think it is also a great place to live as an expat. But spending a holiday here for more then three days, I don't think so.




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