Dubai is one of the seven emirates that make up the United Arab Emirates and the name of the emirate’s main city. The modern emirate of Dubai was created with the formation of the United Arab Emirates in 1971.
Official Name: Dubai
Area: Total 4,114 km² (1,588.4 square miles)
Capital: Dubai (city of Dubai)
Currency: Arab Emirate Dirham (AED); 1 EUR = 5.4 AED
Official language: Arabic, but also widely spoken are Persian, Malayalam, English, Hindi, Urdu, Bengali, and Tagalog
Time zone: Dubai Standard Time (UTC+4)
Dialing Code: +971
Internet top-level domain (TLD): .ae
Emergency services: 999
Days of sunshine per year: 365
Average temperatures: December-March 24ºC; March-November 35 ºC
Main International Airports: Dubai International Airport (DXB), Maktoum International Airport (JXB) – under construction, to be ready in 2008
Religions: 96% Muslim, Hindu, Christian, 4% other
Emir: Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Population: metro 1, 492,000 (2006)
Population density: 345.65/km² (895.2/sq miles)
Gross Domestic Product (GDP): USD 46 billion (2006)
Government offices: Saturday - Wednesday (7:30am - 2:30pm)
General businesses work: 8am to 1pm and 4pm to 8pm from Saturday to Thursday
Banks: 8am to 1pm from Saturday to Wednesday and 8am to 12pm on Thursday
Most major credit cards are widely used and accepted.
Dubai is one of the wonders of the modern world. A decade ago the sand was the ruler of this emirate located on the edge of the Arabian desert with no discernible natural advantages. Nowadays the sand has been dethroned by the luxurious futuristic skyscrapers and the exclusive cozy villas scattered around the coastline. And all this is thanks to the vision of Dubai’s ruler – Sheikh Mohammed and the belief in his subjects in his idea to turn his country into the center of international trading and tourism. His logic is simple: if you build it, they will come.
The audacity of the city's ruler is breathtaking. Running out of coastline to build hotels? Build vast artificial islands with 120km of new beachfront. Need better connections with the world? Build up an award-winning international airline in 15 years.
From within these high standards of luxury and convenience, visitors can experience exotic Arabia in the bustling souks or a night in a Bedouin tent with belly-dancing under the starlit desert skies, as well as a way of life that is still embedded in the Islamic traditions of an ancient land. Dubai's attraction lies in the contrast between the ultra modern and the enchantingly traditional, which gives the city a personality like no other and visitors a variety of experiences to choose from. From desert oases and unspoiled beaches, camel races and old wind towers, to top-class shopping opportunities, avant-garde architecture and the finest international cuisine, Dubai has more than enough depth to satisfy even the most seasoned of travelers.
Places to see:
• Bastakiya District - historic home to many reconstructed buildings in the traditional style;
• Burj al-Arab hotel
• Dubai Museum
• Dubai Zoo
• Gold Souq
• Ibn Battuta Mall
• Jumeirah Mosque
• Mall of the Emirates
• Shindagha District
• Palm Islands
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LEISURE, CULTURE & SPORTS IN DUBAI
Dubai culture today is very different from what it used to be a decade or two ago. The Dubai culture is a cosmopolitan one. With the influx of great number of foreign population which includes Persians, Indians, Baluchis etc., the culture in Dubai has become a global one. With Islam as its official religion, Culture in Dubai is essentially a Muslim one but the presence of Hindus, Christians, Sikhs etc cannot be ignored and their presence has left an undeniable mark on the Culture in Dubai. Click here to learn more
VISAS IN DUBAI
Before leaving to come to Dubai, make sure you understand your legal situation. Depending on your nationality, you might need a visa, residence permit and/or work permit. Read our guide to legal requirements for coming to Dubai or use the Just Landed forums to ask other members for help. Click here to learn more
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