What To Do In United Arab Emirates

View a Map of United Arab Emirates

Check out these articles from the Globetrooper Team in this country:

The United Arab Emirates is a federation of seven emirates on the eastern side of the Arabian peninsula, at the entrance to the Persian Gulf. It has coastlines on the Persian Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf, with Saudi Arabia to the west and southwest, and Oman to the southeast and also on the eastern tip of the Musandam Peninsula as well as an Omani enclave within its borders. It is a country rich in history and culture and an easy starting point for travels in the Middle East.

The United Arab Emirates is a modern and dynamic country. To some, it is an advanced and clean country, to others a touristy "Disneyland". For most Western tourists, the UAE offers an environment that is extremely familiar. The malls are extraordinarily modern, filled with virtually any product available in the West (save sexually explicit material; movies are censored, as are, to some extent, magazines).

The less well known side of the UAE includes remote, magnificent desert dunes on the edge of the Empty Quarter and craggy, awe-inspiring wadis in the north-east bordering Oman.

Alcohol is widely available at many restaurants and bars in Dubai and in the tourist hotels of every other emirate save Sharjah. There is a legal but roundly overlooked requirement to have a licence to buy alcohol. The alcohol license is proof that the bearer is a non-Muslim. A passport will not suffice. However, you can purchase alcohol duty-free at the airport to bring into the UAE. Sharjah emirate is completely dry. An alcohol licence is required in all other emirates and is available to residents at different rates, depending on their income, and for a flat fee in Dubai. The requirement is sometimes overlooked at certain stores.

The roads and other public facilities are modern if, at times, extremely crowded. Supermarkets offer a vast assortment of products from Europe and the U.S., depending on the shop, along with local and regional items. Major international chains such as Ikea and Carrefour have a presence and fast-food chains (nearly all from the U.S.) such as McDonald's and KFC operate widely. On the other hand, there are still a few crowded traditional souks filled with products from around the world, rug stores. These can be hard to find for the average traveler, as the malls tend to gain an overwhelming amount of attention. (Please note that contrary to what is printed in guidebooks, the souks in Abu Dhabi were torn down in 2006 and no longer exist. The souks in Dubai are still wonderful to explore, though).


What To Do In United Arab Emirates

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Vital Stats

Region Info Middle East
Population 283.2 million
Highest Altitude 5,610 m
Mount Damavand, Iran 18,406 ft
Lowest Altitude -418 m
Dead Sea, Israel -1,371 ft
Lowest Temperature -46.4 °C
Van, Turkey (1990) -51.5 °F
Highest Temperature 70.1 °C
Dasht-e Lut, Iran (2007) 158.2 °F

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