The United Arab Emirates is located in the middle of the Arabian Desert, and it’s a popular tourist destination for those interested in learning more about the Middle East. The country is also an important player in the global economy, with many businesses headquartered there.
The UAE’s federal capital is Abu Dhabi, which is also the centre of all government activities. The country’s largest city and world-renowned tourist destination, Dubai, has a population of around 1.1 million people (20% of the total UAE population). Despite being mostly composed of arid desert landscape, the nation possesses an unconventional beauty thatcaptivates those who take the time to appreciate it.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is made up of seven emirates, all under the rule of an Emir or Sheikh. Islam plays a significant role in shaping cultural and social norms throughout the country, so be mindful of this when packing for your trip or making any plans.
UAE is a wealthy country with plenty of oil and gas reserves, as well as a booming tourism industry. This focus on tourism has caused the government to prioritize improvement in infrastructure and education, which benefits all UAE citizens.
The UAE also has two award-winning commercial airlines: Emirates, which is located in Dubai International Airport and Etihad, which is based in Abu Dhabi International Airport. Both are significant air travel hubs linking the Middle East with Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia.
Where is UAE?
This influential Middle-Eastern country sits next to Oman, Saudi Arabia and Qatar; with the Persian Gulf along its northern coast and the Gulf of Oman on its north-eastern border.
Things to Do in UAE
Abu Dhabi and Dubai are the two most significant cities, and both continue to attract a large number of visitors and foreign investors. As a consequence, these are the best places to locate high-end shopping, excellent dining options, and a plethora of unique tourist attractions.
Dubai has the most famous sites, such as the postcard aerial views of Dubai’s Palm Islands. From an unknown, coastal desert city to an internationally known metropolis, with the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa Skyscraper, Ski Dubai’s man-made ski slopes.
The Jumeirah Mosque’s beauty has inspired many a great artwork, and it is considered to be the most photographed mosque in Dubai. Modernization has not harmed the treasured legacies, as evidenced by the preservation of historically significant relics like the annual Dhow race and valuable artefacts kept at the Dubai Museum.
Although it often falls in the shadow of its neighbour Dubai, Abu Dhabi is home to many amazing places worth visiting. One popular event that takes place every year is the Formula One Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit. This event also inspired the creation of Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. Another must-see spot in Abu Dhabi is Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, which features beautiful Islamic architecture and design.
Shopping in UAE
UAE is a shopper’s paradise, with an array of opportunities for visitors to relax and enjoy some retail therapy. From traditional souks to luxury duty-free mega-stores, the sheer variety of products available is sure to make a big dent in your wallet. Shoppers come from all over the world to indulge in the luxury of the gold souks, the flashy international brands and the endless variety of products that embody the style and innovation of UAE.
Arabic Cuisine in UAE
The cuisine of the Arab world is simply delectable. Pork is absolutely prohibited by Muslims, as are the essential components of Arabic cooking, including lamb and chicken; popular meals include lamb, chicken, breads, herbs and spices, dairy products such as yoghurt and butter, and, of course, rice. Although it isn’t as hot as its East Asian counterparts, the cuisine is highly delicious; a fragrant mix of herbs and spice.
Shisha lounges and restaurants are plentiful in Dubai, as well as across the country. Shisha (or sheeshah), the flavored tobacco that is often smoked via a multi-stemmed water pipe (hookah), is an important part of Arab culture.
Travel Tips for UAE
- The official religion of the UAE is Islam, therefore as mindful tourists and visiting business associates, they should be sensitive to the consequences and expectations of a predominantly Muslim culture.
- In general, the dress code in the United Arab Emirates is considered modest, especially for women, but also for males. The Sharjah emirate is particularly strict with its own decency rules; if you are visiting Sharjah, previous study is advised to ensure that suitable clothing is worn.
- The requirement for ladies to wear long, loose clothing that covers at least her neck and, if possible, her elbows is implied. To avoid any potential conflict with local Emiratis, it is recommended that you tone down on any flashy fashion when visiting the UAE, especially during Ramadan celebrations. Women are expected to conceal their hair in mosques and other religious states as a sign of respect for the faith.
- In the UAE, good manners are highly encouraged, given that Muslim customs dominate. Because ritual greeting necessitates (sometimes lengthy) handshakes, keep in mind not to shake hands or eat with your left hand because it is for hygiene reasons. Also, the most senior person should be greeted first by using his real name and title.
- Even though tourists are depicted with a little more respect, it is still better to play it safe rather than risk an avoidable quarrel with the nation’s residents, after all.
UAE Visa Procedure
Depending on your nationality, the visa requirements for entering the United Arab Emirates will differ. If you want more specific information, please visit the UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Website.
Things to do in UAE
The UAE continues to amaze the rest of the world with its innovative inventiveness and ability to host major global events such as conferences, summits, congresses, fairs, expositions, symposiums and more. The UAE remains a top destination for business gatherings due to its extensive facilities, spacious rooms, and beautiful locations.