The extremely fast pace of growth and change in Dubai feels like it all happened overnight, but the last 10 years Dubai has made strides in history. The government has been keen to attract attention to the invigorating historical Dubai in its semblance as a modest fishing port with museums and exhibitions that focus on the simpler ways of life that triumphed before the skyscrapers came along.
The pace of change from a sleepy fishing community to a global capital continues to develop while managing to keep its culture and custom while incorporating skylines and shorelines. The modern-day changes over the past decade make life a lot easier for foreign visitors.
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Completed in 2006, the tree-shaped Palm Jumeirah island known for glitzy hotels, posh apartment towers and upmarket global restaurants offers food trucks with snacks on the boardwalk. The man-made island is popular for its views of the Dubai coastline and the Burj Al Arab hotel. Beach clubs with spas and infinity pools turn into boisterous nightclubs with live DJs in the evening.
Bluewaters Island which opened to the public in 2018 is home to the world’s tallest observation wheel Ain Dubai. Bluewaters Island is accessible from the mainland by a road bridge or a 15-minute walk using a pedestrian bridge.
Dubai is on the frontline of virtual thrills and reality innovation. In the last 10 years visitors have experienced simulated skydiving at the iFly Skydiving simulator, piloted a virtual jet with the Emirates A380 Experience, played at being a racing driver at Dubai Autodrome, or starred in a blockbuster action movie, like The Void: Ghostbusters Dimension, at Hub Zero.
The Emirate was once considered near-impossible to navigate without a car, but that has changed. The Dubai Metro opened in 2009 and provides a mass-transit system suitable for a modern metropolis, with an extension due to open ahead of Expo 2020. Public transport has expanded into the waterways with the advent of water taxis and water buses along the coastline.
You can even tour Dubai by bicycle; although Dubai was not traditionally considered a destination for cyclists, the creation of dedicated car-free circuits and cycle paths in the city and the desert make it easier to explore on two wheels!