Shimmering skyscrapers and towering condos rise high above smooth desert sands at this unique port in the heart of the Middle East. While indoor ski resorts, luxury hotels, white sandy beaches and duty-free shopping have made Dubai an adult wonderland, travelers can still experience some of the city’s former charm (and the natural beauty of the nearby desert) on a day excursion to this popular port.
How to Get to Dubai
Free shopping shuttles leave every hour from the port and take travelers to Mercato Mall or City Center Drive. Otherwise taxis are easy to find near the berth and can be hired for a day rate.
One Day in Dubai
Start the day exploring Dubai’s past at Dubai Creek. This landmark divides the business district from touristy sections of the city and is an ideal spot for witnessing where old meets new. Stop at the Eheikh Saeed al-Maktoum House, for a taste of Dubai before the oil trade took off. Then head to the observation deck on the 124th floor of Nurj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world—for unmatched views of the city skyline. Round out the day with a stop at Burj Al Arab, the only seven-star hotel on the planet. Visitors aren’t always welcome, but scoring a table at the chic underwater restaurant is sure to be a memorable experience.
Dirham is the official currency of Dubai and although Arabic is the national language, English is widely spoken. The cruise terminal, much like the city itself, answers all the needs of travelers. ATMs, free Wi-Fi, a restaurant and shopping shuttles for visitors make the port a perfect spot for jumping off into the city or the desert.