Beyond the tall skyscrapers, glitzy mall and dizzying lifestyle, lies the tender heart of Dubai with its local customs, traditions and cuisines. And trust us when we say that exploring Dubai like a local is a fascinating experience. So, how do you live like a local in the beautiful land of the Burj Khalifa? Here are a few ideas.
- Eat like a local
Dubai is a melting pot of cultures. Here, you can gorge on delicious fare from a number of countries, be it Greek, Mediterranean, Lebanese, Indian, Pakistani, Italian or French. And, no, you do not need to book a table at a five start restaurant. Just head over to the Second of December Street and have your fill of kebabs and shawarmas like the locals do. The best part is that you can accommodate this gastronomical delight within a tight budget.
- Travel like a local
Travelling in Dubai, like a local, can be a fascinating experience. Especially the abra trips (traditional wooden boats) on the Dubai Creek will acquaint you to how your co-travellers live in the city. An abra ride to Deira costs just 1 Dirham and gifts you a treasure trove of conversations. You can even rent an abra for an hour long ride around the creek for as little as 50 Dirhams. Indeed, the best part about travelling like a local is the fact that you come face to face with the authentic spirit of the place which remains out of touch from air conditioned chauffeured cars and isolated hotel rooms.
- Shop like a local
The souks or markets in Dubai are a shopper’s delight. They are full of exotic local fare at bargain prices. Observing the hustle and bustle of the people in a souk is a treat in itself. In fact, the scenes inside a souk have hardly changed over the years and will thus provide you an insight into the authentic Emirati way of living. And in the process you can hit the mother lode of exquisite local jewellery and aromatic spices, just like the locals.
Dubai is a jewel waiting to be discovered. The local spirit of the country can indeed be best captured by living like a local. Perhaps, there is no better way to do this than opting for a homestay. A number of traditional guest houses are also strewn about the city and will offer you a taste of Dubai. These can be easily accessed via Dubai airport taxi services which are both reliable and affordable. Have a great time exploring the place.