With its unique personality that includes 21st-century culture and ancient history, Dubai is an exciting travel destination to explore. This high-tech desert oasis features an ever-changing skyline full of futuristic skyscrapers, including Burj Khalifa, the highest building in the world. In the old part of the city you’ll find traditional gold, textile and spice markets, whilst modern Dubai is home to the largest shopping mall on earth, the Dubai Mall. To get from the modern part of the city to its ancient roots, you sail over Dubai Creek in a traditional boat called an ‘abra’.
Dubai is home to world class shopping and entertainment as well as plenty of Arabic charm, whether you’re spending a lazy day soaking up the sun on the beach, enjoying a ride on a camel in the desert, or experiencing the thrill of a theme park with daring rides.
Why visit Dubai
- Combine a desert and city break with a beach holiday.
- Experience Dubai’s incredibly diverse cultures.
- Enjoy innovative and futuristic architecture.
- Visit an artificially created island with every luxury.
- See lush gardens created in this arid setting.
- It’s one of the fastest growing cities in the world – a real success story.
- You cannot shop like this anywhere else in the world.
Shopping, sailing, sunbathing and thrill seeking are all part and parcel of a holiday package in delightful Dubai. With so many exciting places to visit and such a diverse range of activities, a trip to Dubai is always a magical experience. Let Thompsons Holidays take you on an unsurpassed adventure in this unique destination full of desert dunes, dining delights and extraordinary experiences.
This ultra-modern desert city is a high-tech oasis with an ever-changing skyline. Dubai is a microcosm of cultures and people with so many things to do and so many diverse places to visit on holiday. Whether you’re coming to explore the arid desert and go dune bashing, visit thrilling theme parks, enjoy adrenaline-packed activities, laze on the beach and soak up the sun or go shopping in the largest mall in the world – you can do it all on a Dubai travel package.
Things to do in Dubai
- Take the elevator to the top of Burj Khalifa.
- Enjoy a dinner cruise on Dubai Creek.
- Explore the Lost Chambers Aquarium at Atlantis the Palm.
- Embark on a desert safari.
- Visit the extraordinary Dubai Frame.
- Visit exciting theme parks including LEGOLAND Dubai, with its Water Park.
- Explore under the water at the Dubai Aquarium.
- Head for Aventura Parks to go zip-lining, rope climbing and tree surfing.
- Visit the world’s largest indoor theme park, IMG World of Adventure and meet superheroes including the Hulk, Iron Man and Spiderman.
- Shop for gold and spices in the souks.
- Discover Arabic history in Bur Dubai.
- Go skiing at Al Barsha’s indoor ski slopes.
- Visit the Etihad Museum and Jumeirah Mosque.
Learn all about Dubai’s culture, be entertained, enthralled and excited as you discover all the city has to offer. Whatever you want to do, and whatever type of holiday package you’re after, you’ll find it in Dubai - whether it’s a fun family getaway, enjoying the beach, the nightlife and adventures with friends, or getting away from it all on a romantic break.
When is the best time to visit?
- The best time to visit Dubai is in the winter, November to April.
- Summer (May to October) can be extremely hot and humid.
- July and August are the hottest months.
Getting there & getting around
- Flight duration from Johannesburg to Dubai: 8 hours, 5 minutes.
- It's easy to get around Dubai by taxi, metro, bus, boat, bicycle, or rental car.
Do I need a visa?
- South African passport holders do require a visa to enter the UAE.
- Passports must be valid for 6 months after departure from the UAE.
What time is it?
- The UAE is 2 hours ahead of South Africa.
- The official currency is the Dirham (AED).
- Credit cards are widely accepted & ATMs are prevalent.
- US Dollars are widely accepted in the UAE.
- Tipping is customary in the UAE.
Language & phrases
- The official language is Arabic.
- English is widely spoken in the UAE.
- Islam is the official religion in the UAE.
- When visiting sacred sites, dress conservatively.
- It is safe to drink tap water in Dubai, but bottled water is readily available.
- Vaccinations – check with your travel clinic before you go.
- Lightweight clothing in summer, some light layers for cooler weather and beachwear if you will be visiting the beaches.
- Dress modestly.
- Comfortable walking shoes.
- Sunscreen, lip balm, hat and sunglasses.
- Mini first aid kit and regular prescription medication.
- Hand sanitiser and insect repellent.
- Travel adaptor.
- Support the local economy
- Respect the cultures and customs of the UAE.
- Contact the Thompsons Holidays 24-hour care line to assist.