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Got 48 hours? Travel to Dubai!

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Museums, deep diving, and dining in the sky. There’s a lot you can pack in two days on your next trip to the Emirate

Museums, deep diving, and dining in the sky. There’s a lot you can pack in two days on your next trip to the Emirate

As travel restrictions ease across the globe, visitors are flocking to Dubai in large numbers. And the glitzy metropolis is unveiling new attractions at a rapid pace. My travel itineraries are usually filled with loads of activities and adventure — and Dubai was no exception. Here is how I chose to spend an action-packed 48 hours in this trendy Emirate.

Sunrise at the Museum Of The Future
| Photo Credit: Ihsan Salhia – TG

DAY 1

10AM

Ease in to the day with a visit to the stunning Museum Of The Future, a torus-shaped architectural marvel that has been dubbed as the ‘most beautiful building in the world’. Its striking façade is adorned with numerous inspiring quotes from the ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum. Inside, discover a living museum that adapts its exhibits and attractions to the iterative changes of the environment and technological innovations. I was impressed with Tomorrow Today, which showcased wearable technologies; bodysuits that can protect against extreme climates in the future, to a Teslaglove that tracks you pulse and lets one feel virtual objects. Equally awe-inspiring was a Level 4 electric self-driving mode fully electric car that integrates natural and recyclable materials. Other fascinating features include a DNA library of thousands of different species and a mixed reality recreation of the Amazon Rainforest.

Price: AED 145/adult; free for children under 3 years

Deep Dive Dubai  

Deep Dive Dubai  

2PM

Discover a sunken city at Deep Dive Dubai, the world’s deepest pool at 60m that holds 14 million litres of freshwater, the equivalent of six Olympic-sized swimming pools. As an advanced certified scuba diver, it was a unique and immensely entertaining experience paddling through a fully-furnished apartment with artwork adorning the walls and a fully-stocked library. Other highlights in this 45-minute sojourn included casually leaning against a Mercedes convertible, riding a cycle, making moves on a chess board, or simply reading a magazine. After all, mundane activities take on a whole new meaning when performed at 60 feet below surface level! While the deep dive experience is for certified professionals only, rookies can partake in a surface-level snorkelling session or explore a Discover Scuba session up to 12m.

Price: AED 1200/person for certified divers up to 30m;

AED 1800/person for Discover Scuba Dive up to 12m;

AED 400/person for Discover Snorkeling

Infinity des Lumieres, an immersive digital exhibit at the Dubai Mall

Infinity des Lumieres, an immersive digital exhibit at the Dubai Mall

5PM

Dubai Mall is known to be a shopper’s paradise that stocks the world’s most renowned brands. It is also home to Infinity des Lumières, an immersive digital exhibit that showcases artwork by the famous painter Vincent Van Gogh through vibrant colours, moving images and mesmerizing music, perfectly synchronised across expansive spaces. Time stood still for the couple of hours I spent there, and I was particularly captivated by the inspiring scenes of the countryside he was raised in, and the depiction of the ‘soaring lanterns’ – a nod to his passion to recreate 19 th century Japan in his works.

Price: AED 225/person

8PM

Next, I headed over to Dinner in the Sky, one of the most unusual dining experiences where discerning guests tuck into a delectable three-course meal on a table suspended 50m high in the air. Menus can change frequently and guests are requested to choose between a meat, fish or vegetarian option in advance at the time of booking. The spectacular views of the Dubai skyline, crisp breeze, joyful banter and a DJ spinning foot-tapping chartbusters make this the perfect venue for special occasions.

Price: Starting at AED 599/person

At SkyDive Dubai

At SkyDive Dubai

Day 2

9AM

Kick off the day at SkyDive Dubai, an experience that offers a freefall at 120 miles per hour from a height of about 12,500 feet! Choose between the Palm Drop Zone in the heart of Dubai or the Desert Drop Zone located 35km outside the city, as both offer diverse yet spectacular views! As far as an adrenaline rush goes, nothing quite comes close to jumping off a plane mid-air! The energy at the Skydive facility was infectious, with loud music piercing the air, and my instructor maintaining an upbeat tempo as I followed his drills like a pro before embarking on this one in a lifetime adventure opportunity.

Price: AED 1799/person (Desert Drop Zone)

AED 2299/person (Palm Drop Zone)

Indoor ski facility at Mall of the Emirates 

Indoor ski facility at Mall of the Emirates 
| Photo Credit: Julius Konttinen

2PM

Dubai is perhaps the only place in the world where one can ‘time travel’ from a scorching desert to a freezing winter wonderland in a matter of minutes. Ski Dubai, the indoor ski facility at Mall of the Emirates has five ski runs and a freestyle snowboard run that never runs out of fresh powder. One can also get up close with the facility’s resident colony of Gentoo and King penguins so it is no surprise that this is a huge hit for those travelling with families.

Price: Starting at AED 175/person (1 day snow pass)

5PM

Dubai is rapidly transforming itself into a creative and cultural hub, and I was fortunate that my trip coincided with Art Dubai – the leading art fair in the Middle East that had enthusiasts and collectors fly in from all corners of the globe. More than 300 artists from 50 countries participated, making it one of the most diverse fairs in the region. While there were plenty of paintings and sculptural works, there were numerous sections showcasing the best of Virtual and Augmented Reality-enabled creations and a special emphasis on digital art, with Metaverse and NFTs now the new buzzwords in popular culture.

Price: AED 60/person (1 day ticket)

Dinner at the Time Out Market

Dinner at the Time Out Market

8PM

I wound up my evening at Time Out Market, an epicurean’s delight with the finest cuisines from around the world under one roof. Where else can one sample a spinach phyllo pie from the Balkans and a crispy lamb kibbeh from Lebanon at the same time? For those yearning for a taste of home, chef Prashant Chipkar’s Indian fusion creations at Masti are to die for, and I had to order a second round of his signature Avocado Ceviche Pani Puri.

Price: Approx. AED 150/person

Stay: There is no dearth of hotels to choose from in Dubai. The Address Sky View stands out for its location and its soaring views of the Burj Khalifa as does Raffles The Palm Dubai, especially for those seeking unbridled luxury.

Flights: Fly non-stop from Chennai to Dubai via Emirates, Indigo Airlines & Air Arabia starting at Rs. 27,000 per person (prices subject to change).



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