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Quick Guide to Dubai

Dubai holidays can be a great short break for a blast of sunshine on a winter sunseeking mission or at any time, but you could also consider a longer trip where relaxation, sightseeing and shopping are all combined with the great weather. This is a city that's all about glitz, glamour, shopping malls and decadence - which has made Dubai rise rapidly up the list of must-do holidays! Search for your 2016 trip now!

Dubai has rapidly developed from a small fishing village to one of the world's most exciting and intriguing metropolises. It boasts a unique mix of the old and the shimmering new - such as the Burj Khalifa, which didn't just become the world's tallest building by a few metres. Oh no, it smashed the previous record by a whopping 300 metres!

The rise of low cost airlines has made taking cheap holidays to Dubai a reality, and in fact recent years has also seen it become a popular city break destination, with three and four night trips increasingly the norm. So if you think you've not got time to fit in a Dubai holiday in 2016 or 2017, then think again! Plus, if you're looking to save as much as you can, it's a really good spot for a last-minute deal as you can find some astonishing reductions. Also consider Dubai as an excellent point to start a cruise to explore the Emirates. You can stay and cruise through a number of cruise and holiday tour operators.

Fab holidays for:

City breaks, Lovers of extravagance, Beach breaks

Main Airports:

Dubai International Airport

Did you know?

Foreigners make up most of Dubai's population. The local people, called Emiratis, are just 15% of the total.

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Top 5 Things to Do in Dubai

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When you arrive in Dubai, the city can rapidly become overwhelming with its sheer opulence, variety of sights and bustling lifestyle. So make a beeline for your hotel and take a breath before heading out.

Jumeirah Beach
Arguably Dubai's best free beach. Spend the day here under the sun (lotion applied) and take a dip in the sea.
Souks (marketplace)
Practise your haggling skills and come away with a gem or two. Especially at the gold souks, where there's gold galore.
Malls
Dubai has some pretty extravagant malls where you can go from shopping for clothes to skiing all under the same roof.
Desert Safari
Crash over sand dunes in the tour car, ride the camels and quad bike on the sands with a Dubai desert safari.
Wild Wadi Water Park
A huge waterpark with plenty of hidden gems to explore.

When to Visit Dubai

First step on deciding when to plan your holiday to Dubai is this: do you like really hot heat with a huge helping of humidity? If you do, then go over from end of May onwards to the end of September - the sun beats down with no rainfall and it's almost 100% humidity. Because most people can't handle it, the holiday and flights prices drop too.

For those of you dreaming of sunny beach weather in the depths of a UK weather, then it's all about October to April and March time for you - it's beautiful. As for other considerations, we've got our fingers on the pulse of things you shouldn't miss.

If there's one thing Emiratis know how to do, it's shop. All you have to do is look at their mammoth malls for proof. Hard-core shoppers hit the streets from January to February for the Dubai Shopping Festival, which has fireworks and concerts to spur you on your quest for the perfect shoes.

Thanks to the mild weather and perpetual sunshine, golfers clamour to play on the many sprawling courses Dubai has to offer. From February to March, the UAE's most popular golfing competition comes home to roost. The Dubai Desert Classic takes place at the Emirates Golf Club and the fact there's a substantial money prize makes the game all the more exciting.

February and March is also when the Dubai Jazz Festival takes place, welcoming the dulcet talents of Jamie Callum to the desert, and the Dubai Tennis Championships. Roger Federer and Maria Sherapova have been known to impress on the courts.

From March to April, the Dubai World Cup takes place - and the world's richest horse race is not one to miss. Foodies won't be able to resist the sumptuous eats on offer at the Festival of Taste. Top global chefs gather together to whip up delicious food as well as give you tips and presentations.

Rugby fans flock to see 16 international teams take each on for the Dubai Rugby Sevens in November - December while film aficionados wax poetic about independent and art-house cinema at the Dubai International Film Festival

Beach Holidays in Dubai

There's plenty of great selling points to Dubai but one of its greatest? Its perpetual sunshine (even if sometimes you wish it wouldn't beat down hard) - it means that its beautiful beaches (think white sands, warm, inviting waters) can be enjoyed all year round.

First up is Sunset Beach. Right behind Sunset Mall in Jumeirah, it's one of the most beautiful beaches Dubai has to offer. The views of the Burj Al Arab are first-class and the seas? Well, it provides you with surf - and it's the only place in Dubai to do so.

As bustling as Sunset Beach is quiet, JBR Beach has no shortage of restaurants, bars or hotels along The Walk, a path alongside the beach that invites you to just about anything the minute you step off the sands. Drink, dine or shop after spending a day of sunbathing and trying out the watersports on offer.

Sporty people should make a beeline for the aptly-named Kite Beach. Kite surfing, football, paddle boarding, beach tennis, volleyball and kayaking provide a more active day on this sandy shore. Or, for those who really do just want to tan, some very good things to watch as entertainment.

Al Mamzar Beach Park is a lushly landscape beach made up of five sweeping shores. There are swimming pools, playgrounds, barbecue areas and grassy areas just dying for a picnic set-up. Not a bad place to spend a day (or two).

The thing is - these are our favourites (and there are plenty of reasons why we fell in love with them) but there are plenty more out of there for you to discover. Thanks to the weather, you really can book an Emirates holiday all year round to pick yours.

Family Activities in Dubai

Yes, Dubai hotels are more than accommodating for families with children, with mammoth pools, complete with things like slides and entertainment, and even crèches for younger kids. Plus, they often have their own private beaches with water calm enough for even little tykes to paddle in. That isn't all Dubai has to offer though - this sandy city thinks outside the box.

Kidzania, for one, if beyond anything you could imagine. An interactive city built to a child's scale, kids can go around and role play jobs from pilots to fire-fighters - there are 80 different roles.

They can swim with dolphins at Dubai Atlantis the Palm, learn all about the conversation efforts going towards resident hawksbill turtles at the Dubai Turtle Rehabilitation Project based at Burj Al Arab and Madinat Jumeirah or even test out their ski legs in the Emirates Mall at Ski Dubai.

Two different (and fantastic!) waterparks will send them into a tailspin - see for yourself at Wild Wadi and Aquaventure. Even the extravagantly magnificent Dubai Fountains will keep children rapt for hours, with water spurting out in time to, often somewhat surprising, music choices.

It's safe to say those little tykes won't know what hit them - and they (and, by default, you) will sleep soundly each night after action-packed days.

How to get to Dubai

Cheap flights to Dubai are becoming increasingly easier to find. This is great news if you're looking for a last minute holiday to Dubai. The UK is well connected, with flights from Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Newcastle and multiple London airports all landing at Dubai International Airport.