Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Port Call Series: Dubai, UAE

This is a continuation of my Port Call Series.  I went to Dubai twice on my last deployment, and I have to say, it is my favorite port!

Half way through our deployment, after 48 days of operating out at sea, we pulled into Jebel Ali, the port of Dubai.  It was a much needed break!

First Trip to Dubai!  
I went to both "big" malls this week, Mall of the Emirates (complete
with indoor ski slope), as well as the Dubai Mall (second in size to the
Mall of America).  Both malls have a diverse selection of stores, and it
is downright overwhelming! The malls were open 24-7, while celebrating
the holiday, Eid.  The Dubai Mall is attached to the Burj Khalifa, the
tallest building in the world.  It was pretty incredible being on the
124th floor of the building! I went to the top of the Burj after a fun
filled day at Wild Wadi Water park (next to the Burj al Arab, 7 star,
luxury hotel that looks like a Sailboat). I felt like a big kid going on
water slides, which is probably why a few of the little kids in the park
asked our group to go on the rafts with them!  I didn't do much other
than shop a little and go to the park, because we worked half days. It
is still fairly hot here, 93 degrees every day, so any water park or the
beach was on most folks' agenda!

Second Trip to Dubai!

The crew just spent this past week in port unwinding after a long period at sea.
 I was able to visit another resort/water park, Atlantis, where you
 actually go through shark tanks on the water slides.  Pretty cool seeing
 the sharks and other fish through the tanks on your way down!  A lot of
 fun, even in February!  My liberty group and I went to an old favorite
 spot of ours, the Irish Village, after the water park to grab a sandwich
 and some Magners.  We realized the Irish pub was on the premesis of the
 Dubai Open.  We purchased some tickets, and watched tennis for a few
 hours.  Most of us had never seen a live professional tennis match
 before, so it was a great experience.  I ventured to the Gold Souk
 yesterday with my fellow DHs, followed by a farewell dinner with CTF
 151.  We will be saying goodbye to our Pakistani ship riders soon-which
  means we get to go home!
 I don't have any photos, as photography is frowned upon in Middle Eastern culture.  You can upset some folks if you take pics of them, so I always just kept my camera at home (aka on the ship).  I loved this port call, and I have been here about half a dozen times.  I enjoy the food, the culture, the shopping!

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