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Tag-Archive for "Dubai"

Dubai metro fines May 02

I had the pleasure of testing the new Dubai Metro recently and I took it from the airport to Dubai Mall and it was only like 4,5 AED (about 1 USD). The station at the airport was modern and clean and with guards walking around and a large photo of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum – the ruler of Dubai. But what I thought was quite funny was the little booklet that can be found on the station explaining all the different things that will result in a fine.  How about “Carrying of alcoholic drinks” that will result in a 200 AED fine. Does this mean that you can’t bring your duty free goods in your suitcase when taking the metro or do they mean that you are not allowed to drink on the metro? How about “Using the lifts or escalators in an inappropriate manner” – how do you use an escalator in an inappropriate manner? ;-) So naturally, when I took the metro I was a bit nervous – maybe I was breaking some of the rules. All of a sudden a woman in an Abaya (the traditional Islamic dress) walked over to me and I thought “Oh no, maybe I’m sitting on a seat designated for women”. So I jumped up and offered her my seat – she just looked at me and said “Your ticket please”. Turns out that she was a part of a team checking that the people on the metro had valid tickets. I was able to show my ticket and hence I avoided getting a fine ;-) You can find a list of all the fines on this page.

Category: Travel  | Tags: ,  | 2 Comments
At the top – Burj Khalifa Apr 28

I just had the pleasure of visiting the world’s tallest building: Burj Khalifa in Dubai. I walked over to this amazing tower from the Dubai Mall metro station and it is impossible to not be impressed by the enormous 800 meter tall building. I had gotten a hold of a ticket to the observation deck “At the top” in advance and the ticket price was 100 Dirham (27 USD) but you can also pay to cut in line but then the price is 400 Dirham (110 USD!!!). The entrance to the At the top experience starts within Dubai Mall (which they claim is the biggest mall in the world) and after I passed through security I followed the path to get to the elevator. Along the path you get information about the building process, the design etc. and to start with there is also a couple of models of the building. The elevator itself was quite small but at least it is fast :-) I honestly didn’t feel the elevator starting but it didn’t take long before I felt the change in pressure in my ears and then I knew we were moving. The lift travels at 10 m/s so it only takes a minute to reach the observation deck – so when the doors opened I was looking out from 124th floor! The observation deck has both an indoor and an outdoor section and it gives you a 360  degree view of the Dubai area. I started by going outdoor and the view from about 450 meters above the ground is amazing. You know that you are high up when you can look down on the 60+ floors hotel The Address :-) The sun was blazing outside and even I was quite high up, there was no cooling effect in the breeze. The outdoor section gives you a view from The Address hotel and the musical fountain, the Dubai Mall, Sheikh Zayed road and towards the ocean where it was possible to see the islands of the World project. When going inside again I got a view of Jumeirah (including Burj Al Arab and the Palm in the distance) and all around back to the Address hotel. Even if this is the tallest building in the world, this observation deck is actually not the tallest in the world. That record belongs to Shanghai World Financial Centre ;-) You can read more about the “At the top” observation deck on the Burj Khalifa homepage. Nikki and I went to Dubai last year and you can check out my Dubai trip report on this page.

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Burj Khalifa viewing platform closed Feb 10

It is not long ago since Burj Khalifa (also know as Burj Dubai) opened officially and the viewing platform called “At the top” opened up for the first guest on the 124th floor. But now there are news saying that the viewing platform has been closed indefinitely. The reason for this closing seems to be vague but things like “unexpected high traffic” and “electrical problems” has been mentioned. Nikki and I went to Dubai last year (as you can see in this Dubai trip report) and at the time the building was not open – but what an impressive building! But now it remains to be seen how long it will take before guests once again can enjoy the view from the 124th floor.

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British woman arrested in Dubai after being raped! Jan 09

A British woman got arrested the other day in Dubai when she went to the police to report a rape. It turns out that she was there on vacation with her boyfriend to celebrate her engagement and when she admitted that she had had sex with her boyfriend, she was arrested for having “illegal sexual intercourse”. One should of course respect the rules and regulation to the country that you are visiting but this is no way to be treated if you have been raped. This case shows a bit of the problem that Dubai faces. They do want western tourists to come to the city and country but they still want to enforce their strict rules on them.  So keep this in mind if you are planning on going to Dubai! Here is the article concerning the British woman that got raped.

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Burj Dubai opens…and changes name Jan 08

Maybe old news by now…but just for the record: on January 4th Burj Dubai was opened by Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashed al-Maktoum. At the same time it was also renamed from Burj Dubai to Burj Khalifa (after United Arab Emirates President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan). The official height is now 828 meters (about 2700 ft) and the viewing platform on 124th floor is now open to the public :-) Here is an article about the opening containing a video. Visit the official homepage for more information.

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Photos and videos from Dubai Dec 06

I have uploaded some photos and videos from Dubai in connection with the upcoming Dubai trip report. You can see them all on http://gardkarlsen.com/Dubai_United_Arab_Emirates_photos.htm

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Is it the end of The World? Sep 15

No, we are not talking about Armageddon here – we are talking about The World in Dubai. As some of you know, the city of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates has started some of the most amazing building projects in the world….some examples are Burj Dubai, Ski Dubai, the Palm Jumeirah etc. They also started the contruction of The World a few years back; a man made archipelago of 300 islands located of the coast of Dubai. The project got it’s name as the islands together formed a world map and to start with the there were lots of rumors of celebrities buying varies islands.  According to the project homepage, The World was completed on October 1st 2008. But this week there are rumors that the whole project has been canceled – check this article in TimesOnline. I could see the islands when I was there in May but I don’t think that anything has been built on them yet – I guess the economic crises in the world put an end to the whole thing and maybe this shows that it was just too insane to complete. I’m always fascinated by building projects that are over the top but I didn’t quite see the big attraction in owning a small island of the coast of Dubai. From what I have heard the property prices in Dubai has dropped a lot but I was surprised to see that there were still a lot of construction activities when I was there in April and May. There has been some negative press about Dubai as a tourist destination in the last year and I guess that is not helping either. Anyway, I will write more about my feelings regarding Dubai in the upcoming trip report that I will post on gardkarlsen.com . You can read more about The World on Wikipedia.

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Flight to Dubai with Lufthansa Jul 18

This is a trip report from a trip to Dubai with Lufthansa. We bought these tickets when we came across a great Lufthansa offer a few months back and the price was just to good to turn down. We got the tickets for 2800 kroner (about 420 USD) per person for a round trip from Stavanger in Norway and that is almost half the price of what you normally see. We did go to Dubai in 2002 and you can read that trip report here. I’m also planning on making a new proper trip report…this trip report will focus on the flight to and from Dubai.
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Review of Traders Hotel Dubai Jul 13

I have stayed at Traders hotel in Dubai a numer of times and I have been very happy with the hotel. So when I went to Dubai in April I decided to stay at Traders Hotel to see if the hotel could be compared to the hotel in KL. I booked the room online on the the Traders hotel website and it was 540 AED (about 150 USD) excluding breakfast. I only stayed there 1 night in connection with a meeting in Dubai.
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Category: Hotels, Travel  | Tags: , ,  | 2 Comments
The dark side of Dubai Jun 28

I have been to Dubai a couple of times now and when we went there the first time (see trip report from 2002) I thought it was great. When I returned in 2009 the place had changed quite a lot as they have added some of the most amazing structures on the earth in the city (Burj Dubai, the palm projects, the World etc etc). But I also came across some articles that worries me. Check this article from The Independent . It seems like many of the construction workers face slave like contracts and conditions. Human Rights Watch has also made reports from Dubai like this one called Building Towers. Cheating Workers. So are we supporting “slavery” by visiting Dubai and spending money there?

From VBS.TV and a BBC report

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