Visitors on a London to Dubai Emirate adventure will be captivated by the city's towering reputation for exuberant consumption and bold display. The skyline is the biggest advert for this, from the soaring Burj Khalifa to the decadent Palm Jumeirah Island. You'll certainly get a full dose of sun, style and shopping here. But Dubai goes well beyond the bling. Far away from the designer fashion frenzy and five-star hotels, there's a bounty of cultural and artistic activities to enjoy, and plenty of fun to be had, kicking up sand on the dunes or splashing about on the calm Gulf waters.
You can often find cheap London Dubai Emirate flights from both Heathrow (LHR) and Gatwick (LGW), but generally the latter offers the best deals. Plan to book about 20 days ahead of departure for the best bargains. Dubai simmers under searing heat for much of the year, so as the temperatures fall, the cost of tickets goes sky high, coinciding especially with Christmas and New Year. February is the cheapest time to travel, as this is when prices fall and when the weather in Dubai is pleasantly cool.
The best deals on London to Dubai Emirate flights are generally those leaving Gatwick Airport, some 30 miles due south of the city. The 30-minute rail journey from London Victoria station runs every 15 minutes and is the most seamless option, priced at about GBP 20. Cheaper still is the bus. There are more than 400 express coach services a day running to Gatwick's two terminals.
Travelling in style on London Dubai Emirate flights from Gatwick's North Terminal is now a reality aboard Emirates' Airbus A380 fleet. You’ll even get a deluxe experience in economy on these double-decker super jumbos. That's a relief on the 3,400-mile journey from London to the dazzling sights of Dubai.
Dubai International Airport is just a 4-mile hop from Dubai city centre. Grabbing a taxi is the easiest option for the short ride into town, as they operate around the clock. If you're a solo female traveller though, keep a look out for the pink taxis with their designated female drivers. Other options include the Dubai Metro Red Line or the Skybus service, which links the airport to more than 80 downtown hotels. Just pick up a pre-paid NOL card for the bus at an airport information desk.
It's easy to get sidetracked by the sheer scale of Dubai's fabulous shopping centres and skyscrapers. Its 24/7 duty-free retail frenzy is such an obvious lure. But there are plenty of quirky sights and delights behind Dubai's mirror-polished surfaces. Head to the buzzing market to spend some Dirhams, and enjoy the everyday wonders of the Gold Souk and Spice Souk in Deira. On the opposite side of Dubai is the city’s old town, Bur Dubai. This is the Dubai's Little India and is brimming with cheap and tasty curry houses and glittery sari stalls. Its mishmash of busy backstreets beats to a Bollywood rhythm.
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