10 Unknown Facts About Dubai

Hidden Gems

Dubai, a city situated on the Persian Gulf coast of the United Arab Emirates, is a fascinating place filled with rich history, unmissable landmarks and endless activities. While the city has become best known for its luxury and exciting desert tours, as it turns out, many intriguing aspects of this city remain relatively unknown. Here are ten exciting facts about Dubai that you might not have already known.

1. Dubai Was Once a Fisherman’s Village

If you were to visit Dubai now, you’d be surrounded by utter luxury and skyscrapers galore. But this wasn’t always the case. Indeed, Dubai was once an ancient, sparse agricultural village. Before the discovery of oil in the 1950s and its subsequent growth, Dubai’s economy relied almost exclusively on fishing and the pearl industry.

2. Dubai Has the Largest Mall in the World

Love to shop? Dubai may just be the place for you. Boasting a whopping 13 million square feet of space, the Dubai Mall features more than 1,200 retail stores, two major department stores and hundreds of food and beverage outlets. It even has an indoor theme park, an ice rink and an aquarium. Talk about shopping until you drop.

3. Dubai Has Zero Income Tax

And on the subject of spending money, we have good news for our shopaholics: Dubai boasts zero income tax. This means that residents of the city get to enjoy a tax-free lifestyle, with no personal income tax whatsoever.

4. There are More Foreigners in Dubai Than Locals

With a population of nearly 3 million people, it should come as no surprise that Dubai is a diverse city. However, what some people may not know is that Dubai is home to more foreigners (people not from Dubai) than locals. You’ll find lots of ex-pats attracted to the lifestyle of Dubai, from the likes of Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, British, American and African communities.

5. It Rarely Ever Rains in Dubai

Dubai’s luxurious city scene often makes people forget that Dubai has a desert climate. This means that the city rarely ever sees rain. According to sources, Dubai averages a shockingly small amount of rain–about 5.5 to 7.9 inches every year.

6. Camel Racing is Incredibly Popular

As you’d expect from a desert climate, there are lots of camels in Dubai. That’s why camel racing has become exceedingly popular. Camel racing has been part of society in Dubai since its early beginnings and has been continued by locals over the centuries. If you ever get the chance to visit Dubai, this is an exciting sporting event you won’t want to miss.

7. There is a Helipad Tennis Court

The Burj Al Arab, one of the world’s most luxurious hotels, features a tennis court located on a helipad. This unique setup provides players with a breathtaking view of the city’s skyline and the Persian Gulf. It has been played by some of the world’s greatest tennis players, including Roger Federer and Andre Agassi.

8. ATMs Dispense Gold Bars

Just when you thought Dubai couldn’t get more luxurious, they went ahead and outdid themselves. In Dubai, you can withdraw more than just cash from an ATM. Many ATMs throughout the city dispense gold bars and coins instead of cash. They can typically be found in hotels, airports and malls.

9. There are Strict Laws About Public Displays of Affection

Are you looking to enjoy a little PDA with your sweetheart? Best not to do it in Dubai. According to strict laws, any kissing, hugging or intimate touching can get you into lots of trouble with the law. Though, married couples can hold hands in public without a problem.

10. There are Snowy Activities in Dubai

Despite its desert climate, Dubai does get snow now and then. And for those looking to hit the slopes, you’re in luck. Dubai is home to an indoor ski resort. Ski Dubai, located inside the Mall of the Emirates, offers a snowy escape with ski slopes, a snow park and even a penguin encounter.

Beyond the Skyscrapers

Dubai is a city of contrasts and surprises, where ancient traditions blend seamlessly with futuristic innovation. From its humble beginnings as a fishing village to its current status as a global hub of luxury and extravagance, Dubai offers a unique mix of history, culture and modernity. Whether you’re shopping in the world's largest mall, experiencing the thrill of camel racing, or skiing indoors in the middle of the desert, Dubai has something extraordinary for everyone. These intriguing facts just scratch the surface of what makes Dubai an unparalleled destination. So, whether you’re planning a visit or simply curious about this fascinating city, Dubai’s blend of the old and the new, the natural and the man-made, ensures there’s always something new to discover.

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