What comes to your mind when you hear the word Dubai?
Gold, Skyscrapers, Extravagant Lifestyle, Top-notch cars? Well, there is no argument on that. In fact, those are the exact same words I used to describe Dubai before I left my hometown to start a “new” life here. Well aside from shawarma, of course.
But just recently, I’ve learned that behind all the luxurious front of Dubai, is an even richer cultural side of it. A side I’ve never seen before. A side with souks instead of skyscrapers and abras instead of Ferraris. A refreshing scenery even under the 39 degree heat. Truly the heart of Old Dubai.
For just AED 1 ($0.27), you get to ride an abra which is a traditional boat made of wood to cross the creek. You’ll share the boat with 10-20 others for a 2 to 5-minute ride. But if you want to take a tour around the Creek, you can rent an abra all to yourself for AED 20 to 30 depending on how good you negotiate. I think the best time to do this is during sunset.
The creek kind of reminded me of the canals in Venice. I don’t know how they call the person who drives the abra but make them sing and you’ll get a gondola-style boat ride. Haha.
Behind me is a closed store. We went around 1PM on a Friday, what was I thinking? Lesson learned: go early morning or late afternoon. But I heard it’s best to visit the souks at night?
Me posing in the backyard of someone else’s house. Whose house, I don’t know.
I’m a bit sad to be sharing photos of myself instead of showing you the beauty of Old Dubai. I actually recorded clips of my experience only to find out that they were corrupted. (Damn, gopro)
Anyways, I promise to film my next experience (a more in-depth one) to show you that Dubai is not just about all those fancy things. Behind the mask lies a greater beauty.