Day two in Dubai – Thursday 24th May 2018
I really wanted to go to Abu Dhabi but the actual logistics of it were long (read: I’m lazy) and most of the tours took place on a Wednesday if I wanted to go down that route. Trying to get around on public bus in 38C heat sounded good on paper but in reality I was in vacation mode and didn’t want to do much. That sounds like a whole bunch of excuses right?
Searching for breakfast
I had to feed myself, so I got ready and grabbed a taxi to the Mall of the Emirates. My main reason for coming here was to see the aquarium. However after walking around for a little bit, I found that I’d come to the wrong mall. I guess that’s what hunger does to you? Stupid mistakes make great stories…
As I was visiting Dubai during the Holy month of Ramadan, I wasn’t sure how this was going to affect my trip. Having done some research beforehand, it really only meant that anywhere serving food was cordoned off e.g the food mall. If you were caught eating in a public area you could face a fine, so with this in mind, I headed to the closed off food hall to indulge in a quick breakfast.
If you follow me on Twitter, you’d know just how much I love trying McDonald’s abroad and how much I love a Chicken Big Mac. I’ll let these do the talking:
Being the typical Cancerian, my animal preference is the undersea critters. One time, during one of my hungover states, I watched an entire series of Robson Greene’s Extreme Fishing, I’ve been hooked since. The last time I came to Dubai, I’d only walked past the aquarium and I’d heard so many good things about it since.
The aquarium is RIDICULOUS in a good way; Dubai does everything bigger and better. The only thing I can say is go and see it for yourself, it’s not just a bunch of fish in a tank, there are crocodiles, penguins and even owls. You’ll soon forget you’re in the middle of a mall and wonder why you don’t live in a zoo.
After being in the company of animals for a few hours, I’d worked up a sweat (TMI?) and I got a cab back to my hotel, changed into my swimsuit and headed to the pool.
I also took a little visit to the jacuzzi in my hotel which was everything I needed and more. I’m starting to wonder whether I need to become a spa reviewer in my spare time…?
Something tells me I didn’t do much else that evening, but I do remembering Uber Eats and watching a movie. Sometimes you just have to do the stuff you would do at home somewhere new.
On a side note, how funny is the food choice for England being a Scotch egg on the Uber Eats menu?
Day three in Dubai – Friday 25th May
If I didn’t mention already, I was staying at The Grand Sheraton and in the months leading up to my trip I had been scouring deals on Groupon for spas. Ironically, the deal for my hotel had sold out, so I went to the next best one, that being The Fairmont. Luckily it was walking distance, and with my treatment booked for 10am, I set off around 9.30am in case I got lost. Everything is bigger and clearly labelled in Dubai, but I am not one for following directions well.
Leave me at the spa
When I arrived, I was greeted by the spa receptionist and shown to the locker room where I changed into my robe and found myself chilling out my the jacuzzi before my treatment. Have you ever seen a more beautiful spa?
I felt like I was in something out of The Godfather and best of all, I had it to myself. The Fairmont Spa has a Romanesque theme but it is done so tastefully, for a moment I felt like I’d been transported back to those good old days. I opted for my favourite massage, that being a deep tissue followed by an Indian head massage.
The post-massage feeling is pure euphoria and I wonder why I don’t make them a regular thing in London (oh right they’re overpriced). I always feel like the weight of the world is off my shoulders, my overthinking disappears and I have new-found outlook on life. Now I’m writing this up, I’m going to make a massage part of my self-care routine. Back to Groupon I go…
I should mention that my treatment was around £40 (On Groupon UAE) and gave me full use of all spa facilities and the pool for the day. This is an absolute bargain as full price would have been triple this amount. So that’s my hack for living luxury on a budget whilst travelling. You can indulge without breaking the bank.
After lazing by the pool for a few hours, it began to get a little too hot for my liking, so I went back to my hotel, showered and headed back in search of food… I’d remember seeing La Mer on Instagram and essentially its a manmade pier, similar to Santa Monica.
It was definitely made to be Instagrammed as it has tons of cute little spots, chic (but affordable) restaurants, a water park and views overlooking the Dubai skyline. If you’re stuck for things to during Ramadan in Dubai, this is definitely a great place to spend a day, as the beach doubles up as a chill out spot if you want to do nothing somewhere else too. Next time I come, I’ll definitely be hitting up the water park.
Read more: Musings: The Dubai Instagram Itinerary
Solo cinema dates are the best
Next, I got into a cab to the Dubai mall, walked for absolutely forever to find the cinema, ordered way too much food that I’d ironically eaten before the movie started. I watched Rampage which was pretty good (your typical Hollywood action movie), walked through the mall a little more, before coming back home, I mean to my hotel and conking out.
Even though I said I was going to do much in Dubai, I ended doing a fair bit in three chilled out days. The trick is to go out a little later to combat the heat and most places are open super later anyway, you don’t need to worry about anywhere closing. Even the aquarium is open until 1am!