Dubai is known as one of the more cosmopolitan cities within the Middle East and is also becoming one of the most visited cities in the world. This can partly be attributed to the increased popularity of Emirates airline, which has its hub here, as well as the draw of vast wealth, luxury and opulence.
An economical and stress free option to see all the below sights, plus many more, would be to take a Big Bus tour of Dubai. Dubai is a great layover city with a lot to pack into a visit. I would recommend purchasing a forty-eight hour pass so you can experience the best the city has to offer.
Jumeirah Mosque is arguably the most attractive mosque in the area and the only mosque that allows non-Muslim visitors inside its walls. Tourists will need to first visit the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU), next to the mosque, to sign up for the tour.
The Burj Khalifa is the “tallest artificial structure in the world” and a site to behold. Visitors are able to purchase tickets up to a viewing platform on the 148th level, however I believe the best views are from down below. A good spot to take photos of this mammoth building is at the Dubai Mall, which also hosts an indoor ski resort, aquarium and daily fountain show.
Jumeirah Beach provides a long, sandy white beach against the Persian Gulf, with a 14km long corniche (artificial track) for walking and cycling. Home of the Burj al-Arab Hotel with its famous wind-sail like structure, there are many luxurious hotels in and around Jumeirah Beach.
Delve into the history and culture with a visit to the Dubai museum, located next to the oldest existing building in the city, the Al Fahidi Fort. A visit to this museum will provide insight into the Muslim culture and history of the United Arab Emirates. A great experience for first time visitors.
A perfect way to end a busy and hot day in this oasis is a sunset cruise along Dubai Creek. There are many types of cruises available, including dinner and Dhow (traditional sailing vessel) cruises. A trip along the creek will provide views of the old and new parts of the city, all from the comfort of your seat with a drink in hand.