Discover Dubai

Dubai, The Middle East, United Arab Emirates

For Filipinos who’ve been wanting to get a head start in roaming around the Middle East, fret no more, as Cebu Pacific, now the country’s largest airline introduces direct flights from Manila to Dubai, United Arab Emirates beginning October 7, 2013.

This comes in the heels of introducing direct flights from Manila to Bali, Indonesia.

Dubai now becomes the 21st international destination for Cebu Pacific.

I am not privy to the reasons why CebuPac did it, but I am guessing that the huge demand from overseas Filipino workers and their families made the decision quite easier.

For common travelers, Dubai is also quite an attraction.

Considered as the gateway for the Middle East, Dubai is a city that many Filipinos wish to explore. It is a dazzling destination that caters to luxury travelers and adventurous tourists alike.

Among the attractions that draw tourists to Dubai are the Palm Islands, the largest artificial archipelago on earth. Often heralded as the eighth wonder of the world, it consists of three man-made islands—the Palm Jumeirah, Palm Jebel Ali and Palm Deira—each coming in the shape of a palm tree. The islands feature countless luxury hotels, fine dining establishments, and shopping malls, as well as exclusive beachfront residences, many of which are owned by big-name celebrities and VIPs.

Dubai is also home to the Burj Al Arab, the only seven-star hotel in the world. One of the city’s most notable landmark, it is shaped like a billowing ship’s sail facing the Arabian Gulf. Often referred to as the Jewel of Dubai, the BurjKhalifa is the world’s tallest building standing at 2,716 feet, which is seven times the height of London’s Big Ben and can be seen from 60 miles away. At the outdoor observation deck called At the Top on the 124th floor, one can enjoy a sweeping and breathtaking view of the city and its sprawling desert.

Travelers can also head to the Dubai Fountains and get entranced by a spectacle of water, light, and music. The 900-foot long fountain shoots water up to 500 feet into the air set to classical and contemporary Arabian and world music.

Paying tribute to tradition

Amid the towering skyscraper and impressive architectural masterpieces, Dubai continues to make preserving its historical sites a priority.  Tourists can take a peek into the emirates’ transformation, from a pearling village to a modern metropolis, at the Dubai Museum. Housed in the Al Fahidi Fort, the oldest existing building in the city, the museum features life-sized dioramas that depict everyday life before the discovery of oil in the 1960s.

Travelers can also visit the Jumeirah Mosque, beautifully adorned in Arabic calligraphy and intricate carvings. Here, they can join the guided tours to get an insight into the Islamic religion and culture.

Those who areserious about shopping should take a stroll through Dubai’s traditional souks, or marketplace. At the Textile Souk, they can find luxurious saris, silk, and other fabrics in various hues, weaves, and embroidery from all over the world. The labyrinthine Gold Souk is filled with shops selling magnificent jewelry, from the delicate and intricate, to the bold and loud, while the Spice Souk tantalizes with its colorful array of aromatic spices of all varieties.

Sample a life of luxury at the prestigious Burj Al Arab, the only seven-star hotel in the world.

A thrill-seeker’s paradise

Travelers with a thirst for adventure will be spoiled for choice in Dubai. They get their adrenaline rush by trying out sand boarding or taking a camel ride down the sand dunes. Desert safaris in 4×4 vehicles also promise an unforgettable roller coaster ride.

For the complete desert camping experience, tourists can feast on a delicious barbecue dinner under the stars while being entertained by traditional folk and belly dance performances. Daredevils of all ages are off to a big splash at the Wild Wadi Waterpark, which has over 30 rides and attractions. These include the Jumeirah Sceirah, where guests can slither down a 120-meter slide at an astonishing speed of 80 kilometers per hour.

From time-honored traditions to ultra-modern masterpieces, laid-back tours to daring explorations, there is plenty to discover in Dubai. Now, every Juan can realize their dream Dubai experience as the Philippines’ largest national flag carrier, Cebu Pacific, recently launched its long-haul, low-cost flights to Dubai.

The first and only Philippine carrier and low-cost carrier with direct flights to Dubai, Cebu Pacific offers daily flights from Manila starting October 7, 2013, with year-round fares starting at P6,999. Go on your dream Dubai vacation and book with Cebu Pacific. For more information booking and inquiries, visit www.cebupacificair.com or Cebu Pacific’s official Facebook and Twitter pages.

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