Ancient Cairo, Modern Dubai – finely blended in this unique trip!

dubai_1dubai_2egypt1egypt2Are you planning a trip to Cairo, Egypt or Dubai, UAE? This post will give you the firsthand account of what can keep you regaled in these places. Really interesting and informative account by my friend Mohini – She was gracious enough to share her experience to Egypt and Cairo.

Recently Mohini flew with her husband Anish to Cairo, Egypt and Dubai for her maiden trip to these places. What could have been better that this trip happened as Anish had gathered substantial Air Miles on his foreign trips that it covered major part of their travel.

Firsthand account by Mohini & Anish >>>

“Recently I along with my husband went to Dubai via Egypt. Actually we had lot of Air miles on our United Airlines account which were good enough to cover a major part of our travel to Dubai. And then came an interesting turn when we went ahead and actually booked our air-tickets. It turned out that the flights we ended up booking from United Airlines website were of Egypt Air, and on both legs (Mumbai-Dubai and vice-versa) we had a layover in Cairo, Egypt. The flight from Mumbai to Dubai had a 9.5 hrs halt at Cairo Airport, incidentally from which the Pyramids of Giza are close. We were actually getting a chance to visit this oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, thanks to this long halt. There was no way we were going to pass this opportunity…

…Our visit to Egypt was quite memorable, though a very short one lasting few hours. On arrival at the Cairo airport and after clearing immigration, we were greeted by a travel agent who promised to show us as much of Cairo/Giza as was possible in the limited time. We set about our tour and headed straight for the pyramids. To make the visit more interesting, our tour guide suggested taking a camel-ride to the pyramids once we were in Giza and in the vicinity of the Pyramids. We saw the three biggest pyramids of Cheops, Chephren and Mycerinus, as well as the Great Sphinx. The Sphinx is a mythical creature with a lion’s body and a human head and stands on the Giza Plateau. Next we took a one-hour sunset cruise in Nile, which is the longest river in the world. Unfortunately we could not go inside any of the pyramids, as that entry is restricted to certain time slots and we could not make it in time. But all in all, it was great to see these manmade wonders of the ancient world. We made a promise to ourselves to make a trip to Egypt again sometime down the line and see the pyramids from inside.”

I will highly recommend Egypt to those who are fond of history and ancient stuff.

“Our next and final destination was Dubai – an exact opposite of Egypt. Egypt has so much history, whereas Dubai is a very new and modern city. We loved Dubai – all its aspects including the nice wide roads, orderly traffic and the overall cleanliness. For those who might think of Dubai only as a shopping destination, they might want to reconsider. We were in Dubai only for 3.5 days, and wished we had more time there. We took the desert safari, which was an amazing experience. First our guide/driver took us to a place where we rented and drove a dune buggy in the desert. It was quite safe, since the buggy had seat-belts both for the driver and passenger, the vehicle was sturdy enough and we were allowed to ride/drive only in a limited area. And then we had the most thrilling experience riding in the Land Cruiser, thanks to our driver – the further drive through the desert sands in order to reach an Arabic camp at the other end was extremely adventurous…

… The Arabic camp where we were taken was very interesting – they had a Henna artist, then we could try on Arabic costume and take our snaps, Sheesha smoking (they call it Hubbly-Bubbly) , witnessed local performances / dances of the Arab world such as Tanura dance and belly-dancing.. and last but not the least a lavish buffet spread catering to both veg and non-veg foodies along with unlimited Arabic tea and sweets. Next day we took a city tour where again we had an excellent guide with us who showed us most of the landmarks / important places in the city including the spice markets and Gold market, referred to as spike souk and gold souk. We saw the 7-star Burj Al Arab hotel, drove through the wonderful Palm Jumeirah island and the Atlantis Hotel at the tip of this island, saw the Dubai creek, Dubai Marina , Dubai museum and many such places. In the evening we took a dinner cruise, which is called Dhow cruise – Dhow being the large boat. Next day we went into the tallest structure in the world which is Burj Khalifa and were able to go till the 124th floor – that is where they have the observation deck. The view from there was amazing….

… Dubai has many malls, but the two we visited and should not be missed are Mall of Emirates and the Dubai Mall. Mall of Emirates has an indoor snow-park and the largest indoor ski-resort in the world. As of Dubai Mall, I believe that is the largest mall in the world. Along with all top brands, this mall has a very big Aquarium/Oceanarium. But the highlight of this mall is the musical fountain show, which starts at 6 pm, and thereafter it takes place every half an hour. Though the actual show lasts for 5 min, the wonderful synchronization of the fountain to the music is something you have to experience for yourself.”

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