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The speed at which Dubai has transformed is unparalleled, becoming a bustling metropolis in the heart of a desert in less than half a century. With an incredible mix of jaw-dropping architecture, year-round sunshine, and stunning desert landscapes, a Dubai cruise is a winter sun destination with the wow-factor. Most itineraries passing through the Middle East will either call at Dubai, or offer an overnight stay there. With so much to see and do in this mesmerising part of the Emirates, this is truly an unforgettable destination.

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If you are looking for winter sun, an Emirates and Dubai cruise is a fantastic choice. One of the world’s most exciting and popular destinations, Dubai is the place where you can relax, sunbathe or shop to your heart’s content. A cruise to Dubai may also include Abu Dhabi, Oman and Bahrain, all unique and captivating locations for you to explore and each with a flight time shorter than the Caribbean, perfect for those who don't enjoy flying.

When to go on a Dubai cruise

When it comes to choosing when to cruise to Dubai and the Arab Emirates, the best time of year is from December to March. During these months you can expect warm weather and sunny days, perfect if you're looking to escape dreary winter days for a while.

Food and drink

Taking its inspiration from Iranian, Lebanese and Arabic food, Emirati cuisine may not be too well known, but it is certainly delicious. Including breads, pastries, coffee and meats, tuck into the local delicacies and see what gets your taste buds tingling:

  • Luqaimat- perfect for those with a sweet tooth, these doughnut-like dumplings are served fresh in most cafés.
  • Camel- a modern addition to Dubai's food map, camel burgers are becoming a popular comfort food option.
  • Margoogat- eat like the locals with this hearty meaty, tomato stew.
  • Khubz- this traditional Arabic bread is best served fresh with hummus or an aubergine dip.

However, it isn't just Dubai's culinary scene that entices visitors; it's become more and more well-known for its cocktails, one of the most popular being Anatolian Fizz made with sparkling wine, pomegranate molasses, raspberry and citrus.

What to do on a Dubai cruise

Thanks to its combination of old-world charm and modern innovations, Dubai is home to a feast of attractions including the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. Whether you're looking for desert adventures, poolside lounging or retail therapy, read our blog for more information about what to do in Dubai.

If you'd really like to make the most out of your Dubai cruise, you can add extra nights to your package so you can discover just what this unique destination has to offer with a fantastic Dubai cruise and stay holiday.

In addition, if the intriguing culture and customs of a Dubai cruise intrigue you, then you will love the mysteries and ancient wonders you can discover on a Red Sea cruise, with Celebrity Cruises providing exciting, luxury Arabian voyages including Abu Dhabi and and Arab Emirates maiden sailings.

Top Dubai Cruise Destinations and Shore Excursions

To enrich your Arabian adventure, make sure that you take some shore excursions to the mainland to experience this beautiful part of the world first hand. Steeped in cultural heritage, these fascinating ports of call will awaken your senses and leave you with a greater understanding of their colourful coastlines.

Emirates and Dubai cruises to Dubai

Dubai is one of the most exclusive cities in the world, with exceptional shopping centres, stunning beaches, world class golf courses and a unique landscape. Dubai is truly a place of interesting contrasts with a mixture of traditional architecture and state-of-the-art modern buildings. The Palm Jumeirah is built on an artificially made island and the iconic Burj al Arab with its sail-like facade, stands over 300 metres tall. While on a shore excursion, be sure not to miss the vibrant spice souk (market) and the glittering gold souk, overflowing with flawless fine jewellery.

Emirates and Dubai cruises to Bahrain

Once reputed for seating one of the world's oldest civilisations, Bahrain is now known for being a relatively liberal and modern Persian Gulf country. Enjoy one of the oldest customs of drinking coffee on this island kingdom or digest some of the rich tapestry of local history in one of the many museums. Before you leave, sail on a traditional dhow or visit the Al Fateh Mosque, the largest in Bahrain.

Emirates and Dubai cruises to Abu Dhabi, UAE

Arrive on the shores of Abu Dhabi and you will be greeted with a friendly, hospitable welcome. This stunning capital city of UAE is a juxtaposition of ultra-modern sophistication and Arab charm. You could shop in the grand malls or barter in one of the many colourful souks. You could travel in style in a cool air conditioned limo or ride through the desert on a camel. You could even enjoy a little 5 star gastronomic hospitality away from your ship or sample some of the local Bedouin generosity. Witness a world-class event at the Abu Dhabi F1 Grand Prix for a day to remember or be wowed by the lavish Emirates Palace and Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Centre. Whichever way you choose to discover this country, it's guaranteed to be an unforgettable experience.

Emirates and Dubai cruises to Oman

Your first impression on docking into Muscat, the capital city of Oman, is one of supreme power, reflected in its three forts overlooking the entrance to the port from where amazing panoramic views of the harbour and old city are afforded. A shore excursion will reveal luxurious palaces as well as the beautiful pink marble-gilded domed Zawawi Mosque. Visit Salalah for its fascinating lost city of Ubar, natural beauty and colourful heritage.

Emirates and Dubai cruises to Sir Bani Yas Island

More and more cruise lines are sailing to the up-and-coming Sir Bani Yas Island than ever before. Fantastic for families, over half of the island is covered by a wildlife park consisting of over 13,000 species. Thanks to this impressive landscape, there are a multitude of activities you can do in this fun-filled destination, such as snorkelling, diving, archery, horse riding, mountain biking and hiking.

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