Traditional Culture

The Bastakia Quarter

The Bastakia Quarter, which squeezes itself between the Dubai Creek and the buzzing Bur Dubai district, is one of the city's most picturesque heritage sites and a mini maze of wind-towered buildings, a clutch of which have been transformed into art galleries and cafes.

Weave through the textile souk and on to the Creek, where you can either join the commuters for a AED 1 (US$0.30) abra (water taxi) ride across the river or hire your own boat for a scenic tour of the waterway. Back in port, head to the small but interesting Dubai Museum to see how oil and ambition mixed to make this modern oasis. 

Bur Dubai

Literally translating as mainland Dubai, the Bur region is located on the western side of Dubai Creek and is one of the oldest parts of the city. It is home to an abundance of galleries, hotels, restaurants and a souk for those keen to search out a bargain.

Dubai Museum

Visit the Al Fahidi Fort, home to the wonderful Dubai museum and see the oldest building in Dubai. Also, discover artefacts over 4,000 years old and experience the history and traditions of a proud land.

Jumeirah Mosque 

Built of stone in the medieval Fatimid style, the mosque is a spectacular example of modern Islamic architecture. It is perhaps most attractive in the evening when subtle lighting throws its artistry into sharp relief.

Grand Mosque

Originally constructed in traditional Islamic architectural style and opened in 1900 AD as a kuttab (Quranic school) where children learnt to recite the Quran from memory, the Grand Mosque of Dubai was rebuilt (maintaining the original style) in 1998 and now boasts the tallest minaret in Dubai. The best time to see it is at night, when it is spectacularly lit up. Non-Muslims are not allowed entry but can visit the minaret and take photos from the premises of the Mosque.

Shaik Saed Al Maktoum’s House

The official residence of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai (1912-1958) and grandfather of the present Ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The house, which dates from 1896, today houses a rare collection of historic photographs, coins, stamps and documents that record Dubai’s history.