Thursday, 8 January 2015

Party In The UAE

My final weeks (and final holiday) of 2014 was to the UAE with my parents. This was my fifth (!) trip and re-visiting a place is a mixed blessing - there's less of a sense of adventure but when you've been somewhere so many times it almost feels like a second home the moment the plane touches down. Albeit it a permanently sunny, five star luxuary second home by way of Le Royal Meridian on Jumeriah beach - I'll sacrifice some of the thrill of the unknown for that. We spent Christmas in Dubai which was the best present that Santa could bring the three of us after a busy year.

We landed at Dubai airport at 8am, seeing sun and feeling the heat for the first time in weeks was an awesome start to the day despite the night flight and added extra: screaming kids. The next 10 days involved plenty of beach time, mall time and some time in the old town and Al Ain to see the "real" UAE - it's not all shiny skyscrapers and giant malls, there is culture and history if you know where to look (and if you don't then every hotel offers a multitude of day trips). Our last visit was in 2012 and its amazing how much has changed since then - Dubai always feels like stepping into the future, case in point: a man on a hoverboard in the sea off the man-made palm island.

A bath with a view.
Swapping scarves for suncream. Kiehls SPF 50 is my new favourite and the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Stick is perfect for the beach bag.
Kitties! Mornings and early evenings = kitty time with these three. Sad to say goodbye to my holiday friends!
Sliders! The Royal Lounge cocktail bar was our favourite evening destination - G&Ts, canapes and we even made some holiday friends.
Last day breakfast because it's a bikini free zone for the next 5 months. Nutella and tahini buckwheat crepe.

International falafal at Souk Madinat Jumeriah,

Christmas Day camels on the beach.

Bespoke eclairs in the Royal Lounge.

Chilling in the palace in Al Ain, Abu Dhabi. Al Ain feels very different to Dubai - it's less glitzy but the palaces, museums and oasis where dates are grown and picked are must-sees.

Tasty times at the Camelicious camel farm feeding the camels. The camels are milked to produce camel milk chocolate. It tasted...interesting. Camels are as intelligent as 11 year old children apparently and far easier to convince to eat their vegetables - this one is happy after eating a tasty carrot.

Dubai Marina at night.

Abra tour on the Creek - top tip: a private Abra for an hour costs around £20 and is a great way to see both the old town and the Dhow ships setting sail for Iran and India. Do try to swing by the Gold and Spice Souks on the bank of the Creek.

Living in a shoe. Top tip no. 2: take a pashmina everywhere - modest dress code and Arctic-like mall temperatures sorted.


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  2. LILY! This looks like the best Christmas ever!

    - Elodie x

  3. Looks like you've had a cracking Christmas Lily!

  4. Everything looks amazing

  5. I loved reading this post. I have never been there, so it was really interesting. Plus I loved seeing hot sunshine (even if just on the internet!). Those kitties look really friendly too. Always good if a holiday involves friendly cats :) x

  6. I've been to Dubai a lot of times that it practically is my second home. I never get sick of it. I imagine Christmas there to be magical.


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