85 Facts About Dubai


Dubai is the most populated city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the capital of the Emirate of Dubai, the most populated of the 7 monarchies which together form the United Arab Emirates.

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An early mention of Dubai is in 1095 in the Book of Geography by the Andalusian-Arab geographer Abu Abdullah al-Bakri.

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In 1822, a British naval surveyor noted that Dubai was at that time populated with a thousand people living in an oval-shaped town surrounded by a mud wall, scattered with goats and camels.

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Dubai signed the General Maritime Treaty of 1820 with the British government along with other Trucial States, following the British campaign in 1819 against the Ras Al Khaimah.

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In 1841, a smallpox epidemic broke out in the Bur Dubai locality, forcing residents to relocate east to Deira.

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An indicator of the growing importance of the port of Dubai can be gained from the movements of the steamer of the Bombay and Persia Steam Navigation Company, which from 1899 to 1901 paid five visits annually to Dubai.

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The town of Dubai was an important port of call for foreign tradesmen, chiefly those from Iran, many of whom eventually settled in the town.

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At that time, Dubai consisted of the town of Dubai and the nearby village of Jumeirah, a collection of some 45 areesh huts.

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Dubai was known for its pearl exports until the 1930s; the pearl trade was damaged irreparably by the 1929 Great Depression and the innovation of cultured pearls.

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On 7 April 1961, the Dubai-based MV Dara, a five thousand ton British flagged vessel that plied the route between Basra, Kuwait and Bombay (India), was caught in unusually high winds off Dubai.

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However, by the time the asphalt runway of Dubai Airport was constructed in 1965, opening Dubai to both regional and long haul traffic, a number of foreign airlines were competing for landing rights.

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The import of gold to India had been banned and so the trade was characterised as smuggling, although Dubai's merchants were quick to point out that they were making legal deliveries of gold and that it was up to the customer where they took it.

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Dubai took delivery of over $15 million-worth of watches and over 5 million ounces of silver.

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Dubai had already embarked on a period of infrastructural development and expansion.

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In 1973, Dubai joined the other emirates to adopt a uniform currency: the UAE dirham.

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Dubai provided refuelling bases to allied forces at the Jebel Ali Free Zone during the Gulf War, and again during the 2003 Invasion of Iraq.

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Dubai is situated on the Persian Gulf coast of the United Arab Emirates and is roughly at sea level.

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However, the topography of Dubai is significantly different from that of the southern portion of the UAE in that much of Dubai's landscape is highlighted by sandy desert patterns, while gravel deserts dominate much of the southern region of the country.

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Dubai has multiple gorges and waterholes, which dot the base of the Western Al Hajar mountains.

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Seismically, Dubai is in a very stable zone—the nearest seismic fault line, the Zagros Fault, is 200 kilometres from the UAE and is unlikely to have any seismic impact on Dubai.

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Dubai is on the migration path between Europe, Asia and Africa, and more than 320 migratory bird species pass through the emirate in spring and autumn.

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The waters of Dubai are home to more than 300 species of fish, including the hammour.

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The typical marine life off the Dubai coast includes tropical fish, jellyfish, coral, dugong, dolphins, whales and sharks.

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Dubai is notable for sculpted artificial island complexes including the Palm Islands and The World archipelago.

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Dubai summers are known for the very high humidity level, which can make it very uncomfortable for many with exceptionally high dew points in summer.

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Dubai has been ruled by the Al Maktoum family since 1833; the emirate is a constitutional monarchy.

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Dubai citizens participate in the electoral college to vote representatives to the Federal National Council of the UAE.

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Dubai appoints 8 members in two-term periods to the Federal National Council of the UAE, the supreme federal legislative body.

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Dubai Municipality was established by the then ruler of Dubai, Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, in 1954 for purposes of city planning, citizen services and upkeep of local facilities.

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The Government of Dubai has over 58 governmental departments responsible for security, economic policy, education, transportations, immigration, and is only one of the three emirates to have a separate judicial system independent from the federal judiciary of the UAE.

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Companies in Dubai have in the past been criticised for human rights violations against labourers.

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The Dubai government has denied labour injustices and stated that the watchdog's accusations were "misguided".

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Freedom of speech in Dubai is limited, with both residents and citizens facing severe sanctions from the government for speaking out against the royal family or local laws and culture.

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Dubai has one of the world's lowest violent crime rates, and in 2019 was ranked the seventh-safest city in the world.

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Major-General Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, hailed the force which solved 86 per cent of criminal cases.

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Dubai is the second most expensive city in the region and 20th most expensive city in the world.

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All mosques in Dubai are managed by the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department known as "Awqaf" under the Government of Dubai and all Imams are appointed by the Government.

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Dubai has large Christian, Hindu, Sikh, Baha'i, Buddhist and other religious communities residing in the city, as well as a small but growing Jewish community.

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Dubai maintained its importance as a trade route through the 1970s and 1980s.

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Dubai has a free trade in gold and, until the 1990s, was the hub of a "brisk smuggling trade" of gold ingots to India, where gold import was restricted.

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Dubai is a hub for service industries such as information technology and finance, with industry-specific free zones throughout the city.

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Various programmes, resources and value-added services support the growth of startups in Dubai and help them connect to new business opportunities.

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The other Dubai-based stock exchange is NASDAQ Dubai, which is the international stock exchange in the Middle East.

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Dubai is known as the City of Gold because a major part of the economy is based on gold trades, with Dubai's total gold trading volumes in H1 2011 reaching 580 tonnes, with an average price of US$1, 455 per troy ounce.

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Dubai is an international financial centre and has been ranked 37th within the top 50 global financial cities as surveyed by the MasterCard Worldwide Centres of Commerce Index (2007), and 1st within the Middle East.

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Since it opened in September 2004, the Dubai IFC has attracted, as a regional hub, leading international firms and set-up the NASDAQ Dubai which lists equity, derivatives, structured products, Islamic bonds and other bonds.

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The Dubai IFC model is an independent risk-based regulator with a legislative system consistent with English common law.

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Dubai has launched several major projects to support its economy and develop different sectors.

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Since the economy of Dubai relies majorly on real estate, transportation and tourism, it was highly exposed to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

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In effect, the benchmark stock index of Dubai dropped the most among all the Gulf nations, where the DFM General Index lost as much as 1.

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The documents revealed that Dubai firms, including Kaloti Jewellery International Group and Trust One Financial Services, have been obtaining gold from poor African countries like Sudan.

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The report, “Dubai Uncovered” mentioned names of 100 Russian oligarchs, public officials and Europeans involved in money laundering.

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Great tourist attraction in Dubai is the Burj Khalifa, currently the tallest building on Earth.

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Dubai has been called the "shopping capital of the Middle East".

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Dubai alone has more than 70 shopping centres, including the world's second largest shopping centre, Dubai Mall.

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Dubai is known for the historical souk districts located on either side of its creek.

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Dubai Creek played a vital role in sustaining the life of the community in the city and was the resource which originally drove the economic boom in Dubai.

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Dubai is referred to as "the City of Gold" as the Gold Souk in Deira houses nearly 250 gold retail shops.

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Dubai has a wide range of parks like Safa park, Mushrif park, Hamriya park, etc.

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Some of the most popular beaches in Dubai are Umm Suqeim Beach, Al Mamzar Beach Park, JBR Open Beach, Kite Beach, Black Palace Beach and Royal Island Beach Club.

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In October 2019, Dubai loosened its liquor laws for the first time, under which it allowed tourists to purchase alcohol from state-controlled stores.

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Dubai said, “Dubai is not all pretty, all rosy as we see on social networks.

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Dubai then won the right to host Expo 2020 on 27 November 2013.

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Dubai has targets to build an inclusive, barrier-free and disabled-friendly city.

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Dubai has a rich collection of buildings and structures of various architectural styles.

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Dubai Marina is a district in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

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Transport in Dubai is controlled by the Roads and Transport Authority, an agency of the government of Dubai, formed by royal decree in 2005.

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Dubai licensed taxis are easily identifiable by their cream bodywork colour and varied roof colours identifying the operator.

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The Dubai Metro is the first urban train network in the Arabian Peninsula.

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Dubai has announced it will complete a link of the UAE high-speed rail system which will eventually hook up with the whole GCC and then possibly Europe.

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Dubai is increasingly activating its logistics and ports in order to participate in trade between Europe and China or Africa in addition to oil transport.

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Major holidays in Dubai include Eid al Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, and National Day, which marks the formation of the United Arab Emirates.

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Biryani is a popular cuisine across Dubai with being the most popular among Indians and Pakistanis present in Dubai.

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The festival was designed to showcase the variety of flavours and cuisines on offer in Dubai featuring the cuisines of over 200 nationalities at the festival.

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Dubai Opera opened its door on 31 August 2016 in Downtown Dubai with a performance by Placido Domingo.

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One of the lesser-known sides of Dubai is the importance of its young contemporary art gallery scene.

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Art Dubai, the growing and reputable art fair of the region is as well a major contributor of the contemporary art scene's development.

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The Theatre of Digital Art Dubai opened in 2020 and presents immersive digital art, including contemporary work.

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Censorship is common in Dubai and used by the government to control content that it believes violates the cultural and political sensitivities of Emirates.

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Dubai enacted an Electronic Transactions and Commerce Law in 2002 which deals with digital signatures and electronic registers.

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Above dress code is never compulsory and many people wear western or other eastern clothing without any problems, but prohibitions on wearing "indecent clothing" or revealing too much skin are aspects of the UAE to which Dubai's visitors are expected to conform, and are encoded in Dubai's criminal law.

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Dubai has a very active education regulator, the KHDA, which is best known for its school ratings, but actually has a wide mandate when it comes to school improvement in the emirate.

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In 2013 Synergy University Dubai Campus opened its campus in Jumeirah Lakes Towers being a first University in Dubai to be located outside of Educational Zones.

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Public hospitals in Dubai were first built in the late 1950s and continued to grow with public health initiatives.

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In 2015, Dubai phased in mandatory health insurance for all inhabitants, thereby leading to increased demand for medical services.

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