What clicks you first when you think about Dubai? Most people think about desert safari or high rise buildings. Well, shopaholics think about the world renowned ‘Dubai Shopping Festival’ and ‘Dubai Summer Surprises’ and even tax free shopping. As Dubai is synonymous with shopping, there is nothing that you cannot buy in Dubai.
This January, the most waited time of the year in Dubai kicks off with the popular extravagant event of the Middle East - The Dubai Shopping Festival 2015 (DSF). Being a world famous festival, over five million travellers from across the globe flock to Dubai to pick the best deals and shop till they drop. So, pack your bags and head to Dubai between January 1, 2015 till February 1, 2015 and witness the largest shopping and entertainment extravaganza. This edition of the festival will be more fun as it celebrates its 20th anniversary.
Dubai Shopping Festival offers a wide range of shopping options that are available across the city right from massive malls to small shops. Besides discounted shopping, there are other activities for travellers like raffle draws, music concerts, fashion shows, children’s events and lots more to double the fun. Here is the list of what and where to shop during the Dubai Shopping Festival.
Dubai Gold Souk: Ever since I have been hearing about Dubai, gold from the Middle East was always a highlight. Your trip to Dubai would be incomplete without a visit to Dubai Gold Souk. Located in the heart of the business district of Dubai, Deira, Gold Souk consists of more than 300 retailer shops selling everything from gold jewellery to gold bars at the best bargains in the world. Take your time and pick your gold jewellery or gold coins from any of the stores at best reasonable price.
Dubai Spice Souk: Just adjacent to Gold Souk is the Spice Souk. This traditional market has narrow lanes with shops selling a variety of fragrances, spices and herbs used in Arabic and South Asian food. Although this is not very pleasing to eye, but this souk is worth exploring if you are looking out for exotic spices.
Global Village: This is one of the biggest attractions during the Dubai Shopping Festival. Global Village allows its visitors to explore international heritage as well as cultural diversity. It is developed with a unique concept to bring in the entire globe under one roof representing the culture of every single country in the world. Each country has its own pavilion and local products on display for sale. There are also food stalls, entertainment events, sports activities, children’s rides and daily lucky draws during Dubai Shopping Festival. If you wait till the last week of the event you might just get lucky to grab heavy discounts on good number of items.
Shopping Malls: With more than 68 world-class malls in UAE, Dubai showcases the best of both authentic Arabic and western shopping experience. Shopping malls and individual retail shops are set to offer up to a whopping 75% discount on variety of items. So this is the right time to shop electronics, camcorder and watches that are available at quite good discounts during Dubai Shopping Festival. Dubai is also known for the best deals on international perfumes and locally made ‘attar’. While you get branded perfumes at most of the shopping malls in Dubai, the traditional Arabic Perfume (Attar), can be bought from perfume souk in Deira or small retailers in Meena Bazaar.
Cultural Entertainment: The Dubai Shopping Festival sparks with an incredible firework display and continues to offer rich cultural programs and entertainment all month long. There are fashion shows, film festivals, street-side performances, musical shows, nightly fireworks, cultural events and performing artists from local and global platforms. The streets are draped in colour and lights adding to the joyous festivities.
The Carnival: Apart from shopping, there is a parade consisting of international artists and acrobatics along with dancers and percussionists. There are literally all types of performers, jugglers to stilt walkers and musicians. You can catch live performances and jazz concerts performed by renowned musicians. The events are held every weekend during the month of Dubai Shopping Festival.
Souvenir Shops: Dubai displays an array of products to buy as souvenirs for friends and family back home. From miniature models and key chains of Burj Al Arab and Burj Khalifa to wooden camel, coloured glass lanterns and much more; a traveller has a wide range of options to choose from. You can also shop for chocolates, spices and dry fruits as gifts to take back home.
Things you'll miss if you don’t visit Dubai Shopping Festival: During Dubai Shopping Festival, the shopping malls in Dubai are draped with best of deals to attract visitors. So if you’ve been eyeing on a Rolex, Armani suit or Versace perfume for some time, then this could just be the perfect chance to grab them. Also shoppers can stand a chance to win numerous daily and weekly prizes organised by participating retailers and malls.
Before you head to the greatest shopping festival of 2015, take a look at our Dubai packages. No wonder this city is a shopping paradise with so much to offer. If you are really interested to make the most out of your shopping experience, then Dubai is waiting for you!