Ramadan is not the best time to visit Dubai. We realised this after landing in Dubai during Ramadan season. Even in the airport, except Costa Coffee, all restaurants were closed till evening. This also came as a blessing in disguise, because we saw a different version of Dubai during the Ramadan season.
Pretty much all of Dubai’s restaurants are closed during day time, except a few who keep it open ONLY for takeaway option. Having food at a restaurant or any public place during Ramadan time (till evening) is an offence that can lead to heavy penalty and imprisonment.
Unfortunately, Dubai’s weather is extremely hot during Ramadan. The extreme weather is certainly an issue if you are going to walk a long distance in lookout of an open restaurant.
In some malls, we saw some restaurants open during day time, but there was a clear and big board that said that the food can be consumed only by non-muslims. It was mentioned in the board that a muslim consuming food during fasting time is an offence. The food court was also partially covered to ensure the visibility for the restaurants are reduced.
In the mall, we went to an electronic shop to checkout some gadgets. We were told not to play music in loud volume while checking out gadgets.
While we were on our way to our apartment, we spotted a restaurant for takeaway, quickly we picked up few shawarma rolls.
Instead of staying at a hotel, we decided to experience the “Serviced Apartment” model in Dubai. We stayed at “High End 2 Service Apartment” in Bur Dubai area. Finding a serviced apartment in Dubai is easier than finding a hotel. A good serviced apartment has almost all the facilities of a hotel. Serviced apartments are operated like a hotel – with a general manager, front office managers, restaurant managers, etc.
We did an online ticket purchase for an evening time slot to visit Burj Khalifa. En route to Burj Khalifa.
Right outside Burj Khalifa is The Mall of Dubai, the largest mall in the world by total area. When we spoke to few of our friends in Dubai, some confessed that they have not seen the entire mall. Below picture shows a tiny portion of the mall.
When it was close to the end time of fasting, almost all tables of all restaurant inside the mall was taken. But, they were not served the menu card, the restaurant main desk was also closed with cloth. Below picture was taken from the mall.
When we were walking around and taking photos, we could hear a loud cannon-fire sound from the building on the bottom-left-side of below picture. We were told that this tradition is to announce the end time of fasting for the day. Immediately after this loud sound, all restaurants became operational. Within five minutes, food were getting served on tables and Dubai became Dubai again.
Also, during this time, the Ramadan-rituals-audio was aired. The quality of the audio simply blew us away. Its the best audio quality we have ever heard in an open air environment. The sound could be heard pretty much from the left to right side of buildings in above picture — with clarity, and depth in audio.
From the mall, the entire Burj Khalifa can be photographed (from a very different camera angle). With some effort, we managed to capture the entire building in a single photo frame. The branding done about Dubai all around this place was stunning — through high definition TVs in large sizes and large numbers, and many hashtags written all over it.
While walking towards the lift to enter Burj Khalifa, the usage of technology to showcase the history of Burj Khalifa was mindblowing.
Imagine this scene — while you walk, on your right hand side there are TVs kept in regular distances all the way upto the lift (this is really a long distance). When you take your first step, the first TV to your right will show the first step of construction of Burj Khalifa. When you walk for 3-4 seconds straight and look right, the TV will show the second big milestone of Burj Khalifa construction. The walking speed and construction milestone display on TV was synchronised perfectly.
Below pictures are taken from the top floor in Burj Khalifa. We recommend to spend at least an hour to enjoy and admire the beauty of this city.
Around the mall, the place was very well lit and beautifully decorated. We highly recommend to take a long walk around the mall at night to enjoy the city.