United Arab Emirates
Shopping in United Arab Emirates
If you are looking for souvenirs from United Arab Emirates you should read this.
Known as a shopping paradise, the UAE has become synonymous with luxury and glamour. Its big cities, like Dubai, the streets are filled with typical souks where you can buy local merchandise, as well as large shopping centres where the most prestigious brands in the world are located. A paradise for lovers of shopping that has been crowned the best in the Middle East for being tax-free and because you can buy almost anything your heart desires here. The souks are open to haggling, as it follows the traditional Arab lifestyle. A popular shopping destination is the Gold Souk, where most of the jewellery shops are concentrated and where it is possible to find great discounts; as well as the Spice Market, which opens a whole range of possibilities for budding chefs. In large shopping centers, however, you can find outlets of clothing, electronics or accessories, as well as more prestigious stores. Its enormous variety has led to numerous shopping tours and in the city of Dubai, there is even the Shopping Festival, in which all products are discounted.
Dubai has numerous outlets where you can find all kinds of clothing items. The largest in the city, and the world is the Dubai Mall, where there are more than 1,200 stores of international firms, accessories and sporting goods. The second best option is The Emirates Mall, declared as the third largest worldwide with more than 520 brands. Although prices will depend on the quality and signature of the designer, in these stores you can find many different offers. If you are looking for bargains, head to the Karama market. Almost all products are imitations from China and they usually accept haggling.
Other articles very typical of the Arab Emirates are lamps, made with stained glass, ceramic and metal figures, and shishas, the popular pipe through which many Arabs smoke fruity tobacco. These types of items can be found in many of the stores in the city. One of them is the souk of Bur Dubai, known for its great variety and for being the favourite place for tourists to buy souvenirs or decoration products. The atmosphere is quite boisterous and invites haggling. Also, Madinat Jumeirah is a good place to make these type of purchases. There are bars and restaurants where you can stop for a tasty tea or a snack.
Dubai is free of taxes, so it is possible to buy electronic devices, laptops, cameras and gadgets at a great price. One of the most popular places in the city is in the Indian neighbourhood that is located right next to the gold souk. Here are some of the best stores to buy electronics in the city and prices are very cheap. In addition, bargaining is accepted. In shopping centres, it is possible to find these types of stores although prices will be less appealing. The big brands have their own shops in the Dubai Mall and The Emirates Mall.
Although originally the Arab Emirates did not feature on the Silk Road route, as a Middle Eastern country you can find a wide variety of fabrics, silks and embroidered items. In Dubai, most of the stores where these types of products are sold, and either raw or processed fabrics, are in the fabric souk. There are colourful rolls with different patterns to find here, and it is where the locals come to choose their fabrics to later tailor into their traditional clothes. Due to the large number of shops the prices are not very high, so it is possible to take a few metres home with you to cover furniture, or make unique dresses, suits or home accessories.
Possibly there is no better destination in the Middle East to buy jewellery than Dubai. Known as the city of gold, one of its souks is dedicated exclusively to this precious asset. In total, you can count up to 300 jewellery stores where gold is sold both in kilos and in pieces made by hand. The price will depend on the store and the product, although in many cases it is up to 70% savings compared to Europe. This street is one of the essential stops within any shopping tour of the city. Even if you do not plan to buy anything, just to see all the merchandise and walk among its small stands is a worthwhile experience.
Spices are the star product of the countries of the Near East, who brought them from the different countries of the Asian continent through the historic Spice Route. Currently, every city and town that makes up the Arab Emirates has its own spice market, with intense smells and enormous colourful displays. However, one of the most famous is the one found in the city of Dubai. In it, you can find all kinds of fresh spices, including saffron, cardamom and cumin. You can buy the spices by weight and the price is usually very low. In addition, the atmosphere of the place invites the traveller to enjoy haggling with the locals.