The spiritual heart of the city, Dubai Creek is simply unmissable on your visit here. On one side of the Creek lies Bur Dubai, while Deira occupies the other side. The Creek itself is a charmingly bustling hub of activity. If you wanted to, you could walk all along the Creek's outlined sidewalks, to get a real feel for what the city has to offer. This is very much the defining symbol of 'Old Dubai', miles removed from the frenetic activities taking place on the other side of town.
My personal favourite is taking a ride on the abra (a local water-taxi), as it meanders along, offering a fascinating, refreshing glimpse of the contrasts that lie on the shore. Feel the breeze, remember the moment.
(Licenced - serves alcoholic beverages).
There are numerous organisers offering dinner cruises along Dubai Creek.
The two that I recommend with the best food, best atmosphere (ship) and best service are
-> the Al Mansour Dhow (wooden boat) of the Radisson SAS Blu Hotel in Deira
-> and the Bateaux Dubai (glass boat) owned by Jebel Ali Int'l Hotels.
How could you not love the combination of a 5-star cuisine on a beautiful ship, cruising up & down the Creek for about 2 hours? This is a very popular way for any visitor & also for us residents to spend an evening; many couples like to celebrate Valentine's Day or their anniversary this way, so make sure that you make a reservation!
Al Mansour Dhow Details: (website below)
Leaves port (Chamber of Commerce) at: 08:30pm / Returns at: 10:30pm.
Price per person (Year 2012): Dhs 185.- (buffet + 1 non-alcoholic welcome drink)
Alcohol is available on board and charged separately.
Dress code is smart-casual.
Bateaux Dubai Details: www.bateauxdubai.com
Departure 08.30pm / Return 11:00pm.
Price per person (Year 2012): Dhs 280.- (4-course meal + 1 non-alcoholic welcome drink)
Alcohol is available on board & charged separately.
Dress code is smart-casual.
NOTE: This is a lovely way to spend an evening, and we thoroughly enjoyed our dinner cruise on the Al Mansour Dhow in March 2012... the food was excellent! DELICIOUS! And the staff were exceptionally hospitable.
If you wish to really see the city from the creek's perspective, hire an Abra (water taxi) for an hour during daylight hours, or take part in a lunch cruise.
Dhow is the name for a long, flat sailing vessel that is found in the Indian Ocean along the east coast of Africa, the Arabian peninsula, Pakistan and India. They are basically wooden cargo ships of 30 to 130 feet that have plied the ancient trade routes of the Persian Gulf for millennia. They're built by hand using basic tools and are incredibly sturdy. Local trade in the Middle East is primarily by dhow.
They can be seen unloading along the Creek, the historic heart of the city. There are also plenty of companies offering "Creek Cruises" for lunch or dinner. Some are cheesy, some are romantic, but all are memorable.
Dubai's waterfront epitomizes the city's personality & no trip would be complete without a cruise along the 10km-long Creek is the best way to witness the clashing of the historically old & impressive modernity.
The dhow wharf hasn't changed much in 1,000 years, except that now some of the dhows haul refrigerators, electronics & car tyres instead of date honey, tobacco & cattle.
The best way to see the trading port is from the water. You can hire an Abra (water taxi). It costs 1 Dhs (Dirham) to cross the creek, or you can pay Dhs 10.- and have the entire Abra to youself. In March 2012, we paid 80 Dirhams for 4 of us to take a private tour all the way up & down the creek.
Also take time to walk around the dhow wharfage on the Deira side, to the west of the abra dock to get a closer look at the hustle & bustle and the often hard life of the traders actually living on their dhows. Every day (especially in the winter months in the late afternoon) I see photographers walking along the Dhow wharfage, starting right next to the Chamber of Commerce, opposite the Hilton Dubai Creek Hotel.
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Bateaux Dubai (glass boat dinner cruise): http://www.bateauxdubai.com
Dubai Creek is a-must-to-visit place in Dubai. Situated in Bur Dubai, along the creek, you will love the beautiful view of creek. It is a mixture of modern and traditional. High rise buildings in the background and the dhows and abras (small ships) cruise along the creek. You can take abra to cross from Bur Dubai to Baniyas street in Deira.
Along the creek, you can find many restaurants (mostly Arabic and Lebanese restaurants) , also you can enjoy Shisha. If you come in the afternoon, you will find many birds. You can also feed them by throwing the small pieces of bread to the water. Usually, the birds will catch it before the bread touches the water. It’s nice!! But try to catch them will cause you to pay fine. So, better to avoid it.
Dozens of Abras ferry passengers across Dubai creek from early morning until around midnight.
These wooden water taxis can hold about 25 passengers and can be boarded at two stations on either side of the creek. One route connects Al Sabkha station in Deira with the Old Souk station in Bur Dubai. The other connects two stations further along the creek.
Crossing the creek takes 5 minutes or so, and costs a ridiculously cheap 50 fils, which equates to approximately 8 pence in UK sterling.
Alternatively, it is possible to hire an Abra for a designated period of time to journey up and down the creek.
Boarding and disembarking the Abras can be a little difficult, especially during busy times when crowds are pushing to board, and steady footwear is essential.
Dubai Creek or Khor Dubai is a saltwater creek in Dubai.
It impeded the entry of ships due to current flow, the creek remained an important element in establishing the commercial position of Dubai, being the only port or harbor in the city.
Dubai Creek runs northeast-southwest through the city. The eastern section of the city forms the locality of Deira and is flanked by the emirate of Sharjah in the east and the town of Al Aweer in the south.
The eastern and western sections are linked via four bridges (Al Maktoum Bridge, Al Garhoud Bridge, Business Bay Crossing and Floating Bridge) and one tunnel (Al Shindagha Tunnel).
You can watch my 1 min 32 sec HD Video Dubai In the evening out of my Youtube channel.
The glass-fronted buildings along the edge of the creek vary in appearance depending on the time of day.
At sunset, the buildings cast impressive reflections onto the creek.
Seen here is the sun reflecting off the National Bank of Dubai building to give the creek an orange glow.
Dubai Creek divides the city of Dubai into two separate sections; Bur Dubai and Deira. To get to the creek, just take a taxi which is relatively cheap. The creek is busy with water taxis and Dows; a means of transporting people and goods. It is a beautiful area where markets can be found; restaurants, etc. A must see!!!
What better way to experience the Dubai of old then taking an abra (a kind of local boat) to cross the busy waters of the Dubai Creek....so umbilical to the growth and success of Dubai.
Besides, in my own opinion, this is the most "romantic" way to cross from the bustle of Deira to the more touristy Bur Dubai.
There are several stations along both banks, with abras connecting different locations. The good thing is, no matter what mistake you may make with the cross, the stations are not far from each other and so, you could always do a little bit of walking to get to the rightful location.
Just pick any abra - the owner will ensure that the abra is fully occupied before embarking with the cross. The open air allows you to fully absorb the atmosphere of the waterways.
Each crossing costs you only 1 AED and takes just a mere 10 minutes. Service continues right into the late night.
A perfect way to spend your afternoon off is to walk along the Creek. There are impressive buildings on each side of the creek, restaurants to get some refreshments and a few shopping areas as well.
You can also take a ride on the Abra (wooden boat) from one side of the Creek to the other for just 50 Fils (1/2 Dirham).
Update: Since 1st January 2007, the Abra fare has been increased to 1 Dirham.
A walk along the Creek, in Bur Dubai and in Deira, is part of every visit to Dubai’s old town. You’ll see the old wooden boats offloading their cargo with the skyscrapers in the background. The old buildings and the old souks with an amphibian vehicle full of tourists passing along. And of course the Abras, the small wooden boats connecting both sides of the Dubai Creek with each other. For a relaxing walk, the Bur Dubai side is the most interesting. Start at the textile souk and walk towards the ocean. If you can’t get tired of walking, you can walk up to the pedestrian tunnel which links both sides and is close to the main Gold Souk bus terminal in Deira. At the Deira site, there’s nothing like the beautiful walk from Bur Dubai. However, after exploring the souks, you can watch all the archaic boats offloading their freight and see where the goods from all the shops come from. Check out my Off the beaten path – tip “Dhows on the Creek” for further details on that. For details about crossing the creek the tips “Abras” (transportation) and “The Creek” (general) may be useful too.
Best trip I found in Dubai Creek is 1 Dehram trip from one side of the creek to the other - planty of people doing it . Local people are doing it for their need & tourists are doing it because all other tourists are doing it & it not expensive, it is instantly available - no schedual to follow, nothing to wait for - trip is not cancelled because there are not enough customers. The night dinner boats are nicer but I did not get to it even if I wanted to for some of the above reasons.
Trip was in Jan 2009
If you ever find yourself in this fascinating City, you need to have a walk or take a boat ride along the Dubai Creek, its just so cool.
Take a walk around the souks and the markets and have a bit to eat at the many restaurants alongside the creek.
The Creek area is Dubai historical downtown and it is definitely nice to visit. You'll find the gold, fish, textiles souks (local markets) and you can cross the creek with the traditional boats (abhra). It's a very cheap and a nice experience. You can tell the boat "driver" to take you wherever you want on the river, which can be very useful, above all when it's too hot!
The Creek splits Dubai into two with Bur Dubai on one side and Deira on the other. The creek is 14km long and is shaped in a large J shape from the Khor Dubai Wildlife & Waterbird Sanctuary and flows into the Gulf. The Creek is not only the centre of today's life in Dubai but it also plays an important economic role for the city bringing in many trading ships from far and wide. In the early days only small dhows were able to enter the creek. The bigger vessels had to unload goods into small boats at it's entrance on the Gulf. The late H.H. Shaikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, even before he became the Ruler of Dubai, realised the strategic importance of the creek. He ordered an economic and technical study in 1954 on deepening and widening the creek. Despite the lack of financial resources at that time to cover the cost of the project, a fund called the "Dubai Creek Dredging Fund" was established with a sum of £200,000. Initially, a canal 4000 ft long and six ft deep was dug and in the second stage sheet piling of length 1200 ft and 11,700 ft was laid on both sides of the creek. As a result, shipping movement increased and ships of a capacity of 500 tonnes were able to enter the creek. Upon completion of the dredging operations, it was necessary to link both sides with permanent bridges and hence the Al Maktoum bridge was completed in 1964. With the discovery of oil in 1967, a mobile part of the bridge was introduced in 1968 to facilitate the movement of oil tankers.