Deira has long been the commercial centre of Dubai and has changed a lot over the years due to the development of some of the larger roads and other industrialisations in the area. In recent years it has transformed into a modern paradise filled with souks, shopping malls, restaurants and has a beautiful modern feel while also keeping a distinctive historical feel which you’ll recognise instantly as being a meaningful part of Dubai.
Something for everyone in Deira
This is such a beautiful part of Dubai that is full of unique places to visit. Here’s my list of the top 6 places to check out on your day in and around the Deira area.
Famously known as Dubai’s best spice souk, the Deira spice souk is located close to the Deira Old Souk Abra Station. This gorgeous souk is all winding small alleyways filled with the most exotic scents and spices you can imagine. Fresh stocks arrive every day of the week and here you’ll find anything from cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric and dried fruits to frankincense and medicinal herbs, as well as a huge variety of other spices and delights. The spice souk is open every day of the week so you’ll be able to squeeze in a visit at some point!
While we’re on the topic of spices and food, I have to include the Waterfront Market on this list. The Waterfront Market is a state-of-the-art market that was redone in 2017 and sells the best fresh fish in Dubai. You don’t only buy fish here though! The Waterfront Market boasts a selection of fresh fish, fruit and vegetables, meat and poultry, spices, kiosks, cafes and restaurants. There are also kids play areas and occasional community events that are held here, so this is a great spot for a day out if you’ve got the kids in tow too.
This beautiful heritage house was built in 1890 and was home to one of Dubai’s wealthy pearl merchant princes. If you’re curious about what a gorgeous, traditional Dubai home looked like before modern buildings took over, this is a must-see. The heritage house is filled with ornately restored rooms, Persian rugs and luxurious textiles, complete with a sandy courtyard. On your trip to the heritage house, you’ll be at liberty to move around the hose and explore as you like. This gives a glimpse into real-life and high class Dubai as it once was, and will give you a beautiful look into the wonderful past of what life was once like in Deira.
City Centre Deira Shopping Mall
Dubai knows how to do shopping malls well! The Deira Centre Shopping Mall is unique in that it is one of the only malls in Dubai that has a mix of high-end brands as well as some that are more affordable so it’s more accessible to a wider range of visitors. Here you’ll find a variety of spots to eat, places to shop, and even a movie theatre to change things up during the day and catch the latest films. Keep an eye on their site for any deals and offers they have on!
Deira’s Gold Souk is widely known as Dubai’s best souk. There are tons of intricate and exquisite designs that you’ll only find here, and as such you’ll see tons of visitors haggling for prices on everything from earrings and bangles to ornate full body pieces. Sellers at the gold souk will set their prices high and you can usually haggle them down by around 30% if you’re good at it. The weight of the gold won’t change, but you’ll be able to find a difference in the cost of the workmanship of each piece. Top tip: bring cash with you for an even better deal.
Al Mamzar Beach Park
A beautiful outdoor spot that will complete your day in Deira. Al Mamzar is a creatively designed outdoor space complete with stretches of white sandy beaches, pools, playgrounds, barbeque and picnic areas and bike rentals. You could spend a really fun day in the sun here enjoying everything this spot has to offer! Like most places in Dubai, there’s always a beach within walking distance. You can make the most of your day visiting the souks and other cultural spots around Deira but also still grab some beach time outside to relax.
Cultural experiences and beautiful souks in Deira
There are so many places to explore around Deira. From a beautiful cultural experience at the heritage house, some time outside at Al Mamzar or a trip round the souks, you’ll leave this part of the city with a true sense of appreciation for days gone by and the culture of Dubai. What was your favourite part about Deira?