Deira Island Overview

Deira gives you a sneak peek into the old charm and history of Dubai. Though Deira lacks the skyscrapers and Luxurious complex of the new Dubai, one thing for sure is that this part is filled with rich culture and vibrant buildings.

Though an old area of Dubai but still Deira, has a unique authenticity that never fails to captivate tourists when they visit the city of gold! In contrast to the glittering and ultramodern skyscrapers of downtown Dubai, the Deira district manages to maintain its cultural charm.

You can enjoy the old world charm at this heritage city by starting your journey through Deira Old Souk abra station, where you can disembark and listen to the chatter of Arabic as you stroll through the dingy covered market stalls. Additionally, there are incense burners, aromatic herbs, nuts, and other items all displayed in a photogenic way. The Dhow Market offers an opportunity to shop for traditional Arabic sailing craft items.

Find a huge arcade of glittering gold to treat your eyes, and perhaps, purchase some jewelry that comes in an unimaginable number of designs and lavish trends.

The market is like a theatre of vendors bargaining with their customers and curtains of gold jewelry. Moving on, you should get a traditional experience of food, culture, history and arts while you are in Deira, for which you should visit the various museums and galleries here, including Al Guhhrair center and Dubai Museum.

Amplify the traditional experience by taking a dining cruise in a dhow and binging upon typical Eastern and Western delicacies. Besides, there are many popular eating joints in this part of the city, where you can relish the flavors of traditional as well as foreign meals.

Deira does not lack options when it comes to entertainment for its visitors. You can move over the mystical displays of art galleries to enjoy yourself at Deira’s parks, or visit the much popular Dolphinarium.

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• Since Deira is geographically bordered by Sharjah and the Dubai Creek it becomes a prominent landmark .
• Deira was historically the commercial center of Dubai, but modern development in adjacent parts of the city has made it the second oldest town in Dubai.
• Tourists can ride traditional cargo boats along Deira Creek, which is known for its numerous souks and makes a great pastime for those who love to wander around.
• The Spice Souk and a Gold Souk are popular retail markets that have attracted visitors from throughout the world.
• Some of Deira's notable tourist attractions include a food market, a clock tower and a dolphinarium.
• In addition to the forts and museums, there are many galleries and artworks that offer a rich cultural insight into Dubai's history.

How To Reach

By Metro-The area of Deira lies along the Dubai Creek, with the Persian Gulf and Sharjah on either side. Passengers can alight at Deira by taking the Dubai Metro. It is connected to Bur Dubai via five crossings, including the Business Bay Crossing and Al Shindagha Tunnel. 

By Ferries- Deira is also accessible via a ferry service known as heritage Abra. From the Creek Metro Station, motorized ferries travel to Deira with fares starting at AED 2.

Recommended Read: Best Things to Do in Dubai Airport

Best Time To Visit

Deira is known for its rich history and culture, so it's best to arrive round 10 am so there won't be a rush and you can explore the place at your own pace.

Popular Read: Best Time and Season to Visit Dubai.

Other Essential Information

Places to visit in & Near Deira Dubai

1. Dubai Clock Tower

 One of the most popular monuments in Dubai is its clock tower, which represents the city's growth. Capture this historical monument on camera during a trip to this photo-worthy attraction. It's also a great place to learn about the history of this place that was once an important intersection of routes that led to Dubai.

2. Dubai Gold Souk

Deira is known for its labyrinth of shops where over a hundred shops offer jewelry items and precious stones. Authentic gold items are readily available at the market, especially the Najmat Taiba, an item holding a Guinness World Record for the most valuable piece of jewelry ever made. Remember to bargain until a price that works out well for you without making a hole in your pockets.

3. Dubai Spice Souk:

Explore the traditional spice heritage area in Dubai for an array of savory delights. In addition to the wide selection of fragrant teas you will also find an array of herbs and spices at the market. Stock up on Arabic spices, nuts, and oils, which you can haggle for a lower price.

4. Dubai Dolphinarium: 

Explore the most unique indoor entertainment experience in Dubai where you can participate in daily dolphin and seal shows, creek park bird show and also get a chance to swim with the dolphins. This live interaction with dolphins gives you a chance to dance with them, hug them and swim about in the deep waters.

Click here to Book: Dubai Dolphinarium Tickets

5. Saeed Al Maktoum House: 

Among Dubai’s many famous heritage sites is the Saeed Al Maktoum House, which was once a royal house of the ruling dynasty in Dubai. Today, it has been converted into a museum, replete with furniture, sculptures and historic items, displaying the history of the Emirates.

6. Dubai Museum: 

You can learn more about the history of Dubai at the Dubai Museum. Here, you will be able to learn about the living culture of Dubai and how it bridges the past with the present in the city. Discover the reason also why Dubai is among the best places to visit in the world.

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7. Al Ghurair Centre: 

Popular as the very first shopping mall in Dubai, this shopping center is a landmark tourist attraction in Deira. Currently, it has undergone large scale renovation and plays host to a large number of branded outlets, restaurants and cafes. With over 14 anchor stores, several entertainment zones and community service centers, this is a great place to have fun with kids.

8. Ahmedia Art Gallery: 

Located in Dubai, this art gallery aims to promote international art while presenting Dubai's cultural heritage. One can definitely meet with other similar-minded art enthusiasts at this Gallery, so if you are interested in art in its true sense, then this gallery is for you.

For lovers of art and beauty, you should explore Theatre of Digital Arts, located at Madinat Jumeirah, is one of the best places to visit and marvel at the works of celebrated and notable artists.

9. Al Hamriya Park: 

With a dedicated play area for kids and a football field, this park is an ideal spot for a family outing. Pets are not allowed in this park, but you can enjoy quality time amidst the lush greenery of the park. There are many trees in the park, creating walkways where you can relax and stroll for a while.

10. Dubai Creek Marina: 

At the heart of the Creek, a prestigious marina can be seen set against the backdrop of a warm waterfront location. The berthing houses at this location offer a legitimate luxurious yachting experience, with a stunning view of the Dubai skylines. With more than 80 yachts available to service you, the unparalleled experience will leave you thrilled.

Also Checkout & Book: Dhow Cruise Dubai Creek

Places to eat in Deira Dubai

1. Ashiana: Popular among foodie enthusiasts for its paneer tikka, Palak paneer, chicken curry and samosa, Ashiana is relished by visitors for its lively ambiance, live singing sessions and express hospitality services. You will find an altogether new menu; different from the traditional cuisines you will find in Dubai.

2. Glasshouse Brasserie: Known for exemplary services and quality food, the atmosphere and staff of the restaurant make it a stand-out option for visitors. You can expect to spend a reasonable amount at the restaurant which makes it a comfortable place to visit with family.

3. The China Club: Binge on the best Chinese flavors, prepared by some of the best chefs in Dubai. The restaurant offers flavors ranging from Cantones, Szechuan to Peking, in a very elaborately decorated ambiance that sets the mood just right for a scrumptious evening. Do not forget to get a taste of their famous Dim sums.

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4. Cucina: Located in Courtyard Marriott, the prime cuisines offered at this restaurant are Italian delicacies. The concept of the menu, combined with the choice of brunch and main courses seems to work the magic for tourists at this restaurant. It is priced decently, making it a comfortable option for you to pick.

5. Miyako: As the name suggests, this Japanese restaurant is the best place to have some great Sushi, Asian and Vegan meal options while you are in Deira. Although quite simple in ambiance and its menu, the restaurant is a famous one, known for its traditional meal preparations.

Also Read: Best Japanese Restaurants in Dubai

6. The Boardwalk: This intensive social hub offers a typical marine inspired décor for its visitors while offering marvelous views of the Dubai Creek from its terrace location. The Mediterranean menu is famous for dishes like seafood platter, baked pizzas and calzones. Also famous are the succulent dessert items such as sorbets, pastries and crepes.

Click here to Book: Dinner Cruise in Dubai

Tips for Visiting Deira Island

- Grab a Dubai card that grants you access to various attractions in Dubai without costing a hefty admission fee each time. 

- Although there are no laws forbidding visitors from wearing any type of clothing, it is respectful to their conservative culture to wear something that covers your shoulders and knees. 

- Do not drink alcohol outside a licensed bar or restaurant. 

- Transport within the city may be affected during Islamic holidays so plan your trip beforehand.

- Due to the unbearable heat, it is nearly impossible to explore the city on foot. Either rent a car for driving yourself or arrange a taxi to get around Deira. 

- Tipping is not a common norm in Deira and most service providers do not expect to receive it either.

While in Dubai, you can also Book: Dubai Marina Yacht Tour

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Point of Interest for Deira Island
Al Mamzar Beach Park

Al Mamzar Beach Park

The beach park includes sunbeds, umbrellas, pools, barbecues, athletic training areas, sledges, roller skating areas, and more. Take full advantage of the beach park's extravagant amenities and don't forget to jet ski around the water.

Relish your visit to Mamzar Beach and feel delighted as you step into a lush green landscaped beach park with winding paths.

Naif Souk

Naif Souk

The Naif souk is the place where you can get genuine souvenirs and gifts for a great bargain. This market was once a hub for camels but now you can get a wide array of traditional Arabic goods including clothes and avail henna drawing services.

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Abra Dock

Abra Dock

Take a ride in a traditional Arab boat made with wood, known as the Abra. The dock is a historic site, lined with multiple boats. You will need only 10 minutes to take a memorable ride on one of these, while you gather the picturesque scenes surrounding you. During the tour, you will pass several interesting sites including textile souk and many art galleries.

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Women's Museum Bait al Banat

Women's Museum Bait al Banat

This museum is dedicated to celebrating Emirati women who have contributed to the creation of culture and history. This museum displays their accomplishments from the worlds of business, education, politics, and society.

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Tourism Board Alliances

Deira Island FAQs

What is Deira famous for?

Deira is all about spice and gold souks, bustling with crowds of tourists and revolving with a touch of modernisation. Located on the other side of Dubai Creek, it is the second oldest city, characterised by small retail outlets, historic charms and cultural locations.

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Is Deira a good area in Dubai?

Deira is an extension of the old city in Dubai but with a modern twist. It is among the most popular neighborhoods for tourist to stay safe while holidaying in Dubai.

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What does Deira mean?

Deira is an Arabic word, meaning ‘house’. Another meaning of the word means ‘circular’, which could refer to the way the Dubai Creek is shaped. The origin of the word Deira comes from Arabic language.

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How far is Abu Dhabi from Deira?

The distance between Abu Dhabi and Deira is approximately 150 km, which will take a time of 1 hour 40 minutes to cover on road.

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Which are the best places to visit near Deira?

I. JA Bateaux Dubai: This flagship dining experience in Dubai creek offers an excellent cruising experience right in the middle of sparkling blue waters. Pick a tour package to experience a delightful multi-course meal with beverages and spend your time exploring the panoramic views of the locality of Dubai’s old town.

II. Dubai Frame: This colossal frame allows visitors to go in and ride up the bridge of the Dubai frame. The 150 metre high frame gives you colossal views of both, old and new Dubai. The see through bottom of the bridge is one of the scariest things to brave while you visit this attraction.

III. Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club: Right next to the breezy sea, this is a popular sporting destination for golf enthusiasts. In fact, this award-winning golf course offers a scenic entry to 3 golf courses and hosts several championships throughout the year.

Click here to Book: Dubai Frame Tickets

What is the best time to visit Deira?

The winter months from November to April are the most favourable for tourists looking to explore various facets of Deira’s tourist attractions. During this time, the temperature is not that high as compared to the summer months and the precipitation levels are at their lowest. If you want to find cheap hotel accommodations, then you can visit during the off-season, which occurs during the summer months.

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