The Palm or Jumeirah Beach: which one is best for you? Whether you're a foodie, a laid-back traveller or an adreanline junkie, Caroline Elvin has the answers.
As the largest city in the United Arab Emirates, Dubai attracts tourists from all over the world. Many tourists visit for the luxury shopping malls, the impressive architecture and the year-round warm climate. Dubai International Airport is also the world’s busiest; in 2016, it handled 83.6 million passengers!
Jumeirah Beach and Palm Jumeirah are two of the most popular tourist destinations in Dubai, but what location suits you? Unless you are here for a short layover, you'll probably need to look a little closer into where to stay. Here are five things to consider when you’re visiting the city.
The Palm: Best for a luxury blowout
Jumeirah Beach: Best for independent hidden gems
Dubai is a paradise for foodies. Whatever your dining style, this city can cater to all. From a taste of Latin passion at La Parrilla to a rustic experience at Bushman’s at Anantara The Palm, there’s something for everyone. Uniquely, some of Dubai’s best restaurants are situated in hotels; something many of us aren't typically used to when travelling.
However, you could opt for a hotel around Dubai Marina; a place that has a wide range of restaurants both in and out of the hotels and resorts. Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa is one of the best places to enjoy a wide range of delicious, international food.
2. Beach Bums
The Palm: Best for secluded beaches
Jumeirah Beach: Best for atmosphere
If you’re a beach lover, you’re in for a treat in Dubai. Although Dubai isn’t home to the world’s most famous beaches, the water is always wonderfully warm and the city views make for a very unique beach selfie!
To enjoy the beach life, stay along the JBR Beach. JBR Beach sits adjacent to the walk - which is full of juice bars and cool eateries. JBR Beach can get a little busy in high season, so if you’re looking for something quieter, most resorts on The Palm have private beaches only accessible to guests.
3. Adventure Junkies
The Palm: Best for watersports
Jumeirah Beach: Best for inland adventure
Dubai is a great place for adventure. Whether you’re staying on The Palm or Jumeirah Beach, you’ll be just a short walk away from a watersports kiosk. Perhaps the most famous adventure you can embark on is Skydive Dubai. Skydive Dubai offers amazing dives over The Palm, giving you a chance to see Dubai like never before.
If adventure is your thing, pick accommodation near Dubai Marina or Dubai Media City. Both of these locations are in easy reach of Skydive Dubai and a short journey from Ski Dubai; an indoor Ski Resort located in the Mall Of Emirates.
4. The Laid-back Traveller
The Palm: Best for luxury spas
Jumeirah Beach: Best for beach and city strolls
Dubai might be a vibrant city and cultural hub of the world, but it’s quite easy to feel like you’re not in a city at all. Unlike some city breaks, you won’t come back from Dubai feeling too tired! If you’re looking for a relaxing experience, take a look at the resorts on The Palm.
Many of the resorts on The Palm are so large that you feel like you’re on a remote island and the views of the city are the only thing to remind you it's actually there. Try Sofitel Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa or Waldorf Astoria Dubai The Palm for a bit of peace.
Dubai isn’t really known for its day spas, so almost all spas available are within resorts. These spas are some of the most spectacular you'll come across, with many offering a nod to the cultural heritage of Dubai. For a truly unique spa experience, try the ultra-exclusive Ritz Carlton Dubai Spa.
The Palm: Best for memorabilia
Jumeirah Beach: Best for shopping until you drop!
If you love shopping, Dubai is the place for you. Many of the hotels put on shuttle buses (some of which are available free of charge) to the main malls in Dubai. If you like luxury, a visit to the Mall Of Emirates will leave you feeling suitably shopped-out. The lesser known Dubai Marina Mall is a great place to pick up essentials and is still bigger than the majority of malls where you’ll find mostly high-street shops.
Stay anywhere in either Jumeirah Beach or The Palm and you’ll have easy access to the biggest malls in Dubai. If you’re more intrigued by the equally-famous Gold Souk - the world’s largest gold market, you’ll be better off staying at Jumeirah Beach (as it’s closer). Yet, as mentioned before, most resorts will offer transport to key attractions such as the Gold Souk and the nearby Spice Souk.