The contrast of old and new below us -- modern skyscrapers fading in and out of view beside miles of untamed desert -- gave a perfect glimpse of this unique city as we floated over Dubai.
I recently took a scenic 40-minute Dubai seaplane tour with a company called Seawings. Though Dubai is both hot and hazy in the summertime, it was an opportunity I couldn't pass up, and even though the visibility wasn't the best, it actually added to the experience.
We took off from the marina at Jebel Ali Resort. The resort is a lovely little oasis tucked away in a quiet industrial area south of the city. As a flight attendant, I've done a lot of take-offs and landings, but I don’t usually get to experience them on the water. It’s quite a different feeling.
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The flight took us over Dubai’s most famous attractions - the Burj Khalifa, World Islands, Burj Al Arab. We got to get a glimpse of the Dubai Eye ferris wheel being constructed; once completed, it will be the largest ferris wheel in the world at 260 meters high.
We circled around the Palm Jumeirah, a man-made island large enough to be seen from space. I’ve been on the Palm before, but you don’t really get a feel for how cool the design is until you view it from above.
When I initially decided to take the flight I knew it was quite dusty and that the visibility wouldn’t be ideal. But it might have been the best time to do it. Dubai is a city built up from desert, and as we cruised through the sky, the city’s futuristic-looking buildings slowly appeared out of the haze, giving it an almost magical feel. The larger-than-life landmarks disappeared the same way they had appeared, almost a reflection of Dubai’s transient population.
NOTE: I am not affliliated with Seawings, nor was I paid to promote them for this post. However, I did receive my flight for free as I knew the pilot. All photos and opinions are my own.
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