Riding Through Dubai β€” Big Bus Style πŸ‡¦πŸ‡ͺ

Disclaimer: All Dubai posts are based on travels back in March 2020. As the world continues to battle COVID-19, please, let’s all do our part by upholding personal hygiene standards, practicing social distancing, wearing masks, avoiding unnecessary travels and most importantly, staying healthy and well.

I never cared much for those open-top bus tours. Whenever I saw them in Singapore I’d think- “what a funny way to get around town”. I never really understood it and didn’t see the value in it until well, I tried it for myself. & boy, I absolutely loved my experience. It’s such a great way to see the country and you don’t have to worry about transportation fees and taking the time to map your route to see the sights. I think why Big Bus works in Dubai is cause the city is huge and there’s so much to see β€” it’s the easiest way to get around.

On top of access to all three bus routes on the Big Bus Tour, the additional ‘perks‘ depend on the pass that you buy (1-day, 2-days or 5-days). We bought the 2-day pass for SGD116/pax from Klook. It might seem a little pricey but it’s definitely worth every penny (especially if you can maximise using all three routes and the additional complimentary walking tours + cruises).

Varying activities for different types of pass. (Image from Klook)


Day 1 of Big Bus Tours

Places/activities covered:
Beach Tour (Green line)
β€£ Starting Point: Dubai Mall
β€£ Bus ride past City Walk, Jumeirah Beach, Burj Al Arab, Souk Madinat
β€£ Alighted at Mall of the Emirates to change to the blue line

Marina Tour (Blue line)
β€£ Marina Mall (Location for Marina Cruise)
β€£ Marina & Island Lagoon Boat Cruise
β€£ Bus ride past JBR Walk, Promenade, Bayside, Tallest Block, Media City, The Pointe, Atlantis the Palm
β€£ Alighted at Atlantis the Palm for photos
β€£ Back to Mall of the Emirates to change to the red line to head back to Dubai Mall

β€£ Walking Tour: Downtown Discovery Walk

Took the hotel’s shuttle service and headed to the Big Bus Stop outside Dubai Mall to pick up our tickets.

They have a comprehensive app which provides all the details you need to know, including the ETA of buses at different bus stops. I was impressed with the app! It contained so much useful information. Cruises and walking tours operate at specific timings so it’s really important to plan your route ahead & factor in travelling time.

Always sit on top for the best unobstructed views! Don’t forget sunglasses + sunblock. It gets really windy up there so wearing a cap might not be so wise. Expect messy hair and perhaps a sun-kissed nose.

Earpieces are provided but it’s best if you can use your own. It’s those cheap quality ones where one side might be faulty.

Going past Jumeirah Beach and seeing Burj Al Arab.

Changing to the blue line at Mall of the Emirates to head to Marina Mall to catch the Marina Cruise.

Gelato break while waiting for the Marina & Island Lagoon Boat Cruise.

Setting off from Dubai Marina.

Awfully familiar sight β€” like the Singapore Flyer and Gardens by the Bay.

Next stop: Atlantis, The Palm.

Couldn’t miss a photo op. I will always remember back in 2012 when my mum wanted to take the monorail into Palm Jumeirah in the evening to catch the sunset to see the sights before it got dark. But I was being a brat and by the time we reached the train station it was already nightfall and there wasn’t much to see. I could tell my mum was disappointed and I made sure she would be far from that feeling this time round so I booked a 5-star stay for our last night. More in next post!


Downtown Discovery Walk (1 Hour)

Private tour for us; we were the only ones!

One of the “illusion exhibits” in the mall. If you stare at it long enough something will happen (I forgot!).

Apparently real dino bones.

Headed out the mall to catch the Burj Khalifa & Dubai Fountain light show.

Pretty cool except the fact that there were SO MANY SMALL FLIES outside while we were standing around.

The famous Dubai Mall aquarium. It was nice to go on the walking tour and learn some new things about Dubai β€” like how they’re rivalling with another country (I forgot which) to build the world’s tallest building. As if Burj Khalifa wasn’t tall enough! The guide we had was so knowledgeable and friendly, highly recommend.

Chose to eat at IHOP for dinner. We used to stay in the States and I think it’s embarrassing that I have no memory ever eating at an IHOP so I had to go!

Pancakes & toast. It was too much food and a tad too sweet.


End of Day 1’s Big Bus adventures. Day 2 on the next page.

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