Best for expertly curated itineraries: Norwegian
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Dubai is sometimes called the Las Vegas of the Middle East — but its culture is far more complex than initially meets the eye.
At once sophisticated and over-the-top, exclamatory but preserved in Muslim culture, its Port of Rashid can spin you away to multiple continents around the globe.
Here’s what to know when setting sail from its shores.
Dubai’s central location grants access to Europe, Asia and Oceania. And the Arabian Gulf is brimming with Middle Eastern gems and iconic sights.
These cruise lines can offer everything from affordable journeys to lengthy explorations of the UAE, Europe and beyond.
When choosing cruises for this list, we looked at the quality of routes available from each cruise line, prioritizing well-paced itineraries with port stops at key destinations around the region.
We also considered dining onboard, weighing the number, variety and overall quality of restaurants against passenger reviews. Finally, we weighed cabin amenities against each price point, looking for cruise lines that are known to deliver the highest value.
Additionally, we sought out customer reviews on travel websites and personal travel blogs, considering first-person experiences and each company’s overall reputation.
The best time to cruise from Dubai depends on what you expect from the weather.
November through March are mild winter months, with temperatures between 70°F and 80°F. Summer is May through September and is a scorcher with temperatures that peak over 100°F.
Consider your itinerary before choosing your dates. If you’re sailing north towards Italy, the summer heat may not be as fierce — and you’ll likely save money on flights, hotels and even the cruise in the tourist off-season.
If you’re sailing south to Africa consider traveling during winter to avoid the sweltering summertime heat. Avoid rainy spells in Asia, look for travel during the dry season. You might pay a little extra due to the peak tourist season, however you’ll enjoy your holiday more.
Dubai’s cruise hub, the Port of Rashid, is located at the mouth of Dubai Creek. You can get to it via:
Dubai is pure indulgence perched on the edge of the desert — a tantalizing city from which to embark.
From its port you can discover the world, cruising as close as Oman and Qatar on short, pocket-friendly journeys or as far as Asia and Australia on more extensive cruises.
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