No festival sales on in Global Village but go along for a different evening out while the weather is still perfect for walking. Experience a real Middle Eastern atmosphere with families enjoying browsing, shopping and eating at the various international stalls.  DoinDubai’s top tips:

Visit Yemen and pick up very reasonably priced rhodium based jewellery for yourself or as gifts. Sample all the various honeys on sale here, different ones for men and women’s health ! We also bought freshly ground cinnamon and a packet of spices for making biriyani rice.  Try Iran for perfect dry fruits such as apricots and miniature figs, also stock up on your favourite nuts from here, apparently the tiny bitter almonds and dried apple are brilliant for keeping cholesterol down. Sample some of the many types of seeds on sale here from melon to sunflower, all perfectly roasted and delicately salted. Do eat some of the shelled pomegranate famous in Iran as you walk around. Pick up some pretty painted pottery at Tunisia and very reasonably priced coloured tea glasses from Morocco (use for tiny sprigs of Bougainvillea  for easy table arrangements if you prefer your tea in a builder’s mug) The funky teapots and tea glass sets here are identical but much cheaper than in a well-known department store in Dubai Mall.

We bought freshly made spicy soft cheese specially concocted and sealed in jars from Palestine, a great hit on savoury biscuits for evening drinks with visitors. You can sample an almost endless variety with flat bread twisted into tiny rolls before you buy.  Take a close look at the costume jewellery in Lebanon, this was the most fashionable and trendy jewellery on offer and at fairly good prices. Very handy if the little ladies are begging for multiple ear piercings, get earrings from here that reflect that look minus the extra holes.

Walk through the India pavilion to get a feel for the variety of products on offer, it’s like a mini Meena Bazaar. I picked out some unusual black and beige semi pashmina shawls that are versatile enough to match a number of outfits. Do not expect fresh apple strudel or anything like this in Austria despite the very authentic façade of the stall.  Do go to Global Village hungry, you can sample heaps of  extremely authentic food either in stalls, at the food court area (we opted for Indian here) or in more formal stand alone pop up restaurants dotted about the grounds. The Thai food is particularly good with stalls from restaurants owned and managed by Thais based in International City.

Apart from food do bargain hard for anything you purchase, especially if you’re buying more than one of something. We’re spoilt for spectacular fireworks in Dubai but the ones here are still special and happen on Friday and Saturdays at around 9pm. Entry to Global Village is 10 dirhams for adults. They do have concessions for elderly and disabled people. Please note that it doesn’t open before 4pm in the afternoon but then it does stay open very late till around midnight or so.

 Give the malls a miss and tell me what bargains you picked up at Global Village, just off Mohammed bin Zayed road (previously Emirates road) past the entrance to Arabian Ranches. There is plenty of parking but it gets particularly busy at week ends. Dress sensibly for the cooler weather and the more local atmosphere. There is also a funfair but DoinDubai doesn’t do funfairs any more ! As usual do Like and Share on Facebook and subscribe to DoinDubai to get free posts every week by putting your email id in the box above and confirm you’re following. Thanks wishing you all a very Happy New Year,  Monica.


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