Dubai Sightseeing: Bastakia district

The area of ​​Bastakia on the shores of Dubai Bay, not far from Bur Dubai, is considered the oldest part of Dubai. It is built up with buildings of the end of the XIX – early XX century. Bastakia was founded by Persian merchants. Gradually, the quarter has grown and soon became a full-fledged area, which played an important role in the life of the city. It is thanks to local merchants Dubay managed to survive the crisis of the 1930s, and then sharply increase turnover with India and Persia. Subsequently, the local businessmen have established oil trafficking with the world and received the United Arab Emirates for this.

All houses in the area were created according to the same principle: the foundation was built from a mixture of red clay and pieces of palm trees, and the walls were laid out of the shellham, coral stone and limestone plates mined in the Persian Gulf. In addition to merchants, pearls lived here and several rich families. It was here that wind towers used to ventilate the premises were invented.

In the mid-1980s, Bastakia was on the verge of destruction – here they wanted to build a new business center and a full-fledged residential array. But Architect Rainer Otter, developing a project plan, has long discovered Sheikh from the destruction of architectural monuments. Even the British Prince Charles rose to protect the district, which finally convinced the government to postpone the construction site. In ten years, Bastakia was bought from the local population and renovated, and now the classical Arabic architecture and narrow streets of the old district attract thousands of tourists. Numerous hotels, galleries, museums, cafes and other facilities open here, and the cost of the land meter is steadily growing.

Bachelor’s walk is best starting from the walls The cultural center of Sheikh Mohammed Sheikh Mohammed Center for Cultural Understanding) In one of the most elegant areas of the area with a beautiful courtyard and characteristic decorative lattices. Then it is worth passing about the building in the same old building Restaurant Bastakiah Nights, Go to modern White Mosque and the last surviving site old Urban Wall (approximately 1800), and then past a few art galleries (XVA, Ave Gallery, Majlis Gallery and others) to close the route in Fort Al-Fahidy (Al Fahidi, 1787-1887.), in which now is located very informative city ​​Museum (Dubai Museum). The museum is small, so the main exposure is located in the underground part of the fort, and in the courtyard there is a traditional fishing boat for the region "DOU". By the way, the cultural center of Sheikh Mohammed also organizes excursions to Jumeirah Mosque (Jumeirah Mosque) – the only religious building of the Emirate, access to which is allowed and non-Muslims.

Sightseeing Dubai District Bastakia

Also in Bastakia are located Museum of coffee (Coffee museum), first office building – Bait Al Vakil, or Beit Al Wakel (Bait Al Wakeel) and also beautifully restored House Heritage HERITAGE HOUSE). At night, the area is very spectacularly highlighted, often the various festivals and holidays are held here (for this purpose, an extensive area is east, closer to the British consulate), and numerous restaurants and cafes traditionally attract the attention of tourists. And only here you can see the characteristic Dubai "Wind towers" (Barjeels) – traditional air conditioners, with the help of its simple design, quite effectively cooled air in the house naturally. Birth of these characteristic architectural structures from South Iran, which once again illustrates the history of Bastakia. By the way, many local residents and organizations that occupy the old house houses are fairly willingly allow tourists not only inside, where you can see the characteristic interiors, but also on traditionally flat roofs, offering a beautiful view of the Dubai Creek and the quarter itself, especially in the evenings.

In the village of Pearls
Sheikh Said’s house, in which the museum is now located

How to get there: on the green branch of the metro station to Al Fahidi or Ghubaiba stations.

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