Palm Islands, United Arab Emirates

Palm Islands, United Arab Emirates

Palm Islands in Dubai is a mega-ambitious project of the Emirati government and developers, conceived at the time as the eighth (or what is there already in a row?) Wonder of the World. This is an artificial archipelago, consisting of three large peninsulas: Palm Jumeirah, Palm Deira (about a quarter built) and Palm Jabal Ali (construction is frozen at the initial stage), as well as miniature archipelagos “World” and “Universe” and several small islands. All this was invented to attract wealthy investors (and tourists along with them), as well as to expand the territory of the state in the waters of the Persian Gulf. Check JIBIN123 for United Arab Emirates customs regulations and visa requirements.

The prefix “Palm” in the name of the three islands indicates their shape: they are really created in the form of palm trees – along the “trunk” there is a central transport highway with hotels located along it, shopping and entertainment centers and other infrastructure, and symmetrical “branches” adjoin it, mostly with residential villas. At least that’s how it was originally intended. Plus, each of the “palms” is crowned with a huge crescent-shaped breakwater, protecting it from storms and currents.

How to get to the Isles of Palms

Direct flights to Dubai Airport fly from Moscow’s Sheremetyevo, Vnukovo and Domodedovo. Flights are operated by Aeroflot, FlyDubai, Emirates | Emirates, Ural Airlines and others; the minimum cost of a round-trip flight is 400 USD. From Pulkovo in St. Petersburg, you will have to fly with a transfer in Moscow or by charter. The prices on the page are for August 2021.

You can get from the airport to the islands by metro and monorail. There are stations near terminals 1 and 3, you need to take the red line and go to Nakheel station, and then transfer to the monorail that runs along Palm Jumeirah. The ticket costs 15 AED, the ride takes about an hour. Those who go to other islands need to take a taxi to the hotel.

The cheapest way is to get there by bus (the ticket will cost 2 AED, but the journey will take at least 2 hours, and transfers will be required.

A taxi from the airport will cost 25–30 AED, about half an hour on the road.


On Palm Jumeirah, the only “palm island” built to the end, there is a monorail that crosses it through and through along the “trunk”, making 5 stops along the way. A ticket costs 10-20 AED depending on the distance.

We advise you to sit by the window: the monorail is laid at a high altitude, and wonderful views open from it.

Palm Islands Hotels

As of 2021, most of the hotels already built and already operating in the Palm Islands are concentrated in the Palm Jumeirah. Basically, these are stylish modern 4 or 5 * complexes, the minimum cost of a standard room (for two people) is 250 AED per day.

You can admire the frozen Palm Jabal Ali construction site from the windows of hotels located nearby on the shore; there are not too many of them, and prices there start at an impressive 400 AED per night.

As for the long-term construction of Palm Deira, there are no hotels on its most rebuilt “quarter” either, but there are enough of them nearby on the shore, it is easy to find budget rooms from 100 AED.

What to try

On the “palm trees” and next to them there are many restaurants (including very expensive ones), a bunch of cafes and a great variety of budget eateries with shawarma, ice cream parlors and pizzerias. Almost all the cuisines of the world are represented, but perhaps the most interesting thing will be to try the traditional dishes of the Emirates: masguf – a specially prepared carp, makbus – Arabic pilaf with oriental spices, madruba – hot chicken pate.

You can have a cheap snack with local fast food – flat cakes khamir, salty or sweet, chebab pancakes, similar to Russian pancakes with different fillings. Local sweet habisa (shortbread dough with carob syrup) will be served in any establishment of local cuisine.

Sweet tooths will like camel milk ice cream, and show-offs will like ice cream with gold (where else to be like this, if not in the Emirates?).

For dinner in a restaurant with alcohol (where it is served), you will have to pay approximately 250 AED per person. In eateries, it’s easy to meet 15-20 AED for one.

Attractions of the Isles of Palms

The main attractions of the “palms” are the man-made islands themselves, primarily Palm Jumeirah: the realization of the power of cutting-edge building technologies and the volume of petrodollars poured into all this really takes the breath away from the most impressionable tourists. People with rottenness, who enjoy the failures of their neighbors, are more fond of the other two “palm trees”, the construction of which is now frozen indefinitely due to lack of funds and low demand for future real estate.

On Jumeirah, tourists visit the Atlantics complex, a luxury hotel located on the “top” of the island, as well as the observation deck of The Palm Tower next to the Nakheel Mall. From it, the entire “palm tree” is visible at a glance.


Tourists come to the Palm Islands all year round, but the best time to travel is March-April and October-December, when the weather is moderately hot, and the sea is warm and swimming is pleasant. In summer, the exhausting heat will not allow you to leave the hotel for a long time during the day (and the overheated sea will not refresh), and in January and February the water can be cool.

Palm Islands, United Arab Emirates