The birthplace of a city

This is where it all began. Historically the creek divided Dubai into two sections – Deira and Bur Dubai. In the 19th century, the Bani Yas tribe started settling in the Bur Dubai Creek area. That led to the Al Maktoum dynasty, which brought about the birth of thriving modern Dubai.

Dubai Creek is a seawater inlet that provides a natural harbour. Go back 50 years and this was home to little more than a bustling fishing town. So if you hop off the Dubai Bus Tour here today, you’ll get a flavour of the traditional Arabic lifestyle that still lingers.

A pearl in the crown

Back in the early 1900s, dhows from India and East Africa would stop off here, bringing goods and food for trade. Before oil, the pearl industry was the main driver of Dubai’s economy. The creek was where it was all based, with intrepid swimmers diving for oysters. And the warm, shallow waters made it perfect for the fishing trade too.

A mix of old and new

If you want to experience Dubai’s unique blend of tradition and modernity be sure to take a free Arabian Dhow Cruise from the Quay at Stop 18 – admission is included in your ticket. You’ll be immersed in the bustling, traditional streets and souks, but won’t fail to notice the iconic buildings of today’s Dubai, including the Deira Twin Towers, Sheraton Dubai Creek, National Bank and the Chamber of Commerce, rising behind them.

Other interesting facts about Dubai Creek:

  • Traders still use Port Saeed on the creek to bring goods and wares to sell
  • The Ancient Greeks called the creek the River Zara
  • The creek was dredged in 1961 to allow 7-foot draft vessels passage
  • Al Maktoum Bridge, built in 1963, was the first bridge to connect Bur Dubai and Deira