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Thursday, 23 January 2020

UAE2020 Day 03: Day Trip to Dubai

We had a good night's sleep and woke up fairly early this morning. Although it was 6am in the UAE our body clock still registered 10am Malaysian time. It will take a while for our bodies to adjust to the new time zone.

We hitched a ride with Ginny and Sern on their way to work. Sern dropped Ginny off at her workplace before sending us to the Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station which is just a few blocks away from where he worked.


right across Al Wahda Mall

across the Al Nahyan Stadium too

you can get to Dubai, Al Ain and Sharjah from here

today we're headed to Dubai


First order of business was to head to the counter to purchase our bus tickets to Dubai. We were told that the counter does not sell bus tickets to Dubai, but Nol cards that cost AED30 with a purse value of AED25 which is the exact fare to Dubai. We can use the same cards to ride the Metro and town buses in Dubai as well. 

The counter personnel kept reminding us not to throw the cards away since it can be used (once 'recharged' with the appropriate value) for the return trip to Abu Dhabi.


useful transit payment cards

don't throw away your Nol card!


Once we settled the matter of the fare and Nol cards, we decided to have breakfast first since the express bus number 101 to Dubai's IBN Battuta Bus Station leaves at a frequency of 15 minutes. 

We had breakfast at the Lebanese Restaurant & Grille conveniently located within the bus station. We all ordered the cheese sandwiches with the iconic 'karak chai' or 'karak tea'. Turns out the cheese 'sandwich' was in fact cheese wrapped in paratha rolls. 


in the bus station building

plentiful choices

run by a Lebanese man?

there's rice and a variety of dishes for lunch

this is our cheese 'sandich'


By the time we finished our breakfast it was approaching 8.30 so we headed to the platform where express bus number 101 lay waiting.


the 101 express bus

that will take us to Dubai

Ibn Battuta station, to be precise

time to board!


The bus was full, so much so that we could not find seating next to each other so we had to sit a distance away from one another, while still be in close proximity. Apart from tourists like us there were also students and office workers in suits headed to work and meetings in Dubai.

An hour later we reached Dubai's city limits!


we're almost there!


After spending the day at Ibn Battuta Mall we caught the 2pm express bus back to Abu Dhabi. Little did we know that this would be the only time we would be able to visit our favourite mall in Dubai.


let's head back!


2 short hours later we were back at Abu Dhabi Central Bus Station. We promised to meet up with Ginny and Sern as soon as they got off work and had some time to burn so we wandered around Al Wahda Mall for an hour before making our way to the entrance where Ginny and Sern would pick us up later.

While waiting we took some photos of the Al Nahyan Stadium, home of Al Wahda Football Club, a football club based in Abu Dhabi (obviously) that plays in the UAE Pro League. It has a seating capacity of 10,000 people and open since 1995.


wonder if we could catch a game or two

maybe if we had the time


Ginny and Sern picked us up shortly thereafter and we headed back to Al Reef Villas.

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