DUBAI - The Dubai Metro


The Dubai Metro is ready and running and it's fun! So don't wait, go for a ride now. It's a different way to see the layout of the city that sure beats the backseat of a taxi.

On September 9th, 2009 (or on 9-9-09) Dubai's ruler, His Highness, Sheikh Mohamed bin Rashid al Maktoum officially opened the first Metro line in Dubai, The Red Line. This is the first Metro in the Arabian Peninsula.

On my last visit to Dubai, I decide to try the Metro. I rode from the Dubai Airport Station (in Terminal 3) to the Deira Station near my friends house. The next day, I climbed on the Metro once more. This time, I went to The Emirates Mall Station across town, near Jumeirah Beach.

Both times the rides were fast and easy to navigate. The seats were comfortable, the cars uncrowded, the stations, hospital clean and dare I say, the decor was ultra modern, with lots of shiny tile, glass and chrome surfaces along the way. Air conditioned areas prevailed and best of all, the price was right. It only cost about two dollars per segment.

FYI, not all the stations in the Red Line are opened yet, so check with the station attendants before you get on. Also, check the prices, because they vary according to the distance you travel.

The Metro is easy to navigate because all of the signs and announcements are made in Arabic, as well as in English. Once aboard the Metro, you will hear each stop announced via a loud speaker in both languages and you will see the name of the stop flashed on illuminated signs above the doors. There are also, easy to follow Metro maps over each door.

Seating is mixed, with preference given to the female riders.

More Metro lines that will service the whole city are planned for the near future. There's a Green Line that will open in June 2010 and there's a yellow line that's in the works.

For more information on the Dubai Metro, visit the following link : Dubai Metro - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Enjoy the ride!

DUBAI - Bur Dubai Souq


While in Dubai, visit the Souk in Bur Dubai. It's located in the old part of Dubai, right by the Dubai creek and across the Gold and Spice Souk. To get there from the Gold and Spice Souk, just take the small water taxis that cross the Creek for one Dirham (about .30 cents of a dollar) to the other side. (For more information on these water taxis and on crossing the Dubai Creek, please read our previous post about the Dubai Water Taxis).

Once in the Bur Dubai Souk, visit the Middle Eastern textile shops that offer pashmina shawls, table runners, bed and pillow covers and regional clothes for sale at very reasonable prices. It's the perfect place to pick up a comfortable (and modest) female outfit to roam the most conservative streets of Dubai, like the Souks, with out offending a pious soul.

What outfit am I referring to? certainly not the oppressive black burkha, but a "cool-as-a-breeze" cotton pant & tunic ensemble for women, that comes in a multitude of interchangeable solid, summer colors like turquoise blue, yellow, pink, tan, white and aquamarine green. A perfect outfit for day or night to keep you cool in the heat of Dubai.

I purchased two tunic/pant sets on my last visit to Dubai, one white and the other brown. Both lightly decorated with same color embroidery and a few sparkling beads. I wore my white outfit to the Marina beach the next day and I loved the comfort and coolness I felt from the light and loose fabrics of the outfit during the strong, mid-day heat.

If you wish to purchase one of these outfits, visit my friend Pradeep's shop in the Bur Dubai Souk in the ABRA MARKET SHOP # 4 & 5 (photo enclosed). They speak English and if you tell them you're from the airlines, I've been told, you'll receive a discount.

Once inside the shop, you'll see their fantastic selection of pant & tunic sets for women in a myriad of colors and an equally impressive collection of pashmina shawls, beaded purses, cushion covers, etc. for sale.

All their items are priced very reasonably and the pant/tunic sets sell for about ten dollars each (that's a pair of pants plus a shirt). Word of caution, when purchasing your set, ask for the "Tunic and pants set for women", for there are similar sets for sale in the market for men and those, you definitely don't want to wear in Dubai.

To learn more about the Bur Dubai Souq in Dubai, click in the following link by Lonely Planet.
Sights and attractions, experience Bur Dubai Souq in Dubai - Lonely Planet Travel Information

Have fun and enjoy the Souk!

Do you have any shops or restaurants you wish to recommend? We'd love to hear from you!
Send us your stories to postcards@me.com

FRANKFURT - Botticelli Exhibit at the St�del Museum


I just read this in the New York Times Travel-Art section! If you're in Frankfurt from now until the 18th of February 2010, make some time to visit the fantastic Stadel Art Museum in Frankfurt to view the Botticelli exhibit, the first ever in Germany.

The New York times claims Boticelli is akin to Rembrant or Van Gogh. A "must see" if you're in Frankfurt.

Remember the Venus by Boticelli, (photo enclosed) of the woman floating on a large shell? That's one of his most famous paintings, the original hangs in the Uffizi Gallery In Venice.

For more information on museum hours and admission fees, visit the enclosed link: Plan your visit - Visitor Information - St�del Museum.

If you decide to go, it's an easy walk from the main train station in Frankfurt. Just walk for a couple of blocks towards the river and turn left once your reach the river for about one block. Cross over the river on the pedestrian bridge and once across, the Stadel will be almost right in front of you, a bit to the left (photo enclosed).

Before you leave the museum, don't forget to make a detour to visit Holbein's, the museum cafe. It's a beautiful glass enclosed structure with a lovely garden view. It serves wonderful German desserts and delicious German food and it's very popular with the locals.

If you want a pre-recorded tour in English, they are available for an extra fee.

Enjoy the Boticelli paintings and take a quick tour of the Stadel's gorgeous permanent collection while you're there.

Have you heard of anything cool to do while in Frankfurt? Let us know so we can post it for others to enjoy - Send your comments and recommendations to postcards@me.com

Thanks much!

MUNICH -Christmas Market in The Marienplatz


The Munich Christmas Market started on November 27th and will run until December 24th at 2pm. So hurry up and go there if you're in Munich. It's held in the Marienplatz, the very beautiful main square in the historical center of Munich. It's supposedly, the most popular (and possibly, the most crowded) Christmas market in Munich. Like most Christmas markets, it has a variety of stalls that sell traditional German drinks (hot- mulled wines), sweets and foods. There are also tons of beautifully, hand crafted Christmas ornaments and other lovely crafts.

For more information on this loved market, click on the following link Munich Christmas Markets - Discover Munich.

Market hours :

Monday to Friday - from 10am - 8:30pm
Saturdays - from 9am - 8:30pm
Sundays - from 10am - 7:30 pm
24th of Dec. - from 10am - 2pm

Enjoy! and let us know if you visited any other Christmas markets you liked!

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