Drive Dubai: The answer to lift up your spirits, post Covid-19!

Drive Dubai: The answer to lift up your spirits, post Covid-19!

In today’s increasingly polarized world further accentuated in these unprecedented times, it is fair to assume that lockdown restrictions implemented by governments across the world have, if not anything else, surely dampened human spirit. I, for one however, believe the sheer simple joys of life like having a pint with friends, sunbathing on a beach or even going on a road trip “Drive Dubai!” will certainly go a long way in lifting our spirits.

The Simple Things In Life

I grew up in Dubai, where as a teenager, I learned how to drive back in the day when you didn’t really have the option of an automatic transmission. Anyone who has learned to drive on a manual transmission however, can vouch for the sheer thrill it offers once you master the art. That pure adrenalin feeling with every gear shift. Despite the choice of transmission, all one really needs is a wide open stretch of road, that Dubai with its relatively new infrastructure, has absolutely no real shortage of whatsoever.

In spite of being a small city with a population of only 3 million (that’s less than a fifth of New York City by the way), Dubai has built an intricate network of highways that offer uninterrupted driving for long stretches, albeit at speed limit, which in some cases can be as high as 130 kilometres per hour! In addition to above average highway corridor widths with a minimum of 6 lanes on each side, the superior build quality is clearly evident in the use of high grade asphalt that more often than not draws attention to your car suspension. A sport-tuned suspension normally found on high performance speedsters will certainly accentuate your driving experience here in Dubai.

 

My Favourite Routes

One of my favourite uninterrupted stretches starts from the Palm Jumeirah to Mirdif City Centre via the toll highway E11 north then taking the exit to D83 east immediately after crossing Dubai creek over Garhoud bridge. This 40 kilometre route takes you all along the infamous Shaikh Zayed road where you will experience driving along side the towering architectural wonders of Dubai while crossing the Dubai creek twice over two different 12 lane bridges that maintain the width of the highway making this marvelous driving experience feel seamless and worth every penny you spend on the three toll gates you end up passing through.

As you pass the second bridge and third toll gate, make sure to stay on the right to exit onto Rebat street (D83 east) passing Dubai Festival City on your right you will be able to keep driving uninterrupted without the need to reduce your speed despite losing four lanes.

Once again staying on the left along Rebat which then turns into Tripoli street you can take the exit to Mirdif City Centre parking directly from the highway if you fancy a coffee break, grabbing a bite, take the wife and kids shopping; or else like me if you resent being interrupted when in driving trance then I highly recommend you keep chugging along all the way for about 20 kilometres when D83 east finally ends and merges into another one of my favourite stretches on highway E611.

 

 

E611 Dubia Bypass Road UAE

E611, previously known as Dubai by-pass road and now the grand “Emirates Road”, is a recently widened magnificent stretch of predominantly 16 lanes of high quality grade asphalt on either side and the best part is its toll-free, albeit without the surrounding urban landscapes of E11 yet is no compromise on driving pleasure.

You can cruise at 130 kilometres per hour on it for over 40 kilometres straight. No guesses for how long that should take you on a well lit road. Unlike Europe and America though, highways in the United Arab Emirates are installed with towering central median street lights to cater for the most important road lighting parameters that include luminance, illuminance and glare offering unparalleled visibility at high speeds. It has to be one of the most dreamy night ‘Drive Dubai’.

I have ever taken in my life especially when I have something to ponder over. The empty desert landscapes on either side keep any unnecessary visual distractions at bay for deep thought. You know how they say long walks are great for opening up your mind to creativity. Well driving at 130 kilometres per hour for just about 20 minutes in one of those 8 lanes on E611 is what I do when I have to feed my soul with some tranquility.

 

The vast expanse surrounding Dubai by-pass road (E611) Emirates Road
The vast expanse surrounding Dubai by-pass road (E611) Emirates Road

 

Timing is Everything

I usually time my drives in Dubai past midnight when the magnanimity of those wide stretches of highway are further enhanced by the visible emptiness on display. I do admit that I often lose myself in the high gained from pure driving pleasure until a dose of reality hits me all of a sudden when one of the many installed high speed cameras flash and bring me back to the realization that I may have let myself get carried away.

Oh well, it’s a small price to pay in exchange for an unmatched driving experience. Well at least that’s what I say to myself to savior the guilty pleasure I derive from my late night indulgence.

 

Why Must You Drive Dubai?

Niraj Bhatia Drive Dubai with Ford Probe II 1989 model
Niraj Bhatia with Ford Probe II (1989 model)

If driving has been a source of soul searching for you as it is for me, if driving allows you to contemplate and reflect in deep thought, if driving nurtures a conducive environment for you to self analyse, or if you just like to drive for no apparent reason at all then I assure you driving in the United Arab Emirates is something you must do when you visit.

I highly recommend using a reputed online rental car portal like One Click Drive Dubai especially considering the incredible variety they have on offer from economical to sophisticated luxury hatchbacks, saloons and SUVs and even high performance sporty vehicle options for an out of this world driving experience. All you need is a compatible drivers license from your home country or an international drivers permit will suffice too as well as credit card for security and insurance coverage. 

And if my driving experience on some of Dubai’s incredible highways hasn’t convinced you on the joys of driving then well, I’ll have you know Ford Motors Corporation recently hired experts to conduct a study to measure enjoyment of different activities and found that driving a performance car actually ranks higher than kissing, fine dining, watching football, watching Game of Thrones, shopping, salsa dancing and riding a roller coaster!

All of which by the way you can also do when visiting the United Arab Emirates. So the next time you are thinking of a holiday destination why not consider Dubai and if driving gives you as much pleasure as it gives me then why not consider OneClickDrive.com.

Niraj Bhatia