Al Bastakiya in Old Dubai Complete Travel Guide

Posted On 14-Mar-2023

Dubai's modern skyline is dominated by tall and stylish buildings, making it difficult to navigate and explore the historical areas of Old Dubai.

However, the Al Bastakiya, also known as the Al Fahidi Historical District. It is a traditionally significant site that provides insight into the city's history.

This area represents the humble beginnings of Dubai before the development of the United Arab Emirates. Also, it contrasts sharply with the opulence of the city's contemporary architecture.

If you are interested in experiencing the city's past, visit this old district before you explore the rest of Dubai city. This guide will provide you with valuable information about the historical significance of Al Bastakiya.

Al Bastakiya In Old Dubai - A detailed Discussion

Al Bastakiya in Old Dubai


The historical documentation of Al Bastakiya traces back to the period of maritime trade in the golden city of UAE.

The most prominent trading company in Dubai emerged from the former precinct of Khor Dubai, commonly known as Dubai Creek. This area was established in the 19th century by Mr.

Qasim Bin Abdullah Al Bastaki was supported by successful merchants dealing in valuable commodities such as pearls.

Covering an area of around 300 square meters, this once dull and ancient location has now transformed into a labyrinth of fascinating antiquities. That still embodies the significance of Old Dubai. Legend has it that the area was slated for significant redevelopment, but Prince Charles intervened and halted its destruction. He deemed the area too valuable to be demolished.

Also Read: Souk Madinat Jumeirah Dubai

The Architecture:

Mr. Qasim Bin Abdullah Al Bastaki initially discussed the matter, while in the early 2000s, engineer Rashad Bukhash took charge. Besides, oversaw the renovation of about 50 structures in the area. In addition, he covertly initiated the creation of a team of museums and dwellings.

This was done as his colleagues in the region refused to focus on the progress of Dubai city, preferring instead to maintain their traditional district.

The exceptional shell and internal framework are unparalleled. Dubai's development was driven and invigorated by encouragement from numerous governments. The walls of the buildings are embellished with Islamic calligraphy. Additionally, the Aran Hijazi mashrabiya is an exotic North African method of Levantine embellishments and courtyards. These are just a few of the varied engineering techniques that you can discover in the historic district of Bastakiya in Old Dubai.

Walking along the streets of this neighborhood, with its slippery pavements and the uneven edges of the buildings. You will not experience the same hustle and bustle found elsewhere in the city. Instead, it feels like taking a journey back through many centuries. However, exploring the diverse cultures that have contributed to the rich history of the United Arab Emirates.

Also Read: Souk Madinat Jumeirah

Al Bastakiya Some Important Details:


It is uncovered at Hamriya in the neighborhood of Bur Dubai, UAE


The Al Bastakiya opening hours start from 9 AM to 06:00 PM and it remains open seven days a week.

Entry fee:

There is no entry fee, you can visit the at any time for the Bastakia quarter. You can cease in between the entrance times.

Activities to Explore Al Bastakiya

1. Dar Al Nadwa:

The origins of this building can be traced back to the 1800s. In 1925, it was constructed by its creator, Mr. Abdul Rahman Mohammad Farooq. Furthermore, the building occupies an area of approximately 463 square meters in the neighborhood, and has played host to many significant events, such as…

  • symposiums.
  • art shows.
  • Worldwide or nationwide meetings.

Also Read: Parks in Dubai

2. Sheikh Mohammed Center for Grownup Association Facility:

Established in 1944, this historic building is a prime example of well-documented architecture. Following a renovation in 2004, the building has become the headquarters of the Sheikh Mohammed Center for Cultural Understanding. It boasts 300 square meters of space that are used to host significant international events and essential workshops.

3. Elegant Buildings Area:

Gathered between 1930 and 1931, this structure occupies an area of 400 square meters. It featumetersnique a three-tiered stone staircase leading up to the two floors.

What sets this building apart from others in the district is the stunning panoramic view of the creek that its tower offers. Following a renovation in 1999, the building became the headquarters of the city's Historical Buildings Department.

4. Gallery Majlis:

Constructed in 1930, this tower spans an area of 400 square meters. It was renovated in 2002 and features an intricately designed Majlis. That evokes a sense of nostalgia for a bygone era when craftsmanship was highly valued. Today, the building serves as a repository of traditional art pieces, artifacts, and fabrics. It is boasting some of the finest displays in the beautiful city of Dubai, UAE.

If you plan to arrive by bus, simply alight at the Al Fahidi Bus Station.

5. XVA Hotel:

For an exceptional residential experience in the Bastakia Quarter, look no further than this hotel. The property underwent a renovation in 2003 and now comprises two buildings. Each room boasts picturesque views and is equipped with delightful amenities. This is an opportunity to enjoy a truly unique and unforgettable stay that sets itself apart from all other accommodations in the city. It's an experience that can only be described as epic.

6. Bastakiya Nights Diners:

Experience the unparalleled dining experience offered by this unique restaurant located in the Al Bastakiya district of Dubai. Housed within a building that dates back to 1895. This two-story establishment spans an impressive 649 square meters and features beautiful interiors that overlook a river. The restaurant specializes in serving traditional Arabic cuisine, leaving you craving more after every meal. You'll leave the restaurant satisfied, having tasted some of the best locally sourced and expertly prepared dishes.

7. Sahara Gate:

Located in the historic district of Al Bastakiya, this structure was constructed in 1954 and covers an area of 310 square meters. The building underwent a renovation in 2005 and has since been dedicated to the city's burgeoning real estate and development industry.

The interiors have been thoughtfully designed to reflect Arabic influences, with Islamic calligraphy adorning the walls. The entrance boasts stunning Arabic architectural details. Besides, it is a must-visit destination for anyone exploring old Dubai. It's a wonderful example of the region's rich heritage and should not be missed.

8. Architectural Heritage Society:

Constructed over an area of 184 square meters in 1936, this small yet charming building stands out in the solidly built Al Bastakiya district. Despite its modest size, it boasts one of the most aesthetically pleasing architectural designs in the area.

Following its renovation in 2001, the structure has been recognized and preserved by the Essential Legacy Society for its architectural heritage value. It serves as a wonderful reminder of the region's rich history and is a must-see attraction for visitors to the area.