Day 21 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates – Jun 11th 2015

Alongside Dubai – 11:30 to 23:59

After an interesting sea passage from Colombo, skirting a tropical cyclone, arrival Dubai brings us to the end of the first segment of the World Cruise. About 300 pax depart the ship this morning and slightly more are joining, so we will depart with a yet again full ship, just a few new faces. While arrival was scheduled for 07:00, we experienced delays due to the cyclone and an engine overheating. Therefore, it was about 10:55 before we heard the pipe announcing the ship was secured and cleared by the local authorities.


Temperature: High 43C/109F, Low 36C

Wind/Weather: Light Airs, but very hazy due to recent sandstorm and pollution

Sunrise/Sunset:  05:28/19:08

Clox: Z+4 (no change)

Distance – Colombo to Dubai: 1,920 Miles


Sea Princess transited the Straits of Hermuz in the early hours of the morning, entering the Persian Gulf. Once clear of the Straits we altered to Port onto a SW’ly heading, off-shore of the procession of anchored vessels and oil rigs. We picked up the Port Rashid pilot about 09:30 then proceeded into the harbour, where we turned 180 degrees before backing down to our berth at the passenger terminal. Sea Princess remained alongside for the remainder of the day.

Dubai passenger terminal

Dubai’s Port Rashid Passenger Terminal

Dubai, UAE

The Dubai Emirate is located on the SE Coast of the Persian Gulf and is one of seven separate Emirates included in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It is the most populated city and Emirate within the UAE, and in size is second only to the capital Abu Dhabi. Of the seven emirates, only Abu Dhabi and Dubai have a veto over important matters in the government legislator.

Although Dubai has received numerous mentions over hundreds of years, it was formally established by the Sheikh in 1833, when he convinced about 800 members of the tribe to follow him to Dubai Creek. It remained under the tribe’s control and in 1892 Britain agreed to protect the developing Sheikhdom. The British agreement remained in force until the formation of the UAE on 2nd December 1971, at which time the British departed the Persian Gulf.

Initially driven by the oil and gas industry, the Dubai economy has diversified widely, with oil and gas only producing about 7% of GDP. Real estate, construction, shopping, finance and tourism are now the major components of the Dubai economy. The city has developed a number of industry specific hubs – Dubai Internet City, Dubai Media City, Dubai Financial District and Dubai Marina.

Hazy view of Burj Kalifa while approach berth

Dubai Mall & Burj Kalifa in the haze from the port



As a turn-around and overnight port, very few people were expected to remain aboard the vessel, so minimal, if any entertainment was arranged by the cruise staff, so it really wasn’t worth photographing and posting the Princess Patter, which was also very similar to day 1 in Sydney.

After breakfast we returned to the cabin, watching the arrival from the balcony. While backing down to the passenger terminal we noted one of the smaller royal yachts, which our son was visiting to chat with his opposite number, the Staff Captain. Although one of the smaller of the Dubai Royal Yachts, it is an ex-cruise ship. Our son Iain met us immediately on clearing the terminal, advising Judi she had a noon appointment for nails, etc. This was at the opposite end of the city, so Iain drove like Mario Andretti, arriving with a few minutes to spare.

Palm Jumeirah stem with swanky hotels

View of Palm Jumeirah man made island from 52nd floor od Dubai Marina Marriott

When Heidi finished work and Judi’s appointment was over, we headed to the Observatory, which is on the 52nd floor of the Marriott in Dubai Marina. Wow, the kids picked a really excellent place for lunch, even one that accepted wearing shorts in their dress code. Underground valet parking, was available, so we stopped at the entrance and jumped into the lift that whisked us up to the 52nd floor. Although hazy, due to the recent sandstorm, as we were seated at a window seat the view was spectacular. Located at the shore end of Palm Jumeirah Island, we had an excellent view of the sky diving club, the man-made island and Iain’s ship MV Dubai.

Palm Jumeirah base with Iain's ship at end of inshore frond

Entrance bridge to Palm Jumeirah, with 3rd largest yacht in the world that Iain works aboard

Palm Jumeirah south side and marina

South side of Palm Jumeirah and marina with Atlantis in the background

After a great lunch we headed back to the kid’s house where Heidi, our # 1 daughter-in-law gave us both a haircut.

Soon it was time to head downtown to meet up with our friend Dean, who is staying at a hotel close to the port. Being rush hour, Iain allowed an hour for what is normally a 40 minute drive, however it took almost 2 hours. Never again will I ever complain about Vancouver traffic. We dined at Dean’s favourite, P.F. Chang’s which is a worldwide chain. Food was good, but outside in a mall it was rather noisy.

PF Changs Iain & Heidi

Our son Iain and daughter-in-law Heidi at dinner at PF Changs

PF Changs Dean & Iain and Heidi's friend Jo

Our friend Dean and Heidi’s friend Jo having dinner at PF Changs

PF Changs Andy with shorter hair

Andy with new short hair at PF Changs

PF Changs our group at dinner

Our dinner group at PF Changs in Dubai

After dinner, Iain took us back and dropped us at the ship and wanted to head back early to pick us up again tomorrow to take us out for breakfast. We declined, as he needed to enjoy his rare weekend off, and we planned to Skype early next morning with our daughter, before everybody else was awake and flooded the minimal bandwidth available.


Segment 1 Summary (Sydney to Dubai)

  • Sydney to Melbourne               540 miles at average speed 16.77 kts
  • Melbourne to Busselton      1,562 miles at average speed 18.76 kts
  • Busselton to Fremantle           118 miles at average speed 10.75 kts
  • Fremantle to HMAS Sydney   416 miles at average speed 18.92 kts
  • HMAS Sydney to Colombo  2,730 miles at average speed 17.28 kts
  • Colombo to Dubai                  1,920 miles at average speed 18.11 kts

Total Distance since Sydney – 7,286.6 miles


Bridge Team

  • Captain                  Captain William Kent
  • Staff Captain        Maurizio Di Prete
  • Senior 1/Officer  Antonio Festa
  • 1/Officer                 Antonio Pietrafitta
  • Senior 2/Officer   Matthew Burrows
  • 2/Officer                  Martin Curanovic
  • 3/Officer                  Francesco De Angelis
  • 3/Officer                  Nikola Nikolov
  • 3/Officer                  Greg Orrock


As another day closes, we bid you farewell, till tomorrow and hope for fair skies and following seas.

5 thoughts on “Day 21 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates – Jun 11th 2015

  1. Who is this mysterious daughter you seldom reference lol! Not even a mention of your grandson tsk tsk. He’s very disappointed in his Grandpa that he hasn’t made the blog yet. Hahaha! Just kidding love the stories! Xoxo


  2. Always wonderful visiting with family and friends. Years ago, I watched the documentary on the building of Palm Island and I believe they are working on a ‘world island’. Fascinating stuff. Too bad the sand storm made the skies so hazy.


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