Finding your way around Dubai – The Newcomer’s Guide to the Six Parallel Roads

This simple map may help you understand the main roads in Dubai. Image source: startpagedubai.com

This simple map may help you understand the main roads in Dubai.
Image source: startpagedubai.com

If you’re planning to move to Dubai or have just arrived, a basic understanding of the structural aspects of the Emirate (each city is an Emirate, there are seven in total) in terms of locations and road networks would go a long way – whether you’re buying/renting a car or using a taxi or even the metro. Though a smartphone with a navigation application is highly recommended and will go a long way in helping you with the specific turns etc.

Dubai is longer than it is wide – it is a city that flows beautifully along the coast, what is largely known as Jumeirah Beach. Parallel to the cost are some of the main freeways (highways) of Dubai. Starting from the beach, you first have Jumeirah Beach Road (also sometimes know as the Jumeirah Road) which, as the name suggests, is right by the beach. Parallel to this is the Al Wasl Road, after which is the most popular and most populated road of Dubai – the Sheikh Zayed Road – arguably this is the bloodline of Dubai and a road that we’ve all learned to love and be proud of, given that you would find much of Dubai’s architectural and infrastructural achievements on this very road (Burj Khalifa being the most visible one!). The first and the main line of the Dubai Metro (the red line) also goes along this road.

Parallel to this road is the Al Khail road which is more of an industrial highway and goes from the Business Bay Crossing in Deira all the way up to Jebel

This is a great map to help you understand the structure of Dubai through many of its beautiful landmarks. Image source: cartographersguild.com

This is a great map to help you understand the structure of Dubai through many of its beautiful landmarks.
Image source: cartographersguild.com

Ali where it connects on to the Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Road (formerly known as the Emirates Road) – all the way until then, however, the Sheilkh Mohammed Bin Rashid Road is the second last parallel road to the ones mentioned above. Parallel to this is the now Emirates Road (formerly known as the Outer Bypass Road).

Now, all of the above roads essentially take you from the Sharjah direction to Abu Dhabi and start at the Bur Dubai area (specifically Oud Metha) with the exception of Al Khail road which goes on to connect with Business Bay crossing (that leads you into the newer parts of Deira). Once you’re in Bur Dubai though, if you want to get across the other side of the creek into Deira which is the oldert part of Dubai (a river that essentially divides the Emirate into two parts), you can use any of the bridges – Maktoum Bridge, Floating Bridge, Garhoud Bridge or Business Bay Crossing. The Maktoum and Garhoud bridges have a SALIK charge applicable.

This is the Sheikh Zayed Road that we're all proud of - you can't be in Dubai and not interact with this road every now and again! Image source: flashydubai.com

This is the Sheikh Zayed Road that we’re all proud of – you can’t be in Dubai and not interact with this road every now and again!
Image source: flashydubai.com

And that’s pretty much it – most locations in Dubai would need you to interact with one of the above main roads in order to get to them. In terms of the five main parallel roads described above, you’d need to just make sure you get to the right exit and take the turn in the right direction in order to get on to the perpendicular road that would take you towards your destination.

Hope this gives you an introductory idea on how the roads are structured in Dubai, if you’d like any kind of guidance on insurance come visit insurancemarket.ae

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