What is the first thing that strikes your mind when you think of Dubai? Magnificent?Opulence? Or Dreams? Rightly, Dubai is known for being larger than life; be it in technology, architecture, richness, or adventure-the city leaves everyone spellbound. But, was this city always living in the lap of luxuries, sipping the famous Dubai coffee on their velvet sofa? Surprisingly, No. Dubai has catapulted itself from being a fishing village to what it is now.
Stunned? That’s the specialty of this amazing city. Wondering how did this happen?
We have rounded up a brief history of Dubai that will make you fall in love with this city all over again!
Scroll down to unveil the mystery of Dubai history and culture.
Before jumping into history, let’s take a quick tour of the City’s cultural background.
Dubai’s culture finds its roots from the Islamic tradition since Muslims settled here from the very early times. Clothing and lifestyle are also influenced by religious beliefs. You can see men wearing traditional dishdasha and women covered in Ababya The city is warm to foreigners and tourists. People here are religiously tolerant and you can see various temples and churches in the city.
From the very beginning!
The initial settlement in Dubai dates back to the Minoan period nearly around 3000 BCE. The place was a huge mangrove swamp that dried up and the place became inhabitable. Later, in 2500 BCE many cattle herders started living here and marked the beginning of date palm plantation.
Archaeologists have also found various caravan evidence that suggests the city was an important trade hub. We can also find the records Dubai in the journal of Gaspero Balbi, a Venetian merchant dating back to 1580, as a core exporter of pearl. The modern-day souks are an adaptation from the caravans that traded with gold, spices, and textiles.
Another significant event that shaped Dubai was the settlement of the Bani Yas tribe in Abu Dhabi making Dubai a dependency.
1800’s to the historical discovery!
The history of present-day Dubai started in 1833 with only 800 members of the Bani Yas tribe at the mouth of a creek. This area being rich in natural resources and blessed with the best of locations became a prime center for fishing and pearl diving. The Baniyas were then joined by the Bedouins, the Arabian nomads. In a short span of time, the city became one of the largest trade port housing hundreds of businessmen, markets and souks. However, the city faced a recession between 1930-1940 as the international demand for pearls declined. Plus, the two world wars also affected the trade in general. Dubai was still recovering from fall in pearl demand that the creek collapsed. The then Sheikh of Kuwait lent millions of dollars to Dubai for renovating the Creek. This helped in flourishing the trade once again and making the city a major trading hub.
However, in the 1950s Dubai faced a financial downturn when the Japanese pearls flooded the market. The money crunch did not last long as Dubai experienced something that changed its fate forever! The city struck oil.
Oil was the ultimate savior!
Things turned out exactly the way Dubai needed it. The oil “bomb-shell” led to the beginning of modern-day Dubai. Since 1969, the city started generating revenues from the export of oil and this sleepy city has not blinked an eye since! Sheikh Rashid began the development of Dubai. And in no time, the city got flooded with schools, tall buildings, hospitals, airports, harbors, trade centers, and much more. Soon Dubai became the capital city of the UAE after its formation in 1971. Since then the city has pledged to move forward and never look back.
Tourism at its Best!
Being well aware of the fact that oil is not gonna last forever, the Dubai government decided to establish a better source of income for the city. And what could be better than tourism? Since the late 1980s, the government has been making endeavors to make it the most wanted tourist destination around the globe. And the results are in front of us all.
The progress made by Dubai in the last 50 years is commendable. Starting from fish port to struggling in pearl trade to becoming the unmatched city in the world, Dubai’s history has witnessed it all.
Events that built Dubai!
Another important foundation that made Dubai economically strong was the investment in real estate. It has now become the backbone of the city’s economy. Dubai is not just investing in tourism, it has become one of the biggest centers of trade, business, and technology. Some of the milestones that helped Dubai grow are the Burj Khalifa, Burj-ul Arab, the Dubai Metro, The Dubai Mall, Dubai Frame, and the list can go one forever!
You can now hardly identify the 19th century Dubai amidst today’s pomp. The sky kissing buildings, air-conditioned malls, expensive cars, luxurious hotels, and massive golf courses are the quintessence of the 2020’s Dubai.
Every year Dubai comes up with something more innovative than the previous year. Starting from a very humble beginning to this day, Dubai has always faced hard times with strength. The city is budding and there are no limits to its growth.
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