The bus tour of Dubai was extremely informative. I learned so much information in those short few hours that I don’t know how to process everything I’ve learned. We started off our tour with a stop at the Dubai Marina. This area is a “residential” area for expats. I say “residential” because the area consists of apartments rather than the traditional home that most people would think of. If you were to visit this area seven years ago, you would be looking at desert. It’s crazy to me that this area is all man-made, including the canal. Right around the corner from the marina is the Palm Jumeirah. This also is man-made using sand from pulled up from the bottom of the sea. So much sand that you could wrap it around the Earth three times. We drove straight through the trunk of the palm to the Atlantis Hotel facing the Persian Gulf. To get to the Atlantis, we had to drive underwater to get from the top of the trunk to the barrier that is keeping the palm intact. Awesome, right? While making our way up, we noticed that the metro goes directly through the trunk of the palm so we will be utilizing our new metro cards very soon to get better pictures of the palm. After visiting the Palm Jumeirah, we were off to see the Burj Al Arab, the only seven star hotel in the world. I thought I knew what to expect after seeing it online but nothing compares to seeing it in person. While in the area, we visited the Souk Madinat facing the Burj Al Arab. Not a true souk but gave us a good taste of what is sold at the souks. Now the real thing. We end up taking a boat to get to the real souks. It felt like Pirates of the Caribbean with boats racing to get from one place to another, occasionally crashing in to each other. Once we arrived we were given thirty minutes to explore the souk (mostly comprised of gold and spices). I thought I had a grip on what to expect but I was totally in for a ride. Walking down the streets, men walk up to you asking if you are interested in designer handbags, gold, and scarves. Some men try to put the product on you to get you interested in the product. Hannah and I got “scarfed.” This is the term we came up with because you could be casually walking through to end up getting a scarf wrapped around you. Saying, “no thank you,” doesn’t quite work here. You need to be firm and say, “no.” This is how these men make a living, it’s really no different than walking through a mall and having perfume sprayed at you or taking a sample. I don’t think I fully understood what a souk was and what to expect at one. Looking back at it now, I would definitely go back because it can only get better from here.