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and is more like reading Time Out - a What's On of shops
on 15 November 2014
Compared to full sized Lonely Planet guides, this pocket guide is stripped of all the interesting added-value information about customs, history, and culture, and is more like reading Time Out - a What's On of shops, entertainment and restaurants. Any contextual information about what makes the UAE unique is squished into tiny boxes with titles like 'Understand' and 'Local Life'. You don't even get a potted history of Dubai. It won't leave you much wiser about the country - it'll fool you into thinking there's barely any cultural context you should know.
The maps lack detail and are poorly scaled - I chose a hotel which looked like it was within walking distance of the city centre but turned out to be on a desert motorway.
However the book is useful if you have no concept of how Dubai fits together, and want a simple overview of the city's different areas whilst planning your trip. Once you're in Dubai it's useful to have the maps for planning the day's major sightseeing locations, though not for using as walking maps. Plus the book is very small and light for carrying around.