Dubai
Few places divide opinion as much as Dubai, the most cosmopolitan city-emirate of the United Arab Emirates. Detractors claim that its newness feels artificial. However, Dubai has a long history and archaeological sites dating to the Bronze Age. The culture of this place is intertwined with Bedouin traditions, Arab hospitality, and a tolerant form of Islam. Despite the recent rush of development, you'll still find gritty backstreets and low-rise neighborhoods amid glitzy shopping arcades and gleaming skyscrapers. For those who take the time to get beneath the skin of the place, Dubai is a compelling and dynamic destination.