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Number of course

COM-371 Name of course

Tourism Principles Name of the assessment item Assessment Item No.1 Individual Research Project (UAE Tourism History) Number of words used: 1500 Name of the student Maryam Ali Juma Ali 201001248

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Contents

Introduction ……………………………………………………………………………………………..……..3 Mythology ……………………………………………………………………………………………..……..4 Field notes ……………………………………………………………………………………………..……..5 Study finding……………………………………………………………………………………………..……..7 Results……………………………………………………………………………………………..………..…..11 Conclusion……………………………………………………………………………………………..……..12 References……………………………………………………………………………………………..……..13

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Introduction:

The tourism of the United Arab Emirates has been a mysterious matter to research upon and I had the chance in this assignment to unveil the untold history. Of course, stories differ from one generation to another, and in my case the time periods that I have been studying are the late 70’s and the 80’s for which my research subjects are my parents.

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Mythology: My research requires gathering data from Emirati older generation in my family supported by lecture 3 and 4 which are used as guide to accomplish it. The pervious lectures by professor Kotsi are important to analyze the materials founded by my interviews therefore arrive at a complete understanding and historical reconstruction of the tourism patterns of older generation of the United Arab Emirates. Through my research I will be answering the following questions:  Which were the attractive places that you visited?  How often did you visit the tourist attraction?  Were there any tourists in the place that you lived/visited?  Where there any tourists in Dubai?  What was the accommodation like?  What kind of transportation did you use?  With whom did you visit these places?

To reach a satisfactory result upon my research topic I have interviewed both my parents through a set of questions. On the next day, I organized the information and developed them into full texts that ended with a story, the tourism history of the united Arab Emirates through my parents experience (lecture 4 : case study). The interviews took place on Friday the 2nd of November 2012 , starting with my father “ Ali Juma” followed by my mother “Zainab Gharib.”

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Field notes: My father who was born on 1965 in Dubai , is a typical model of how male youth used to spend their time ; travelling , camping and enjoying nature. When I asked him about the most famous places he has been to, he said ; Seeji , WadyKhamees ( Khamees valley ) ,Duba Al Husin ( see photo 1 ),wadyWareaa (Wareaa valley), Al Ain Al Faydha ( hot water sping) , Hatta( see

Photo 1 : My father and his friends at Duba Al Hasen in 1975

photo2,3)…

My father and his friends visited these places weekly; he laughed while admitting that fact and told me the reason. For them, it meant relaxation, fine weather and gateway away from the city life and family rules. Males at that time were given the opportunity to do Photo 2 : My father and his friend at Al Hawelat ( Hatta ) in mid-70's

whatever they liked without being asked about their whereabouts and in my father’s

case , I guess by now we all have a clue about his whereabouts! In the late 70’s or the beginning of the 80’s , a man usually had his own car , my father’s car ( which he refused to tell me its model) used to carry all his friend towards their destination of the week. Nature meant fresh air and sleeping outdoors, so they usually brought their own tents or slept under the trees throughout the night. 5|Page


People did not come to Dubai for entertainment,

they

came

to

seek

employment. However a limited number of foreigners were spotted at these places; in fact you could not tell whether they were tourists or residents of the country my father added. Most of them were Indians whom my father did not interact

Photo 3 : My father's friends at Hatta in the 80's

with only on rare occasions for example, when a help is needed. My father has a theory about why tourists came to the UAE at that time. He says: “maybe, the Indian residents took pictures of themselves during their visitation of the tourist locations and sent it to their families, and then the families asked about the locations and came to visit them on their vacation. � Yet, this is just an observation of my father and might not be the reason why tourists came!

In the summer holidays, my father and once again his friends drove towards the water bodies (the valleys). The weather is hot , the water is warm there was no reason to stop them from swimming and spending days at the valleys.

After spending his youth adventuring, my father enlisted in a football club and travelled with the club for training camp, and later on medical treatment when he got injured. He flew to Italy and Amsterdam, as he also travelled to India for entertainment with his friend.

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My mother’s side of the story is different as she used to live in Abu Dhabi before she got married to my father. Girls in the old days were prohibited from going outside on their own, so they often were accompanied by their family members. Trips to my mother meant renting a bus and heading towards water. The huge number of the members made it difficult to sleepover on locations so they often returned later at night on the same day. The trips were only taken for granted on public holidays or Eids, unlike my father who went on a regular basis. The places her family visited were: Al Ain Al Faydah( hot spring water), Jabal Hafit ( Hafit mountain in Al Ain ), Al Ain Zoo , AinKhat and seji valley. My mother’s neighbors were Indians, British and Palestinians; they used to visit the same locations her family did. Trips to Al Ain were special to my mom to which they used to spend the night in their family’s farm house.

My mother travelled outside the UAE to various places; she visited her friend in Qatar and went to Omra ( Saudi Arabia ) on 1983,and went to the Philippines and Hong Kong on her 18th birthday in 1986 .On 1988 she went on her Honeymoon that she still brags about to France, Switzerland, London and Bombay (India ). My mother clarified that it was rare to travel to European countries at that time as most of the Arabs destinations were headed towards India for medical treatment.

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Study findings:

Accommodation:  It differed according to the people who were on the trip. Male groups either slept outside or camped the night while large families returned home or spent the night in the farm house.  It differed according to the location visited. Tents were used for camping near the valleys or in the desert. The farm houses were used while visiting Al Ain tourism locations.  Hotels were not available for the Domestic Tourism in the 70’s and the 80’s, they were rare to the point that only one was known by the locals.

Domestic Tourism:  The locations visited were the same for all the residents and the locals who lived in the UAE between the 70’s and the 80’s and they were the following :  Seji valley.  WadiKhamis( Khamis valley ).  AinKhat( hot spring water ) .  WadiWareaa( Wareaa Valley ).  Al Ain Al Faydah.  JabalHafeet( Hafeet Mountain ).  Al Ain Zoo.  Hatta.  Duba Al Hussen. 8|Page


Purpose of the Domestic Tourism:  Mostly for the entertainment purpose that falls under camping and enjoying natural sightseeing.  A break from the city life , adventure in rural areas and mountains.

Outbound Tourism:  Most of the people who travelled outside the country at that time had one main cause: Medical Tourism.  The most famous destination was Bombay (India ) .  Travelling to Europe was rare and considered luxurious.

Purpose of the Outbound Tourism:  The number one purpose is medical treatment (operations and physical treatment).  Entertainment and family visitation (weddings, honeymoon).

Inbound Tourism:  It is still hard to prove that there were tourists at that time (the 70’s and 80’s) but foreigners were seen in the UAE.  Nationalities: Indians (Dubai & Abu Dhabi), (British, Palestinians and Egyptians) in Abu Dhabi.

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Transportation:  Domestic Tourism : Males or groups of men used personal cars, while large family members rented buses.  Outbound Tourism and Inbound Tourism: Planes and ships. Leisure activities:  Camping  Swimming in the valleys and water bodies.  Cooking outdoors.  Visiting zoos and museums.

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Results: The United Arab Emirates tourism history during the 70’s and the 80’s has been the case study in my research as a result the followings were discovered. The domestic tourism in the country was at its peak as families and friends enjoyed their time near water bodies and camping areas. Wady’s and Valleys in the eastern areas of the UAE were the most famous destinations during that time frame. The outbound tourism for Emiratis was mainly for medical tourism and entertainment reasons, especially the wealthy families. Most medical Tourism took place in India for operations such as kidney transplant that my late uncle had. Whereas the inbound tourism in the country is hard to confirm in the 70’s and the 80’s as most of the foreigners were actually residents of the UAE. Accommodation during trips and camping were occasionally outdoors (tents) in the open as hotels were rare or not available at all. As for the transportation, cars and buses were used for domestic tourism. While on the other hand, airplanes and ships were used for long distance travel.

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Conclusion:

The tourism history of the United Arab Emirates was ignored by the tourism experts; however, printed in our old generation’s memories. It has to be noted that the locations mentioned by my parents still exist today, but have been through many changes due to the climate change and the time slot effect. The water is unfortunately gone and it is probably the reason why people do not visit them as others did before. Adding the fact that the hot weather contributed to shift the tourists to more closed places like the various malls we have today. I am not in the position to say this but it might be the fact that family ties are not as strong as they were before so the trips to these places has minimized even at Eid vacations. Overall, the UAE used to attract domestic tourism in the past and in the main time it is doing quite well by combining the Inbound and the Domestic Tourism at the same time.

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References: Kotsi, F. (2012). Field Research in Tourism Studies. [ power point study ]. Retrieved from http://learn.zu.ac.ae Kotsi, F. (2012). Lecture 4 : Case Study. [ power point study ]. Retrieved from http://learn.zu.ac.ae

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UAE Tourism History primary research  

Research conducted through my Tourism Principles class.

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