Gift Ideas for Mom from Dubai
You can see the burgeoning, bustling city of Dubai sprawled beneath you as your airplane makes its descent to the runway. Maybe you have arrived to quench your insatiable thirst to see the groundbreaking architecture the city has to offer, or perhaps to see the Ferrari Museum.
Whatever the reason you may have gone to Dubai, you know one thing: your mom is certainly going to want a gift. But what should you get her? Here are some gift ideas for mom from Dubai: lanterns, lamps, traditional articles of clothing, posters, spices native to the Arabian Peninsula, chocolates, dates, and more.
Like any city, Dubai certainly has a lot to offer when it comes to keepsakes and the like. So, let’s review some of the options you may want to explore.
Food and Cooking Utensils from Dubai for Moms
The UAE has a rich culinary history, layered with spices, dates, etc. Bringing your mom back some unique parts of Emirati cuisine is a great gift for her from your travels.
Dried fruits are a staple part of the Emirati diet, and the date is the most important among the available options. Dates also play an essential cultural role in one of Islam’s holiest months: Ramadan.
Many Muslim Emiratis gift one another dates as presents that may be eaten at the end of fasting.
Dates also boast an array of health benefits, as they are a strong source of fiber, potassium, iron, and calcium, among other substances. Dates are also linked to boosting energy.
Bateel offers a wide variety of options for dates: ranging from how the date arrangements are prepared to the specific vein of date used.
Many markets and supermarkets will also offer dates that you may purchase to bring home as a gift.
Loomi are tiny, dried limes that have lost their water content. Once you cut and stew them, you will allow the release of a powerful flavor that can help add a sour taste and great scents to any dish you cook.
Loomis are used in Iran to flavor stews, and in the Arabian Peninsula, they are cooked with fish to add flavor. They are even added to some teas.
If your mother enjoys or even loves cooking, then bringing back a bag of loomi with you is a great gift for her.
Camel Milk Chocolates
To quell your mother’s sweet tooth, you may decide it pertinent to purchase her a box of camel milk chocolates to bring back from Dubai.
Only one company, Al Nassma, is known to manufacture these chocolates.
These chocolates are offered in five different varieties to suit the diverse tastes of their customers: whole milk, 70% cocoa, dates, macadamia, and spiced.
These chocolates are even available in camel-shaped varieties.
Although not a popular aspect of Emirati cultural today, the tradition of extracting and drinking camel milk stems from the Bedouin nomads in the UAE and Arabian Peninsula.
You can purchase camel milk as a drink, a milk-like liquid, or you may instead buy it as an edible substance with yogurt-like qualities.
If your mom is an adventurous eater or drinker, then perhaps this would be a great souvenir to bring back to her.
If your mom is not keen on drinking milk from a camel, you may instead prefer to buy a camel milk soap for washing one’s hands and bodies.
If your mother loves to cook different and exotic foods, you may choose to bring her home some Arab spices from Dubai.
The Middle East touts a diverse and flavorful cuisine; as such, you may want to bring the tastes of Dubai home to mom.
These spices have notably powerful scents that may permeate your clothes once you’ve packed them, but they will also enhance the flavor of the foods you prepare at home with a uniquely Emirati flare.
Arabic Coffee Pots
Coffee has a deep-rooted tradition in the Middle East, and as such, many types of coffee come from the region.
Going along with the cultural aspect of coffee, you may choose to purchase coffee beans or grounds to go along with a traditional Emirati copper coffee pot.
These coffee pots, referred to as “dallah,” can be quite ornate and may be used as a decorative addition in a home, for those who would prefer not to use the “dallah” for brewing coffee.
Decorative Pieces for Mom from Dubai
In the United Arab Emirates, there is a tradition that revolves around the usage of lanterns. These lanterns are unique for their Emirati flare, which includes mirrors and glass created and put together with significant effort and precision.
These lanterns, such as these from GPSMyCity, provide character to any room due to the eye-catching allure of colors and the light it attracts.
These lanterns come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and building materials. For example, some lanterns are made of copper and tin or brass interwoven with ornate, colorful pieces of glass.
Similar to lanterns, Emirati lamps are constructed of some sort of metal and paired with colorful, elaborate pieces of glass that help adorn the entire piece with a glowing, eye-catching design.
Many times, these lamps are also inlaid with precious or semi-precious stones, which only add to the beauty of the piece.
These lamps serve as great decorations for any room, incorporating Arabian pattern-style art.
A perfume holder or stand serves as an apparatus upon which you can rest your more beloved fragrances. Typically, perfume holders made in Dubai are constructed from crystal or glass (or a combination of the two).
Perfume holders can come in a variety of different shapes or sizes, and you can gauge the size/shape of the particular piece you wish to buy for your mother.
For the most part, perfume holders or stands have golden bases with detailed etchings on it. Sometimes, there will even be stones added to the intricacy of the golden base.
Much of the designs that add to the artistic nature of the perfume holders or stands explore the nature of Arab and Muslim art, reminiscent of the older Islamic empires and the art that prevailed during that time.
You could also purchase your mother specific fragrances to accompany the piece itself.
In the United Arab Emirates, perfume oils are largely referred to as attars. Attars typically derive their smell from plant sources in nature, without the addition of alcohol.
Typically, you will be able to experiment and decide which scent will suit your mom (or you, if you so wish to buy one for yourself as well). If you would also like, you’ll typically have the option to create a concoction of fragrances to produce the desired smell.
Arabic carpets are renowned around the world for their color, design, patterns, and intricacy. The colors utilized in this style carpet typically fall within the darker varieties of red, brown, and tan.
What catches most people’s eyes about these carpets is the use of intricate patterns to add a bit of diversion to the monochromatic color scheme.
Typically, when purchasing an Arabic carpet, people prefer to buy the hand-woven carpets as they are of better quality compared to their mass-produced counterparts. However, hand-woven carpets are significantly more expensive.
Naturally, hand-woven carpets cost a bit more than mass-produced carpets do.
Local Art Posters
Wandering the streets of Dubai, you may come into contact with many different styles of art, as you would in another bustling city like New York or London.
Street vendors and artists may sell some great art posters that you could bring back to your mother and frame as a gift for her from your trip or time abroad.
However, you’ll have to make sure to shop in the right places, meaning that you should prefer markets to other areas, as those vendors tend to be more reputable and reliable with what they’re giving you.
You don’t want to bring home some fake, printed art; you want to bring home real, hand-painted pieces.
These gorgeous pieces are made of sandalwood and typically include some sort of silver or brass and also stones.
The intricacies of jewel chests make them beautiful decorations if they are not used as actual jewelry chests, as they can also serve as lovely centerpieces to rooms or additions to the ambiance.
Think about the lamp that Aladdin has to rub. These traditional lamps in Emirati culture are ornate pieces of artwork.
Typically, these brass lamps are constructed with precious or semi-precious stones and carvings that enhance the artistic, aesthetic glow.
Many markets in the city of Dubai offer these elaborate gifts so that you may bring one home as a centerpiece for your mother to show off how her child went to Dubai!
Incense for Mom from Dubai
Oudh produces an aroma that is quite distinct, as it is an incense popularly used in Dubai. Oudh is an incense created from the resin of agarwood.
You could purchase oudh in its pure oil form, a mixture of oudh oil with the oils of other flowers such as roses, or you could purchase an oudh fragrance perfume.
Bakhoor produces a distinct aroma, similar to that produced by oudh, as they both derive from agarwood.
However, bakhoor refers to agarwood chips that you can burn in order to produce the aroma you know and love.
Bakhoor also has the great effect of permeating an entire room or area with its powerful smell.
Broadly in the Middle East, and more specifically, in the city of Dubai, incense holders are an important part of Arab culture.
These incense holders serve as great gifts that you may choose to bring home for your mother. Who doesn’t love a good smelling home?
Incense holders are elaborately decorated and constructed to hold incense and emit a fragrance in a household or the area in which it was placed.
You may want to purchase types of incense, such as myrrh (the traditional Arab choice), to pair with the gift of an incense holder for your mother.
Clothes and Jewelry from Dubai for Mom
Shawls are both a fashion statement and part of the cultural wear in the United Arab Emirates. Pashmina shawls are popular in the UAE, and they are typically made of cashmere.
The cashmere is made from the hair of goats and blended with silk to create a soft, smooth texture.
Pashmina shawls are typically pricier than their other counterparts, but the quality of the fabric is nearly unbeatable. To check and make sure that the shawl you are being sold is an actual pashmina shawl, it is recommended that you try pulling the entire shawl through a ring.
The shawl should travel through the ring without issue. If you experience an issue you’re probably not hold a true Pashmina shawl in your hands.
Beyond simple jewelry, gold is an important part of Emirati culture, and especially in the center of luxury that is Dubai.
However, regular gold jewelry is significantly cheaper to purchase in Dubai than it is in the United States.
Many businesses sell gold jewelry to customers in Dubai, so finding the right piece for your mother will not be difficult.
Similar to the jewelry from Dubai, lucky stones are another intricacy that you may choose to bring home for your mother.
Lucky stones are particular to each person’s month of birth. They typically contain some amount of gold, silver, and platinum. The addition of these metals is thought to bring good luck to the person wearing the lucky stone.
These lucky stones come in an array of different assortments available, so you should be able to find one that would fit your mother’s tastes.
Lucky stones can come as rings, bracelets, necklaces, or earrings. You may even decide to purchase a set of matching lucky stones comprising all of the options.
In the United Arab Emirates, there is a history of diving for pearls off the coast. As such, Dubai is a hotspot for pearl jewelry as it is one of the UAE’s most visited cities.
If your mom enjoys lovely, ornate (and sometimes expensive) jewelry, then buying her pearl jewelry from Dubai may be a great option.
If your mom has a deep-seated love for Middle Eastern culture or perhaps prescribes to it herself, you may want to bring her home an abaya.
Abayas are traditional wear for Muslim women in the Middle East, and, by extension, Dubai. These loose-fitting black robes fall over a woman’s regular clothes.
Traditionally, the abaya may be paired with the hijab or a veil that covers everything but a woman’s eyes. However, over the years of secularization in Dubai, abayas have evolved to include more designs that add a bit of fashion to the modesty.
Dubai is regarded as a notably western-style city in comparison to other areas of the Middle East. As such, it attracts many tourists from Western areas, so the fashion has adapted to suit the styles of visiting foreigners.
Many accessories sold in Dubai are now in the form of traditional European and American styles but incorporate Arabic calligraphy on them.
If your mom loves high fashion and wishes for a piece uniquely Emirati with something she’s used to, this may be a great gift to bring home to her.
Traditional Arab Shoes
Traditional Arab shoes are intricately designed shoes that fit slimly. These shoes are available in many different, vibrant colors.
You can choose to have the shoes changed and enhanced according to what you think your mom would like, adding things like beads, cloth balls, and baubles.
You can choose between purchasing completely closed shoes or slip-ons.
In general, you can tailor these shoes to your liking or your mother’s preferences to create the optimal gift.
Religious and Traditional Pieces for Mom from Dubai
Islam’s presence in Dubai is very apparent. Islamic stores dapple the city, and, in general, the country is regarded as very religious, so naturally there would be religiously affiliated souvenirs.
If your mother is Muslim or enjoys the presence of diverse religious artifacts, perhaps you should purchase a Quran stand for her while in Dubai.
Many religious Muslims in Dubai have Quran stands in their home, as Islam is deeply rooted in the culture in both Dubai and the United Arab Emirates.
Quran stands are not a one-size-fits-all product. In fact, there are a plethora of options and varieties that you may choose for the Quran stand you wish to gift your mother.
Typically, Quran stands are constructed of wood with elaborate etchings and patterns in the traditional Arabic artistic style.
Below the stand upon which you rest the Quran are drawers used to store whatever you need for your reading of the Quran if you affiliate with Islam.
The stand on top where you place the Quran is collapsible.
If your mom is a bit more on the daring side or enjoys smoking hookah, perhaps you might want to bring back a native Emirati hookah.
Hookah is technically the term that refers to the actual pipe itself while you actually smoke shisha.
Smoking hookah and shisha is a popular cultural leisure in Dubai. Shisha comes in a variety of different flavors, ranging from strawberry to mint.
Even if your mother hardlines against cigarettes or hookah smoking (smoking a hookah has a similar detriment to your health as smoking cigarettes), you may want to purchase a hookah pipe as a decorative piece to her worldly adornments.
When most think of Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, or the Arabian Peninsula, a desert comes to mind, and that’s because most of the land is, in fact, an arid and dry desert.
To bring your mom a piece of the land you visited, perhaps you may choose to buy a small bottle containing sand.
Sometimes, you can even buy dyed sand with an artistic flair to it. Either way, this can be a great, inexpensive gift to bring home to your mother.
The Arabian Peninsula has a long history of the use of daggers. These daggers are typically intricately welded by hand, an awesome decorative piece that also sports some level of lethality.
These blades are recognizable as they tend to curve at the tip.
The dagger’s handles are usually decorated more lavishly. Arabian daggers were historically kept in a sheath and worn on a belt around the waist.
If your mother wants you to bring her an Arabian dagger (maybe she is an expert in Arabian war tactics), then perhaps you’ll also have to buy a mount to place the dagger on a stand of your fireplace or mount it on your wall.
Shopping for Dad in Dubai
If you would like to bring something else that suits your father, some of the options mentioned above would certainly apply.
For example, you could consider purchasing your dad:
- Assorted dates and dried fruits
- Arabian daggers
- Emirati perfume/fragrance
- Bottled Sand
- Local art posters for decoration
- Quran stands
- Arab shoes for men
- Hookah pipes and shisha
- Lucky stones
There are some other options that you may choose to explore for your dad that you could find in Dubai.
Kandoura outfits are traditional Emirati wear for men in Dubai. This is an excellent gift for your father as he could wear it if he likes, or perhaps he could keep it as something to cherish from your travels in Dubai.
Perhaps, if he has also planned a trip to Dubai, then he will be able to bring along his Kandoura to assimilate into the culture for the duration of his stay.
This type of dress is very culturally specific to Dubai and would make a great gift for your father.
When you visit Dubai, you will likely see that electronic devices are significantly cheaper than what you could purchase in the United States.
Maybe your father has an outdated iPhone, an older Samsung, or an ancient flip-phone. If that is the case, you could frugally purchase your dad a more updated phone (just beware of all the calls you’ll incur asking you to explain technological difficulties).
However, there is nothing specific about Dubai or the United Arab Emirates to this gift.
Arab Matchlock Muskets are intricate muskets that are unique to Dubai and the UAE. These muskets typically have bodies made of either steel or brass.
The butt of the musket is made of polished wood.
These guns display an ornate craftsmanship particular to Dubai, making these weapons very artistically made, almost more decorative than useful.
Where to Buy Souvenirs in Dubai
Dubai, a massive, sprawling city, offers many different options when you consider where you want to buy the souvenirs you plan to bring home.
Al Jaber Gallery
The Al Jaber Gallery is present in many larger shopping areas in the city of Dubai. This store is stocked with different souvenir options for tourists to bring home.
You can find traditional Emirati clothing at this store, among other, less exciting souvenirs such as mugs, postcards, etc.
There is an Al Jaber Gallery in the Dubai Mall in downtown Dubai in the Financial Centre. There are other locations in the Mall of the Emirates and in Souk Madinat Jumeirah.
This is the best place for you to go if you want to purchase traditional Arab and Emirati spices to bring home. Other than the spices, you can also buy other decorative pieces available in the Spice Souk.
You can bargain with vendors in the Spice Souk, which is less or not common in other markets, in order to protect yourself from spending extensive amounts of money on simple purchases like spices or decorations.
Museums are typically great places to purchase keepsakes from foreign places as they are culturally tied to the place they come from.
You can go to the museum for an experience for you to learn more about the city of Dubai and everything the museum has to offer, and you can buy any souvenirs in the gift shop.
The Naif Souk is a historical and traditional vending market in Dubai. You can visit the Naif Souk for a variety of different souvenir options.
If you wish to purchase your mother an abaya, then this is an excellent place for you to go.
The Naif also offers many other different clothing options and leather items.
There are a plethora of options that you can buy from as the Naif Souk sports over one-hundred different vendors.
The Camel Company
The Camel Company is a store available in the different malls around Dubai. The Camel Company targets tourists, in particular, so you can visit it to buy your less important keepsakes.
Souk Madinat Jumeirah
The Souk Madinat Jumeirah is one of the best spots for you to purchase the different souvenirs you plan on bringing home to your family, friends, and others.
This Souk is similar to the historical and traditional types of Arabic bazaars that spotted the different areas of the Arabic Muslim world during the height of the Islamic empires.
There is also a Camel Company in this Souk.
Many of the different souvenir options we have mentioned are available in the Souk Madinat Jumeirah, from perfume to kandouras, jewel chests to muskets.
Hopefully, you’ll be able to travel and navigate the bustling city of Dubai comfortably, and, in the meantime, you can also hit the high spots for buying souvenirs while also visiting great spots to experience the native culture of Dubai.