TOP-16 Best Gifts from UAE

Page update - Sep 22, 2023

What gifts and souvenirs can tourists bring from Dubai and other UAE emirates? What are the prices in souvenir stores, markets, supermarkets? What can you buy cheap there? What are the gifts that you can't buy in other countries? Read the answers in this review.

The prices and other information on this page were updated in September 2023. Many gifts and souvenirs have become more expensive during this year, but not very much. For the first half of 2023, inflation was 2.05%. See all the current prices on this page.


Before planning a list of gifts and souvenirs from the United Arab Emirates, you need to check two important things.

First, what is allowed and not to take out from the UAE? And if allowed then what are the permitted quantities? Search for the answer in our detailed review "What is allowed and forbidden to take out the UAE".

Second, what is allowed and not to import into your homeland country? And if allowed then what are the permitted quantities? The export from the UAE does not cause problems, but the import rules are usually more strict.

One more thing

Prices below in this review are published in UAE dirhams, as the prices in the souvenir shops, stores and supermarkets are declared in dirhams. To understand how much it is in dollars, pounds, euros and other currencies, see the current exchange rates on our page "Money in Dubai and UAE". To find out where and how to exchange dollars, pounds and euros for dirhams profitably, read the review "Currency Exchange in Dubai and UAE".

16 place - Date honey (syrup)

The natural syrup made from dates is often called "date honey". This product is very popular in all countries where dates are grown. No wonder, since dates that are unsuitable for direct sale (for example, because of their poor face) have to be used.

The syrup looks like this, see the photo next to it, click on the photo to enlarge to full screen. The consistency is almost like honey, and there are even common notes in the flavors.

Date honey is delicious, natural and very healthy, because it inherits all the useful nutrients from dates. It is consumed in the same way as honey: eaten with bread, added to tea, added to dough in baking, used as a filling.

And most importantly, date honey is cheap. In the UAE stores you can find it for 20-25 dirhams per kilo. In US and European countries it is difficult to find, and the price will be twice as expensive. Do not miss the chance!

Date honey is most often sold in glass jars. So be careful: take it in your carry-on luggage, or roll in something soft (like clothes) in your luggage. If date honey spills in your suitcase, then all belongings are likely to be spoiled.

Find your flight

15 place - Oriental sweets

All kinds of oriental sweets - baklava, lokum, halva, nougat, sherbet, basbousa, omm ali - are loved in the UAE. However, the Emiratis do not claim to be the inventors of any of these sweets. Emirati cuisine has its own great sweet dishes, we have told about them in detail on the page "Emirati cuisine". But they all spoil quickly, so you can hardly bring them home.

Dubai is one of the gastronomic capitals of the world. There are restaurants and eateries of more than 200 cuisines of the world. In the stores there are sweets to choose from. Baklava and lokum (Turkish Delight) according to the best Turkish recipes. Halva, sherbet and nougat according to the best Arab recipes. These five sweets have a long shelf life and would be great as a gift from the UAE.

It is best to buy sweets from bakeries and confectioneries. You can buy them in supermarkets by weight or in packs, but the taste will obviously be worse.

The prices in supermarkets. For plain baklava is from 50 to 80 dirhams per kilo, for pistachio sort is from 100 to 150. Turkish Delight (Lokum) is from 15 to 100 dirhams a kilo, depending on the composition and coating. Halva is 25 to 100 dirhams per kilo depending on the composition. The prices in patisseries and bakeries are higher depending on the level of a patisserie or bakery.

By the way, Dubai Mall has the world's largest candy store Candylicious. If you vacation in Dubai, do not forget to look there. Read more in our review "Candylicious Store".

14 place - Khanjar

Traditional Arabian dagger, easily recognized by its large curved scabbard. The dagger itself is curved, but not so much. As it looks, see the photo next to it, click on the photo to enlarge to full screen.

A very colorful gift, BUT!

Attention! Khanjar is a cold weapon, it is forbidden to import it into the territory of most countries. If you take it by usual means, you will risk being checked by the customs, and then you will not only lose your khanjar but also pay a fine. You do so at your own risk.

Khanjars were, and still are, mostly made of copper and brass. Ordinary people used them for hunting and at home, but for military purposes they still preferred a more serious weapon made of steel.

Khanjar more often was not used as a weapon, but showed the status of its owner. The royalty in Oman and other emirates owned silver and gold khanjars, but ivory khanjars were considered a special class.

Prices range from 40 dirhams to infinity, depending on the decor. Look for khanjars in souvenir stores. You can watch the process of its manufacture and even take part yourself in the Abu Dhabi Heritage Village.

Find your hotel

13 place - Bezaar - Arabian spice blend

The United Arab Emirates don't have any national spice, as the variety of plant life there is very poor. But the Emiratis have their own national blend of spices. Bezaar mixture is very interesting in taste and is present in many dishes of Arabic cuisine.

Ingredients: cumin, coriander, fenugreek, dill, chili pepper, kukrumah, cinnamon. As it looks, see the photo near, click on photo for enlarge to full screen.

The contents of the ingredients are not clearly regulated. Every family makes bezaar a little differently. There may be more ingredients. The head chef of the famous Seven Sands restaurant chain, Bassel Ibrahim, once blabbed to The National Newspaper that their signature bezaar consist of 18 ingredients. Unfortunately, he didn't disclose the list.

Of course, you could make your own bezaar and it would be cheaper, but it's easier to buy ready-made. Look for bezaar in supermarkets (rare) or in special spice markets (Spice Souk), which are available in every emirate.

In Dubai, Spice Souk is located in Deira district, near Al Ras metro station (green line). For a subway map, see our review "Dubai Metro".

In Abu Dhabi you will find an excellent choice of spices in the Al Mina market in the Zayed Port area. In Sharjah, head to the Central Market (aka Blue Market), located north along the promenade from Al Noor Mosque, across from Al Montaza Island.

The price of bezaar mix starts at 80 dirhams per kilo. Of course, it is not reasonable to buy it by the kilogram. 100-200 grams are enough for a gift.

12 place - Rihal

Rihal is an X-shaped stand for reading books, and usually the Koran is placed on it. But of course, any book (not just Islamic books) can be placed on the rihal. The rihal is made of wood and usually carved or painted. As it looks, see the photo next to it, click on the photo to enlarge to full screen.

The gift is very colorful, beautiful and interesting, but not at all practical. First, you would have to look at the text of the book at an angle. Secondly, our modern books don't tend to stay open, but more often try to fold up, and they don't hold well on a rihal.

Such a gift would be perfect for book lovers. For others, the rihal will be just a beautiful trinket.

And by the way, rihal is quite big and heavy. Weighs from 0.5 to 3 kilograms (from 1 to 6.5 pounds). The length of the rihal is from 25 to 50 centimeters (from 0.8 to 1.6 feet) when folded.

Price ranges from 50 to 500 dirhams. The price depends on the size, quality of the master-cutter, and origin.

It is an interesting fact that the rihal is not an Arab invention at all. The Arabs adopted rihals from the Indians, who read the Ramayana and Bhagavad-gita on them from ancient times.

Find your transfer

11 place - Bakhoor and mabkhara

These gifts are filled with the spirit of the United Arab Emirates, both literally and figuratively.

Bakhoor is an incense made of agarwood, which, when infected with a special fungus, produces aromatic resin. Bakhoor is burned at home in special mabkhara incense burners. See the photo near, click on the photo to enlarge it to full screen.

There are countless varieties of bakhoor for sale in the UAE. Each producer creates their own unique flavors. Bakhoor is usually sold in round tablets or in chocolate-like briquettes.

There are "real" and "fake" bakhoor. This is the official terminology, so don't be alarmed. "Real" is produced naturally by infecting the agarwood with a fungus. "Fake" is produced artificially in farms where agarwood trees are grown and purposely infected with the fungus. There is not much difference for the end customer. In the following, we will quote prices for "fake" bakhoor, as it is many times cheaper.

The price of bakhoor starts from 20 dirhams for a pack of 40 grams. It is better to buy on perfume markets, where the range is wider than in stores.

The price of a mabkhara incense burner - from 30 dirhams to infinity, depends on the material of the product and the decor which may even be of gold with precious stones. It is better to buy an electric burner, as it is considered safer than a charcoal burner.

Read more in our review "Bakhoor and oud".

10 place - Oodh oil perfume

Oodh is an oil made from agarwood, which we wrote about in the previous chapter. This oil is used to make expensive perfumes with unique aromas.

The oil is obtained from the wood by distillation. From 1 kilogram (2,2lb) of wood only 0,28 milliliters of oil are obtained.

The most famous brand of perfume in the UAE is called Ajmal Perfumes. The price for perfume of this brand is in the middle range. Ajmal Perfumes stores are located in all major shopping malls in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Any perfume based on oodh is poured in such a way that the price of a package is not less than USD 100. Plan your expenses as 400 dirhams and more.

There is no upper limit for the price. And no wonder, since oodh oil is more expensive than gold. Remember that oodh never comes cheap, so beware of fakes!

You can buy either scented candles or the oodh oil itself in 3 milligram vials. The prices are similar - from 380 dirhams and above.

Read more in our review "Bakhoor and oud".

9 place - Camel meat

The Arabs of the Persian Gulf do not eat camel meat every day, but cook it only on holidays. For this reason, you can not buy camel meat in every store, and the prices are rather high.

This gift is interesting, but very doubtful. Camel meat's taste is similar to beef and has no unique health benefits. We recommend you to try some camel meat dish in a restaurant, get your own portion of impressions and stop.

It is possible to bring camel meat, but quite difficult. Fresh meat can be refused by the customs authorities of your homeland country. Please check the customs laws of your homeland country. Fresh meat can spoil during transportation. You can take frozen meat, it will defrost, but will not spoil.

If you dare, it is better to take canned meat, if you can find it in the supermarket (very rare). Meat is rarely available in supermarkets, and it is better to look for it at markets or butcher shops. Can be ordered online with delivery to the hotel. In supermarkets there are sausages and smoked camel meat (rather rare).

The range of prices is from 30 to 200 dirhams a kilo. The most expensive type is called "huwar" which is meat of camel colt.

8 place - Sand art in bottles

In recent years, sand art in bottles have become very popular in Dubai. And some souvenir stores even conduct a show when a craftsman makes a picture in front of customers. As such bottle paintings look, see the photo next to it, click on the photo to enlarge to full screen.

Some tourists even believe that such paintings are a Dubai invention. But in fact, they were invented in Egypt (another version is Jordan) just a couple of decades ago. Since there are many Egyptians working in the United Arab Emirates (about 400,000), naturally, local Egyptian natives quickly set up the business of selling these paintings to tourists.

The souvenir is beautiful, colorful, original and most importantly cheap.

The price for a sand painting in a bottle varies from 10 to 100 dirhams. The price depends on the size of the bottle but most of all on the location where you buy it. The closer to the popular attractions, the more expensive.

Remember the main thing! This souvenir is fragile. If it breaks in the suitcase, then you'll have a long time to shake the sand out of all your belongings. It is better to take a picture-bottle in your hand luggage. Or roll the picture-bottle in something soft in your suitcase. We all know that airport baggage handlers usually mistreat our suitcases.

Website editor-in-chief's note, "Not all baggage handlers are bad. There are good, responsible and cultured handlers. We treat such handlers with respect".

7 place - Ghutra and agal

This is a traditional Arab headdress. Gutra (aka "Keffiye") is a headscarf made of cloth, usually cotton, worn on the head. There are dozens of methods of wearing it, but Gulf Arabs prefer to wear the ghutra with an agal.

Agal is a rope, usually of goat's hair, which holds the gutra in place. The rope is usually folded in half. It is always worn with an overlap to the back.

Each of the readers undoubtedly has already seen the ghutra and agal on the heads of Arab sheikhs. Sheikhs are shown in the news all the time, and they all wear this headdress. In the photo next to this headdress is Sheikh Mohammed Al Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai and Vice President of the UAE. Click on the photo to enlarge it to full screen.

A set of ghutra and agal can cost from 10 to 1,000 dirhams. There are fashionable brands in the field of Arab traditional clothing. A handmade ghutra by a fashion brand may well cost even more than Dh1,000. Don't be surprised. Just go to a souvenir store, which usually has inexpensive sets.

6 place - Abaya

Abaya is a traditional Muslim women's dress with sleeves and without a belt.

Many western people think that Muslim women's clothing is always something black, shapeless, asexual, covering the face and making a woman "walking bag". NOTHING OF THE SORT!

Muslim fashion does not stand still, especially in the UAE. Visit to a Muslim fashion stores and see for yourself. Look at the photo nearby, click to enlarge to full screen.

Firstly, abayas are now made not only in black, but in all the colors of the rainbow. Secondly, abayas are actively decorated with embroidery, patterns, beads or even elements of gold. It looks very beautiful. And remember, the abaya is only a dress, and it does not cover the face at all.

If any reader wants to know more about modern models, we recommend an interesting website

The price of abaya is from 100 dirhams to infinity. The price depends on the fabric material, decoration and brand.

5 place - Camel milk and dairy products

For thousands of years, the people of Arabia have been drinking camel's milk and eating dates. Even today, camel milk is no less popular than cow's milk among the UAE natives. Over the past 20 years camel's milk has become more popular in the world as it is believed to be healthier.

For many tourists camel milk is interesting because it is very difficult to taste it in homeland countries. It may be a problem to bring it from the UAE. Pasteurization of camel milk was invented recently, and not every supermarket now offers milk with a long shelf life, and fresh milk has a shelf life of just 5 days.

The price per liter is 15-20 dirhams. It is better to buy in supermarkets. Buy it in the last days of your vacation so that it does not have time to spoil. The prices are on the screenshot above, click to enlarge to full screen.

The most famous camel milk and food brand in the UAE is Camelicious, their products we recommend first. Since 2020, the Al Ain brand (named after the city Al Ain) has grown in popularity. Al Ain products are considered comparable to Camelicious in quality.

Read all the details in our review "Camel Milk in the UAE".

4 place - Souvenirs

More than half of Emirati souvenirs are camels in various forms. Magnets of all kinds and sizes, plush toys, figurines made of ceramics and wood, cups with a picture or in the shape of a camel, and so on. Everything that can be produced by the famous brand "made in China" (joking).

Very popular among tourists are magnets depicting famous landmarks - the Burj Khalifa tower, the Burj Al Arab hotel, the Dubai Fountain and others.

Prices: magnets from 5 to 20 dirhams, figurines from 5 to 50 dirhams, plush toys from 20 to 200 dirhams.

T-shirts with the inscriptions "I love Dubai" and "I love UAE" are in demand among foreign tourists. We don't approve of that. If you come to the UAE for the first time, is it right to declare your love on the first date?

Very interesting souvenirs are glass models of sights. Especially in Dubai are often found models of the Burj Khalifa and the Burj Al Arab Hotel. In Abu Dhabi, the best seller is a model of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque.

Prices for glass models - from 60 dirhams and above. Please note, the thing is fragile, if transported in a suitcase, wrap it with clothes or take it as hand luggage.

3 place - Dallah coffee pot

Ever wonder why the world's most common coffee variety is called "arabica"? This fact shows how much coffee has become embedded in the culture of the Arabs of the Persian Gulf.

In fact, the Arabica coffee sort comes from Ethiopia, and coffee does not grow in the UAE except for special plantations in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. But it was the Arabs who were the first to appreciate the drink and started trading coffee.

Dallah is the national coffee pot. It has become one of the symbols of Persian Gulf culture. It is depicted on the 1 dirham UAE coin, showing its importance to the traditions and history of the United Arab Emirates. The dallah coffee pot is also called the "Baghdad Pot" or the "Pot of the Gulf".

It is a very interesting gift, but more suitable for decoration. It is uncomfortable to brew coffee in it, if you compare it to the modern coffee pots. In the UAE, they sell thermoses, stylized as dallah coffee pots, such a gift is beautiful and practical. If you find such a thermos, take it for sure.

The price of a dallah coffee pot is from 20 dirhams and above. The price depends on the material, there are also dallah coffee pots made of silver and gold.

Coffee in the Arab Emirates comes from Ethiopia and Yemen. Coffee has always been imported and considered a symbol of wealth. It is always customary to brew coffee when receiving guests. Coffee does not have value for a tourist, because you can buy Ethiopian coffee in your homeland even cheaper.

2 place - Al Nassma chocolates

Al Nassma Chocolate is a famous confectionery company in Dubai. They were the first to produce chocolates with camel milk. Al Nassma is a premium chocolates. It took Al Nassma 4 years to develop the technology and the recipe.

Camel milk is obtained on the Camelicious farms in Dubai, and the milk is flown to Austria where it is mixed with the best chocolate. The resulting mass is airlifted back to Dubai, where it is molded and packaged. Obviously, under this scheme, the chocolate is very expensive!

The most popular tourist set is called the Camel Caravan. It is 9 chocolate figures of camels, packed in a wooden box. Watch the photo near, click on photo to enlarge to full screen. The weight of the chocolate in this set is 100 grams. Another option is a large camel-shaped figurine weighing 130 grams.

Beautiful, colorful, delicious, but VERY expensive.

Price of the Camel Caravan (9 pieces, 100gr) package is from 100 dirhams.

Price of the Camel Caravan (1 piece, 130gr) - from 60 dirhams.

Al Nassma chocolate bar (100gr) - from 50 dirhams.

Al Nassma chocolate can not always be found on sale, because the production volume is limited. You can find stalls selling Al Nassma chocolate in major hotels and shopping malls in Dubai, they are easily recognized by the shape of a camel. Recently (in February 2021), a new Al Nassma store opened in the Gold Market.

1 place - Dates

The most popular gift from the UAE among tourists are sweet dates. There are over a hundred varieties for every taste and wallet in the UAE. The climate of the Arabian Peninsula is ideal for the date palm, and the Emirati dates are considered one of the best in the world.

Dates have to be bought carefully, as cheap varieties from Tunisia, Algeria and Iran can be found on the shelves next to the top quality dates from the UAE and Saudi Arabia. There is no point in taking tunisian or algerian dates home, because they are probably even cheaper in your home country.

In 2020, relations between the UAE and Israel were normalized. And now there are Israeli medjool dates on the shelves. There is no point in buying Israeli dates, because they are widely available in many countries and cheaper than in the UAE.

Emirati dates are expensive if compared with tunisian or algerian ones. The price for Emirati dates - from 30 dirhams a kilo and for best sorts - from 75 dirhams a kilo.

We recommend the following varieties: Medjool (pictured near), Fard, Sheesh, Khalas, Barhi.

Dates in the UAE are sold everywhere - in markets, supermarkets and souvenir stores. There are even boutiques of dates and confectionery products made of them. The most famous is Bateel, famous for its chocolate-covered dates with almonds inside.

Read about how to choose dates in the UAE, what to look for when buying them and interesting facts in our review "Dates in the UAE".

Out of the contest - electronics, fashionable clothes and accessories

In the UAE, almost all goods can be bought cheaper than in Western countries. There are minimal customs duties - only 5%, no sale tax and minimal VAT - only 5%. And this tax can be refunded on departure, as we explained in detail on the page "VAT refund in the UAE".

We do NOT guarantee that you can buy an iPhone or a fancy bag in the first store you see, and the item will be cheaper than in your home country. Sellers in the UAE have a lower entry price for goods than others. But the trade markup is their decision. It is always possible to buy cheaper, you just need to know where.

Read more on our page "Shopping in the UAE".

Important and useful to know

- We recommend planning souvenirs and gifts as follows: $100 for a modest set, $200 for a good one, $300-400 for a fancy one. Read about planning expenses in our review "How much money to take in Dubai and the UAE";

- Dozens of nations live and work in the UAE, as we detailed in our review "Who lives in Dubai and the UAE". There are thousands of stores with ethnic goods from all over the world. You can buy almost everything. We highly recommend the Global Village park, where the concentration of stores is record.

- Those wishing to bring home local alcohol will be disappointed. It doesn't exist. Read more in the review "Alcohol in Dubai and the UAE";

- Those who want to bring home the local tobacco will be disappointed. It does not exist. See the page "Smoking and cigarettes in Dubai and the UAE" for details.

We wish you useful and profitable shopping in the United Arab Emirates, and read our interesting for tourists pages about this country (see the list of pages below).


Tips for Tourists in the UAE


What to Take for the UAE

What You Should Not Do in the UAE

To the UAE with Kids

Sharks in the UAE

Weather in the UAE by Month

Holidays in the UAE

Are Unmarried Young Women
Allowed to Enter the UAE?

All-Inclusive in the UAE

Power Sockets & Voltage in the UAE

Hotels in the UAE with Own Beach


The UAE - Info, Facts, Figures

What Language is Spoken in the UAE

Population and Citizens of the UAE

History of the UAE

Flag of the UAE

Friday and Weekend in the UAE

Ramadan in the UAE

Sheikh Zayed - Father of Nation

Sheikhs of the UAE


What to Bring from the UAE

What You Can and Not Bring In the UAE

What You Can and Not Take Out the UAE

VAT Refund in the UAE

Shopping in the UAE - Why is Cheap

Date Fruits in the UAE

Camel Milk and Dairy Products

Bakhoor and Oud


Money in the UAE - Emirati Dirham

Currency Exchange in the UAE

How Much Money to Take to the UAE

Food Prices in the UAE

Tourist Taxes in the UAE

Alcohol in the UAE

Cigarettes and Smoking in the UAE

Vape and iQos in the UAE


Dubai Metro - Fares and Map

Taxi in the UAE - Fares and Guide

NOL Transport Card Dubai

Dubai Tram

Dubai Monorail

Buses in the UAE


From Dubai Airport (DXB) to City

From Al Maktoum Airport (DWC) to City

From Abu Dhabi Airport (AUH) to City

From Sharjah Airport (SHJ) to City


From Dubai to Abu-Dhabi

Free Buses Dubai - Abu-Dhabi

From Sharjah to Dubai

From Ras Al-Khaimah to Dubai

From Ajman to Dubai

From Fujairah to Dubai

From Umm Al-Quwain to Dubai


Internet in the UAE

Cheap Calls from the UAE

Free SIM-card in Dubai

UAE Phone Codes




Bur Dubai

Dubai Marina



TOP Attractions in Dubai

Beaches in Dubai

Abu Dhabi

Al Ain

Yas Island

Beaches in Abu Dhabi


Beaches in Sharjah


Ras Al Khaimah

Umm Al Quwain



Best Attractions in the UAE

Free Attractions in the UAE


Burj Khalifa

Dubai Fountain

Excursions in Dubai

How to Save on Entertainment in Dubai


The Best in Dubai Mall

Dubai Aquarium

Candylicious in Dubai Mall

Waterfall in Dubai Mall


Gold Market in Dubai

Al Mamzar Beach and Park

Deira Clock Tower

City Centre Deira Mall


Burj Al Arab

Wild Wadi Water Park

Jumeirah Mosque

Dubai Marina Mall

Madinat Jumeirah

Jumeirah Beach



The Lost Chambers

Dolphin Bay

Palm Fountains

The View at the Palm






Ain Dubai

Madame Tussauds


The Dubai Frame

Dubai Dolphinarium

Al Fahidi Fort Museum

Museum of the Future


Global Village

Miracle Garden

Butterfly Garden

IMG Worlds of Adventure


Mall of the Emirates

Ski Dubai


Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

Louvre Abu Dhabi

Emirates Palace

Observation Deck at 300

Sheikh Zayed Memorial

Heritage Village

Corniche Waterfront

Sir Bani Yas


Ferrari World

Formula Rossa

Galleria Ferrari

Warner Bros Park

Yas WaterWorld

Yas Marina & Formula 1

Yas Mall


Sharjah Fountains

Sharjah Aquarium

Museum of Islamic Civilization

Al Noor Mosque

Mega Mall


Ajman Fish Market

Ajman Fort and Museum

City Centre Ajman Mall


DreamLand Water Park


Emirati Cuisine - What to Taste © 2020-2024