Where did you go?
In September, I went to Dubai with friends and family.
What tourist attractions did you visit and do you have any tips for people with IBD who would like to see these?
We went to Aquaventure Waterpark, but we chose to go on a Sunday (their Monday) so it wouldn’t be too busy. This meant that there weren’t really any queues for rides or toilets. We also kept a base with sunbeds and bags which was near a toilet.
Did you do any prior research before the trip?
A friend lives in Dubai, so she was really knowledgeable about what eateries would suit me. Her cousin also has Crohn’s, so she knew pretty well what we can/can’t eat.
Did your IBD cause you any issues on this trip?
In Dubai I tried drinking alcohol, so I expected a rough stomach the next day. I was also on steroids while I was in Dubai – my second lot – because I got poorly again before arriving.
Was there anything out of the ordinary that stressed you out, or could potentially stress out someone with IBD?
The heat really stressed me out, and I never would be like that normally. It made me feel claustrophobic; I couldn’t be out in it for too long. At midday (the hottest point) I would often go inside in the air conditioning and explore around the hotel instead.
Can you recommend how many days/weeks is a good time to visit this location?
I think anything from five days to two weeks would be lovely here. It’s mad because it’s a city but also has a beach. So you could think of it as a city break or a relaxing beach holiday.
The toilets in all locations were lovely and clean. As I had gone to built-up, tourist-focused places, everything was well kept.
Can you tell us what the food and cuisine is like? Any tips on where to eat and what to avoid?
We ate a lot of sushi, which was amazing. I ate sashimi which is just raw fish and it was such a lovely change from chicken all the time.
On a scale of 1-5 how much does your IBD affect you?
(1 being in remission and 5 being in a flare)
5. Being away and still suffering these symptoms is really hard, but I am determined not to let it beat me.
On a scale of 1-5, how difficult was it to manage your IBD while on this trip?
(1 being no issues and 5 being very difficult to manage)
Luckily I was on Prednisolone so it kind of ‘covered me’ shall we say. I think if I hadn’t been on the steroids it would’ve been a totally different story. Both times I’ve come off the steroids my flare has become increasingly worse, so I was really lucky to have been on the steroids whilst I was away. I also didn’t suffer bad side effects on the steroids, just insomnia.
Were there any activities which challenged your IBD management?
Everyday life is a challenge with IBD, so I’m used to things being tough! Nothing in particular stood out for me whilst I was away.
Would you recommend this place for people who have IBD?
People in Dubai will go out of their way to please you. There is just a slight issue with the language there, but most people speak English perfectly.