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DSF 2012: In the good old days...

DUBAI - Heritage is back in the limelight this DSF (Dubai Shopping Festival). The Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) is showcasing the rich maritime history and hospitality traditions of the Emiratis for the visitors of the Heritage Village and Diving Village in Al Shindagha heritage complex for the visitors during the 2012 edition of the shopping-cum-cultural extravaganza ending on February 5.

Nasser bin Juma, Director of Diving Village and member of the DTCM Committee of Heritage Events for the DSF 2012, said:
“The activities we have organised this time offer more insights into the UAE’s national and marine heritage and offer visitors the opportunity to go back in time and admire the Emirati traditions and culture.
The visitors can gain invaluable knowledge about Dubai’s maritime history, pearl diving traditions and architecture and lifestyles of the yore.”
He said heritage and culture are central to the UAE’s national identity and there is a deep interest among the residents and visitors of Dubai to know about the Emirati traditions and culture and the DTCM programmes were designed to capture important information about the Emirati heritage and the roots of the nation and provide visitors a sense of history and culture of Dubai.
The Al Shindagha complex offers visitors a splendid set of old maps exhibiting urban growth of Dubai in the last century, desert life, traditional Arabian homes, mosques, fishing, farming, dhow building, pearl diving and everyday trading.
Colourful and suggestive dioramas complete with life-size figures and sound and light effects illustrate life in Dubai’s old days. Also interesting to the visitors are traditional wooden seafaring dhows used for fishing, trading and pearling, boat building and diving tools.
The Heritage Village focuses on the UAE’s maritime past, trading activities and local history. There are several traditional shops, handicraft stores and exhibitions.
The Diving Village is a motley collection of pearl-diving artifacts and pictures of Dubai’s pearl divers and marine life. Some of the black and white photos are interesting, reflecting the tough life that many divers endured before scuba diving was invented.
The Heritage Village incorporates a small museum displaying ancient artifacts from several archaeological sites dating as far back as 550BC. The village also displays and sells traditional crafts, pottery, woven goods and Bedouin jewellery. Juma said the strong number of visitors to the heritage sites during the DSF 2012 clearly reflects the keen interest of people from various nationalities in knowing more about the rich history, culture and traditions of the Emiratis and the evolution of Dubai from a small pearling village into one of the world’s leading global trading, tourism and aviation hubs.
A wide variety of other activities including henna painting, traditional plays, performances by music bands and competitions for children in various fields makes a visit to the heritage sites memorable for the visitors.
The visitors can also enjoy the sight of which was common in the old Dubai — a travelling salesman who used to go from one house to another selling a variety of household items by making a call in loud voice about his arrival.
The programmes will be take place from 5pm to 10pm each day at the Heritage Village and Diving Village in Al Shindagha and also at th