Tourist shopping for souvenirs at Bur Dubai Souq.

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Dubai's oldest souq (market) flanks a central arcade canopied by an ornately carved wooden roof. Friday evenings here are especially lively, as it turns into a virtual crawling carnival with expat workers loading up on socks, pashminas, T-shirts and knock-off Calvins on their day off. In a section known as the Textile Souq you can stock up on fabrics – silk, cotton, satin and velvet – at very reasonable prices. On the downside, although good humoured, the vendors here can be very pushy.

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