Although Dubai is impressive at ground level, it’s completely unique from up in the sky.
These photos and video by Qatari A380 pilot Khalifa Al Thani exemplify what we mean.
The whole metropolis is beautifully lit up at night, the initial standout feature being, of course, Palm Jumeirah.
Look more carefully and you’ll pick out Jumeirah Village Circle, the wheel-like shape further inland.
There’s also Jumeirah Islands, the squiggly area and the tetris-style blocks not far from Dubai Marina.
And the tulip shape to the left of Palm Jumeirah? That’s Bluewaters Island, the brand-new development that will soon house the Dubai Eye Ferris wheel.
Al Thani has actually made a habit of taking spectacular aerial photos of cities and landscapes from the cockpit of the Qatar Airways A380 he flies and sharing them on social media.
He often includes the cockpit itself in his snaps, which offers his 50,000 Instagram followers an idea of what it must feel like to pilot such a big aircraft.
If you’re a fan of these type of photos, check out the following pictures of the United Arab Emirates taken by Nasa astronauts from space. It’s a great way to appreciate the UAE’s meteoric rise from desert to mega city in just a few decades.