People & Places: Hustle and bustle of Naif Road is mesmerising

naif, deira, dubai, people and places

The Naif District is a unique locality, constantly buzzing with activity.


Dhanusha Gokulan

Published: Thu 8 Aug 2019, 11:23 PM

Last updated: Sat 10 Aug 2019, 10:49 AM

Anybody with plans to visit Naif district in Deira must have faced fear at the thought of finding parking in the tightly packed rows of Dubai's most densely populated commercial and residential district.
Deira, the oldest commercial district of Dubai, is home to the UAE's rich cultural attractions. It's where tradition and modern culture converge. However, nestled comfortably between Al Murar and Al Rigga, the Naif District is a unique locality, constantly buzzing with activity.
It's always busy in Naif Street
Mohammed Qaseem, an employee at the Shams Naif Furniture located in the heart of Naif Street, said: "It's always busy in Naif Street. From the time the sun rises till it sets. Only after 2am and till 7am it is a little quiet."
Qaseem has been a resident of Naif Road for over 15 years. "I first came here from Pakistan in 2004. I was 28 years old then. I first lived in Rolla in Sharjah for some time and then moved here when I found a better employment."
Naif District is best known for being the home for cost-effective trading equipment, electronic gadgets, textiles, furniture and much more. However, these hundreds of small and big stores are stacked against each other, and it's bustling with people rushing in and out of the stores.
265 stores in Naif Souq
According to local guide Illyas Ceetheragath, the Naif Souq is a perfect sport for purchasing abayas and textile for hijabs. "You can buy ready-made abayas or you can purchase clothes," he said. He added a useful tip: "Try using the Metro to get here though. If you are driving with your car, then park your vehicle opposite the Naif Police Station public parking."
According to several store owners, the souq plays host to over 265 stores.
Ceetheragath said: "Shopkeepers sell various goods from jewellery to clothing and even local food. Most importantly, if you are looking for souvenirs which you wouldn't find at the airport, this place offers you a wide variety of items."
Naif is also the homeland to the most popular Mosque in Deira - Naif Mosque - first built in 1948. "Within the vicinity of this mosque, you can find a variety of shops and restaurants which are seriously worth stepping in to. The footfall and cultural diversity in this area make it the perfect portrait stop," said Firdose Muqaddam, an Indian resident of Deira who regularly visits Naif Souq. "This is the best place to buy textile and electronics," he added.
Don't snap without permission
However, Ceetheragath warned: "If you are a tourist interested in taking portraits of people, it is better to approach them and introduce yourself. Most shopkeepers and residents will be happy to pose. Avoid sneaking a picture. This applies to women as they often do not like to be photographed by strangers."
Other than Indians and Pakistanis, Naif has several residents and storekeepers who are from Bangladesh, Nepal, China and from the African continent.

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