World's Least Romantic Places

Where’s the love? It’s hard to find in these places, where clichés, crowds, and other unpleasant realities can kill the mood for romance.

Downtown Dubai

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While this emirate has a cosmopolitan, modern sheen, visitors would be well advised to respect local laws and customs. This is one melting pot of diverse cultures, values, and social mores that can sometimes boil over. Consider the British couple arrested in 2010 for kissing in public. Both received one month in jail but were spared lashes, a common punishment for such crimes. Still, travelers can’t say they weren’t warned: the Dubai Mall displays prominent signage asking guests to abstain from public displays of affection.

How to Find the Romance: Retreat to the desert, where you can stay beyond the reach of judging eyes at Al Maha Resort and Spa, built by the Sheikh Khalifa. The private villas with oversize plunge pools overlook the shifting sands within Dubai’s first national park and are, not surprisingly, fit for royalty.

Adam McCulloch

World's Least Romantic Places

Downtown Dubai

While this emirate has a cosmopolitan, modern sheen, visitors would be well advised to respect local laws and customs. This is one melting pot of diverse cultures, values, and social mores that can sometimes boil over. Consider the British couple arrested in 2010 for kissing in public. Both received one month in jail but were spared lashes, a common punishment for such crimes. Still, travelers can’t say they weren’t warned: the Dubai Mall displays prominent signage asking guests to abstain from public displays of affection.

How to Find the Romance: Retreat to the desert, where you can stay beyond the reach of judging eyes at Al Maha Resort and Spa, built by the Sheikh Khalifa. The private villas with oversize plunge pools overlook the shifting sands within Dubai’s first national park and are, not surprisingly, fit for royalty.

Adam McCulloch

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