If you want to see not only the skyscrapers of a modern megalopolis in Dubai, but also the historic center where the city was founded, you should come to the shore of the Dubai Creek and have a tour of the streets of Deira District.
Today, in order to get either to the gold market or spice market in Deira District from the other districts of Dubai it would be better to use the tube. However, before the metro was constructed, ferryboat was a very popular way of crossing the Dubai Creek. Now it is but an attraction for tourists and a way of crossing the canal for those who live in Deira. Mainly these are the Hindus trading on the local markets.
There are two ways to see the Dubai Creek: to take a regular boat used to carry people from one bank to the other and ask the boater to take you all along the Dubai Creek. Or you can buy a tour on an old wooden ship and go along about the same route but only on an authentic Arab vessel.
Dubai Creek is rather picturesque. You can see there both the modern buildings of Deira District, and the old port with cargo ships dating back to the middle of the past century. It will be very interesting to see all this to perceive a giant jump from a fishing village in the middle of 20 century to the ultra modern megalopolis in our time that Dubai made for only several decades.