Back in July, when I was invited by Nokia for the launch event of the Nokia Lumia 1020, it was the first time I saw the Nokia Lumia 1020 and fell in love with its camera. I was thrilled when I was invited again by Nokia, but this time to try out the Lumia 1020 and experience/experiment photography with the Lumia 1020 at an adventure trip in Dubai.
Dubai is a cosmopolitan metropolis city that was built with an eye for design, elegance and perfection. No other city would be more suitable to test the Lumia 1020 as it shares the DNA for design, elegance and perfection.
To be frank, very little or nothing was known to be about the trip until two days before boarding the flight. I got the itinerary for the trip after I got my visa was confirmed. The itinerary excited me. There was mention of Palm, Beaches and Chopper rides and I was barely able to sleep, pensively waiting for the D-Day.
Day 1: The moment I landed in Dubai, I was driven to the Media One hotel in Media City, Dubai. After a Lunch at the hotel, I had a few hours on my own until dinner meeting with the Product managers at Nokia. I decided to dive in right away the start exploring the city. I wanted to the go to the Burj Khalifa and go on top of it. But I found out that, I had to book tickets in advance, else it would be very expensive. So decided to skip it and drove to the Dubai Mall. Dubai Mall is located in the Dubai Marina area, right next to the Burj Khalifa. Its a huge mall, probably one of the world’s largest. I didn’t have the Nokia Lumia in my hand yet and I started clicking with my DSLR. This place is a photographer’s dream come true. It’s lavish interiors and plush decorations made my camera go crazy for about an hour or so. I was truly amazed by the massive indoor aquarium right within the Mall. This is Dubai, and its a city built right in middle of a desert and they have an indoor aquarium with giant sting rays flying above your head. It was totally unbelievable. On my way back, we took the long route to hotel and touched major attractions like the Burj Al Dubai and the Jameria beach.
Back in the Hotel, we met up with our hosts, Team Nokia and the other guests. The guests were hand picked bloggers, photographers, journalists and Nokia enthusiasts from around the world. I was very fortunate to be one among such a prestigious group. Dinner was planned at Al Nafoora Restaurant at the Jumeriah Zabeel Saray one of the premier hotels in the Palm Jameria. The Palm Jameria is one among the 3 man made real estate in the shape of a palm leaf, right in middle of the ocean. We drove to the Palm and the drive was fascinating for me, as this was my first time at the Palm. A 10 km ride within the palm took us to the magnificent Jemeriah Zabeel Saray. After dinner at Al Nafoora, we were given the Nokia Lumia devices. Then we headed to a spot in the palm, from where we could get a good view of the Dubai city skyline at night.
Marcus Olsson, the product manager for the Nokia pro camera application was with us. He gave us a quick introduction to the pro camera application and how we can take long exposure shots with it.
Day 2: The started early for me. I headed to the Gym at the Hotel and after a quick dip at the swimming pool at the Dek, in Media one Hotel, I was monstrously hungry. After breakfast we started off on a road trip to Oman via Abu Dhabhi. There was a filming crew with us armed with the ultimate RED Epic to film our adventure. It was scorching hot outside. We were on a bus with all our luggage and the RED Epic loaded in the trailer. The two hour ride ended at the Golden Tulip Resort in Oman. After check-in at the resort, we quickly jumped on to a Big boat. Lunch was served in the boat. Temperature outside had cooled down a bit making our ride a pleasant one. The ride was very scenic. Just before sun set, we were transferred to smaller speed boats and we were taken deep in to the sea to witness and capture the sun set by the desert mountains of Oman, from the sea. We were travelling in the waters of the Musundam area. After dark, we were back in our big boat for dinner. The boat was anchored off the coast of a small beach in Musundam. The sea at night brought in the excitement of bio-luminescent seaweed. The water, when agitated, was glowing with bio luminescence. This was super exciting but the light was so weak to be captured by any camera. So I jumped into the sea and enjoyed the night sea and the luminescence, though I can barely swim. At the beach, I tried to capture the milky way with my DSLR, but then the excitement of Lumia 925 and its capability to capture low light images distracted me. We had fun capturing low light images by the camp fire and also experimented with long exposure shots using LED lights and torches. The night ended with a long ride on a speed boat back to the resort in Oman.
Day 3: Again the day stated early for me. I wanted to capture the sun rise at the beach and the excitement drove me out of my bed very early. With all my photographic gear and Lumia mobiles, I started off on my own. The others were either asleep or were still in Musundam on the big boat. I was able to capture some amazing shots of the day break and also a time lapse video. After a stroll in the beach, I took a dip in the clear beach waters. Road trip back to Dubai was pretty un-eventful. We were all either tired or sleepy.
After checking in to the Media One hotel again, we were all ready for the highlight of the adventure. The chopper ride over the skies of Dubai. Check out the photos of Dubai, shot from the chopper using a Lumia 1020.
Later that evening, we headed to a studio in Dubai where Fatiniza, the columbian singer and her band were rehearsing. We used the Lumia 1020 to shoot the video and test the sound quality. We also compared the recording with other devices and found that the Lumia 1020 was way ahead in terms of audio recording capability. Then we went for dinner at Dubai Marina, in a restaurant called Shades on top of The Address. We shot some cool pictures of the Dubai marina skyline from the restaurant.
That was the last day of the adventure trip with Lumia. It was a fantastic experience. Well organized and perfectly executed by the Nokia Connect team.
Also Read: Nokia Lumia 1020 Review – A Photographer’s dream come true