Check out these fun things to do in Dubai!
Truly, Dubai is a land of wonders. Hands down, one of the most exciting travel destinations across the planet, Dubai leaves no stone unturned in ensuring that no traveller returns home disappointed. From state-of-the-art architecture to the sprawling desert realm; from world-class shopping malls to exquisite fine-dining options; from endless attractions to remarkable man-made islands, there is no dearth of top attractions and things to do in Dubai.
If you are looking for entertainment in Dubai, the splendid Dubai Malls, the numerous souks, enticing theme parks, gardens, and exciting Dubai tours will ensure you have it all. If you want some thrill, there are also a multitude of adventure activities to do in Dubai such as paragliding, desert safaris, indoor skiing, deep sea diving, bungee jumping, and so much more! If you’re travelling with family, indulge in an array of family friendly activities in Dubai such as checking out the city’s many theme parks, and other top attractions in Dubai. For shopaholics craving shopping in Dubai, the numerous exotic souks and the sparkling shopping malls, are like a dream come true!
Top things to do in Dubai
If you want to take your travel and shopping experience to the next level, the best time to visit Dubai is during the upcoming Dubai Shopping Festival 2017! Held in January every year, this Dubai festival is when the entire city comes alive with lights, festivities, glamour, gastronomy, and of course, endless shopping opportunities! The Dubai Shopping Festival 2017 is hands down, an ultimate family experience, complete with music concerts, fireworks, fun-fairs, fashion shows, humongous discounts, and crazy sales! Shopping in Dubai can’t get any better than this! So, shop till you drop on your next holiday to Dubai, and enjoy the endless attractions and things to do in Dubai!
Here’s a list you can start ticking off!
Adventure Activities to do in Dubai
Best things to do in Dubai
1] Sky diving at SkyDive Dubai: A dose of adrenaline rush
Enjoy the adrenaline rush of jumping off a plane from 4000 meters high up in the sky and shooting down at a breakneck speed of more than 210 kilometres per hour. You don’t have to worry about your parachute opening or not, as you can try the tandem sky dive with a highly trained instructor at SkyDive Dubai.
2] Paragliding at Dubai Paragliding Club: Soar high above Dubai skyline
Dubai Paragliding Club is your ultimate destination to indulge in the crazy adventure of paragliding. Dubai’s landscape is best enjoyed while you soar high in a paraglider. Feel the air rush through your veins as you soar high above over the deep blue horizon and revel in the magnificent aerial views of Dubai.
3] Bungee jumping at Gravity Zone: An adventure unlike any other
Visit the Gravity Zone in Meydan Road and enjoy the exhilarating and high adrenalin rush of bungee jumping in Dubai. You will get to jump from a platform 90 meters high (300 feet) with a spectacular background with your feet tied up to elastic cord system and guided by pro instructors Shout your lungs out and feel the adrenaline rush take you over.
4] Deep sea diving: Explore the depths of the Persian Gulf
Dive in the deep sea of the Persian Gulf and explore the coral reefs and several wrecks filled with precious marine lifeforms and reefs. Deep Blue Sea Diving is one of the professional organisation in Dubai which conducts diving courses by professional PADI and CMAS certified divers.
5] Desert safari: Go dune bashing in 4*4 drives in Dubai deserts
Tread through the rust colored desert landscape of UAE in a timeless manner with a camel safari or go for a more exhilarating approach of fast-paced 4X4 wheel drive safari; Dubai’s desert are meant for adventure. Go dune bashing, savour the Dubai hospitality and get an authentic feel of the Middle East here.
6] ATV and Quad biking: Discover Dubai in style
Powerful all-terrain vehicles and quad bikes are meant for the rugged landscape and desert of Dubai. Enjoy the adrenaline rush of traversing through the desert in the rugged terrain of Dubai at exhilarating speed and power of a quad bike.
Click on the Dubai Guide to know about even more things to do in Dubai!
7] Sandboarding: Experience the thrill of surfing Dubai’s sand dunes
Sandboarding is one of the most popular desert adventure options in Dubai. Just like snowboarding, sandboarding involves the same principle of gliding and balancing on a wooden board while moving down in speed against gravity from the top of a sand dune.
8] Parasailing and kite surfing: Float over Dubai’s mesmeric skyline
Soar high in the air with a parachute connected to a fast moving motor boat or simply glide over the water on a board connected to a high flying kite. There are plenty of operators in Dubai to ensure a high quality adventure sports of parasailing and kite surfing.
9] Fly boarding and Wakeboarding: Stunning water sports for the thrill seekers
The highly popular water sports of flyboarding and wakeboarding are among the trendiest adventure sports in Dubai. Experience the thrill of hovering in air with a powerful Jetstream propulsion in flyboarding and enjoy the sharp turns and twist of wakeboarding as you glide over the water propelled on a boat connected by a motor boat.
10] Skiing: Experience the thrill of skiing in the midst of desert
Visit the SkiDubai, one of the world’s largest indoor ski diving centres located in the Mall of the Emirates. SkiDubai has an 85-metre-high mountain with 5 different slopes of varying degrees and steepness. It has a 400 metre indoor ski run and features ice playing area for children, toboggan runs, ice slides, and ice caves.
11] Cage snorkelling and Shark Dive: Gems of the Dubai water kingdom
Dive in one of the largest indoor aquariums in the world and enjoy a thrilling encounter with ferocious sharks, octopuses, sting rays and plenty of marine species. Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo is the perfect place to get your first experience of scuba diving in a controlled environment.
Entertainment in Dubai
12] Atlantis the Palm
One of the most famous and luxurious entertainment resort in Dubai, Atlantis the Palm is situated in the heart of Dubai. Atlantis the Palm is one of the most luxurious hotels in Dubai as well as it is the unique ocean-themed resort, which features a variety of entertainment facilities and marine adventure attractions for the people of all ages. The hotel is also home to one of the largest open-air aquarium in the world, which features over 65,000 marine animals in lagoons.
13] Watch the dazzling Dubai Fountain at Dubai Mall
Enjoy the breath-taking sights and sounds of Dubai by taking a front row seats to revel in the magical experience of beautifully choreographed, light illuminating fountain show on musical rhythms with the iconic Burj Khalifa as your backdrop. Each show lasts 5 minutes and the light beams emerging from the fountains are visible from few kilometers away. The world’s largest dancing fountains show is truly a sight to behold.
14] Stroll in the most beautiful flower garden in the world – Dubai Miracle Garden
Dubai is all about the smoke of shishas, aroma of spicy meat, fragrance of perfumes and flowers. Flowers in a desert! Absolutely, after all, this is Dubai and anything is possible here. This impossibly huge and multicolored garden with more than 45 million flowers blossoming in the arid desert, lures tourists with its sensory delights. Follow the aroma in the biggest flower garden in the world – Dubai Miracle Garden. As you enter into this magical oasis, the rainbow colored flowery formation will definitely catch your eyes.
15] The Big Bus Dubai City Tour
Experience the incredible contrast of the old and the new and see the amazing transformation of the small fishing village into a vibrant city – Dubai. Travelling in an open-top double-decker hop-on hop-off bus provides amazing views as you travel through the lengths and breadths of Dubai. It includes a visit to the major landmarks of Dubai including Burj Al Arab, Burj Khalifa, Gold Souk, Dubai Creek and much more with an audio commentary in 12 different languages.
16] Enjoy a belly dancing show in desert safari camp
When it comes to belly dancing, nothing compares to the belly dancing shows in Dubai’s desert safari camps. The cornerstone of Arabic desert safaris, belly dancing is just not a folk dance, but a performing art of Arabian countries. Melodious musical tunes fill the atmosphere as you get mesmerized with the soft and smooth movements of these dancers. As the name suggests, belly dancing has graceful and rhythmic movements on soft tunes. Dubai’s desert safari camps provide the best belly dancers to entertain you to the heart’s fill.
17] Experience 6D cinema at Thrill Zone
Experience it, instead of merely watching it. The 6D cinema at Thrill Zone in Dubai is the latest cutting edge technology that brings cinema to a new level. Its dazzling 3D graphics, and special effects create an ambience unlike anything this planet has ever seen. Its digital sound and full motion seats make you feel like you are actually there.
18] Indulge in dune bashing in the deserts of Dubai
With a rich and extensive culture, breath-taking scenery, exotic wildlife and entertaining adrenaline rides in the world, Dubai has so much to offer. Its desert camp experience on 4×4 vehicles offer you a thrilling ride over the red sand dunes, among the must-do things for anyone visiting Dubai.
19] Experience the amazing aquatic life inside the Dubai Aquarium
Walk through the largest underwater tunnel and explore the variety of colorful marine life at Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo. Located in the middle of world’s largest shopping mall – Dubai Mall gives you an opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the world’s most fascinating underwater life. You can also take a glass-bottom boat tour or get wet in the snorkeling cage. Walk along the world’s largest viewing panel, where you will find yourself face to face with exotic marine species. You will be left awestruck by the true magnificence of it all.
20] Full Moon Horseback Riding at Mushrif Equestrian
Just imagine a 1300 acres woodland and desert terrain, bright full moon, and a serene environ around you. If you ever wished to ride a horse by moonlight, along with trees and their romantic shadows then this ride is for you. Set in the rolling sands on the outskirts of Dubai, Mushrif Park is the largest park in the city and offers a serene desert landscape to explore this oasis on a magnificent white horse.
21] Go-Karting at Dubai Autodrome
Need for speed, anyone! Fasten your seatbelts and experience the thrill of burning rubber at Dubai Autodrome. Hold the steering wheel of a racing car tightly and hit the tracks in an Audi TT or single seater car or simply feel the epic power of an Audi R8 V10. Check your driving skills with the single seater racing car ideal for adrenaline seekers, who are looking to feel the power of a real race car.
Luxury Hotels and Resorts in Dubai
22] Get 7-star treatment at Burj al Arab hotel
The dhow-shaped Burj al Arab hotel is an icon in Dubai. It’s one of the most luxurious hotels in the world with extensive decorations and spacious and regal guest rooms. This 7-star property has a helipad and few restaurants which has redefined the art of fine dining in Dubai. Feel like a star as you stay in Burj al Arab and enjoy the experience of world class hospitality.
23] Enjoy Dubai’s panoramic views from the majestic JW Marriot Marquis hotel
The world’s tallest hotel, JW Marriot Marquis is a spectacular addition to Dubai’s already famed cityscape and architecture. This amazing hotel has two wings, 72 floors and 1600 guest rooms and suites with panoramic views of the surrounding city. Its location on the Sheikh Zayed Road makes it easier for the guests to reach the other top Dubai attractions like The Dubai Mall and Burj Khalifa.
24] Bust the myth in the cozy confines of Atlantis, The Palm hotel
Located in the Palm Jumeirah, this is an amazing hotel and resort designed on the theme of Atlantis, the lost and mythical city. The hotel has 1539 guest rooms and a dedicated theme park, Adventure Water Park. Regular concerts and all night parties are conducted at the Nasimi Beach. Enjoy world class dining which include a famous restaurant by the celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey.
25] Revel in the luxury and comforts of the Al Maha Desert Resort
This amazing world class resort is nestled on a pristine palm oasis in the vast desert of Dubai. The resort is located inside the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve and is a key wildlife park in the country. Enjoy cultural displays by the bedouins and soak in the several desert adventures while staying at Al Maha Desert Resort.
26] The twin delights on the Dubai skyline: Grosvenor House, Dubai
The hotel’s two glittering twin towers are among the most recognisable landmarks in Dubai: This amazing hotel has two iconic 45 storey towers and has become the talk of Dubai’s social scene and features 749 spacious and contemporary guest rooms, suites and apartments. Its location is ideal for tourist and business travellers who also get to experience the beach, gold clubs, Dubai Internet City, Media City and several shopping malls in the proximity.
27] World-class shopping and entertainment at Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates
The property was opened in April 2006 and is located adjacent to the stunning Mall of the Emirates. The hotel has 393 rooms and suites designed in contemporary décor and its proximity to the Mall of the Emirates ensures plenty of dining, shopping and entertainment options.
28] A world of sophisticated beauty and luxury at Armani Hotel Dubai
Armani Hotel Dubai is a part of the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa. The entire property has been designed by the world renowned designer Giorgio Armani. This amazing hotel bears the imprints of the legendary fashion designer in every aspect starting from the design of lobby, guestrooms, restaurants and bars.
29] Stylish rooms and a rooftop pool to indulge yourself at Hilton Dubai Creek
An award winning property, the Hilton Dubai Creek is located in the backdrop of the scenic Dubai Creek. The hotel has 150 guest rooms and suites with contemporary décor and facilities. The property has acquired a reputation of offering world class hospitality and services to its guest and is recognised with the reputed TripAdvisor Hall of Fame.
30] Experience the timeless elegance of Le Meridien Dubai
This property is best suited for frequent travellers and businessmen who want to stay near the airport and enjoy the world class services and hospitality of Le Meridien brand. Situated close to the airport, the Le Meridien Dubai has close to 579 hotel rooms and suites and 18 amazing restaurants and bars.
31] An elegant pyramid in the midst of Dubai – Raffles Dubai
Located in the heart of the Dubai, Raffles Dubai is one of the premium luxury hotels in city choc a bloc with elegance. The property is located at a 10 minutes’ drive from Dubai International Airport and is a short drive from Burj Khalifa and Dubai Mall. The hotel has several award winning restaurants and bars and popular nightclubs to ensure a memorable stay in Dubai.
Shopping in Dubai
32] Stroll in the alleys of Souk Madinat
Endless shopping, varied entertainment and fine dining – all at one place – Madinat Jumeirah. Souk Madinat is a terrific marketplace with the feel of the bygone ancient era, coupled with sweet fragrances and an authentic atmosphere, a visual treat for the visitors. Take a stroll around numerous winding alleys as the market offers endless options to stroll through. Treat yourself with the best shopping experience where the atmosphere is filled with the aromas of the waterfront cafes, bars and restaurants.
33] Window shop or buy bucketful of gold ornaments in Gold Souk
Shop after shop filled with gold (more than what was found in Aladdin’s Cave!), with prices determined on weight. Don’t be afraid to do some bargaining. The Gold Souk in Dubai really comes alive at night, and even if you are not interested buying something, watching the bargaining is real entertainment in itself.
34] Shop during the holy month in the Ramadan Night Market
Experience soulful shopping at Dubai’s one and only night market that is held only in the holy months of Ramadan. The market is the best place to shop for the Eid festival, and is also a great place to have fun with the family. This annual Ramadan Night Market is a 10-night, one-stop shopping event with over 400 vendors and shoppers featuring products and brands from different regions of the world, bringing their own cultural heritage.
35] Stop and smell the spices at Spice Souk
The overpowering pungent smell of the Spice Souk will hit you before you see it, thanks to the aromas from all over the world. One of the most popular souks in Dubai, its narrow alleys are lined up with small stores selling herbs and expensive spices such as saffron that can be purchased in bulk amount. Here, the air is filled with pungent aromas coming from colorful spies like pepper, cloves, turmeric, cinnamon and fresh dry fruits among others.
36] Shop from over 1000 stores in the Mall of the Emirates
Boasting of high-end shopping options for all tastes, Dubai is a city that has created a fantasy land of shopping malls showcasing everything under one place. At the Mall of the Emirates, you will find an incredible array of stores supplying a diverse selection of goods and services under one roof – teen fashion brands, electronics, accessories, jewelry, bags and books… anything you could possibly wish for!
37] Fascinated about gadgets – Go for electronics shopping in Dubai
If you are planning to travel to Dubai, then the first thing on your to-do list must be – electronics shopping. Electronics shopping in Dubai is an interesting activity for all tourists here. Due to duty-free shopping and no-taxation policies, shopping in Dubai has resulted in one of the best places for electronics shopping.
Online electronics shopping in Dubai is also a hit. Explore the internet and you will find loads of websites and information regarding where to do your electronics shopping in Dubai.
38] Enjoy duty-free shopping in Dubai
Duty-free shopping is a must-do thing while visiting the UAE. UAE’s all the airports have duty-free shops among them Abu Dhabi and Dubai’s airports are the largest and are particularly famous. Tax-free shopping at Dubai International Airport is a heaven for shopaholics. Gold jewelry and perfumes are the most popular consumer items, but a wide array of goods are also on sale, including electronics, cameras, leather goods, toys, and other cosmetics, among others.
39] From cotton to raw silk, textiles souk in Dubai is a must-visit
If your heart desires a change from the bright bustling malls to the usual street shopping head to Textiles souk in Dubai. Located in Bur Dubai, Dubai’s Textile Souk is an awesome textile market for those who love fashion. The whole market is occupied by numerous stalls, showcasing every possible kind of fabric on offer from different cultures. All shops have their window displays decorated with cotton fabrics and raw silks, luring you to walk in. The sprawling souk has a huge wooden gateway. No matter what is your taste, you will find something that suits you.
40] Enjoy terrific discounts while online shopping
Take a look at multiple websites that facilitate online shopping in Dubai and the range of products that they offer. You will be mesmerized by the flexibility of doing online shopping. Dubai online shopping can be a special experience as many websites offers incredibly attractive prices, discounts, free delivery and free vouchers. Dubai online shopping is a lot of fun, reliable and useful, this is something that you can definitely indulge in.
41] Traverse around the world in just a few hours at Global Village
A unique concept of navigating the world in a few hours at Global Village. One of the largest seasonal cultural extravaganzas in Dubai, it offers tourists an amazing array of shopping, festivals and entertainment options in an open-air theme park. While taking a walk around the Global Village, you get to experience cultures of different countries at one place.
Top Restaurants in Dubai
42] Reflets: Enjoy French delicacies at this classic restaurant
Wonderful French cuisine straight from the line of world renowned French chef Pierre Gagnaire is what Reflets is all about. This classic French restaurant with pink hues, crystal chandeliers and Italian lighting is certainly one of the best places to enjoy French gastronomy and fine dining in Dubai. Reflets has a well-stocked wine list and a well-crafted menu to ensure a wonderful dining experience.
43] Pierchic: Exquisite alfresco dining amidst the backdrop of Burj Al Arab Hotel
A high-end Mediterranean restaurant with a stunning location in Dubai’s Al Qadar, Medinat Jumeirah’s extended pier. The location in outstanding for alfresco dining and spending a beautiful evening with your partner. Amidst the backdrop of Burj Al Arab and the sprawling views of Arabian Gulf. The food is delicious and service is attentive and knowledgeable to ensure a highly memorable evening.
44] Buddha Bar: Cocktails, music and an ambience to vouch for in Dubai
Buddha Bar is back on Dubai’s famed dining scene after a major refurbishment with fresh décor and yet, maintaining the same Asian and oriental charm. The face paint of Buddha, dark wood furnishings, ambient lightings and wonderful selection of lounge music is what makes dining in Buddha Bar one of the top dining experiences in the city of Dubai. Located in the Grosvenor House Dubai, it has also started a new establishment, Siddharta Lounge.
45] Al Hadheerah: Live kitchen serving Arab delicacies in the midst of the desert
Al Hadheerah is a famed establishment in the Bab Al Shams Desert Resort and Spa. Al Hadheerah’s USP is the live kitchen in the middle of desert along with entertainment. The setting is a traditional fort where guests are entertained with display of falconry, camel caravan, horse show and Tanoura dancers create a scene reminiscent of Arabian Nights. As you soak yourself in the entertainment, delicious Arab delicacies are prepared on wood fire ovens and cooking stations.
46] Nobu: A famed Japanese restaurant in Palm Jumeirah
Part of the Atlantis The Palm in Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, Nobu is famed Japanese restaurant, a chain of renowned Japanese chef Noobuyuki “Nobu” Matsuhisa. The establishment offers a unique take on traditional Japanese recipes with a unique combination of Peruvian cuisine ingredients and elements. The fusion of Japanese and Peruvian cuisine has earned a reputation for Nobu as one of the best restaurants in Dubai to savour delectable Japanese fares.
47] Al Muntaha: Innovative European cuisine experience in the Burj al Arab
Located on the 27th floor of the iconic Burj Al Arab hotel, Al Muntaha is certainly one of the must have dining experiences of Dubai. Stunning panoramic views of the city coupled with an innovative take on European cuisine and an intimate setting are its main highlights. The dress code is smart casual and the menu is fixed to ensure a quality fine dining.
48] Al Mahara: Stunning seafood restaurant with an underwater feel
Another top notch restaurant in Burj Al Arab, Al Mahara uses an amazing setting of a giant aquarium coupled with stunning lightings and interiors to create a marvellous ambience. Relish the delicious fresh sea food and a well curated stock of wines while enjoying the sight of colourful marine species. Smart casual and semi-formal is the dress code and the ambience is classy, perfect for fine dining.
49] Armani Ristorante: Italian culinary experience at its tantalising best
Part of the Armani Hotel Dubai and located inside the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa, Armani Ristorante is designed by the world renowned designer Giorgio Armani. The restaurant has a classy, trendy décor of monochrome shades and plush furnishings. The cuisine served is Italian with a well-crafted gourmet menu and fine selection of wines. Open kitchen style allows plenty of interactivity with the chefs as well.
50] Royal China: Classical Chinese food to gorge on
One of the best Chinese restaurants in Dubai, Royal China has a regal setting with extensive use of red velvet curtains, matching furnishings and décor. This vintage style restaurant serves authentic Chinese specialities from all the diverse regions of China. The tone is informal, allowing for a wonderful conversation while enjoying the wonderful Chinese gastronomy.
51] Tomo: Delicious sushi served with exotic views of Dubai skyline
Tomo has a reputation of being one of the top Japanese restaurants in Dubai. The restaurant is located in Raffles Dubai and allows panoramic views of the city from the top of the pyramid shaped iconic hotel. Oriental décor add a vintage element to its authentic Japanese cuisine and philosophy.
Top Dubai Attractions
52] Step inside Dubai’s most exquisite mosque – the Jumeirah Mosque
If you are not a Muslim, you may not know much about Islam religion and culture. A visit to the most photographed icons of the country, the Jumeirah Mosque is the only mosque in Dubai where non-Muslims can also enter. Visiting this mosque will give you great insights into Islamic culture and a greater understanding of its beliefs. Its snowy-white and intricately designed pair of slender minarets and roofline crowned with domes decorated with ornate carvings lit up against an evening sky. This beautiful formation is among the must-visit places in Dubai for the tourists.
53] Experience Dubai’s old and living history at Dubai Museum
Take a historical glimpse into the Dubai’s past and spend some entertaining time while visiting the Dubai Museum. One of the key attractions in the emirate, you get to explore plenty of historical items picked up from all around the region – all at one location. Located in the Al Fahidi Fort, you will find within the walls of the Dubai Museum, a rare collection of variety of arts and artefacts such as descriptive dioramas showcasing Dubai of the past and its gallery collections displaying markets, Arab houses, deserts and waterways reflecting the ancient history and lifestyle of traditional Arabs.
54] Enjoy the city’s most spectacular free fountain show at Dubai Mall
Just a hop, skip and a jump from Burj Khalifa to the Dubai Mall. Dubai Mall features the world’s largest choreographed musical fountain show set on the lake of Burj Khalifa. Apart from the live fountain show, there are more than 1,200 shops and 150 restaurants here. An entire day spent here isn’t enough to see it all. The venue is home to an indoor theme park, a huge indoor waterfall, a luxury hotel, a 155-million-year-old dinosaur skeleton and a giant aquarium and underwater zoo featuring stingrays, penguins, sharks and many more exotic animals.
55] At the top of the world’s tallest building – Burj Khalifa
Take the world’s high speed elevator and enjoy the spectacular views of Dubai’ stunning skyline and its coastline from the 124th floor observation deck at the top of Burj Khalifa. Hold on to your breath- it takes only a few seconds. This is a magical experience and one of the best entertainment options in Dubai especially in the backdrop of a magical sunset. For those who would like to linger for a meal in the clouds, the Sky Lounge on level 148th floor, is the place to be.
56] Welcome to the world most luxurious hotel – Burj Al Arab
Everybody who has ever heard of Dubai knows of the Burj al Arab –world’s first and only 7-star hotel and certainly one of the most photographed monuments in the world. Its sailboat-shaped silhouette rising majestically from its manmade island is a delight to the eyes. This luxurious hotel has various viewpoints from where you can click pictures of yourself, but one of the best is from the beach next to it, from where you will get the ultimate Dubai picture with the Burj Al Arab in the background. Don’t miss its signature culinary flight dining experience and the world famous afternoon tea.
57] Step back in time at Dubai Creek
Dubai may be famous for the glitz and glamour of its skyscrapers, but the real gem of the city is, and always will be, the Creek. Today, the area is packed with the history of the emirate, as it is home to the Dubai Museum, as well as the labyrinthine alleyways of the gold, spice and textile souks in Deira. If you would like a more relaxing tour, try a traditional Dhow Cruise, which offers cruises throughout the day and night? Glide down the waterway and capture the magnificent skyline reflecting the sunlight during the day or magnificently illuminated at night. Also, experience a romantic dinner served on a deck.
58] Step foot on the largest man-made island – Palm Jumeirah
Take a journey through one of the largest man-made island in the world in the shape of a palm tree –Palm Jumeirah. This is one of the most striking attractions of Dubai. For an exceptional outdoor dining, look no further than Atlantis, The Palm hotel. Enjoy a leisurely cruise through the waters of Arabian Gulf or witness Dubai’s glittering skyline or a unique thrilling experience of scuba diving with dolphins all at the Palm Jumeirah beach.
59] Taste 23-carat gold ice cream at Dubai’s Scoopi Café
Gold is everywhere in Dubai! From sports cars, skyscrapers, to dinner plates and in the souks, it’s all gold all around. All, it remains, is to eat gold, then, isn’t it? Forget your favourite usual ice-cream – this 23 carat Black Diamond ice-cream is laden with Madagascar vanilla ice-cream and Iranian saffron, served in a fancy Versace bowl with slices of black truffles and garnished with edible gold at just AED 3000. Enjoy the world’s most expensive ice-cream scoop at Dubai’s Scoopi Café on Jumeirah Beach Road.
60] Mingle with exotic animals at Dubai Zoo
A trip to the Dubai Zoo is a great one to take while visiting this lovely subtropical land. By visiting the Dubai Zoo you will able to see animals which call the Arabian Peninsula home. Arabian wolf is a rare species and can be found only in the Dubai Zoo. Getting a chance to view these beautiful creatures is a once in a lifetime experience for you.
61] Enjoy indoor skiing at Ski Dubai
Whether you are a newbie or a pro, Ski Dubai offers an amazing setting to enjoy skiing, snowboarding or just playing in the snow – whatever your level. Discover the ultimate indoor snow – Middle East’s first indoor ski centre is situated in the Mall of Emirates. Covering an area of 3,000 sq. m, Ski Dubai is a great place for family fun, with toboggan slopes, snow caves and tube rides. Don’t forget to pay a visit to alpine café – ideal for sipping hot chocolate in minus four degrees, or watching the daily march of Dubai’s newest residents – the Snow Penguins!
Romantic Things to do in Dubai
62] Enjoy a romantic dinner at the Jumeirah Beach Hotel
The mighty views of Dubai’s skyline, a comfortable seating, lip-smacking cuisine, world- renowned DJs playing your favourite music and your sweetheart for company, what else can an ideal date entail? Restaurant 360° at Jumeriah Beach Hotel is just a perfect place to enjoy a quiet romantic dinner with your loved one. Another USP of the place is that it offers panoramic views of the sea and often serves as a late venue for the most happening parties of Dubai. Recipient of multiple awards from the likes of UK DJ Magazine, Time Out Dubai and Ahlan’s etc., 360° remains the most fashionable and popular venue for residents and visitors alike.
63] Go for a leisurely walk on the beach
Nothing like having a heart to heart talk with your sweetheart and watching the sun go down while you take a stroll on of the cleanest beach of Dubai, Jumeriah Beach. The white sand, the cool breeze and the Dubai skylights add to the magnificence of the romantic atmosphere.
Access to Jumeriah beach, can cost you anywhere from AED 150 to AED 700 for a day. Want to make the day even more special, gather for tit-bits and organise a small picnic and have a relaxing dinner. Feeling extravagant? Spending a night at Jumeirah hotel will give a befitting end to your evening.
64] For something extravagant…Hot Air Balloon Ride
If you could manage to convince your better half, for waking up at the crack of the dawn, the two of you will be treated with mesmerising views of vast golden desert and a variety of native animals such as the oryx, gazelle and camels, as your hot air balloon glides over Dubai Desert Conservation Reservation. Balloon Adventures Emirates LLC, one of Dubai’s most experienced and professional balloon operators operate every day from mid-September until end of May (weather permitting). The company arranges free pick-up from a common meeting point or may pick you up directly from your hotel depending on where you are staying.
65] Overnight desert safari
Experience the beauty of a quiet starry night, as you spend the night in Bedouin – style tents carpeted with traditional seating, relishing a sumptuous buffet dinner, followed by gahwa (Arabic coffee) and fresh dates.
Also, most of the overnight desert safari packages include activities like Dune driving, camel rides, sunset photography, and sand boarding etc., making it a fun date option for couples.
66] Private Desert Safari
This one is apt for the adventurous kinds. Make your safari special, instead of being a part of a large group, hire the complete car exclusively for you and opt for any of the available safaris; be it morning safari, evening safari or overnight safari and give your loved one, the time of his/her life.
Let HolidayMe plan the fun date for you as you get to enjoy a private pickup from your Dubai hotel, which will take you to the traditional camel farm to a camel ride. Next, drive across the Dubai desert to enjoy an amazing experience of sandboarding! From relishing a tasty barbecue dinner, to enjoying a live belly-dancing performance to spending some time under the sparkling stars, everything is included in this comprehensive package.
67] A spa date – for something intimate
Pamper your sweetheart and enjoy a relaxing couples massage and spa at the Raffles Spa in their luxury couples suite. As a chocolate lover, you will be delighted to know that this fabulous spa offers spa deal for two with a chocolate body scrub, chocolate face mask and a massage.
Enjoy a glass of champagne, chocolates and strawberries by the pool, and spend quality time relaxing together. Raffles Spa is hands down one of the best spas of Dubai, and rest assured your experience with them will be nothing but exemplary in all aspects.
68] Coffee date at Skyview bar Burj Al-Arab
Breath-taking views, dark rich coffee, soft succulent pastries and endless conversations with your sweetheart; the perfect recipe for a memorable date.
And when you take your date at the Skyview Bar Burj Al Arab, chance of you winning a few brownie points or two, increases triple folds.
Soaring 200 metres above sea level at 27th floor, this restaurant offers unmatched views of Dubai’s skyline; ones that guarantee to take your breath away. Add to it, rotating line-up of live music, eclectic drinks list, innovative cocktails and lip-smacking cuisine, this place has everything to blow your date away.
69] Go shopping in the souks and the malls of Dubai
Shopping is a therapeutic experience for most of us. Even if women are notorious for their shopping love, am sure most men share this guilty pleasure, too.
If you are blessed with the same interests and if it has to do anything with shopping, you for sure will not be disappointed by Dubai. Dotted with shopping malls, gold souq and flea markets, this place is literally a shopaholic’s paradise. Pamper your lady with gold and diamonds or simply go window-shopping hand-in-hand, checking out various labels and brands which seem inexhaustible in Dubai malls.
70] Spend a romantic evening with a unique Dhow Cruise
Want to treat your partner in style? A romantic evening with cool fresh breeze, tasty dinner and entertainment at a Dhow cruise is something out of ordinary. The Dhow cruises are conducted in the Dubai Creek and also in the Dubai Marina.
A Dhow is a traditional wooden ship and a typical dhow cruise lasts for about 2 hours, and includes hotel pickup and drop off, dinner and entertainment.
71] Dance together on the Barasti or Nasimi Beach
Put on your dancing shoes, and ready yourself for a fun-filled day at Barasti or Nasimi Beach. Whether you are a beach bum or a party-popper, spending time at Barasti Beach will definitely ensure your time is well spent.
Barasti offers the unadulterated mix of great music, tasty food and heavenly cocktails against the spectacular backdrop of Dubai Marina. Want to party all night long? No worries with the world’s best DJs at the renowned beach party nights, it might be just your best night.
Another USP? The entry is free.
72] Enjoy an aerial view of Dubai
A 40-min helicopter ride alongwith refreshments while checking out the stunning views of Dubai, is a sure way of winning your partner’s heart. What can be more thrilling than flying over some of the most remarkable structures of the world and experiencing a water landing? Catch a sight of the incredible Palm Jumeirah Island, Burj Khalifa and the rest of Dubai skyline as you take this journey with your sweetheart.
Family Friendly Activities in Dubai
73] Aquaventure Waterpark – A Theme Park for Family Fun in Dubai
This wonderful theme park is located inside the Atlantis The Palm, Dubai and is one of the most popular and in-demand family friendly activities in Dubai. Aquaventure Waterpark has plenty of slides and rides and special encounters with marine animals like sharks and sting rays. Popular rides include The Tower of Neptune, The Tower of Poseidon and the interesting The Lost Chambers Aquarium.
74] Helicopter tour of Dubai skyline
Renowned for magnificent skyline and iconic buildings, there is no better way to get a bird’s eye view of Dubai than a helicopter tour. This fascinating 15 minute tour starts at Atlantis, The Palm and it will fly over the spectacular coastline of Arabian Gulf. This tour also take you to admire the fascinating wonders of Dubai such as Burj Al Arab, Palm Jumeirah, Union Square, the Mall of the Emirates, Sheikh Zayed Road and finally to the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa.
75] Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo – Experience the True, Blue Water Kingdom in Dubai
One of the largest indoor aquariums in the world, Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo is located inside The Dubai Mall. This huge aquarium is filled with rich marine species of over 140 types including sharks, sting rays and many more. You can also enjoy shark tunnel visit to see sharks and sting rays moving overhead. You can enjoy daring adventures like cage snorkelling, shark diving and underwater swimming.
76] Dubai Autodrome – Zoom around in Audi, McLaren and other racing cars
Dubai Autodrome is the place to be in the city if you want to drive hot wheels like Audi R8, Audi TT, McLaren among other racing cars. You can enjoy driving around a professional race track with a trained instructor, who will ensure a memorable adventure. Kids can enjoy driving simulators and go-karting and plenty of interactive driving sessions.
77] iFly Dubai – Experience indoor sky diving for kids and families in Dubai
iFly Dubai is a state-of-art indoor sky diving centre which uses high velocity air pressure to help you float in air. The iFly Dubai is steadily gaining popularity in the city as one of the top kid’s friendly activities in the city which allows unlimited fun and an experience of flying which is very much like skydiving, bungee jumping and base jumping.
78] Wild Wadi Waterpark – A theme park based on Arabic folktale of Juha for kids
Wild Wadi Waterpark is located in front of the stunning Burj Al Arab and is a part of Jumeirah group of hotels and resorts. The theme park has close to 30 rides are attractions for family and kids. The entire theme park is created on an Arab folktale of Juha, a known character in the Arab world. Wild Wadi is an amazing family friendly theme park where you will enjoy a wide range of activities, joy rides and water slides.
79] Kidzania – Play, learn and have fun at this unique theme park in Dubai
Kidzania is a unique theme park in Dubai which offers a safe and entertaining atmosphere for kids and toddlers. The idea is to allow kids to choose and role play any profession, be it doctor, scientist, policeman, fireman, journalist, beautician and several other professions in a fun city where the kids can earn as well while learning and having fun. Kidzania is one of the most creative and innovative centres for family friendly activities and is widely appreciated by several organisations, communities and visitors.
80] Dubai Miracle Garden – A landscaped garden for families to relax
Dubai Miracle Garden is one of the top attractions in the city of Dubai and has also made an entry in the Guinness Book of Records for having the largest floral wall in the world. This beautiful landscaped garden is one of the newest entrants on Dubai’s ever emerging tourist attractions of the city. Fairytale castles, arches, pavilions and well-manicured flower beds and structures are all adorned with flowers. Dubai Miracle Garden is a dream world for kids.
81] SEGA Republic
SEGA Republic is located in The Dubai Mall and has 14 thrilling rides and more that 150 arcade games. The large park has five dedicated themed zones which offers games and rides including motion simulators and virtual experiences and plenty of skill games like roller coaster, Spin Gear, half-pipe Canyon, Sonic Hopper, Storm-G, race, snowboard, bobsled, and American Hi Striker, among many others.
Luxury activities in Dubai
82] Fly to Dubai in Emirates first class service
Travel like royalty and arrive in Dubai via Emirate’s first class service. Known as a crème de la crème of luxury, Emirates is known for its superior five-star services where you can slide the privacy doors closed and unwind in your own world, and enjoy a glass of exclusive wine or champagne, or help yourself to your own personal mini-bar while travelling in first class. What’s more, the airline also has convenient shower facilities for its passengers!
83] Arrive at your hotel in a private helicopter in Burj Al Arab
Dubai’s Burj Al Arab hotel is the pinnacle of luxury in a city which is home to some of the world’s most outstanding hotels. Perhaps, being built on a man-made island or its unique ‘dhow-shaped’ structure contributes to the fact. Whatever be the case, those lucky enough to stay here, get a chance to arrive at the Burj Al Arab’s own private helicopter on the hotel’s helipad, located on the 28th floor.
84] Staying at Al Maha, a luxury desert resort and spa
Situated in Murqquab desert, this luxury hotel defines the word luxury in its own way. Along with a full-service spa, Al Maha has a restaurant and an outdoor pool. Free buffet breakfast and free valet parking are also provided. Additionally, all of its 42 rooms provide free WiFi, and iPod docks. Guests can enjoy private plunge pools and deep soaking tubs, all in the middle of the desert!
85] Get pampered at the One & Only Royal Mirage Spa
This luxurious, serene sanctuary with 12 individual therapy rooms provides a wide variety of tailored treatments that are designed to unwind, balance and uplift your body. One & Only Royal Mirage Spa features whirlpools, massage rooms, jacuzzis and plunge showers set in a traditional Oriental Hammam with heated massage tables. The spa also provides separate treatments and operating hours for men and women in an exclusive haven designed to relax the body and mind.
86] Rent a Ferrari in Dubai
It is not uncommon to see some of the world’s most exotic cars racing down Dubai’s 12 lane roads. Driving a Ferrari might seem like a far-off dream in most other parts of the world, but not here in Dubai, where many high-end cars like Bentleys, Aston Martins, Ferraris and Lamborghinis grace its roads.
Please note that the minimum age to drive in Dubai is 25 years.
87] Cruise on a private yacht
Relax onboard an enormous catamaran as you sail around the Palm Jumeirah, Atlantis and Burj Al Arab, in your own private yacht. Dubai’s glittering night skyline is best admired from a boat in Dubai Creek, that’s why sailing in a traditional dhow boat while enjoying Emirati music, belly dancing and delicious gastronomic fares is among the top evening entertainment options in the city. And worry not! A barbecue buffet, soft drinks, a live DJ, towels and snorkelling gear are all included in the price!
88] Withdraw gold from Dubai’s Gold ATMs
Does the ATM really discharge gold? It surely does in Dubai! A gold-to-go machine is the first-ever gold vending machine found in Dubai which splits out the rare element in 320 different forms, from gold bar to coins to wearable jewellery! Did you know that even the machine is gold-plated? You really have to see it to believe it!
89] Enjoy a day playing Camel Polo
But, believe it or not, the game of Polo was actually invented in the Middle East more than 2500 years ago! And while some might find the very idea of camel polo outrageous, it is a serious sport in Dubai, and an activity you should certainly indulge in while holidaying here.
90] Sleep at a height of 300 metres in JW Marriot
Imagine sleeping in the world’s tallest hotel room, at a height of 1,164 feet above sea level! Dubai’s JW Marriott Marquis Hotel has four of such incredible in suites on its 69th floor! This landmark luxury hotel is the new holder of Guinness Book of World Records, the title was formerly with the 1,093-feet-tall Rose Tower, also situated in Dubai!
91] Relish a private dinner on Burj al Arab’s helipad
Symbolic of Dubai’s innovation and creativity, Burj al Arab Hotel has a lot of delightfully lavish experiences to offer. The seven-star hotel’s helipad is famous for a friendly tennis match between legends Andre Agassi vs Roger Federer and a big Tiger Woods golfing drive, but did you know that you could also arrange for an exclusive private dinner on top of the Burj Al Arab Helipad? Apart from this, the helipad is also becoming a popular venue for destination weddings.
Road trips from Dubai
92] Hatta Pools – Apt place to cool off from the summer heat
Distance from Dubai: 131 kilometers (Approx. 1 hours 30 mins)
The historic village of Hatta and drive along the gravel tracks through the mountains is a memorable one to say the least. Hatta’s rock pools are a great place to cool off during summer and are an impressive sight of their own, having been carved by rain over millions of years. Here, Hatta Heritage Village is worth a stop, as you can see the village’s old watchtower and restored stone building, and have an overnight stay at the famous Hatta Fort Hotel.
93] Al Ain (via Jebel Hafeet) – Among the world’s greatest driving roads
Distance from Dubai: 163 kilometers (Approx. 2 hours)
Home to UAE’s second highest peak, Jebel Hafeet has rightfully been placed ‘among the world’s greatest driving roads’. Located in Al Ain City, this road is filled with innumerable scenic views and craggy limestone formations that have survived through millions of years. On your way up its 1240 meters climb, make sure you stop at the Green Mubazarrah park, a lush area of greenery and hot springs that are known to have therapeutic qualities.
94] Al Maha Desert Resort and Spa – Luxury, Greenery and Wildlife
Distance from Dubai: 67 kilometers ( Approx. 50 mins)
You don’t really have to stay at Al Maha’s luxury resort to experience its beauty; the long, scenic drive leading to this ultra-exclusive desert escape is well worth the mileage. Apart from plenty of greenery and wildlife, date and camel farms that you’ll spot on the way; it’s also likely that you’ll need to make small halts to let those cute dromedaries (Arabian camels) cross the road!
95] Dibba – Panoramic views to savour for a lifetime
Distance from Dubai: 151 kilometers ( Approx. 1 hour 40 mins)
Imagine driving on a road that boasts of panoramic views of mountains on one side, and sea on the other. That’s UAE’s east coast for you. Driving to Dibba from Dubai is a great way to escape the hectic city life: the pace is laid-back and the dramatic scenery is a far cry from Dubai’s bustling sites and skyscrapers. Do make sure you are carrying your passport though, for Oman has a strict ‘no passport, no entry’ policy.
96] Jebel Maleihah (Fossil Rock), Sharjah – Dune bashing, Marine Fossils to watch out for
Distance from Dubai: 43 kilometers ( Approx. 1 hour)
Officially known as Jebel Maleihah, this large outcrop is more widely known as Fossil Rock, due to the abundance of marine fossils that can be found on its slopes. Located in Sharjah, this area is rich with the fossils of shells and small sea creatures present on the ocean floor millions of years ago, when water covered much of Arabia. Fossil Rock is ideal for a half-day trip of dune bashing for off-roaders.
We’d suggest you undertake some lessons or complete a 4WD course before driving to Fossil Rocks from Dubai.
97] Fujairah Road – Perfect for diving locations and weekend breaks
Distance from Dubai: 168 kilometers (Approx. 2 hours 15 mins)
Famous for diving locations and relaxed weekend breaks, Fujairah is an ideal seaside resort on the east coast of the Emirates. The emirate, which is mainly mountainous and rocky, has mostly been developed from a tourist point of view, which means there are even more facilities here. The drive to Fujairah takes you through lofty mountains, and several gorgeous towns that are dotted with mountain ranges. The roads are ultra-smooth, and there are several hotels/restaurants at appropriate intervals making the journey from Dubai to Fujairah easy and enjoyable.
98] Khasab – Norway of the Middle East
Distance from Dubai: 197 kilometers (Approx. 2 hours 40 mins)
Also known as ‘Norway of the Middle East’ (thanks to its multiple fjords), the beautiful city of Khasab is becoming popular for a quick weekend getaway from Dubai because of its accessibility. The drive to Khasab from Dubai itself is spectacular on a clear day; a winding road around Musandam’s coast dotted with many fjords and small, quiet bays great for beach camping.
99] Abu Dhabi – The Rising Emirate on the UAE skyline
Distance from Dubai: 147 kilometers (Approx. 1 hours 50 mins)
One of the most popular weekend getaways from Dubai, Abu Dhabi is very easy to get to. Just head south on the Sheikh Zayed Road and keep going. It takes about 2 hours to reach Abu Dhabi from Dubai. However, do take care to avoid rush hour traffic on this road as the driving can get a bit irritating during peak hours.
Also read: Top 10 Things To Do In Abu Dhabi
100] Ras Al Khaimah – Paragliding, water sports and much more
Distance from Dubai: 113 kilometers (Approx. 1 hour 15 mins)
For the adventurer in you, the drive to Ras al Khaimah from Dubai is both, invigorating as well as rewarding. Apart from the smooth roads leading to the city, Ras al Khaimah is also a great mini-break destination that boasts of a variety of weekend activities to do such as paragliding, water sports, golf, fishing and horse riding. The emirate is also full of fabulous five-star hotels and beach resorts, making it a practical weekend option.
101] Umm Al Quwain – A perfect family road trip from Dubai
Distance from Dubai: 70 kilometers (Approx. 45 mins)
Home to UAE’s largest water park, Al Quwain is also the country’s least populated Emirate.
The drive to Al Quwain from Dubai is quite uneventful, and is thus ideal for a family road trip from Dubai. The famous Dreamland Aqua Park is right on the coastline of Al Quwain, and has over 30 rides and slides to keep children as well as adults entertained!