top things to do in Dubai
Be it air-conditioned malls or the sprawling desert, adrenaline-charged water parks or preserved heritage — Dubai has a wealth of activities and attractions. It is a city where modern technology and innovative construction ingrains into Arabian culture. Blessed with dynamic geography, the concoction of the new and old landmarks in Dubai will leave you spellbound. To experience the best of both sides, here are the top things to do in Dubai:
Tick off Burj Khalifa
Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world and holds several other world-recording titles. It is home to two vantage points that offer the unparalleled view of the city. It is only here that you can squeeze in the fastest double-deck elevator. There are virtual reality displays, high-powered telescopes, public observation terraces, green screen photography, lounges, and restaurants, that offer an immersive experience.
Explore the Dubai Mall
A few feet away from Burj Khalifa, the Dubai Mall is a shopper’s paradise reputed as the centre of more than 1300 stores with the most covetable brands. It is a massive leisure destination with entertainment facilities like an ice rink, movie theatre, VR Park, an aquarium that has thousands of creatures and much more. Visitors can dive with sharks, watch the waterfall, dine at plenty of restaurants, or just hang out window shopping without throwing a dime.
Take a tour of Burj Al Arab
Overlooking the Persian Gulf, this seven-star hotel has wowed the architecture buffs with its sail-shaped silhouette. Those who aren’t staying at the hotel can watch it from steps away at Jumeirah Beach. Otherwise, one can also gain entry by reserving a table at any of the premium on-site restaurants or grabbing an afternoon tea with a view.
Discover the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo
Located inside the Dubai Mall, this is a family-friendly attraction. One of the largest of its kind, this aquarium and underwater zoo houses hundreds of species of fish, sharks and stingrays in their natural habitat. It imitates an ocean bed which you could see from inside by scuba diving or cage snorkelling. Challenge your guts to feed the sharks alongside the trained divers.
Groove to the Dubai Fountain
Amongst the free things to do in Dubai, the spectacular show of Dubai Fountain impresses like no other. Located at the foot of the Burj Khalifa, on the 30-acre Burj Lake, this is one of the largest choreographed fountain systems you will come across. Illuminated by 6,600 lights and 50 coloured projectors, the fountain performs on several world-class pieces of music. You can catch the entire performance from the Boardwalk, book the Burj Lake abra ride, stand on the walkway of Souk Al Bahr, or from the nearby restaurants.
Cruise on Dhow across Marina
Dubai has brought a revolution by converting their old dhows to the modern and embellished cruises. Sit on any floor of this double-deck ship and savor the delicious meal as you cross the stunning cityscape and lofty skyscrapers of Marina (or the historic buildings and buzzing market of Creek). Choose from dhow cruise Marina or Creek, revel in live shows, gawk at the shimmering view and have an unparalleled 2-hour fun.
Stroll in the walkways of Bastakiya Quarter
Throughout history, UAE was known for pearl trading. The epicenter of this business was the Basktaiya Quarter where merchants lived. It is the oldest standing residential area of Dubai that features ochre-colored buildings with wind towers. Today, as you walk in the winding alleyways, most of the brown doors of these homes open to galleries, museums, cafes, boutiques and exhibitions for the tourists to learn, eat and explore.
Enjoy the Desert Safari
One thing that hasn’t changed in this modern renovation of Dubai is its expansive golden desert. The undulating dunes offer a wealth of adventurous activities, such as 4*4 dune bashing, sandboarding, quad biking and hot air balloon ride. It carries the legacy of Bedouin culture with henna designing, belly dancing, camel riding, serving Arabic buffet and other culturally-inclined activities. You can go through a range of desert safaris in Dubai that combine all such experiences in one package.
Browse at Gold and Spice Souks
The Gold Souk, located on Dubai Creek’s south bank in the Deira, specializes in gold jewelry of best quality and cheap rates. It is dotted with 300 retailers that feature glittering displays of necklaces, bracelets and earrings. On the other side of the creek lies the aromatic spice souks including cinnamon, ginger and chilli. There are other souks that sell perfumes, textiles, handmade items and souvenirs.
Visit Dubai Frame
You can uncover the past, present and future of Dubai — all in one landmark building located in Zabeel Park. Resembling the largest picture frame, Dubai Frame is built on an innovative concept where the two towers are connected by 150m tall and 93m wide bridge. Stand atop this bridge and you will remain in awe of the sweeping panoramic views of the modern skyline in South and historic sights in North. Know the history of Dubai on the mezzanine floor through virtual display and find out what the city will look like as you pass through the immersive time tunnel.
Feel the winter vibes at Ski Dubai
Even when the city is getting extreme sunlight and wrapped in the blazing heat, the massive indoor ski resort maintains -2 degree Celsius. This is the winter wonderland nestled in the Mall of the Emirates that has an array of exciting polar activities. You can ski or learn to ski, snowboard, take a chairlift ride, go for toboggan runs, and even meet the penguins. Later, feel the warmth with a hot cup of chocolate.
Splash at Wild Wadi Waterpark
Tucked in front of the Burj Al Arab, this beautifully themed water park is one of the largest water parks in the Middle East. The entry ticket gives you access to 30 waterslides and rides, from casual to jaw-dropping level. Some of the popular attractions include Master Blaster, Aquadrop, Speed Slide, Flowbarrel and Rainfortress; these record-breaking waterslides will get the adrenaline pumping. There is also a kids section filled with interactive games, water guns, slides and more.
Lounge at Kite Beach
One of Dubai’s favourite beaches, Kite Beach is perfect for sun-seekers. For some serious water fun, come with your family, friends or partner and participate in a range of water sports, such as kitesurfing, wakeboarding or stand-up paddleboarding. Keep your feet dry as you play beach volleyball, grab a bite at food trucks, and admire majestic views of Burj Al Arab. In the 14km track, have a causal jog or walk. You can enjoy all the activities fuss-free because of the facilities present around.
Shop, dine and Global Village
Representing almost a hundred of countries at this giant fairground, there is something magical about Global Village. Pavilions are staged with thousands of displays, local handicrafts and delicious delicacies for the travellers to taste the slice of different countries under one roof. With countless games, thrilling rides, street performances, and star-studded concerts, there is never a moment of boredom here.
We Love Dubai
In a nutshell, Dubai will have you spoilt for choices — there is something for travellers of all ages. From starting your day by the beach and spending your day in air-conditioned malls to ending it in the desert, the city is a smorgasbord of different things to do. Add these experiences in your list and you will have an amazing vacation in Dubai.