An array of outdoor attractions in Dubai have opened in time for the winter season, providing families and children across the UAE, as well as tourists, multiple options to explore and to experience the rich diversity of the city’s offerings amid perfect weather.
Whether you are an adventure seeker searching for an adrenaline rush, or simply someone looking to enjoy the great outdoors, the range of experiences and activities caters to different tastes and age groups with strict precautionary measures in place across the board to ensure the health and safety of visitors.
With the current situation highlighting the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle, adults and children alike have the opportunity to take up sports and fitness activities, absorb the breathtaking sights and enjoy nature or opt for relaxation and recreation at several locations across Dubai.
You can take a stroll or laze on the beach, go for a swim in the sea or on a hiking trip through rugged terrain or spend quality fitness time through various wellness activities during the ongoing Dubai Fitness Challenge. You can also choose to organise your family’s day out at one of the many beautiful parks in Dubai, enjoy the timeless tranquility of the desert, make the most of lively and unique shopping experiences at the souk or savour international cuisine at a variety of restaurants that reinforce Dubai’s position as the gastronomy capital of the region.
The diverse outdoor attractions of Dubai will ensure that you take home unforgettable memories, and above all you will experience the warmth and enthusiasm of its people and communities representing a microcosm of cultures.
A welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of the busy urban life, a visit to one of the city’s parks is among the many ways to unwind and whilst spending quality time with loved ones. Dubai is home to a number of parks, such as Zabeel Park, Burj Park, Al Mamzar Beach Park, Safa Park Creek Park and Mushrif Park. Meanwhile, Dubai Safari Park and Dubai Crocodile Park provide memorable experiences for the community. Dubai Safari Park, a wildlife reserve, animal sanctuary and education centre, is home to over 2,500 animals from all over the world, making it a unique tourism and edutainment destination. The Dubai Crocodile Park is home to the majestic freshwater Nile crocodile, and will help visitors learn more about the endangered species.
Another exciting way to enjoy the weekend is to visit the Dubai Miracle Garden. Featuring over 150 million flowers of over 120 varieties, the Dubai Miracle Garden is the world’s largest natural flower garden and is one of the most beautiful attractions in Dubai. All of the plants and flowers in Dubai Miracle Garden are fashioned into various stunning arches, patterns and shapes, making for a colourful sight – practically picture perfect.
Beaches and water parks
Dubai’s beach culture ensures that there’s always something for everyone, whether you want to play a game of beach volleyball with friends, curl up with a book or even enjoy a nice picnic on the sand. Among the options across the city are "The Beach" in JBR, which includes a range of restaurants, hotels, lounges and entertainment places for families, Kite Beach, which is popular for surfing and beach sports, Sunset Beach, which offers views of the Burj Al Arab, and Al Mamzar Beach, which provides a suitable environment for relaxation and swimming, together with pathways for walking and cycling. Off the coast, sports enthusiasts can indulge in jet skiing, surfing, and so much more.
Water parks are fun-filled family attractions, and a splendid way to escape the heat. Legoland Water Park has rides for all ages, so the entire family can enjoy their day out; Wild Wadi, in front of the Burj Al Arab, offers many entertaining experiences for kids and their parents; and there’s even Laguna Water Park in La Mer – a modern park featuring a variety of rides catering to thrill seekers – as well as Aquaventure Waterpark at Atlantis the Palm, the largest of its kind in Dubai.
Hatta is the perfect getaway from the city lights, providing an opportunity to get back to nature as well as to experience a wide range of activities. You could go mountain biking or hiking in the Hajar Mountains – also known for its stunning views – or enjoy wadi-bashing in the riverbeds and even go kayaking in the Hatta Dam. The Hatta Wadi Hub offers visitors experiences such as a 10-metre high climbing wall that includes five lanes, a slingshot that propels those looking for adventure, fun and suspense to a height of up to 50 meters, and paragliding.
Skydive Dubai caters to anyone craving an adrenaline rush and welcomes skydiving enthusiasts to enjoy the spectacular views while flying high over the Palm Jumeirah. If you are skydiving for the first time, you can jump in tandem with a professional coach to enjoy a safe experience.
Try the longest zipline in the world – the XLine – which is located in Dubai Marina Mall. The XLine is one of the steepest and fastest ziplines around the globe, and has multiple lines, which means that family and friends can delight in the fantastic views together.
Hot Air Balloon
A hot air balloon ride treats people to a magnificent bird’s eye view of Dubai. Amazing sights start to appear on every trip, such as the mountains, Bedouin villages, camels and dunes, making it the ultimate adventure.
The months of November and December are ideal for outdoor fitness activities in the city, as the pleasant weather combined with the many facilities in Dubai make for excellent workout sessions. There is also the Dubai Fitness Challenge, a 30-day citywide initiative to get Dubai’s residents and communities energetic and active. The lineup of events – both virtual and physical – relate to wellbeing, sport and fitness and can be availed by anyone regardless of age, interest, ability, location or even fitness level. Everyone will be able to find an activity to suit them, from yoga to cycling, and start the first steps towards a healthier lifestyle.
Dubai’s famous desert safaris allow people to take in the breathtaking views of the desert landscapes, engage in activities like dune bashing, sand boarding and quad biking, and provide the opportunity to participate in traditional activities like camel riding, getting close to falcons, or even experience authentic Emirati hospitality with a barbeque under the stars.
Shopping in the souk
Shopping in Dubai is an impressive and entertaining cultural experience, which makes it so much more than retail therapy. Apart from the modern malls, shoppers can get some of the best bargains at the traditional souks, where visitors can shop for the finest souvenirs and items like carpets, silk scarves, antiques, textiles, perfumes, spices, and much more. Visitors can visit the Dubai Spice Souk or shop at the Textile Souk in Bur Dubai or head over to Murshid Souk, Naif Souk and even the Gold Souk, featuring hundreds of stores selling exquisite jewellery. At the other end of the city, the Global Village brings the cultures of the world together with pavilions representing the ultimate mix of culture, entertainment and shopping.