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Dubai [ © Fintrvlr/Flickr ]
Dubai [ © Fintrvlr/Flickr ]
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The Top 10 Things to See and Do in Dubai

Picture of Lavanya Nair
Updated: 28 June 2017
When on holiday with those you consider near and dear, choosing an activity that all of you will enjoy can be arduous and time consuming. In Dubai, however, there are plenty of attractions and landmarks that will ensure that everyone leaves thoroughly satisfied. Here’s a list of highlights for your trip.
Burj_Al_Arab_Interior [ © Imre Solt/Wikimedia ]
Burj_Al_Arab_Interior | © Imre Solt/Wikimedia ]
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Burj Al Arab

Why not dine like royalty at this magnificent hotel with its palatial and majestic interiors? The signature sail-shaped exterior of the jewel of Jumeirah is an unmissable symbol of modern Dubai. The Burj hosts multiple restaurants that serve delectable treats from around the world. Pay a visit to Al Mahara that will tantalize your taste buds with its impressive selection of seafood and crisp wines, plus don’t miss the wall-to-ceiling aquarium. You’ll be overwhelmed with the courteous hospitality of the friendly staff along with the contemporary ambiance that oozes luxury.

Address & telephone number: Jumeirah Rd | Burj Al-Arab Hotel, Dubai,United Arab Emirates, +971 4 301 7777

Aquaventure Waterpark

Ideal for those seeking that adrenaline rush, the Aquaventure Waterpark is home to the most outrageous rides and slides, including the Towers of Poseidon and Neptune. An Atlantean flyer zip line is a definite addition to anyone’s bucket list, offering a bird’s-eye view of the fascinating land below. After all that, treat yourself to a freshly prepared cocktail while relaxing in the cabanas, and satisfy your appetite at one of 15 restaurants that serve tasty pick-me-ups for instant nourishment.

Address & telephone number: Crescent Road | Atlantis, The Palm, Dubai,United Arab Emirates, +971-4-4260000

Racecourse [ © Jaguar MENA/Wikimedia]
Racecourse | © Jaguar MENA/Wikimedia]

Meydan Racecourse

Equine enthusiasts, along with sports aficionados, will find this establishment particularly thrilling. The Meydan Racecourse offers a fabulous tour of the grounds, along with its horses and stables. An excellent time to visit is during the Dubai World Cup, where thousands of spectators gather to place their bets and cheer on the racers while enjoying top-class food and beverages. Even when not in use, the racecourse provides a wonderful view for those dining at the Meydan hotel.

Address & telephone number: Suite 206 | Nad Al Sheba, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, +(0) 4 327 2110

Exhibit at garden [ © Tim Adams/Flickr]
Exhibit at garden | © Tim Adams/Flickr
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Dubai Miracle Garden

This unique outdoor space aims to bring you closer to nature, while also offering an array of vibrant artistic displays of sculptures and designs. From 10ft-tall peacocks to the incredible flowers, the garden is sure to be the ideal solution to a tiring and stressful day. Be sure to visit the butterfly garden, which spans over 1,800 meters and can accommodate over 300 guests. Covered in flowers, the garden consists of nine domes, each one housing a different species of butterfly that range in size and color. At 30 AED (about $8 US) a ticket to this attraction is one to witness.

Address & telephone number: Dubai Land, Al Barsha, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, +971-44228902

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Desert Safari Tour

For those looking to make memories that will last a lifetime, the desert safari tours will not disappoint. Choose from a variety of modes of transport that include hot-air balloons, 4×4 vehicles, helicopters and wonder boats, all striving to give you a personalized and unforgettable journey into the sandy lands of an otherwise cosmopolitan country. Should one opt for a morning safari, the experience should last between five and six hours, complete with a tour of a camel farm. You will be given the chance to ride the creatures of the desert, along with a slot in which to sand board, or even make use of quad bikes.

Address & telephone number: Al Murjan Tower 209 | Al Nahda 2, Dubai,United Arab Emirates, +(971) 50 2661837

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Madinat Theater

The concept of showcasing the dramatic arts has been around since the early 5th century BC, and currently the propagation of drama has made its way to Dubai at the Madinat Theater. Hosting several plays and concerts, it is located inside the Souk Medinat. The theater lobby is well lit and features works including Miracle on 34th Street and ballet. With easy access by public transport, cars and taxi, the theater is the ideal venue for a night out and for those who appreciate the fine arts.

Address & telephone number: Madinat Souk, Umm Suqeim | Jumeirah,Dubai, United Arab Emirates, +971-4-3666546

SPM-DEC-2015-4355 copy

Salsali’s current Exhibition ‘GERMAN COOL’ | Photo courtesy of Salsali Private Museum

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Salsali Private Museum

To many, Dubai consists of magnificent beaches, luxurious hotels and deluxe shopping malls. Museums such as the Salsali are usually ignored. The Salsali Private Museum (SPM) is the first private museum of contemporary art in Dubai and is a treasure trove of cultural heritage. It is located at the Alserkal Avenue and was inaugurated in 2011 by its founder Ramin Salsali. The museum aims to showcase his extensive private collection to the public in Dubai. The collection consists of over 1,000 artworks ranging from ornate sculptures to paintings and photographs by a plethora of different artists. The museum is equipped with an expansive lounge where up-and-coming artists can feature their work and can meet one another to discuss ideas.

Address & telephone number: AlSerkal Avenue, Unit 14, | Al Quoz 1, Street 8, Dubai 123234, United Arab Emirates, + 971-4-3809600

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Bounce

Test out your trampolining skills at the jump park Bounce. This funky indoor park has slam dunks, a dodgeball area, trick walls for wall-running, and more than a hundred back-to-back trampolines. This fun day out doubles as a workout that’s great for your core.

Address & telephone number: Bounce, Building 32, 4B Street, Al Quoz 1, Dubai, UAE,
+ 971 4 321 1400

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Dubai Mall

Visit the largest shopping center in the world that is home to over 1,200 retail outlets and 160 food and drink restaurants and kiosks. It may be impossible to scour the entire building in a day, but sample the highlights that are sure to make your journey worthwhile. Dine at the Al Bahar Souk that boasts an irresistible menu or for a source of entertainment, watch an exciting movie within the comfort of the Reel cinemas that comprises 22 screens, featuring several critically acclaimed flicks.

Address & telephone number: Al Mussallah Rd | DownTown Dubai, Near Souk Al Bahar Bridge, Dubai 113444, United Arab Emirates, + 4 362 7500

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Chillout Ice Lounge

The intense sweltering heat from the Dubai sun can truly be a hindrance as well as a welcome change from the sometimes dreary climates of the West. Therefore it is recommended that you make an appearance at the Chillout Ice Lounge. Upon arrival, visitors are bestowed with thermal clothing to keep themselves warm while in the minus six degrees Celsius. The Chillout Lounge serves up a frosty blend of sub-zero temperatures with a unique decor. The lounge is an interesting combination of ice, glass and steel. Ingeniously engineered lights alter their hues at certain intervals to create a luxurious venue fit for a casual rendezvous between friends. To warm up, choose from steaming hot soups, hot beverages and snacks along with rich desserts.

Address & telephone number: Times Square Center | Ground Level inside Times Square Center, Dubai 115787, United Arab Emirates, +971 4 341 8121