Looking to explore the history of Dubai? Here is a list of 11 museums in Dubai that you are open to visitors of all ages! Whether you are tourists or long-time residents, these museums guarantee a fun learning experience for everyone.
HISTORICAL MUSEUMS IN DUBAI
First up we bring you all the amazing historical museums in Dubai that house some of the oldest artefacts found in the UAE and mesmerising pictures of the city and the ruling family. Visiting these museums are a perfect way to learn the history of the UAE and see how the emirate of Dubai was, before it evolved into this magnificent city.
1. Dubai Museum
Located in the area of Bur Dubai we have one of the most famous museums in Dubai, the Dubai Museum. Built back in 1787, the building that is now the Dubai Museum has a rich history behind it. It acted as a home to the erstwhile monarch in the past, while also serving as a fort of defence and even a prison. It was in 1971 that the monument was renovated and opened to the public as the official museum of Dubai. Now, this museum in Dubai houses original antiques such as pottery, weapons and tombs. You also get to explore different wings reflecting the atmosphere of the markets and transitional homes in the past.
- Dubai Museum Location: Al Fahidi Street, Opposite the Grand Mosque
- Dubai Museum Timing: Open daily from 08:30 am to 08:30 pm; 02:30 pm to 08:30 pm on Fridays
- Dubai Museum Tickets Price: AED 3 for adults and AED 1 for children (under the age of 6)
- Contact: +971-4-353-1862
2. Shindagha Museum / Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum House
Ever wondered where the vision of the Dubai we see today was first thought of? Just head to the Shindagha museum to find out. Located on the banks of the Dubai Creek, the Shindagha Museum is one of the newest attractions in Dubai. It features various sections with interactive displays of photos, videos and artefacts that will take you back to the 19th century. There is also a section called the Perfume House, where you can see the traditional methods used for making different scents. The Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum House, which is the oldest building in Dubai and was the official residence of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum, will also be part of the new Shindagha Museum in Dubai.
Note: The wing of the Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum House is currently closed for renovation.
- Shindagha Museum Location: Al Shindagha area on the Bur Dubai side of the Dubai Creek
- Shindagha Museum Timing: Open daily from 10:00 am to 06:00 pm; 02:30 pm to 09:00 pm on Fridays; Closed on Tuesdays
- Shindagha Museum Ticket Price: AED 15 for adults and AED 5 for students (aged 5-24); Children under the age of 5 and people of determination have free entry
- Contact: +971-4-515-5336 / +971-4-515-5337
3. Saruq Al Hadid Museum
Another great museum in the Shindagha area to visit is Saruq Al-Hadid Museum. It is nestled between the narrow corridors of Dubai’s historical districts and can be easily found thanks to all the navigational boards around the area. The archaeological museum in UAE has artefacts from the recently discovered archaeological site of Saruq Al-Hadid, which dates back to the iron age.
The Saruq Al-Hadid site was discovered in 2002 by Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum as he was travelling by a chartered a flight over Rub Al-Khali desert. There was a patch of the dessert that has a slightly different colour from the rest, which was a result of the slag created from smelting iron. Over 8,000 pieces of pottery, iron and gold were found and unearthed from this site and are now displayed at the Saruq Al Hadid Museum in Dubai.
- Saruq Al Hadid Location: Al Shindagha area on the Bur Dubai side of the Dubai Creek. Inside the historical district.
- Saruq Al Hadid Museum Timing: Open daily from 08:00 am to 08:00 pm and Friday from 04:00 pm to 08:00 pm. Last tickets issues at 07:30 pm
- Saruq Al Hadid Museum Ticket Price: AED 20 for adults and AED 10 for children (7 – 12 years); Senior citizens and children under 6 have free entry
- Contact: +971-4-359-56122
4. Women’s Museum UAE (Bait Al Banat)
Moving over to the Deira area of the Dubai Creek, our next museum on this list is the Women’s Museum. It one of the historical museums in Dubai that celebrates the lives of women of the UAE, and highlights the various roles played by them for the country. Some of the exhibits in the Bait Al Banat museum include artwork by female artists from all over the UAE and personal belongings of the women in the past. You can find this museum in the heart of the Gold Souk. Just locate the RAK Bank building and follow the narrow pathways to the area behind it, you’ll be able to find the Women’s Museum.
- Women’s Museum Location: Deira Gold Souk, behind RAK Bank Building
- Women’s Museum Timing: Open daily from 10:00 am to 07:00 pm; closed on Fridays
- Women’s Museum Ticket Price: AED 20 per person
- Contact: +971-4-234-2342
5. History of Cinema Museum, Al Barsha
Located in the Al Barsha community, the History of Cinema Museum is another one of the historical Dubai museums. It features over 300 unique photo and video artefacts that were collected over 35 years by Bahraini/Lebanese businessman, Mr. Akram Miknas. All the items in this museum date back to the1730s and offers visitors with an interactive experience into the history of cinema.
- History of Cinema Museum Location: MCN Hive Building, 1st Floor, TECOM C, Barsha Heights
- History of Cinema Museum Timing: Open daily from 09:00 am to 06:00 pm; Closed on Fridays
- History of Cinema Museum Ticket Price: AED 30 for adults; AED 25 for University Students with valid ID and AED 20 for children under 18 years
- Contact: +971-4-421-6679
6. Etihad Museum, Jumeirah
One of the newer museums in Dubai, the Etihad Museum is where tourists and residents can visit to explore the UAE’s rich history. It is divided into multiple interactive pavilions where there are photos and films of how the country was between 1968 and 1974. You can also catch snapshots of the founding fathers and even see some of their personal belongings. The Etihad Museum in Dubai is located in the heart of Jumeirah and is the same historical site of the Union House, where the first constitution was signed in 1971.
- Etihad Museum Location: 1 Jumeirah Street, Next to the Union Flag building
- Etihad Museum Timing: Open daily 10:00 am – 08:00 pm
- Etihad Museum Ticket Price: AED 25 for adults; AED 10 for students; Children below 5 years of age and People of Determination enter free
- Contact: +971-4-515-5771
FREE MUSEUMS IN DUBAI
Visiting free museums is considered as one of the best free things to do in Dubai. For those who would like to save a buck, here is a list of all the free museums in Dubai.
7. Coffee Museum
If you happen to be around Bastakiya in the Al Fahidi area, make sure to visit the Coffee Museum. This one of the free entry museums in Dubai where you can explore the history of coffee and the different brewing and roasting methods used in the past. This also happens to be amongst the best free kids activities in Dubai.
- Coffee Museum Location: Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood aka Bastakiya
- Coffee Museum Timings: 09:00 am – 05:00 pm (Sun-Thu); Museum is closed on Friday and Saturday
- Coffee Museum Ticket Price: Free entry
- Contact: +971-4-353-8777
8. Coin Museum
Another great museum in Dubai with free entry is the Coins Museum. It is located in the same area as the Coffee Museum, so if you are in the area, you can make a quick stop here too. Visitors have the chance to view over 470 pieces of rare coins that date back to various historical eras. Exploring the free museums in Bur Dubai like this one also gives you a chance to see the old architecture used in traditional desert homes in the UAE.
- Coin Museum Location: Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood aka Bastakiya
- Coin Museum Timings: 08:00 am – 02:00 pm (Sun-Thu); Museum is closed on Friday and Saturday
- Coin Museum Ticket Price: Free
- Contact: +971-4-225-3312
9. Dubai Police Museum
If you’d like to learn about the history of the police force in Dubai, head to the Dubai Police Museum in Jumeirah. Located within the Police Academy, this museum is full of historical information and vintage pieces of uniform, weapons and equipment used by Dubai Police. You can even spot some of the very famous police supercars parked outside. For a full tour of this police museum in Dubai, visitors need to fill out an online form from the Dubai Police website.
- Dubai Police Museum Location: Umm Suqeim Street
- Dubai Police Museum Timing: Open daily from 08:00 am – 03:00 pm
- Dubai Police Museum Ticket Price: Free
- Dubai Police Museum Contact: +971-4-269-2222
10. Naif Museum
Another one of the free museums in Dubai is Naif Museum. The building that is now the Naif Museum was built in 1939 entirely with clay and was the first police station in Dubai. Over here where visitors can see how police uniforms have evolved over time, as well as see the weapons, medals and badges of police ranks of the Dubai Police Force. You also get a first-hand look at the detention rooms prisoners were kept.
- Naif Museum Location: Naif Souk, Deira
- Naif Museum Timing: Open daily from 08:00 am – 02:00 pm; Closed on Friday and Saturday
- Naif Museum Ticket Price: Free
- Contact: +971-4-227-6484
NEW MUSEUMS IN DUBAI
While these museums are already part of the cultural history of the city, there will soon be some new museums opening in Dubai.
11. Museum Of The Future
The Museum of the Future is a familiar sight for those travelling along Sheikh Zayed Road near Emirates Towers. This new museum in Dubai will not display the past, but instead, focus on innovations of the future. Not only is it an architectural feat but it will also act as an accessory of the future. Being one of the largest Expo 2020 projects, this will undoubtedly be one of the most interesting museums in Dubai. The opening dates for this museum are yet to be announced, but we can expect to see it sometime in 2020.
- Museum Of The Future Location: Sheikh Zayed Road next to Emirates Towers
- Museum Of The Future Timing: TBA
- Museum Of The Future Ticket Price: TBA
- Museum Of The Future Contact: TBA
That concludes this list of all museums in Dubai. Apart from these, you can also visit the Museum of Illusions Dubai, a unique museum with exhibits that feature mind-boggling optical illusions. Also keep an eye out for the opening date of the Madame Tussauds Dubai, the first ever wax museum in Dubai.
For those looking to visit all these museums, visit the Coins Museum, Coffee Museum and Dubai Museum in one go, as they are all museums in Bur Dubai that are located close to each other. As for the museums in Deira, the Women’s Museum and Naif Museum are located within walking distance of each other. The Saruq Al-Hadid Museum and Shindaga Museum are also located within walking distance from to each other and can be visited in a single day.
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