Dubai is famous for a lot of things. Sky high towers, awe-inspiring architecture, age-old bazaars and districts, hip new leisure activities and destinations, to name just a few. Today, we take a look at some of the most famous places in Dubai that should definitely be on your must-visit list.
FAMOUS PLACES TO VISIT IN DUBAI
Let’s begin with all the famous places to visit in Dubai that are unique to the emirate.
Topping our list of Dubai’s famous places is the tallest building in the world – the Burj Khalifa. Located in Downtown Dubai, the Burj Khalifa was designed by architect Adrian Smith of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.
While the building’s exterior is iconic in every way possible, there is a world of entertainment hidden within its premises. Visitors can find plenty of things to do in Burj Khalifa.
You can enjoy panoramic views of the surroundings from the At the Top Burj Khalifa observation deck, enjoy afternoon tea at At.mosphere, or relax at the Burj Club.
BURJ AL ARAB
Designed to look like the sail of a dhow cruise, Burj Al Arab is one of the most famous landmarks in Dubai. Everything in the hotel from its architecture to the furnishings emanates grandeur and style.
How does a luxurious stay at the Burj Al Arab – the world’s ONLY self-styled 7-star hotel sound? Or perhaps a fine dining experience at one of the fantastic restaurants in the Burj Al Arab? Either way, prepare to be basked in complete opulence.
The hotel even has its very own helipad, where you can arrive in style. The Burj Al Arab Terrace is where you can enjoy some relaxing pool time with cocktails and cabanas. There are also plenty of watersports available for the thrill seekers.
Our list of famous places in Dubai would be incomplete without the mention of the world’s largest man-made island – Palm Jumeirah.
This premium waterfront locale offers an ideal mix of luxury residential properties and a number of leisure destinations including the famous – Atlantis, The Palm resort.
Shaped like a palm, this man-made island in Dubai spans over 560 hectares of land, which is big enough to cover 600 football fields – and that’s just one of the many staggering facts about Palm Jumeirah.
Popular international personalities, like English footballer David Beckham and Bollywood superstar Shahrukh Khan own lavish villas on the island.
AL FAHIDI DISTRICT
The Al Fahidi District, also known as the Al Bastakiya area is another famous place in Dubai. Located in Bur Dubai, the area is dotted with low buildings and narrow passages.
Counted among some of the oldest heritage sites in Dubai, the area served as a trading hub for textile and pearl merchants back in the 1800s.
With landmarks and museums that hold relics that date back to before the federation of emirates, the Al Fahidi District has retained most of its originality in terms of layout and architecture.
A contrast to the high-rise towers and uber-modern areas in “new” Dubai, the Dubai Creek is another popular place for tourists to explore.
The Creek forms a natural division between Bur Dubai and Deira that goes all the way to the Ras Al Khor Sanctuary. Dubai Creek has a rich history of being the emirate’s first major port.
Besides the historic significance, the Dubai Creek takes you on a journey through some of the best elements of old Dubai. The mystic aura, the traditional wooden dhows and the historic buildings together make The Creek a popular place to visit in Dubai.
DUBAI’S FAMOUS PLACES TO SHOP
Shopping is one of the most popular things to do in Dubai. People come here to shop till they drop. Whether it’s high-end fashion brands, spices from all over the world, gold or anything else you’re looking for – you’ll find it here. Let’s look at some of the famous places to shop in Dubai.
THE DUBAI MALL
One of Dubai’s most famous places – The Dubai Mall is the ultimate shopping destination in the emirate. Dubbed the best mall in Dubai, this iconic mall is home to luxury hotels, a retail extravaganza and a host of fun activities for all.
There are more than 1,200 retail shops in The Dubai Mall, selling everything from fashion clothing and accessories to home goods, electronics and more.
You can also find some great restaurants at the mall, including Café Bateel, P.F. Chang’s and Walnut Grove. Entertainment destinations within the mall include the Dubai Mall Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, the Dubai Ice Rink and EKart Zabeel, amongst others.
Souks in Dubai bring back the old bazaar charm, with open markets, bargain prices and some rare finds that you may not find in the malls.
The Deira Gold Souk is the largest gold market in the world. There are more than 300 shops selling masterfully-crafted gold jewellery for every occasion.
Whether you’re looking for an intricate new piece to add to your everyday collection or something more debonair with precious gemstones to wear at a special occasion – this is your place to shop!
Never forget that Dubai is famous for its gold – it’s pure, it’s cheap and there is plenty of variety to choose from. For many, buying gold is an absolutely essential component of any trip to Dubai….and, if you have the means, it’s hard to argue with that sentiment.
If you want more than just a good retail therapy, head over to The Walk JBR. This bustling waterfront promenade brings you an excellent mix of shopping and leisure.
Shopaholics have plenty of retail stores in JBR Walk to explore, including Sephora, Mothercare and Victoria’s Secret. You can wrap up the shopping spree with a delicious meal at one of the fantastic restaurants there.
Stay a little longer and you can even witness live performances at JBR Walk – music bands, dancers and even acrobats putting up a fantastic show for all. The mood here is generally festive and you can click some amazing insta-worthy shots for your gram!
POPULAR ATTRACTIONS IN DUBAI
Looking for more places Dubai is famous for? Here are some famous attractions in Dubai that are fun and unique.
Spread across 72,000 sq. m., the Dubai Miracle Garden is a popular winter-spring attraction in Dubai that attracts millions of visitors every year.
The place features beautiful 2D and 3D floral structures and figurines. There’s a Disney Avenue with Mickey and all his friends, there’s an aerial floating lady dressed in exotic flowers, a life-size Emirate A 380, a Lost Paradise, a trampoline park, gorgeous cabanas and a lot more.
Located in Dubailand, this beautiful attraction is home to more than fifty million flowers and should definitely be on your list of places to visit in Dubai during the winter season.
- Ticket Price: AED 55 per person | AED 40 (kids aged 3 to 12) | Free for toddlers and people of determination
- Location: Al Barsha South Third, Dubailand
- Timings: 09:00 am to 09:00 pm | Weekends 09:00 am to 11:00 pm
A ski resort in the desert? That’s definitely exclusive to Dubai! Opened back in 2005, Ski Dubai indoor ski resort also makes it to our list of famous places in Dubai.
Covering an area of 22,500 sq. m., Ski Dubai has thrilling rides, an 85-metre high mountain to ski down from, a snow park for kids and penguins for everyone to mingle with.
You can ski there or at least learn to ski, go sledging, build your own snowman, ride the toboggan or enjoy one of the fun rides. The resort also houses three cafés where you can grab a quick bite between all the adventure and fun.
If you’re looking for adventurous things to do in Dubai – Ski Dubai has plenty of that to offer.
- Ticket Price: From AED 190 per person
- Location: Mall of the Emirates – Al Barsha
- Timings: 10:00 am to 12:00 am | Weekends 09:00 am to 12:00 am
A beachfront leisure destination, La Mer is another famous place in Dubai to visit. This is a beach with a myriad of retail stores, restaurants and entertainment options.
La Mer brings you a well-rounded family destination where you can relax, play, shop and dine all in one place. There are watersports and sunbeds, contemporary art and upbeat vibes – this popular destination is generally great for a feel-good time outdoors.
Developed by Meraas, the La Mer Beach is fully facilitated and offers the perfect backdrop for some amazing Instagrammable shots.
- Ticket Price: Free entry
- Location: between Jumeirah Bay and Pearl Jumeirah – Jumeirah 1
- Timings: 10:00 am to 10:00 pm| Thursdays to Saturdays 10:00 am to 12:00 am
Particularly popular among kite surfers and beach bums, Kite Beach is another famous attraction in Dubai for people of all ages.
One of the best public beaches in Dubai, Kite Beach is ideal for a day of lounging in the sun, indulging in an array of water sport activities, or hitting up a game of beach volleyball.
The beach also has a skate park, a water park and adventure zones for kids – there’s something for the whole family, which makes Kite Beach a popular family-friendly place in Dubai.
- Ticket Price: Free entry
- Location: Umm Suqeim
- Timings: Open 24 hours
THE MUSEUM OF THE FUTURE
The museums in Dubai offer a unique window into the history and culture of the region. Soon to open for the public, The Museum of the Future is the latest addition to Dubai’s awesome collection of museums.
Located on Sheikh Zayed Road, close to the Emirates Towers, The Museum of the Future will display innovative technologies, latest inventions and explore the realms of artificial intelligence.
The museum’s stunningly iconic exterior is made with stainless steel, shaped into a lustrous silver oval with a hollow centre. The façade is adorned with beautifully engraved Arabic calligraphy that is breathtakingly captivating.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHAT ARE THE BEST FREE THINGS TO DO IN DUBAI?
They say the that best things in life are free…and many agree with that thinking. There’s certainly no doubt that some of the best experiences in the emirate come from all the free things to do in Dubai. Whether it’s roaming around the historic Al Fahidi District, spending a day at the beach or watching the IMAGINE laser and water spectacle at Dubai Festival City – there’s just so much to enjoy and explore.
WHAT ARE THE BEST THINGS TO BUY IN DUBAI?
Whether you’re looking for gifts or souvenirs to take back home, there are a bunch of unique things you can buy in Dubai. Some of the best things to buy in Dubai include:
- Gold jewellery
- Arabic attars
- Arabic coffee and coffee pots
- Natural incense (Oud and Bakhoor)
- Camel milk chocolates
WHAT ARE THE BEST PLACES TO VISIT WITH FAMILY IN DUBAI?
If you’re looking for things to do with family in Dubai, you’re spoilt for choice. From waterparks to museums, beaches, craft centres, escape rooms and desert safaris – you’ll definitely find something that works best for you and your family.
Some of the best free things to do with kids in Dubai include:
- Watching flamingoes at the Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary
- Getting a glimpse into the underwater realm at the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo
- Visit La Mer Beach
- Explore Riverland Dubai
You can also explore the various kids’ play areas in Dubai to keep whole family entertained.
Now that you know Dubai’s most famous places and all that they’re popular for, tell us what is your favourite place to visit in the emirate?
Not as popular as the major tourist attractions, but well worth checking out, here’s some hidden gems in Dubai that offer unique experiences to visitors.
Other than the all the aforementioned, there are a plethora of other tourist attractions in Dubai that you shouldn’t miss out on. And since the season calls for it, try out all the winter activities in Dubai while you still can.
For those of you who rely on the Metro to get around the city, there are a number of Dubai attractions located near the metro – making it way easier for you to explore them!
Looking for tourist attractions all across the UAE? MyBayut has got you covered. Here’s our list of the best tourist attractions in the UAE.