Since its opening in 2017, the Dubai Canal has become one of the most popular attractions in the city, and one which exemplifies the emirate’s commitment to innovative engineering. While the colourful waters of the Dubai Canal are certainly beautiful, there’s a lot more to this marvel than what meets the eye. Take a look at our Dubai Canal review to learn more about this stunning spectacle.
All about the Dubai Canal
Inaugurated approximately 3 years ago, the Dubai Canal is a 3.2-kilometre long man-made canal running through the UAE’s most famous highway, Sheikh Zayed Road. Inspired by the Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco, this waterfront destination has become a major tourist attraction in Dubai.
This 6.4km waterfront beauty comes with a 3km running track, 12km cycling track and a mechanical waterfall at the intersection of the Sheikh Zayed Road bridge and the canal. In addition to these, there are five pedestrian bridges, of which three run across the Canal. This way visitors can easily cross over and enjoy the stunning sights from the top of the bridge. Very close for residents of rental apartments in Business Bay, the brand new development of Al Habtoor City is set along the banks of the Dubai Canal.
An extension of the famous Deira Creek, the Dubai Canal is divided into three networks: The Water Network, Green Network and Public Realm.
The Water Network
The water network of the canal comprises of three water bodies. The Dubai Canal, which covers a distance of 2.9 km and connects Business Bay to the Arabian Gulf. The Arabian Gulf coastline, which has a beautiful beachfront. The final part of the canal is the Crystal Lagoon at Safa Park.
The Green Network
This network connects Safa Park to new Jumeirah Beach Park.
The Public Realm
This is the surrounding area around the canal which is being developed. There are many restaurants and recreational facilities close to this area, in the neighbouring district of Jumeirah.
Cruises at Dubai Canal
One of the most popular things to do at the Dubai Canal is the cruises. There are a number of companies offering these tours in the city, including Rayna Tours, Arabian Adventures, Xclusive Yachts and more.
Dubai Canal Dhow Cruise
With the Dubai Canal Dhow Cruise, you will see the famous Arabian Gulf is all its glory. This is your chance to appreciate the Dubai Skyline from a different perspective. During the night, you could just relax under the stars and enjoy the serene atmosphere.
The 2.5 km journey starts from Dubai Festival City Mall. You will generally pass through Business Bay, Safa Park, JW Marquis Hotel and the Westin Hotel. And of course, you will see the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa in the background. On this dhow cruise, you get a chance to pass through the electronically controlled waterfall, which stops automatically when a boat or dhow comes nearby.
For dinner, you will usually be served a 3-course international meal. Traditional Arab dances will be performed for your entertainment.
Dubai Canal Abra Ride
An abra is an ancient Emirati mode of transportation. It has been used by Emiratis for generations, and it represents the heritage of the United Arab Emirates. It is, therefore, a novel experience for tourists.
Abra tours also start and end at Dubai Festival City Mall. However, the route differs from the Dubai Canal Dhow Cruise. As you move through the Canal, you will see the Ras Al Khor Sanctuary, Business Bay, Westin and St. Regis Hotel, Burj Khalifa, Business Bay Bridge, JW Marriott Hotel, Sheikh Zayed Road Waterfall Bridge.
Dubai Canal Abra Ride is an experience to be had at least once in your life.
Dubai Canal Yacht Cruise
The 3-hour long cruise can be taken during breakfast, lunch or supper time. The first destination on this stunning yacht cruise is Marasi Business Bay. The gorgeous blue waters, restaurants and cafes attract hundreds of visitors almost daily.
The upper deck is spacious so you can enjoy the views without being hassled. The lower deck has 3 cabins and a restroom. The cruise starts from Marasi Canal.
Business Bay District, Burj Khalifa, Burj Al Arab and Cheese Building are the major landmarks in Dubai that you can look out for during the Dubai Canal yacht cruise.
The breakfast tour has croissants, muffins as refreshments. Lamb kofta, burgers, salads and desert juices are served during the afternoon and evening tours.
You will cherish the 5-star hospitality for a long time.
* Prices, timings and inclusions are based on individual providers. Please contact the companies directly to get an idea of the cost for the Dubai Canal cruises and abra rides.
If these tours don’t interest you, you can hop on the Dubai water taxi network and take a ferry around the canal. There are 3 daily ferry trips starting from the Jaddaf Marine Station at 10:00 am, 12:00 pm and 5:40 pm.
Dubai Canal Restaurants
If you want to try some eateries after your walk along the Dubai Canal, there are many great choices near the area. You can choose from the following Dubai Canal Restaurants, located within a 5-km radius. If you are near the Business Bay end of the Canal, Al Habtoor City is fairly close to the area. The restaurants in the hotels there, are great to refuel after a long walk. Alternatively, the restaurants in Jumeirah are also easily accessible if you are closer to the Safa side of the canal. Here are some of the eclectic options near the area.
- Manga Sushi – Japanese (Level 1, Beach Park Plaza Centre, Jumeirah 2 – Dubai)
- Bait Misk – Lebanese ( 2 Al Urouba Street, Jumeirah)
- The Rose and Crown – British pub grub ( Al Habtoor City)
- Seven Sisters – Lebanese menu (JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai)
- Coya Dubai – Peruvian menu (Jumeirah Beach Road)
- Karachi Grill – Pakistani menu (Jumeirah Street)
Things to know before the Dubai Canal Tour
What are the Dubai Water Canal timings?
There are no opening or closing timings for the Dubai Canal. However, a beautiful waterfall has been developed which operates only within a certain timeframe. This Dubai Canal waterfall operates from 08:00 pm to 10:00 pm. It has motion sensors and it stops when a boat or abra comes within range.
If this is your first Dubai Canal tour, it would be advisable to visit and witness the waterfall. It might be a little crowded but you won’t regret it. Take our word for it!
Do I have to buy a ticket to visit the Dubai Canal?
No, there are no tickets. It is a great place to come and relax.
How do I reach Dubai Water Canal?
Different transport options could take you to the Dubai Water Canal.
If you want to take your car, drive towards the Dubai World Trade Centre. The Al Habtoor City exit will take you to the parking on the Business Bay end. If you are in the Jumeirah side, there is parking along the residential areas.
When it comes to the Dubai Metro stations, get down at the Business Bay station and walk your way towards Sheikh Zayed Road Bridge. Take the lift to start your Dubai Canal Tour.
Cabs are also readily available in the area.
Is Dubai Canal parking free or paid?
Parking is available under the Sheikh Zayed Road Bridge. However, please keep in mind Dubai Canal parking is paid. You can pay via SMS and the charges depend on how long you stay.
Are there any pedestrian bridges running across the Canal?
There are 5 pedestrian bridges in total. Three of them run from one end to the other end of the canal. All bridges have escalators on both sides.
Can I take a boat or ferry to cross the Dubai Canal?
Yes, Dubai Canal boat rides are popular amongst visitors. There are nine marine stations; five of them along the canal and four in Business Bay. You can also use a ferry or a water taxi. The Dubai Canal ride costs depend on the package you take.
Can I cycle or skate on the Marasi Business Bay Promenade during my Dubai Canal tour?
Yes, visitors may cycle or skate on the Marasi Business Bay Promenade. One bridge has a concrete slope so you can either ride or push your cycle across the canal. There is a running track so you can burn some calories there too. If you live in a rental flat on Sheikh Zayed Road, this could be a perfect way to get back in shape.
Are there any more free facilities available along the Dubai Canal?
There are numerous charging stations for your phone along the Canal.
You can visit the Dubai Canal year round. It is especially enjoyable during winters as you can walk along the canal and enjoy the cool breeze. The fact that it is one of the top free things to do in Dubai makes it an extremely popular destination in the city.
We hope this review of the Dubai Canal has been helpful. Stay tuned to MyBayut to know more about the city’s top attractions!