Dubai is an exciting and versatile holiday destination. Renowned mostly as a superlative shopping haven, this Arabian hub offers activities and attractions for visitors of all ages. Heading on a holiday to Dubai, with children in tow, is sometimes fraught with grief; but let us assure you, a better holiday destination you couldn’t have picked!
Not only is the choice of holiday rental accommodation in Dubai splendid, but this Eastern sanctuary boasts a renowned child loving culture. We dare say taking your kids on holidays to a Muslim country may be infinitely easier than taking them to Europe! Follow our guide to child friendly outings in Dubai, and have an unforgettable family holiday.
Wonderland in Dubai
Dubai’s Wonderland is the largest amusement centre in the United Arab Emirates, and spending a full day here is pure fun and entertainment. It’s not only kids that are kept busy with the innumerable water slides, boat rides, and wave runners; but Wonderland also boasts four different restaurants, a relaxing cruise option and various water shows.
The park is divided in three sections; Splashland being the most popular. The heat on Dubai can be a little overwhelming; visiting Wonderland on your first day may be a great way to keep hydrated and acclimatize your whole family to the sometimes extreme dry heat. Wonderland is open every day except Sundays.
Well, there’s no point denying it, shopping in Dubai is by far the most popular activity for tourists. Visiting the Gold and Spice souks should definitely be on top of your to-do list; but do bear in mind that both outdoor markets can get very crowded, so keep a close tab on the little ones. Whilst most of us would love getting hopelessly lost in an Arabian souk, it may be just a little overwhelming for a tiny tyke.
A far less stressful option would be visiting one of the many astronomical shopping malls in Dubai. The experience is no less cultural; these mega-complexes are quite unique to Dubai and the thousands of stores offer just as many local products as the souks do, albeit in a little more sanitized environment.
The Mall of the Emirates could well represent a full-day excursion for a family; offering infinite shopping, eating and entertainment options. You could visit the world-famous indoor skiing centre, or take the kids to Magic Land, the biggest indoor amusement centre in Dubai. Your only problem here would be keeping tabs on your credit cards, not your kids!
Exploring the hypnotizing desert dunes of Dubai is a once in a lifetime experience, and one which the whole family can enjoy. Most tours include an hour or so of adrenalin filled sand dune 4-wheel-driving, a chance to do a short camel ride, a full buffet Arabic dinner under the stars and a little evening entertainment comprising of music, belly dancing and henna painting.
While the most reputable companies insist on not taking children under the age of seven, most will leave the onus up to the parents, as per their culture. We also do not recommend young children take part in the dune bashing, but you do always have the option of being dropped off at the evening camp before the dune driving starts, thus missing out on the only potentially hazardous part of the trip. Should you be traveling with your partner, then at least one of you can have the chance of enjoying this most thrilling ride! The rest of the excursion is very safe and immensely enticing for the whole family; so take just a few precautions and you too can experience the best of the Arabian Desert.
Family restaurants and local cuisine
When it comes to food, Dubai is a children’s (and adult’s) gastronomic paradise. Every imaginable cuisine is on offer, including recognizable fast-food joints, 5 star restaurants and everything in between. Families have no problems keeping their kids well fed whilst on holiday in Dubai, as most restaurants offer kid’s menus which include staples like hamburgers, sandwiches and fish fingers! It is often said that in Arabic countries, every restaurant is a family restaurant, as children are always welcome Casual dining along the creek is a wonderful way to wind down after a hard day’s play, so dig in and enjoy!