Bustling and vibrant, Dubai is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. Located in the United Arab Emirates, Dubai welcomed over 14 million visitors in 2022. Dubai is an entertaining and diverse destination with its futuristic architecture, iconic buildings, and luxury hotels and resorts.
Adventure lovers will love all the outdoor activities Dubai has to offer. In the desert surrounding the city, there is sandboarding, dune bashing, and camel riding. Dubai also has a big water sports culture due to its proximity to the Arabian Gulf. Popular sports include scuba diving, snorkeling, and jet-skiing. There is even indoor skiing available for winter sports fans!
Dubai offers a wide range of cultural activities, such as the Dubai Opera and the Dubai Miracle Garden, which showcases over 45 million colorful flowers. It is also known for its luxurious hotels and resorts, many offering stunning views of the city’s skyline and the sea.
From adventure sports to world-class cultural experiences, there is something for everyone to experience in this cosmopolitan city. Here are some of the top places to visit in Dubai for tourists:
Towering over Dubai at 828 meters (2,716 feet), the Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world. It is located in the heart of the city and can be seen from many miles away. Designed by architect Adrian Smith, Burj Khalifa is a skyscraper that houses the luxury five-star Armani Hotel Dubai. The hotel occupies several floors within the building, propagating the commonly held belief that the entire building is a hotel. The building was designed with a Y-shaped floor plan to increase the perceived floor space. It is possible to tour the incredible 163 floors of the Burj Khalifa without booking a room by scheduling with their tour service. Many travelers visit the all-glass observation deck, known as “At the Top,” to see breathtaking views of Dubai through high-powered telescopes. The Burj Khalifa has a range of entertainment venues, restaurants, lounges, and more for visitors to enjoy.
One of the biggest malls in the world, the Dubai Mall is a world-famous shopping destination. For individuals and families seeking a distinctive experience, the mall is the ideal location for dining, entertainment, and luxury retail. Almost 1,300 retail establishments, including high-end boutiques and national chains, are available to patrons throughout a large 1.1 million square metre space. The mall also has a number of top-notch attractions, such as the Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, which houses thousands of aquatic animals in an astounding 10-million-liter tank. The mall also contains the Olympic-sized Dubai Ice Rink, which gives guests the ability to skate and participate in winter sports all year round.
Palm Jumeirah is an impressive man-made island that was built off the coast of Dubai. It’s designed in the shape of a palm tree making it one of the most iconic landmarks in the Middle East. Palm Jumeirah houses several luxurious resorts, world class restaurants, and stunning beaches. The hotels and resorts contain beautiful spas and exclusive access to some of Dubai’s top clubs. Tourists can enjoy water activities such as snorkeling, jet skiing, and parasailing in different locations around the island. From gourmet restaurants to cafes there are dining venues that cater to all budgets and tastes. Palm Jumeirah represents the innovation, luxury, and ambition that Dubai has come to embody over the last few decades.
One of the most beloved attractions in Dubai is the Dubai Fountain. This spectacular water, light, and music display delights adults and children in downtown Dubai. It is a massive choreographed fountain, spanning over 900 feet and shooting water up to 500 feet in the air. Awe-inspiring water jets, lighting, and music are displayed in a mesmerizing show. Every evening, the shows draw large crowds from all around the world, and each one has its own unique combination of choreography and music. The spectacle is free to observe from the promenade, but patrons can pay for a better view from a neighboring restaurant or hotel. The Dubai Fountain is a must-see for anyone visiting the city.
Dubai Miracle Garden
For nature lovers, the Dubai Miracle Garden is a breathtaking park home to millions of colorful flowers and sculptures. The garden is over 72,000 square meters and features heart-shaped arches, pyramids, floral clock towers, and other elaborate flower arrangements. Other features include a butterfly garden, an aromatic garden, Disney Avenue, and the world’s largest flower structure. It is truly a testament to Dubai’s creativity and support for nature and the arts. The Dubai Miracle Garden is open from November to May each year.
Another popular natural attraction for tourists is Dubai Creek. This natural seawater inlet has been the historical trade route connecting Dubai to the Arabian Gulf for centuries. It was a lifeline for the city, supporting its growth and development and serving as its main port. Now it’s an important tourist destination that offers many cultural experiences. Guests can ride in a traditional wooden boat called an abra or visit one of the old markets called souks. There they can find special goods, spices, and textiles for sale. There are also restaurants around the Dubai Creek that specialize in Emirati and international cuisine. It’s an excellent spot for travelers looking to experience Emirati culture in a setting steeped in history.
One of the oldest still-standing buildings in Dubai, the historic Al Fahidi Fort, which houses the Dubai Museum, was built in the late 18th century. The museum provides an intriguing look at Dubai’s history and culture, illustrating how the city developed from a fishing community to a central international hub of trade and commerce. The museum’s many exhibitions, which include life-size dioramas of conventional Emirati life, historical artifacts, and interactive displays, are available for visitors to explore. The museum also provides information on the area’s natural history, emphasizing the value of the sea and the desert to the residents of Dubai. The fort’s underground galleries can be explored by visitors who also want to learn about earlier attempts to defend the city.
In the Mall of the Emirates, an indoor ski resort called Ski Dubai lets guests experience skiing and snowboarding in the heart of the desert. The resort has a 22,500 square-meter indoor ski slope with a range of terrains, including a slope for beginners and one for experienced skiers. Other snow-related activities available to visitors include zorbing, tobogganing, and even a penguin encounter. Special technology is used at the resort to manage the snow and provide the best skiing conditions all year round. Visitors may escape the sweltering desert heat and enjoy a winter wonderland in the middle of Dubai thanks to Ski Dubai, which offers a distinctive and exhilarating experience.
With a wide variety of attractions for visitors of all ages and interests, Dubai is a vibrant and dynamic city. Everyone can explore and appreciate something in Dubai, from the iconic Burj Khalifa to the historic Dubai Creek. The Dubai Mall, Ski Dubai, and the Dubai Miracle Garden are other attractions that make Dubai an exceptional and wonderful tourist destination. Dubai has everything, whether you’re looking for adventure, relaxation, or cultural encounters. When visiting Dubai, visitors can include these top sites on their itineraries to experience the wonder of this amazing city.