What to do with few hours in Dubai?

Dubai is aptly termed as an International travel hub – its connectivity, thanks to the prime geographic location and tourist offerings are fabulous.

Have a layover in Dubai of over 5 hours? Making plans to host friends transiting through Dubai, who have just few hours to spare before heading back to airport? While the airport itself is a sight to behold, those who have got that few extra hours to spare should likely consider checking their baggage and exploring the modern marvel – its luxury shopping experience, ultramodern architecture, lively nightlife scene and more.

Have 2 hours to spare?

Head over to City Walk & the Nearby Box Park. A lively, yet serene shopping Mall, Food & Entertainment destination well integrated within the community to make you want to WALK - Hence the name City Walk. This is a popular destination amongst the Emiratis too.

When it’s time to replenish those calories you’ve burnt walking and shopping, you’ll be pleased to know that you’re spoilt for choice of food as well. Here is a pick of fine eateries at City Walk:

  • Farzi Cafe – Serves “global cuisine with a unique Indian and Arabic twist”, as they call it!
  • Hummingbird Bakery – Right place to stop over for a short cupcake break.
  • Mo’s – Offers a choice of comfort foods - from burgers, hot dogs, spaghetti, meatballs, quesadillas to salads and sundaes.

Families would love a stroll on the European-style pedestrianized boulevards, fashionistas can rejoice in the huge selection of designer boutiques, with intermittent indoor and outdoor dining options. Another beautiful sight to behold is the water fountain with music and laser show and live entertainment.  Time to airport: 20 minutes

BoxPark: Located very close to the CityWalk, Boxpark combines restaurant and retail concept in a hip urban setting. All the retail outelts are made out of recycled containers, painted in bright shades, breathing fresh life into the city. Great place to walk in the late evening, hang out at a restaurant and enjoy people watching. Time to airport: 20 minutes

3 hours to spare?

Water Canal: Take a 30 minute dhow ride along the Dubai Water Canal - a 3.2km long waterway which winds its way to the Arabian Gulf from the Creek in Old Dubai through Business Bay. Enjoy the views of the well-lit canal flanked by the Safa Park bordering the canal, the pedestrian bridges crisscrossing the canal and the mesmerizing waterfall. This motion-operated waterfall can be switched off when a sensor detects a boat approaching!

4 hours to spare and you want some nature?

Miracle Garden: Open during the winter months, the Dubai Miracle Garden is a feast for the eyes and the soul. A world of floral wonder, including the world's largest flower arrangement - of Airbus A380 superjumbo aircraft – made entirely from flowers, awaits visitors at the miracle garden.

The attractions, including the heart-shaped pathway, open pristine white tents with floral details, mesmerizing floral castles which reminds of the Cinderella tales, floral wonders built around beautiful waterways, the central galleria with a grand view of the floral décor and more will definitely leave an impression and make one want to come visiting again.

Another attraction worth seeing, quite close to the miracle garden, is the Butterfly Garden, housing over 35,000 species of butterflies in nine custom-built domes.

Got more hours to spare? Explore iconic Dubai

Take a tour of Downtown Dubai – the heart of the city.

Standing tall at 828 meters, Burj Khalifa - the world's tallest building and Dubai’s pride dominates the Dubai skyline. Get a stunning view of the city from the observation deck on level 124.

Squeeze in some quality shopping time at The Dubai Mall – World’s biggest shopping, right next to the Burj Khalifa. It’s a miniature city in itself with 1,200-plus shops, 150 restaurants, an indoor theme park, an ice rink, a huge indoor waterfall, a choreographed outdoor fountain and the giant Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo.

Next, catch a glimpse of the breath-taking water show at the Dubai fountain. Located at the base of the iconic Burj Khalifa and just outside the Dubai Mall, the Dubai Fountain features the world's largest choreographed fountain system. The colorfully illuminated jet sways dancing to breath-taking musical numbers from around the world in the backdrop of stunning laser show at the Burj is a totally mesmerizing view to behold.

If you have few extra hours or days to explore Dubai, you should definitely explore the architectural, cultural and geographical gems like the Dubai Opera, Palm Jumeirah, JBR and the kite beach, Dubai frame, the gold souq, Dubai Safari and more.


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