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The Best Outdoor Family Attractions in Dubai

In the last couple of decades, Dubai has skyrocketed to the status of one of the most glamourous cities in the world. It offers luxury holidays and has several attractions suitable to every age group. Whether it is shopping, entertainment, culture, or food, you will find something to do in the city. However, Dubai is not just about shopping malls, theme parks, and restaurants. If you are looking for outdoor family attractions in Dubai, there are plenty of places to visit in the city for unforgettable experiences.

city skyline across body of water
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Photo by Denys Gromov on Pexels.com

Guest Post Contributed by Pranitaa Purohit

Old Dubai

The present-day Dubai is known for its luxury, glitz, and glamour. However, the city was just a tiny fishing village and pearl diving region in the past. A trip to Al Bastakiya Quarter will take you back to the ancient days of the city. As you stroll around, you will see houses made of teak, mud, palm fronds, gypsum, and coral with wind towers on the top of most homes, the air conditioning system in the olden days.

You will find numerous cafes, restaurants, boutiques, and art galleries. Also, visit the historic Dubai Creek and the souks or traditional markets surrounding it. You can shop for various local products like garments, teas, spices, footwear, herbs, essential oils, and more. The Gold Souk is the largest market here, and you will be tongue-tied looking at the jewelry display on the store windows.

boat in front of old Dubai
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Old Dubai. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Miracle Garden

Miracle Garden is a vast flower garden spanning an area of more than 72000 square meters and is one of the top outdoor family attractions in Dubai. It is also one of the most extensive natural flower gardens globally, with more than 50 million flowers in vibrant colors and hues and looks straight out of a fairytale. You can also visit the butterfly garden and see some beautiful butterflies. It also has a photo booth, a trampoline park, and a souvenir shop from where you can buy lovely Disney merchandise.

purple and pink flowers at Miracle Garden, outdoor family attractions in Dubai
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Miracle Gardens. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Wild Wadi waterpark

Located near the Jumeirah Beach hotels, Wild Wadi waterpark offers 30 thrilling rides and attractions to its visitors. It is themed on Juha, a popular character from Arabian folklore. It has the fastest and tallest free-fall waterslide outside the USA, called Jumeirah Sceirah. It also consists of the largest wave pool in the Middle East, known as the Breakers Bay. You can enjoy awe-inspiring views of the iconic sail-shaped hotel Burj Al Arab from here.

Wild Wadi Waterpark in Dubai
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Wild Wadi Waterpark. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Global Village

Global Village Dubai takes place every year between November and April and takes you on an exciting journey of entertainment, shopping, food, and fun. This cultural spectacle is a crowd puller where you can sample yummy food, shop for various products, and watch entertainment such as music concerts, dance performances, and other live events. Hundreds of nations come together and set up their pavilions with replicas of renowned landmarks from their country. You feel like you are on a world tour on a single ticket.

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The Global Village. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Dhow Cruise

Dhows are traditional wooden vessels sailing the Dubai waters for many years. These boats have undergone a complete makeover and offer an ultimate Emirati experience. Book a dhow cruise dinner with your family and pass through the charming Dubai Creek or the dazzling Dubai Marina. Treat yourself to a BBQ buffet dinner on board, complete with an array of local and international food. Enjoy captivating cultural performances such as the Tanura dance show and Belly dancing before you culminate your evening.

Dhow cruise in Dubai, best outdoor family attractions in Dubai
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Dhow Cruise. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Green Planet

Green Planet is the first tropical rainforest and biodome in the heart of the desert city. It consists of rich flora and fauna and has more than 3,000 plants, trees, and animals, and covers an area of 6000 sqft. It is an excellent place to engage in interactive four-level vertical forest experiences and gain insight into the importance of natural environments for all the inhabitants of our planet.

three birds sitting in the Green Planet Dubai
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Birds at the Green Planet. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Ras Al Khor Sanctuary

Situated in the heart of Dubai, Ras Al Khor Wildlife sanctuary is a protected natural wetland reserve and home to more than 450 birds and over 50 species of plants. It is declared a world heritage site and has three platforms – Flamingo Hide, Mangrove Hide, and Lagoon Hide. You can take a closer look at the birds with the help of binoculars placed here. You can spot several birds, including Flamingos, Herons, Silverbills, Snowy Plovers, and others.

flamingos at the Ras Al Khor Sanctuary
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Ras Al Khor Sanctuary. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Hatta Mountains

Surrounded by the magnificent Hajjar Mountain, Hatta boasts a rugged landscape that offers a visual treat to its visitors and is one of the best outdoor family attractions in Dubai. It is an ideal place to soak in the nature of the region and learn about the culture and heritage of the UAE.

You can also visit The Hatta Heritage Village, which consists of an ancient fort and a mosque that dates to the 16th century. Another highlight here is the Hatta Dam, wherein water collected from natural mountain springs produces electricity and irrigation. You can also see Emirati art and architecture in the form of restored mud houses, buildings, and monuments.

the Hatta Mountains of Dubai, best outdoor family attractions in Dubai
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Hatta Mountains. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Kite Beach

Kite Beach is among the most beautiful and famous beaches in Dubai. Both locals and tourists like to flock to this beach to spend a lazy day soaking in some surf, sun, and sand. You can also indulge in myriad watersports, including kite surfing, kayaking, banana boat ride, jet skiing, and paddle boarding. You can enjoy family activities such as building sandcastles, collecting shells, or swimming. There is a Skating rink, a play area, and a trampoline park for the children as well.

people flying kites on Kite Beach in Dubai, one of the best outdoor family attractions in Dubai
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Kite Beach. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Dubai Dolphinarium

Dubai Dolphinarium is an excellent place for the entire family to spend a day seeing the adorable dolphins and seals. Book tickets for the dolphin and seal show where these delightful creatures impress you with their antics. Seeing them juggle, dance, play, and dive will bring a big smile to your face.

You can also interact, swim, and click selfies with the cute dolphins. Another attraction here is the Creek Park Exotic Bird Show, where you can see Red-billed Hornbills, Eclectic Parrots, African Greys, Macaws, Sulfur-Crested Cockatoos, and many other exotic birds.

Dolphinarium in Dubai, best outdoor family attractions in Dubai
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Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Love Lakes at Al Qadra

The striking Al Qadra Lakes are two intertwined heart-shaped lakes that offer a recreation spot for locals and tourists. Located in the heart of the arid deserts of Dubai, this place is rich in flora and fauna and is one of the best outdoor family attractions in Dubai.

You can enjoy a plethora of activities here, including birdwatching, barbequing, cycling, and camping. If you are lucky, you can even spot ducks, oryx, flamingos, gazelles, foxes, black swans, rabbits, and eagles here.

the love lakes at Al Qadra, best outdoor  family attractions in Dubai
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Love Lakes. Photo contributed by Pranitaa Purohit.

Final Thoughts

Dubai has so many incredible attractions that you are spoilt for choice. It strikes an outstanding balance between modern and cultural spots bringing you a fantastic lineup of things to do every time.

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Outdoor family attractions in Dubai, the city of luxury in the UAE, from bright colorful flower filled gardens to remote wildlife refuges and beyond!
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