Dubai is an amazing destination to visit, no matter if it’s a holiday, business trip, honeymoon, long weekend or any other occasion. While the choice of things to do during the day time is almost limitless, the list of places to visit in Dubai at night is hardly any shorter. When day turns into night, a whole new adventure begins. This is our guide for the best Dubai night attractions.
Places to visit in Dubai at night for free
When the sun sets over the United Arab Emirates, JBR Marina is a hotspot for night time adventures. Dubai Marina is a 7 km long waterfront walkway among a beautiful man-made canal with a fantastic view of the well-lit skyscrapers along the way. The area is very safe even during late hours and attracts lots of visitors as well as local crowds for an evening stroll. Of all the places we have been to in Dubai, Dubai Marina is one of the best places to visit in Dubai at night for free because you get to enjoy the beautiful scenery, can take breaks and use the numerous benches and don’t have to spend any money at all.
However, if you do wish to have dinner in Dubai Marina by night, there is really no shortage of very nice restaurants along the way as well as street food and ice cream stands. JBR Marina beachfront is another great hang out for a late-night out in Dubai!
Dubai Downtown: Fountain and Dubai mall
Even though Dubai downtown has a huge amount of entertainment options that you would need to pay for, you can in fact see some of them for free! Dubai Fountain show is held every day after sunset, it lasts around 5 minutes and is repeated every 30 minutes.
Best places to see the Dubai Fountain show
One of the best things to see in Dubai at night is the Dubai Fountain show – a world-class performance created by the same people who created the Las Vegas fountain. A very good view of the whole fountain can be seen from the higher level, but usually, these are restaurant terraces that you can’t access for free. Another great place to watch is from the Top of Burj Khalifa, which also can’t be accessed for free.
If you’d like to enjoy the Dubai Fountain night show for free, you would need to watch from the ground level and take the spot early, at least 10 min before the start. During my last visit, we found a good spot on the bridge, facing Burj Khalifa on the other side. This way we got to see both the fountain and the Highest building in the world at the same time!
Working hours: 7 – 11 pm, every 30 minutes.
Dubai night attractions in Dubai mall
Dubai mall is one of the largest malls in the world, so it should come as no surprise that it is also open until late at night. One of the best things to see in Dubai at night for free is the Dubai Aquarium located in Dubai Mall. You can see one side of the aquarium for free or visit the tunnel and get a much closer look for a small fee. Interesting fact: total capacity 10 million liters of water, over 140 species, over 300 sharks and rays live in this aquarium. Dimensions: 51 meters in length, 20 meters in width, and 11 meters in height.
Another cool attraction in Dubai Mall is the authentic, 155-Million-year-old dinosaur skeleton located in the souk area. Fun fact: 90% of the bones are original. Dino was discovered in 2008 in Wyoming, USA.
Finally, window shopping is another great way to do some night sightseeing in Dubai. With over 1200 shops and a total internal floor area of 5.9 million square feet, you can surely have some fun exploring the store displays combined with a heavy workout!
Opening times: 10 am – 12 am
Dubai souks are traditional Arab markets and should also be included in things to do in Dubai late at night. Throughout centuries, Middle Eastern countries have been known as trade hubs on the Silk Route. Visiting Dubai souks may give you a really good idea of how it used to be here before the oil started to flow through the pipes.
Great place to have a quick look around, watch people haggling and bargaining. The amount of gold and the variety may surprise you. Tip: When haggling, don’t be afraid to go down at least 50%!
Perfume Souk is a nice place to visit if you enjoy trying new scents and would like to get a unique one for yourself or your loved ones.
We recommend spice souk as another free night attraction in Dubai. If you’d like to buy some spices, make sure they are fresh and not too overpriced. Sometimes you can get them cheaper at Carrefour.
Lots of clothes, scarves, and textiles can be found here. Vendors will try to push and sell you things but stay calm and say no if you are not interested in buying.
Opening time: 10am to 10pm.
Sheikh Zayed Bridge Waterfall
Another great example of Dubai tourist places at night – Sheikh Zayed Bridge– is both a bridge and a small illuminated waterfall. The biggest highlight is the parting of the waterfall when the vessels approach and letting them through – reminds of a curtain.
This beautiful bridge is an architectural masterpiece. Philips was chosen to illuminate the structure and did a great job. The bridge is connecting the Meydan hotel to the main road. The technology used: Philips Color Kinetics eColor Graze Powercore LED grazing fixtures.
Parks to visit in Dubai by night
Visiting Dubai parks is one more way to experience Dubai at night. While Dubai parks provide fresh air and shade during the day, by night they can be transformed into really cool tourist attractions!
This park is especially worth visiting with small children. It may be a good idea to arrive shortly before the sunset in order to see it from totally different perspectives. Dubai Garden Glow consists of several interesting parts, Magic and Ice parks are not included in the ticket price and need to be purchased separately.
Glow park is a large collection (around 500) of impressive displays and installations created from recycled fabric and 10 million LED lights.
Dinosaur park – fantastic animated dinosaur sculptures that will drive your kids crazy.
Ice park – a beautiful collection of ice sculptures depicting wild animals. Warm clothes will be provided!
The magic park is a great place to take photos (upside-down house etc), reminded us of the Illusion museum we visited in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Art park – 3D art paintings where you can step into the picture. This is another great way to take memorable photos.
Opening times: Saturday to Thursday 4:00 PM to 11:00 PM; Friday: 4:00 PM to 12:00 AM.
Ticket price: 65AED.
Zabeel Park is located right next to Dubai Frame and offers a great place to relax and take a walk. While during the day people come here to have a picnic or escape from the heat, by night this is a quiet place to enjoy, take a walk, and escape from the hectic city vibe.
One of the best places to visit at night in Dubai is Global Village – a multicultural amusement and theme park, inspired by different cultures and countries (16 pavilions in total). Global Village is best enjoyed after dark when the heat has passed, and you can be comfortable outside. Each of the areas is designed to keep special attributes of the country/culture in mind. You can expect to find local handicrafts, snacks, and drinks as well as souvenirs in various country halls.
Moreover, Global Village offers numerous free shows, concerts, and other entertainment for both young and old. Most shows are free, few are for an extra charge (such as stunt show). As if it wasn’t enough already, you can also enjoy thrilling rides at the region’s largest funfair!
Opening times: Sat-Wed : 4:00pm – 12:00am; Thu – Fri : 4:00pm – 1:00am
NB! Global Village is closed during summer months (beginning of April – end of October).
Dubai night Shows and party
Of course, the list of places to visit at night in Dubai wouldn’t be complete without traditional night attractions, such as theater, shows, and nightclubs. Here are the best ones you should consider.
Have you ever been to any Cirque du Soleil shows? If you enjoy things like that, you will most probably love La Perle! Created by famous Franco Dragone, Italian theater director, this is a mix of spectacular light, technology, and acrobatics. music, performances, audiovisual experience and special effects are incredible!
Two daily shows are performed by 65 world-class acrobats and performers from 23 countries. The performance includes acrobatics, contortion, flying, diving, and even motorcycles stunts. The coolest part is the aqua theater with waterfalls, torrents, and rain on a floor.
Ticket price AED 350 – 899; Timings: daily @ 19:00 and 21:30. Tickets can be purchased here.
Going to the theater may not be the most obvious thing to do in Dubai at night, but that is exactly why we should have it on our list. Surprisingly, Madinat theater sounds like a great idea if you are looking to spend some quality time during your holiday. Located in the heart of the Souk Madinat Jumeirah, this 442-seat theater was the first one built in Dubai.
This theater has been around for a while already and seen performances from Shakespeare’s plays and international comedy to famous Broadway musicals, opera, and classical concerts. Some very famous names have stepped on this stage, such as the Moscow City Ballet and the UK Comedy Club show.
With its 2000 seat capacity, Dubai Opera is a true jewel of the downtown district. The building itself is a masterpiece, resembling the traditional sailing vessel – dhow. The opera was opened in 2016 and is a major space for theater, opera, ballet, concerts, conferences, and exhibitions.
Dubai Opera visit can be easily combined with Burj Khalifa / Dubai Mall visit and Fountain viewing, as they are all right next to each other.
Zinc Nightclub – Award-winning, an amazing nightclub with fantastic ambiance, music, and the crowd. The nice dance floor at the center of the club to dance the night away. This club features international guest DJs
Cavalli Club is a unique place and also the oldest running club in Dubai. The place has its charm and outstanding décor (low-hanging chandeliers, Swarovski crystals, glamorous furnishings) making it an ideal hangout for the fashion-minded crowds.
Base (nightclub of the year 2018) – a true party-goer’s haven thanks to visual displays and amazing pyrotechnics along with world-class beats. The place is often visited by famous DJs and offers great inexpensive cocktails.
Club 360 is another award-winning club in Dubai featuring a panoramic view of the Burj Al Arab, upbeat music from hip-hop to contemporary hits and high-class bartenders.
White Dubai is a must-visit if you are looking for a rooftop nightclub playing electronic and house music.
ARMANI/PRIVÉ is one of the most elite clubs in Downtown Dubai. Quick and personalized service. However, you may be subject to a strict dress code.
Where to eat in Dubai at night
Just like any major city, Dubai has lots of various restaurants for any taste and budget. We have reviewed many of them in our two days in Dubai guide, so in this article, we will not be naming them again. However, there are few interesting ideas for a fun Dubai by night dinner experience.
Dhow dinner cruise (Creek/Marina)
Dubai dinner cruise is a perfect way to enjoy the beautiful Dubai from water and have a tasty dinner at the same time. Dinner cruises can be found at both Creek and Dubai Marina areas. These cruises are done with traditional dhow sailing boats and usually include entertainment and live music.
Xclusive cruise is considered one of the best companies offering dinner cruises in Dubai. The choice of food is excellent, they offer burgers, salmon, kebabs, Thai curry, salad, fruit, muffins, brownies, etc. The cruise is sailing from the Marina and passing Burj al Arab, the Palm, Atlantis and Marina lagoons.
At.mosphere Restaurant & Lounge
How about dining in the world’s highest restaurant? Only in Dubai, you have a chance to experience a European menu based on classic French cooking while seated among clouds! Treat yourself for an unforgettable night with a 5* view of the city.
Dinner in the sky
If Ascending Burj Khalifa seems like a too stressful idea, here is a suggestion for an alternative – get up 50 meters in the air and enjoy the view along with delicious food from top chefs from The Le Meridien and The Westin Mina Seyahi Marina. No need to worry about the safety – they will buckle you up before you go. The dinner lasts for 1 hour and the last one goes high at 9:30 PM.
A truly unique idea for a night out in Dubai is the Noire restaurant. The concept of eating in the total darkness has its bonuses – as your senses will be heightened, you have a chance to feel the taste of food in a totally new way. The waiters are wearing night-vision goggles, so no need to worry about how they will find you.
Al Dawaar Revolving Restaurant
If you can’t get enough of this city (like we do), then this restaurant may be for you. With its panoramic 360-degree view of Dubai, you will get to see all the best attractions while enjoying your dinner – Burj Khalifa, Persian Bay, Creek, and many others!
Night sightseeing in Dubai: organized tours
Desert Safari evening and overnight
True adventure lovers will certainly appreciate the overnight desert safari tour organized by various travel agencies in Dubai. The tour starts with evening dune bashing, followed by activities in the Bedouin camp, such as BBQ dinner, belly dancing, fire show. Quad biking and sandboarding are for an extra charge. When the evening turns into night, you will be handed sleeping bags, mattresses and blankets and get to enjoy the night under the stars, followed by a stunning sunrise in the Arabian desert.
Having seen the evening safari, I can recommend this trip for everyone who wants to enjoy the desert at the fullest. It’s a beautiful place to be and the evening we spent there was way too short for this kind of action-packed activity. BBQ dinner was very delicious, with lots of meat and veggie options as well as traditional Arabic sweets.
Big Bus night tour
The big advantage of a night bus tour is the much cooler weather (compared to day time) and the smaller amount of traffic. Board the Big Bus tour for a night adventure in Dubai and see the city from a totally new perspective! You will be passing all major attractions, such as Burj Khalifa, Palm Island, Burj al Arab and many more.
The best about this tour – no need to go to each attraction separately, they are all on your route!
Start time 7:45 pm, Meeting point: Dubai Mall or the Mall of the Emirates.
Things to see in Abu Dhabi at night
If all mentioned above doesn’t cut the deal and you feel like there is a need for some extra sightseeing to be done in UAE after dark, how about a short ride to the neighboring state Abu Dhabi? We will not burden you with numerous restaurants for a night out, but rather suggest few interesting and unusual activities.
Sheikh Zayed Mosque
The largest mosque in UAE, this impressive structure was constructed between 1996 and 2007. This beautiful mosque is very impressive during day time when the sun illuminates its perfect white walls. However, when the day turns into night, a whole new look comes into life – the Mosque is lit and becomes something out of this world, almost a fairy tale castle from the One Thousand and One Nights book!
Opening hours: 9 AM – 10 PM. No admission fee.
Corniche beach walk
Corniche is a city beach walk. Its a lovely part of Abu Dhabi, ideal for walking during late and night hours. You can rent a bicycle or simply stroll along the coastline, enjoying the view of the sea and the skyscrapers of Abu Dhabi. The area is very safe during night time. There are a few cafes to fulfill your hunger.
What are your favorite places to visit in Dubai at night?