No need to jet off for the perfect getaway – Dubai has enough adventures to make this long weekend one to remember. Whether you want to kick back and relax or experience something new, we’ve planned the perfect Eid weekend for you.
Thursday, 8 August: Rev up your weekengine
There are two ways your Thursday can go – head home after work and call it a day or gear up for a night out. Both have their appeal, but if you’re in the mood to explore we recommend you head to Dubai Marina. Thursdays at The Beach in JBR are lit with buzzing vibes so get there early to watch the sunset over the sea. Sit by the shore with a cool pre-dinner scoop (or two, who’s counting?) of gelato from Morelli’s or tangy sorbet from Dri Dri. You have many options for dinner, but we're thinking fresh-out-of-a-bucket seafood at Aprons and Hammers or traditional Emirati delights at Seven Sands. Nearby at the Movenpick Hotel, The Laughter Factory picks up with its August roll call at 9pm. Get your tickets in advance and laugh into the long weekend with comics from the UK and US.
Friday, 9 August: Uphill to Hatta
Still itching to get out of town? Get up early and take a day trip to Hatta! It’s still within the UAE so you don’t have to worry about booking a flight or arranging a visa, but different enough to hit refresh on city life. Surrounded by mountains, Hatta Fort Hotel is a fabulous spot to spend the early part of your day enjoying its scenic swimming pool, gardens and walking paths.
Venture out to explore the region’s rich history at centuries-old forts, towers and citadels. The must-see Hatta Heritage Village is home to traditional huts, customary goods for sale and life-sized prototypes of long-ago monuments giving a glimpse into ancient rural lives. Take a break from time-travelling and grab a bite at the recommended Emirati eatery, Tanor Lahm Restaurant. Wrap up your trip by visiting the famous Hatta Fort, an impressive defense structure dating back to 1896, before heading home to Dubai.
Saturday, 10 August: Mellow in the middle
Recoup from your activity-packed day at Hatta with a late breakfast at Clinton Street Baking Company in Citywalk. Straight from New York, this upbeat eatery is known for delicious fried chicken and waffles and fluffy pancakes. Follow it up with a freshly brewed caffeine kick at homegrown coffeehouse % Arabica nearby.
Once fresh and awake, venture down to Al Quoz to the vibrant Alserkal Avenue arts district. From gallery hopping to healthy eats at eccentric cafes, there's much to see and do here. Wander through art exhibitions at Lawrie Shabibi Gallery or Carbon 12 before grabbing a cup of specialty coffee at Nightjar Coffee. If you make it to Alserkal Avenue before 1pm, register for Mirzam Chocolate’s free coffee and chocolate pairing workshop, or enjoy a shot of liquified dark chocolate. Next door, Cinema Akil is wrapping up its cat-centric movie series, which ends with hit Japanese animation The Cat Returns by Hiroyuki Morita at 10pm.
Sunday, 11 August: Eid and culture fun
Eid Mubarak! Whether or not you observe Eid Al Adha, there are plenty of ways to get involved and learn about local heritage and customs. Dive into the culture carnival by hearing folktales from Sheibitna at The Dubai Mall or checking out Etihad Museum’s new Founding Fathers exhibition. While roaming entertainers are spreading joy at malls near you, visit Dubai Festival City Mall for all that and then some.
Arrive there early to shop special Eid offers and explore activities for children before getting ready for the main Eid fireworks display at 8pm. This breathtaking show by Imagine is sure to be very popular, so head out to the bay to grab a spot or book a table at one of the waterfront restaurants like Eataly or Al Fanar.
Monday, 12 August: Downtown delights
Downtown Dubai is one of the hippest neighbourhoods in the city. Towering skyscrapers dot this upscale district where world-class nightlife and entertainment intersect. Opt for a laid-back yet happening evening with friends at Kizmet, a casual eatery which celebrates the timelessness of good food in an ambient setting.
With newly lifted spirits, venture next door to Dubai Opera to catch the recently released Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw. That’s right – the iconic performance venue is switching gears by showing the blockbuster on a large, high-definition screen with tickets starting at just AED60. Book in advance for an unusual movie-going experience.
Tuesday, 13 August: Everything is just beachy
Come full circle by ending your long weekend back at Dubai Marina, where you can find a perfect mix of easygoing entertainment and high-energy activities. Spend the day at the beach to maximise the sun and waves while little ones have a blast at Splash Pad. Meanwhile, adults can rent a daybed at Sea Breeze, which also offers adrenaline-pumping water sports like jet skis, flyboarding and banana boat rides.
For the ultimate rush, head to the nearby XLine Dubai Marina. Considered the world’s longest urban zipline, this 1km ride travels from the Amwaj Towers in JBR to Dubai Marina Mall. There’s no better time to get in on XLine with their special summer offer starting at AED399 for one rider. It’s the perfect sign off to a packed Eid holiday right here in Dubai.