Things to do in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Whether you live in Dubai or Abu Dhabi or are visiting the UAE, you will never be short of things to do. There are numerous sports activities offered throughout the city, from football, rugby, golf, tennis, yoga and general fitness, to more extreme sports such as skydiving, race track driving, bungee jumping, dune bashing, indoor skiing and fly boarding. Throughout the year there are also organised sporting events for people to enjoy. You may want to take part in the spartan race, the desert warrior challenge, al gaffal dhow race, Go sport aquathlon beach polo, 2XU triathlon championships and the emirates cricket tournament. Each year Dubai also hosts the Dubai desert classic golf tournament and the Dubai Rugby Sevens, which as a resident you will be sure not to miss. There really is something for everyone.

Eating out in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

When it comes to eating out in Dubai, the list of restaurants and types of cuisine available is limitless. You can find a variety of restaurants doted all around town, from pizzerias, Lebanese eateries and curry houses, to fine dining restaurants in the 5 star hotels, where you food is prepared by a Michelin star chef.

Some of the popular places to find a good selection of restaurants close together include; Madinat Jumeirah, DIFC, Souk Al Bahar and Jumeirah Beach Residence. There are also many restaurants in the food courts located in the numerous malls. These usually have fast food outlets such a burger king and KFC, as well as Asian cuisine and steak houses, so the choice is yours!

 Ordering In 

When it comes to ordering in, again the choice is endless. Most restaurants, cafes and bistros in Dubai provide takeout’s on request and deliver (for a minimal charge). With a selection of apps to order food online, it’s never been easier to get tasty cuisine delivered to your door. There’s even a choice for busy executives or the health conscious  – for a monthly subscription, nourishing meals throughout the day can be prepared for you and delivered to your home or office – showing there’s a selection of healthy take outs too!

Cooking at Home

Wherever you’re from in the world, there a certain home comforts you’ll miss – for a lot of people its their national delicacies, which makes its important to be able to buy your home produce to cook yourself.

Most foods are now available in the western supermarkets and large hypermarkets, as well as specific food markets found in the older areas of the city such as Satwa. Supermarkets are situated all around the city. You will find a local ‘town Centre’ containing essential shops such as a grocery store, coffee shop, café, bookstore, hairdressers etc. in most residential areas of Dubai. 

Imported food can be expensive, so you may want to look at alternative options and buy your provisions from several supermarkets. It can be surprising how the cost of an imported product in a western supermarket can differ from that of a hypermarket, you can sometimes pay double the price – for the exact same item! Also, don’t instinctively brush past the local produce; often vegetables farmed in regions close by are as tasty as the internationally imported crop, at a fraction of the price.

OUR TIP: Remember, restaurants in Dubai serving alcohol have to be associated to a hotel; so if you’re eating at The Walk in JBR, don’t expect to have a glass of wine with your meal. There are a few exceptions like the Palm Jumeirah beach bars; this is because the Palm has different rules, being ‘offshore’.

UAE Shopping and Malls in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

There is nothing you cannot buy when it comes to shopping in Dubai. From gold to electronics, designer labels and high street brands, everything is available at one of the many malls – Dubai Mall, Mall of the Emirates and IBN Battuta Mall in Dubai and Marina Mall and Abu Dhabi Mall in Abu Dhabi, to name a few.

Music Activities

There is music concerts in Dubai and Abu Dhabi all the time and artists fly from all over the world to perform in several venues around the cities, so your sure to see your favourite performers!


 As well as the fine dining restaurants and lounge bars that can be found all over the city, Dubai is renowned for its vibrant nightlife and topnotch clubbing scene. 

Some of the most popular world-renowned DJs and artists fly from around the globe to host club nights and concerts, so there are always several nights to chose from and not enough of the weekend! Ladies nights offering free drinks and discounts on food also happen throughout the city, typically on a Tuesday and Wednesday night.

So whether you’re looking to dress up for a night to Dubai’s best nightclubs or just a casual night out with some friends, there are plenty of party spots to pick from.