‘Tis the time of the year where we hear the jingle bells ringing, carols singing and a series of lights flickering right before our very eyes. The breeze now feels a little bit cooler and families get together a little bit tighter – it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!
While the UAE is situated in the Middle Eastern region, surrounded by desert sands, does naturally not experience snow and is predominantly Muslim, one will be surprised how this Gulf country graciously opens its cultural boundaries to welcome the majority of its expat population. Dubai is one to spearhead a multi-cultural and diverse city, celebrating others cultural, national and even religious beliefs.
Whether you miss the Christmas markets or plan to have a white Christmas, we have rounded-up the best places to be in Dubai this Christmas season:
Madinat Jumeirah, Magical Market
Madinat Jumeirah’s big festive market is back and will be running for 16 continuous days from the 13th of December. Souk Madinat Jumeirah has always been a spectacular sight for their Christmas installation, a winter wonderland recreation and massive Christmas tree.
The little ones can enjoy the play areas, giant snowball zone, bungee jump and gingerbread house-making station. Santa Claus will also make daily appearances from 5pm to 7pm and have the opportunity to ride the Abra along with him. Big kids can enjoy live entertainment while munching away on seasonal food and drinks. There is festive fun for everyone!
Dubai Opera, Christmas Market
The Dubai Opera will host its first ever Christmas Market with the theme “Home of Christmas in Dubai” from the 4th to 14th of December. There will be choral and ballet performances from the much-loved Jingle Bell rock to traditional music of Handel’s Messiah. Also, pop up performances from homegrown National Youth Orchestra and GEMS Choir.
The new Christmas Market will bring lots of cheer, festive treats and seasonal shopping and activities for everyone! The market will be open from 4pm to 10pm daily, 4pm to midnight on Thursday and weekends and a chance to meet Santa on 5-6 and 12-13 December from 6:30pm to 8:30pm.
Ski Dubai, Christmas Wonderland
Are the mountains calling? This is the most beautiful time of the year at Ski Dubai, housed within the Mall of the Emirates, the only place that offers white Christmas and ‘real’ snow. Join their Winter Wonderland and book your tickets from the 12th to 24th of December and take the fun at the slopes.
Meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, get a present, warm up with a cup of hot chocolate, take photos and enjoy the festive workshops and live performances in Ski Dubai’s Christmas Packages!
Wafi Mall, Elf Adventures
Experience a magical adventure at WAFI’s Elf Mountain. Join their market stalls filled with Yuletide goodies, stroll around their miniature Elf Village, check out their stunning Christmas tree and ride the fun simulator into the virtual reality slopes open for all ages!
Little boys and girls will also get the chance to meet Santa waiting for them at the famous grotto with gifts and toys. Santa’s grotto is open from 8:30am to 9:30pm with tickets at 70AED inclusive of Christmas gifts, vouchers and goodies.
Al Habtoor Palace, Winter Garden
The Al Habtoor Palace is magically transforming into a winter wonderland this Christmas season. Al Habtoor Palace Dubai’s enchanting Versailles Gardens is filled with festive fun for the whole family including our beloved fur babies!
Children will enjoy the mini rides, crazy golf and snowball fight zone. Hone their creative and culinary skills in a fun gingerbread house-making class. Grab a mince pie and mulled grape in the variety of food stalls and kiosks bringing some Christmas delights just as the famous Christmas Markets in Germany! Witness their giant Christmas tree light up at 6:30pm and a live band take the stage at 7pm every night until the 24th of December.
This season is for everyone, and if you find yourself in Dubai, you can still have a merry little Christmas. So, take out the family and set the date now! Visit some of the best places to be in Dubai this Christmas.