Dubai is one of the most trending tourist destinations in the world. With its diverse culture, iconic buildings, and exciting activities, this international hub is quickly becoming one of the top choices for travelers, and for a good reason.
From the tallest building in the world, the largest waterpark in the world, and even the deepest pool in the world, along with beautiful beaches, museums, and theme parks, Dubai has something to please everyone. With so many things to do around the city, planning your Dubai holiday itinerary can get overwhelming. The last thing you want is to miss out on an amazing place and regret it later!
To help you with your Dubai trip planning, we have created a comprehensive 5 & 7-day best Dubai itinerary that will guide you through must-see destinations in the city. With this plan, you won’t miss out on any of the iconic spots that Dubai is known for.
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5-Day Itinerary For Dubai - What To See In Dubai in 5 Days
Bonus Days For A 7-Day Dubai Itinerary
What is the best time to visit Dubai?
As the city can get very hot during peak summer months, the best time to visit Dubai is during the winter months, between October to April. Popular destinations like Global Village and Miracle Garden are also open only during these months.
How can I commute around Dubai?
Dubai has a very well-connected and reliable public transport system with multiple metro lines, bus routes, and taxis that can help you travel from one destination to the next. You can utilize the metro and bus with the NOL card, which is easily available across the city and can be recharged.
Can I rent a car in Dubai?
You can rent a car and travel across the city easily if you hold an international license.
Is Dubai a safe city?
Dubai is one of the safest cities in the world. The crime rate is extremely low, and the police are always on high alert and protect residents and tourists alike at all times. You can easily travel during the late hours of the night without any danger.
Does Dubai have a dress code?
While there is no set dress code in the city, tourists are recommended to wear modest clothing that covers their arms and knees, as some malls and other locations do not allow entry otherwise. Beachwear and swimsuits are allowed on beaches and resorts but not in other public spaces.
How can I book tickets for events and attractions in Dubai?
As Dubai is a popular tourist destination, we recommend booking all your tickets in advance to avoid any disappointment. You can find and book tickets for your chosen events and attractions easily on Platinumlist.
5-Day Itinerary For Dubai – What To See In Dubai in 5 Days
Pro tip: If you can, book a flight that arrives in the evening or at night so that you can start exploring the city from early morning the next day. And if you want to make the most out of your trip, make sure you wake up and start sightseeing as early as possible!
You can choose to use a Dubai tour package for your trip or plan a trip on your own with this comprehensive list.
The first day of your trip should be about Dubai’s most iconic destinations, The Dubai Mall and Burj Khalifa. Burj Khalifa is located next to The Dubai Mall, so it makes perfect sense to pair your visit to the landmark building with a day at the mall. During this visit, you can catch the most spectacular views of the Burj Khalifa from The Dubai Mall, visit the At The Top observatory on top of the Burj Khalifa, and explore the world’s largest mall. Here’s what you can do during your day at The Dubai Mall.
Visit At The Top, Burj Khalifa
A visit to At The Top, Burj Khalifa’s in-house observatory, is a must for every tourist. The tallest observatory in the world, located on Level 124 and 125 of Burj Khalifa, At The Top, provides panoramic views of the city through its floor-to-ceiling glass windows. As it’s a popular tourist destination, we recommend booking your tickets in advance to ensure you don’t miss out on this experience.
Watch the dancing fountains
The dancing fountains are one of the most iconic landmarks of The Dubai Mall and are definitely not to be missed. The fountain show takes place every 30 minutes after 6 p.m. in the open area next to Souk Al Bahar. We recommend reaching the location 15 minutes before the show to find a good viewing spot.
Visit The Underwater Zoo & Aquarium
The Dubai Mall is home to one of the largest aquariums in the world that houses over 1400 marine species, including Tiger Sharks, Sting Rays, and more. The Aquarium is an absolute spectacle to behold and can be viewed for free from the mall. If you want to experience the underwater world up close, you can also choose to visit the Underwater Zoo & Aquarium, where you will get an opportunity to look at the animals from a special tunnel under the aquarium and witness many more of them including the massive King Croc.
Enjoy a delicious meal
The Dubai Mall houses some of the best restaurants in the city, ranging from fine dining venues to fast-food chains. No matter your food preference, you are sure to find something you like at the mall. As you will spend the entire day in the mall, you can try multiple restaurants and cafes for different meals.
Explore other parts of the mall
There are many more things to do and see in The Dubai Mall, like Souk Al Bahar, The Ice Rink, Hysteria (haunted house), PlayDXB (VR arcade area), Reel Cinemas, and Infinity Des Lumieres. You can choose the places you want to visit and plan the rest of your day accordingly.
The Dubai Mall houses over 1000 retail shops, from luxury to departmental stores. If you still have time to spare, you can explore the shopping scene and splurge on the wide collections offered in the mall.
The second day can be dedicated to Desert Safari, another exciting Dubai experience that should definitely not be missed. Desert Safari takes you on an exciting journey into the desert. It gives you an opportunity to experience the traditional Bedouin lifestyle in a desert camp with exciting activities like dune bashing, camel riding, belly dancing, and more.
Important note: Desert Safari experiences must be booked at least 2 days in advance, so make sure you make your reservations as early as possible.
Most standard desert safari experiences begin between 2 to 3 pm and last till 9 p.m., which means that it will take almost your entire day. However, if you start your day early, you can also add a visit to The Dubai Frame to your itinerary. The Dubai Frame experience takes about an hour, which makes it the perfect thing to add to your day with Desert Safari.
On the third day of your trip, it’s time to explore the iconic Burj Al Arab. The only 7-star hotel in the world, Burj Al Arab is a spectacle to behold both from the outside and inside. You can explore the hotel even if you are not staying there with a special Inside Burj Al Arab tour experience that takes you around the luxurious location with a private butler who gives you all the history and information about the place.
As Burj Al Arab is located on the edge of Kite Beach, you can pair your tour with a day at the beach. Kite Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Dubai and is perfect for a relaxing, laid-back day with friends and family. You can choose to participate in one of the many watersports that happen at the beach, including kayaking, jet skiing, paragliding, and surfing, or just enjoy a relaxing day on the sandy shore and witness a beautiful sunset.
The Kite Beach is also lined with multiple dining destinations, so if you’re feeling hungry, there are plenty of options to choose from.
Buckle up because day four is going to be an adventurous one. If you love water and adventure, then you should definitely add the Aquaventure Waterpark to the list. Certified by the Guinness World Records as the world’s largest waterpark, Aquaventure houses 100+ thrilling water rides and attractions, including the world-famous Leap of Faith with a near-vertical drop. With multiple attractions ranging from thrilling to mild and a dedicated kids’ area, Aquaventure is the perfect location for a fun family day out.
Aquaventure is located within the famous Atlantis hotel, which means that your visit will also give you an opportunity to explore the luxurious location. To make the most out of the day, ensure you arrive at Aquaventure as early as possible.
As Aquaventure is situated in Palm Jumeirah, you can continue your day and head to The Pointe to explore the happening area with multiple retail and dining destinations and enjoy a delicious meal with gorgeous views of the Arabian coast.
Alternatively, you can also switch the Aquaventure visit with a snorkeling experience at Deep Dive Dubai, which is the world’s deepest pool. If you are not a water person, you can also choose to visit one of the many theme parks in Dubai, like IMG Worlds of Adventure or Dubai Parks & Resorts, on this day.
Visiting with kids? Learn more about fun things to do with kids in Dubai with our full guide.
We hope you’re not tired because day five will be jam-packed with fun experiences. Start your day bright and early and head to the Deira Souk to delve into the tradition and culture of the region. Deira Souk is the perfect place to discover Dubai’s merchant and trade history and buy fun and exciting souvenirs and local spices. If you’re in the mood to splurge, you can also head to the famous Deira Gold Souk, which is located right there.
To add to your cultural experience, take an Abra ride to Al Seef. An abra is a small, traditional boat dating back many years that takes visitors from one side of the port to the other. True to its spirit, an Abra ride still costs only 1 AED per person, just like in old times.
Get off the Abra and head to Al Seef, one of the most unique locations in Dubai. Built to resemble the olden structures of the city, Al Seef is a beautiful complex with multiple retail and dining destinations that are perfect for shopping and a little stroll that takes you back to history.
After your trip down the historical lane, it’s time to travel the world at Global Village. Global Village is an annual outdoor fair that houses 30+ country pavilions and is one of Dubai’s top tourist destinations. As it’s a massive place to explore, we recommend heading to Global Village as soon as it opens (at 4 p.m.) so that you have the entire day.
Global Village is one of the best dining and shopping destinations, with 1000s of retail and dining destinations from around the world. You can find traditional chaat from India, Bosinain kebabs, Thai tempura shrimp, and so much more. We recommend going to Global Village on an empty stomach so that you can try as many delicacies as possible! It’s the perfect place to add to your Dubai family trip itinerary.
Suppose you visit during summer when Global Village is not open (between April and September). In that case, you can use this day to visit other popular destinations like the Museum Of The Future.
Bonus Days For A 7-Day Dubai Itinerary
If you’re in town for a few extra days, a day trip to Abu Dhabi is definitely worth it. Abu Dhabi, the capital of UAE, is just an hour and a half drive from Dubai. You can choose to rent a car and drive to Abu Dhabi or take an easy intercity bus from one of the many bus stations in Dubai.
Abu Dhabi has many popular tourist destinations, the most famous being the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, which is known as one of the most beautiful mosques in the world. Here are a few attractions you can choose to visit during your day in Abu Dhabi.
- Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
- Qasr Al Watan
- Louvre Abu Dhabi
- Yas Island Mall & Marina Circuit
- Ferrari World Abu Dhabi
- Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi
You can also choose to extend your Abu Dhabi visit to two days; there is plenty to do in the city. If you’re looking for more things to do in Abu Dhabi, check out our full guide here.
If you have one more day to spare, dedicate it to a shopping spree. Dubai is known as one of the best shopping destinations in the world, and rightfully so. The city houses some of the best shopping malls in the world, like The Dubai Mall, Mall Of The Emirates, Dubai Hills Mall, Dubai Festival City Mall, and so many more.
Each of these malls is jam-packed with a variety of retail locations ranging from high-end brands like Dior and Prada to more budget-friendly lines like HM and Zara, along with local stores that are filled with exciting products.
You can also choose to visit one of the two outlet locations in the city – Outlet Mall and Outlet Village, both of which house outlet stores of popular brands that offer amazing deals and discounts.
And just like that, you have a perfectly planned Dubai travel itinerary. If you want to switch any of the experiences mentioned above, here are a few more famous tourist destinations to add to your Dubai itinerary.