Five Must-Visit Attractions in Dubai  

Five Must-Visit Attractions in Dubai  

Last Updated on June 7, 2023

Dubai is the UAE’s second largest emirate, but more than that, it is one of the Arabian world’s most gorgeous cities with a whirlwind of attractions and activities on offer. It, therefore, is not an easy task to narrow down top things to see or do in Dubai to a compact list of just five. But, if you have very less time to spend in Dubai and want to cover all its must-experiences on your short trip, make sure that you visit these five top tourist attractions in Dubai. 

1. Downtown Dubai’s Iconic Attractions: Burj Khalifa, The Dubai Mall and Dubai Fountain Show

The ultra-stylish neighborhood of Downtown Dubai bags the top spot on this list and for all apt reasons. Some of the most superlative attractions and experiences comprise this 500-acre Dubai district; some of the unmissable among them are: 

Burj Khalifa

This breathtaking 828-meter-high is the world’s tallest building; a visit to its observation decks on 124th and 148th levels lets you see the glamorous city skyline, together with its desert, ocean and beyond, from up to a height of over 555 meters (dependent on the package you choose.) The elevator ride that journeys you to this standpoint itself is an attraction in its own right, being one of the fastest of its kind in the world. You also get to enlighten yourself about Dubai’s past as well as interesting facts about this colossal structure, thanks to a multimedia exhibit. 

The Dubai Mall

If you think malls are just for shopping, the malls in Dubai will prove you wrong. Each of the malls in Dubai is a full-suite entertainment destination and the Dubai Mall is a higher-up version of all. It is literally attached to Burj Khalifa and is so sprawling that you can spend your entire holiday here. Browse its 1,200 plus retail outlets and dine on the go with over 200 eateries dotted all over the mall. And did we say about the tons of amusement and recreation choices that this mall has on offer; Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, Dubai Ice Rink, Ekart Zabeel, KidZania Dubai, Play DXB, and Infinity des Lumières – the Arabian World’s largest digital art gallery are a few to mention among them.  

Dubai Fountain Show

No Downtown Dubai or Dubai visit itself is complete without watching this stunning aquatic show. Located on Burj Lake (against the backdrop of Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Mall), it is a resplendent amalgam of music, light and water, definite to leave you in awe. You can watch it for free; but if you want to secure for yourself a premium standpoint to admire this show, you can dine at a restaurant (offering direct views over the fountain) or take an abra ride along Burj Lake or more conveniently hit Dubai Fountain Boardwalk. 

2. Brand-New Observation Decks: Sky Views Dubai and the View at the Palm

Dubai has an unrivaled urban cityscape entwined with man-made islands, astonishing greenery and of course, ultra luxe architecture. And the best thing is that you can catch these marvelous sights without any hassle by taking to its newest observation decks, mainly: 

Sky Views Dubai

Located in the heart of the city in Address Sky View Hotel, its observation deck spread over 52nd and 53rd levels may not be as high as ones within Burj Khalifa. But, it is absolutely worth a visit for its awe inducing views and out of the world experiences, such as the transparent Sky Glass Ride from 53rd level to 52nd level – the first of its kind in the Middle East. For those with a penchant for some crazy adventure, Sky Views also hosts the region’s first hand-free edge walk session. 

The View at the Palm

The man-made island of Palm Jumeirah, with its huge palm-like design, is an engineering marvel like no other. Taking to heights (on a helicopter ride or a sky dive session) was the only possible way to admire this view till 2021 when the View at the Palm was unveiled. This observation deck has been solely designed to treat you with the full grand view of this extensive island as well as its surroundings. It is placed inside Palm Tower on its 52nd level. 

3. Bluewaters Island

This waterfront destination may be one of the newest in Dubai, but it is brimming with record-breaking and first-of-its-kind experiences. It is home to the only Caesars Palace Property outside of Las Vegas, which also comprise the region’s ultimate entertainment venue, Rotunda Dubai. Apart from these, don’t miss out its must-visit attractions such as: 

Ain Dubai

This observation wheel is one of the island’s main highlights. But, it is not any ordinary giant wheel. It is the highest-of-its-kind that will rotate and escalate you to a height of over 250 meters during its 38 minutes ride. With a total of 48 air-conditioned and fully covered cabins, you can choose from a shared or private ride complete with intimate dine and wine experience. No matter which ride you choose, it guarantees you the most refreshing and exclusive perspective over Dubai’s seductive sights across Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Marina, and Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR.)

Madame Tussauds Dubai

Located close to Ain Dubai, it is the first Madame Tussauds Museum that you will ever find in the Middle East. This museum is probably the only place on the planet where you get to see your favorite royals, movie personalities, sports superstars, classic superheroes and music sensations all under one roof. It is courtesy to its vast collection of life-size wax figures that is nothing short of real-like. Unlike a conventional museum, you get to touch, interact and even take some cool snaps with your beloved celebs.

4. Old Dubai

One of the most impressive aspects about Dubai is the diversity of its offerings. Yes, it is where you get to feel both pulsating modern vibe and old world charm in the heart of the city. Just a few minutes’ drive from Downtown and Sheikh Zayed Road is Old Dubai, spread over Bur Dubai, Deira and Dubai Creek regions. Be sure to add some of the following Old Dubai attractions and experiences in your Dubai checklist.  

Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood

The beautifully preserved 19th century quarter boasts of some of the region’s most treasured cultural landmarks. With sand-colored structures adorned with wooden towers or traditional air-conditioners, you’ll find here some real gems including Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding, Dubai Museum, Coffee Museum, and Arabic Tea House to name a few. 

Al Seef

Situated on the banks of the historic Dubai Creek, Al Seef delightfully fuses old with vibrant new. 

Al Shindagha

This is another significant part of Old Dubai which is mostly frequented for the enlightening Al Shindagha Museum, Saruq Al-Hadid Archaeological Museum, and most of all, the residence of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum, Dubai’s past ruler. 

Arabian Souks

From Gold Souk and Textiles Souk to Spice Souk and Perfume Souk, these are traditional Arabian bazaars and make best place to shop authentic Emirati keepsakes at super affordable rates. 

Abra Ride

This ride in a wooden abra across Dubai Creek is one of the most cost-effective things to do in Dubai, as it sets you back just AED 1.

5. Desert Safari

Tucked away from Dubai’s glamorous side is its quaint desert landscape that is isolated yet pristine and full of life. Take a guided desert safari to immerse yourself in the unparalleled magnificence and quietude of the Arabian Desert. Subject to your unique preferences, you can make your desert experience as action-packed or relaxed as possible. For a dose of adventure and culture, it is most ideal to go on an evening desert safari, packaged with an electrifying 4X4 dune bash session, camel ride, sand boarding, BBQ dining and traditional shows (like Belly Dance and Tanura.) You can pose for some precious souvenir pictures wearing traditional Emirati costumes and further sit down for a session of Shisha smoking and henna tattooing. You can take your desert safari to next level with an overnight desert safari or limit it to a two or three hours on a morning desert safari. 

Top Tips to Consider for Your Dubai Visit

  • Regardless of number of days you plan to spend in Dubai, make sure that you book everything in advance, such as Dubai visa, accommodation, transfers, sightseeing tours etc. 
  • Depending on your preferences, you can add or swap the above attractions with a visit to Museum of the Future, Museum of Illusions, Mohammed Bin Rashid Library, and Dubai Frame to name a few. 
  • This list covers year-round attractions. Now if you plan for a Dubai holiday in winter season, visit some of its top seasonal attractions by booking Miracle Garden, Dubai Glow Garden, and Global Village tickets in advance.  
  • Get the right pass to maximize your Dubai exploration. There are combo tours which let you visit or enjoy two or more Dubai attractions for a single price. 


While the above is by no means the ultimate list of tourist attractions in Dubai, it will definitely introduce you to some of its classic, most modern and brand-new attractions. Whether you are traveling to Dubai for a day or a week, these absolute sees are enough to keep you occupied on your upcoming Arabian holiday. 

You may also like:

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Insider Guide to Luxury Travel in Dubai

The Dubai Food Festival: A Taste of the World

5 Tips for the Ultimate Foodie Experience in Dubai

10 Most Delicious Dishes From Dubai

All You Need To Know About Dubai’s Foodie Paradise

6 Things You Don’t Know About Eating Mandi Rice In Dubai

About Maria Kennedy

Maria Kennedy is the managing editor at Travel for Food Hub. Maria is on a full-tilt mission to share local food and travel inspiration. When she is not writing about food and travel, startups or social media, she is enjoying her time with her boys in sunny Spain.

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