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Things to do in Dubai

Love it or hate it for its excess, Dubai is on a mission to redefine the modern city. You'll find historical sites such as the Dubai Museum (housed in the 18th-century Al Fahidi Fort), ambitious, cloud-scraping architecture, and endless entertainment (think shopping, amusement parks, indoor skiing, and more).

Many travelers make a beeline for the Dubai Mall, which can feel overwhelming in its vastness. Inside, there's a 22-screen theater; an indoor theme park, called Sega World; an enormous play space dubbed Kidzania; a giant Aquarium with an underwater zoo; and a full-sized ice-skating rink. (Tip: You'll be walking for hours so be sure to wear comfortable shoes.) Don't miss the Dubai Fountain, which stages a daily 6 p.m. show that easily rivals anything that the Bellagio in Las Vegas has to offer.

Not for the faint of heart, the Burj Khalifa is the world's tallest skyscraper at 2,625 feet with the world's highest observation deck on the 124th floor. Also worth visiting is the Walk, the biggest residential construction in the world. It's a great place for watching people—and their cars. Recent spottings include a gold-plated Porsche Cayenne or a two-tone Ferrari. Rev your engines.

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  • Al Majlis

    One of the best places to escape the maddening airport crowds is this expensive and lavish reception and service center for VIPs—or those willing t... More
  • Al Nassma

    You’ll find camel’s-milk chocolate (that’s right, camel’s milk) with dates, spices, and half the fat of your standard cow’s-milk variety. More
  • Burj Dubai

    The Burj Khalifa, also referred to as the Burj Dubai, is one of the city’s most recognizable structures and the tallest building in the world. The ... More
  • Burj Khalifa

  • Business Bay

    Currently under construction, Business Bay, when completed, will be a multipurpose, commercial and residential center. Located between Sheikh Zayed... More
  • DDF Gold “Islands”

    As in the various gold souks in the Middle East, gold is sold by the gram in the Dubai Airport, at constantly fluctuating prices. You can also buy ... More
  • DDF Raffles

    An ever-changing selection of cars and motorbikes gets raffled off to passengers willing to shell out $139 for a ticket in the Finest Surprise raff... More
  • Dubai Duty Free (DDF)

    With the opening of Terminal 3 in October 2008, the airport’s retail operations—all controlled by Dubai Duty Free—doubled to 160,000 square feet of... More
  • Dubai International Airport (DXB)

    Dubai International Airport is the primary airport for the city of Dubai and has become a major air traffic hub for the Middle East. The airport ha... More
  • Dubailand

    Behold Dubailand, a three-billion-square-foot outdoor oasis from Tatweer (a government-owned real-estate investment firm) that improbably marries a... More
  • Five Green

    Five Green is the first United Arab Emirates concept store devoted to urban street-wear and art sourced from all over the world. This concept store... More
  • G-Force Health Club

    If you’re stopping over in Dubai, the likelihood is high that you’ve just gotten off a long flight and are on your way to another. Which means you’... More
  • Gold Souk

    Browse the glittering stalls: the sheer volume of what’s on display (it's estimated that ten tons of gold are in the market at any given time) alon... More
  • Harvey Nichols, Dubai

    Part of the Mall of the Emirates, this internal complex houses a good selection of designer labels—and the new Almaz restaurant, by Mourad "Momo" M... More
  • Marhaba Lounge

    Regardless of the airline or class you’re flying, you can gain admission to one of these lounges (open 24/7) for about $42, no reservation required... More

Explore things to do in Dubai for more options.

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