Helicopter Scenic Tour from the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah
Nothing compares to the thrill of viewing Dubai from the air and departing from Burj Al Arab Jumeirah’s helipad. The landing and take-off ritual includes a red carpet welcome, complete with a team of butlers who offer gourmet delicacies. The experience includes a 40-minute ride past the city’s skyline and takes in landmarks such as the Palm Jumeirah and the historic Dubai Creek – a truly unforgettable experience.
Al Fahidi Historical District
Explore the city’s history with a trip to Dubai Creek, famed for establishing the old pearling industry. Watch traditional dhow boats laden with goods sail past then explore the Al Fahidi Historical District and Dubai Museum, the city’s oldest buildings which date back to 1787. Discover archaeological finds, local antiquities and artefacts and witness the city’s incredible transformation through a series of aerial photos and a multimedia presentation. Round off the day with a stroll through the winding alleyways of the bustling textile, spice and gold souks, reminiscent of a bygone era.
Wild Wadi Waterpark™
With rides and attractions for the whole family, Wild Wadi Waterpark™ next to Jumeirah Beach Hotel offers the perfect day out. Themed with characters inspired from Arabian folklore, the younger ones will love the kids’ activities in Juha’s Dhow and Lagoon which includes five slides and water guns. Relax in a rubber ring and experience the surge of the Flood River’s metre high waves or enjoy the more relaxed and laidback Juha’s Journey. Thrill seekers can hurtle down the adrenaline fuelled 120-metre high Jumeirah Sceirah at speeds of 80km/h, or join friends in giant rings for the fast and furious Tantrum Alley and Burj Surj. Budding surfers can show off their skills on the Wipeout and Riptide Flowriders that shoot out seven tonnes of water per second to create real waves, one of only four such rides in the world.
The Souk Madinat Jumeirah
Experience old-world Arabia and meander around this authentic re-creation of a traditional bazaar. Characterised by traditional Middle Eastern style and ambience, Souk Madinat Jumeirah is reminiscent of ancient Arabia. While away an afternoon and admire the wood carved archways as sunlight peeks through, highlighting the intricate Arabic architectural design. Explore the souk’s many winding streets that lead to waterfront cafés, restaurants and bars and boutique-style open-shuttered shops and galleries. Visitors can purchase goods from shops that spill out onto the ‘streets,’ offering traditional Middle Eastern items, designer goods, artwork, home-ware and gifts from every corner of the globe.
Visit rehabilitated turtles
Behind the scenes at Madinat Jumeirah and Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is a turtle rehabilitation centre that rescues hundreds of distressed sea turtles every year. Since it was set up in 2004, the team has nursed over 800 sea turtles back to health and returned them to the waters off the Dubai coast. Over the last decade, the Dubai Turtle Rehabilitation Project has impacted regional and international sea turtle populations by increasing the number of animals in the environment that would have otherwise perished. During the second phase of rehabilitation, guests can visit the turtles which can be seen swimming in the salt-water canals of Madinat Jumeirah as they prepare to be returned to the sea.
This area has been transformed in recent years and is now home to a whole host of activities. You’ll find SUP (that’s stand-up-paddle boarding), kite surfing, surf school, volleyball, beach tennis and football to name a few. Then there are plenty of cool and quirky outlets to choose from if you fancy a bite to eat. Try Wanna Banana for banana treats; the Park House café – a spin off from Ripe Market which serves local organic produce; Taqado for Central American flavours; Amor for pizzas; SALT for burgers or try Holland House Mini Pancakes to satisfy your sweet tooth cravings.
A popular ‘bucket-list’ activity in Dubai is to visit the observation deck in the Burj Khalifa. Measuring over 828 metres in height, this is the tallest building in the world. It’s advisable to book tickets in advance at the concierge desk. If you visit at sunset or in the evening, you can also watch the world’s tallest performing fountain in Downtown Dubai, a wonderful way to conclude the day. The fountain performs to different songs from classical to contemporary Arabic and world music. When operational, the fountain has over 22,000 gallons of water in the air at any given moment.