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Sights & Attractions

24 hours in Downtown Dubai

Mon, December 25, 2023

Pack in the highlights of Dubai's 'Centre of Now', from delicious dining to picture-worthy spots – all in just one day.

Pack in the highlights of Dubai's 'Centre of Now', from delicious dining to picture-worthy spots – all in just one day.

8am: Breakfast at Karak House

Start your day at this charming, Emirati-owned gem that provides the perfect people-watching perch as well as Burj Khalifa views on Downtown Dubai's main boulevard. Known for its spiced, traditional teas – we recommend the saffron chai – it also serves up delicious waffles, granola and pancakes, making sure you're kept fuelled for the day. The house 'karak breakfast' is always a popular choice with eggs, zaatar labneh, hummus harissa, mushrooms, toasted bread and more.

10am: Get entertained at Dubai Mall

The Dubai Mall

Much more than just a shopping destination, the whole family will find plenty of fun things to do at the impressive Dubai Mall. Find out about sea creatures at the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo, let little ones learn and play at KidZania or go skating at the Ice Rink. Plus you'll find both high street favourites and top designer brands if you're looking for retail therapy.

1pm: Enjoy lunch at Time Out Market

TimeOut Market

Homegrown talent is on display at Dubai's curated culinary spot Time Out Market. Grab a table and then mix and match plates from diverse 17 diverse eateries, including Pitfire Pizza's truffle slices and Al Fanar's fragrant Emirati machboos to 21 Grams' succulent Balkan kebabs and Reif Kushiyaki's legendary sandos. Just don't forget to finish on a sweet note with ice cream from Scoopi.

2.30pm: Walk on the edge at Sky Views


Adventure-seekers can get whisked up to the 53rd floor at Sky Views Dubai for sky-high experiences. Glide down one level in a transparent tunnel on the Glass Side, get spectacular vistas from the observatory, and grab a coffee with a view before taking on the ultimate thrill – the Edge Walk. You get harnessed in before being escorted to the outdoor platform that lets you walk around the skyscraper's highest level, with no barriers.

4pm: Get pampered at the Palace Downtown Spa

The Arabesque opulence of The Spa at Palace Downtown makes it a popular choice among visitors and locals alike. Opt for the spa's signature One Desert Journey, that includes a body scrub infused with the goodness of desert sand and salt, followed by a refreshing Moroccan mint oil herbal massage to awaken the senses. Afterwards, relax with tea by the poolside, taking in the serene Burj Lake scene.

Did you know?
At over 828 metres tall, the Burj Khalifa holds seven world records including one for the tallest building, the tallest free-standing structure, and the building with the highest number of posts on Instagram.

6pm: Be amazed by The Dubai Fountain

Couple enjoying the Dubai Fountain in Dubai

Keep your camera ready as you'll want to capture the beautifully-choreographed dancing water jets of The Dubai Fountain. Spanning the size of two football fields, the show takes place every 30 minutes, with the Burj Khalifa as an impressive backdrop. It's best to arrive at sunset so you can watch the sky transform from dusky pink to starry black. If you're looking for the very best views, book the Dubai Fountain Lake Ride which takes you even closer to the action.

6:30pm: Devour dinner at Jun's

 juns Downtown

Grab a pre-theatre bite at celebrity chef Kelvin Cheung's eatery that has been creating waves thanks to its blend of cuisines. Expect Far Eastern, Indian and North American influences alongside comforting, nostalgic plates. Book the best table in the house – the chef's counter – to get a ring-side seat into the theatrical preparation, as well as the opportunity to interact with the sensation himself.

8pm: Take in a show at Dubai Opera

Dubai Opera

Expect it all, from operas and ballets to musicals and comedy acts by internationally-renowned names and famous companies. The Dubai Opera is not just an awe-inspiring venue but a draw for the world's top talent, so see what's on the calendar on your next visit. It's always a good idea to watch a show at this leading performing arts destination, but make sure you book in advance as seats sell out fast.

10:30pm: Take in views At The Top

At The Top, Burj Khalifa

Book the last slot of the night so you can see the twinkling lights of Downtown Dubai from the tallest building in the world. The Burj Khalifa's observation deck, with floor-to-ceiling windows, is located 555m above ground and gives guests 360-degree vistas. The must-try experience also offers a fascinating insight into how the record-breaking structure was built thanks to immersive multimedia displays.

11:30pm: Find new vibes at CE LA VI

Night owls looking to further their time at Downtown Dubai should explore one of the area's many rooftop lounges. Open till late, leading lounges offer food and refreshments till the early hours, with an upbeat atmosphere and stunning views as part of the package. CE LA VI at Address Sky View is a popular hotspot, as is Luna Dubai at Dubai International Financial Centre and Neos at Address Downtown.

Food & Drink
  • Tower 2 - Level 54, Address Sky View Hotel - Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Blvd - Dubai

12am: Tuck yourself in at Address Fountain Views

There are plenty of options to stay in Downtown Dubai, from five-star suites at Address Fountain Views and Sofitel Dubai Downtown to Vida Downtown, The Dubai EDITION and Ramada by Wyndham Downtown Dubai. There's something to suit all budgets – just plan in advance and remember to look out for hotel deals and offers. One thing is for certain, wherever you check-in, you'll be within walking distance to some of the most special sights in the city.

Explore Downtown Dubai

There is so much to see, eat and experience in the Centre of Now

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