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The best beach activities in Dubai

Mon, May 27, 2024

There’s more to Dubai's beaches than sunbathing. If you want to get your blood pumping, there are plenty of ways to keep you active on the sand.

There’s more to Dubai's beaches than sunbathing. If you want to get your blood pumping, there are plenty of ways to keep you active on the sand.



The quintessential beach sport, volleyball is a terrific way to get your heart racing on the beach. Played in teams of six, it’s perfect for larger groups of friends and family, or a great way to meet new people if you don’t have a full team. There’s plenty of places to join a game, or even get some training – check out Esperia Volleyball Academy at Kite Beach for pitch rentals, ask at your hotel, or just wander down to Sunset Beach or Al Sufouh Beach and join in a game.


Beach football

Beach football is a sandy twist to one of the world’s most popular sports. Played on a smaller beach-based pitch, usually with five players per team, the game rewards improvisation with plenty of chances to take a shot at the goal making it enormous fun. Dubai is a hub for beach football, hosting the Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup regularly, and there are plenty of professional pitches around. But for casual players, a decent patch of beach and some improvised goal posts is enough to get you started.



What better way to stay healthy and see Dubai’s beaches than a run beside the sand? Sunset Beach has a dedicated jogging track which runs along the landward edge of the sand. The path actually runs for 7km along the Jumeirah coast and stretches from Sunset Beach to the Burj Al Arab, and is made from springy material to reduce joint strain. But if a flat, sprung track sounds a bit undemanding, then go all out with sand running. Much tougher than road or track running, dealing with the shifting sands under your feet makes this a gruelling workout for even the most experienced runners – no wonder top football managers sometimes make their players run up sand dunes.


Gym workouts

Why work out in a regular indoor gym when you could do your routine on the beach? You can find free-to-use equipment and facilities at Kite Beach and Al Mamzar Beach Park, among others, and you can also sign up for beach boot-camps in many locations. For a premium beachside workout, head to FIVE Palm Jumeirah’s Move at Five beach gym, which offers passes for non-hotel guests – or check out the ultra-luxe J Club at Jumeirah Beach Hotel. Many more Dubai beach resorts have great fitness facilities, with day-passes often available.



Yoga has exploded in popularity in Dubai in recent years, not least because of the ability to take a class by the sea. Many of the city's hotels host regular yoga sessions on the sands, including Sofitel Dubai The Palm and Talise Spa at Madinat Jumeirah, while Kite Beach often sees weekend sun salutations at the Sole Mio Beach Club. If you’re in Dubai at the right time, full moon yoga is an extraordinary experience. Held every full moon at Fairmont The Palm, and sometimes at other beachside locations, this is your chance to practice yoga in the moonlight, followed by a serene meditation session.


Kite flying

Wide beaches and regular breezes make Dubai a great place to fly a kite. From simple kites suitable for almost any age, to professional-grade models designed for high manoeuvrability and acrobatic displays, flying a kite can be enthralling and keeps you on your toes. Suitable for any beach as long as there’s wind, just make sure there’s plenty of space, so as not to interfere with other beach-goers. Also, note that Dubai’s Kite Beach is oriented around kite surfers, rather than land-based kite flying.



The deep blue sea along Dubai's coast is the place to be for all aquatic thrill-seekers, with a wide array of high-energy activities as well as laidback fun to look forward to. Whether you want to make the most of a beach day with a short and affordable stint or a lengthy luxury session out on the waves, you'll find no dearth of options. Choose among many reputable leisure operators anchored across the city's beaches – like Water Adventure Dubai at JBR or Nemo WaterSports near the Burj Al Arab – for everything from a boat cruise, fishing trip and paddling to wakeboarding, jet-skiing and parasailing. Go on, and make a splash you won't soon forget.

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