Discover the best of Dubai from the water

Discover a different side of Dubai's most memorable sights
Set sail and explore the city's coastline with these adventurous experiences based on ancient and modern traditions alike. For example, while Dubai is a hub for glamorous supercars, private helicopters and other hi-tech toys, the city once relied on abras to transport people and goods up and down Dubai Creek, and these traditional boats are still in use today. Whether you're looking to unwind, celebrate or explore, it's time to discover the city from an alternate perspective.
1

Dubai Creek

Bustling waterways

Dubai Creek

Bustling waterways

SEE HISTORICAL DUBAI FROM THE WATER

Time on your hands? A trip down Dubai Creek will be an indelible memory. A public transport service, the fleets of abras criss-cross the wide saltwater creek, as they've done for centuries. A token fee gives travellers a round-trip between the Gold, Textile and Spice Souks, where visitors can find well-priced gemstones and gold pieces, exotic fabrics, and Middle Eastern kitchen staples. Finish the ride at the far end of the Creek, at the Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club, for a drink on the rooftop terrace.
Location Details
  Dubai Old Souk Marine Transport Station 

shop our souks
3

Hatta

Glide through hills

Hatta

Glide through hills

Beach lovers have been cruising along the Dubai coast for decades, with kayaks, canoes, SUPs and all manner of seafaring toys visible from the city's best beaches. More recently, paddle power has become available in the heart of Hatta. 

Hatta Kayak provides single and double kayaks, along with three-person yellow boats and triple water bikes for a truly social experience. For simple relaxation, there are donut boats and a tour boat for larger groups. For more action and adventure, blaze your own trail at Hatta Wadi Hub, where you can try out zorbing, ziplining and much more.
Location Details
  Hatta, Dubai
+971 800 637 227
4

Madinat Jumeirah

Winding canals

Madinat Jumeirah

Winding canals

VIEW THE BURJ AL ARAB BY ABRA

The Madinat Jumeirah souk and resort use abras to connect the sanctuary's hotels, villas and restaurants via a manmade canal system, with regular stops. Cruising past the beach, a Madinat abra ride takes about 30 minutes for a full loop, leaving the docks so frequently that it's easy to find you have a boat all to yourself for at least part of the trip.

If you find it hard to leave, you can check-in to luxury at Jumeirah Al Qasr, Jumeirah Mina A’Salam or Jumeirah Al Naseem, or go for a meal at of the many spectacular waterside restaurants and lounges in this tranquil setting.
Location Details
  Madinat Jumeirah Souk Abra Station (near Trattoria Toscana) 
+971 4 366 8888

summer in Dubai
5

Dining delights

By the water

Dining delights

By the water

Make it a date on the water

It’s no accident that some of Dubai’s best restaurants come equipped with a serene, coastal view. Several of the city’s most romantic restaurants offer an aquatic ambience; Ossiano at Atlantis, The Palm has its giant aquarium; Fish Beach Taverna in Dubai Marina boasts stunning sea views; and at Thiptara in Downtown you could almost reach out and touch The Dubai Fountain show.

Fine dining on the water isn’t strictly reserved for couples, however. Despite being one of the city’s most coveted dining venues, perched out on the Gulf, Pierchic at Al Qasr offers a relaxed policy for its diners. The restaurant welcomes younger kids and even casualwear, such as shorts and flip flops – you’re by the beach, after all.
Location Details
  Ossiano, Atlantis, The Palm
+971 4 426 2626

  Fish Beach Taverna, Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina
 +971 4 511 7373

  Thiptara, Palace Downtown
 +971 4 888 3444

  Pierchic, Al Qasr at Madinat Jumeirah
+971 800 666353
6

Dubai Canal

The heart of the city

Dubai Canal

The heart of the city

DISCOVER DUBAI’S NEW WATERWAY

Fast-forward to modern day Dubai, and water transport has had a makeover. Take a sail down Dubai’s newest waterway and one of its most ambitious projects yet – the Dubai Canal. Stretching three kilometres from the Arabian Gulf, through Safa Park, into the heart of the city centre, and culminating in the existing waters of Business Bay, the new waterway is 180m across at its widest point.

Head over at dusk and take in spectacular views from any one of the three pedestrian bridges that cross the Canal. Don't miss the mechanical waterfall where the Canal meets the Sheikh Zayed Road bridge. Motion-operated, it pumps water through the bridge in a constant flow and switches off when a sensor detects a boat nearby.
Location Details
  Dubai Water Canal


7

Surf's up

Shore fun

Surf's up

Shore fun

Wake up to some waves

The Gulf is renowned for its peaceful waters, but Dubai’s coastline has a couple of breaks that surfers should take note of. Throughout the winter season, you’ll find plenty of enthusiasts braving their alarm clocks to find the best waves at Sunset Beach – the epicentre of the city’s surf scene.

The regular north-westerly winds have also created swells next to Nikki Beach, on Pearl Jumeirah island. That’s why Surf House Dubai, a local surfing institution, has set up board hire at both locations. Aside from renting out gear, the team also arranges lessons, contents and other fun events – and the café will guarantee a healthy breakfast once you’ve rinsed the salt from your hair.
Location Details
  Surf House Dubai, Sunset Beach
+971 50 796 3076

  Nikki Beach Resort & Spa, Pearl Jumeira
+971 4 376 6000
8

The World Islands

New adventures

The World Islands

New adventures

ENJOY THE OPEN SEA ON DUBAI’S BEAUTIFUL GULF

Cruising along the Arabian Gulf, drop anchor at the World Islands - a stunning manmade development that's designed to loosely resemble a world map. Make your way to the 'Lebanon Island' where a popular beach club awaits. Here you can soak up the sunshine or simply enjoy a delicious Mediterranean-inspired lunch by the waterside at Toro Blanco.

As the sun sets, enjoy the vivid Arabian sunset reflecting off the city's mirrored skyscrapers in the distance.

Looking for more action on the water? Try our memorable water experiences for new aquatic adventures.
Location Details
  The Island Beach Club, The World Islands
+971 4 447 2240

  your romantic gateway
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