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10 hidden gems to discover in Dubai

Thu, December 9, 2021

A tranquil creative space, a stunning infinity pool, new-age gastronomy and secret desert oases… discover that there is even more to Dubai than the extraordinary with this list of unexpected attractions.

A tranquil creative space, a stunning infinity pool, new-age gastronomy and secret desert oases… discover that there is even more to Dubai than the extraordinary with this list of unexpected attractions.

1

Stylish dome tents in the heart of Hatta

Hatta Dome Park
Settle in for an unforgettable night under the stars at Hatta Dome Park, a glamping experience that takes advantage of Hatta’s mountainscape views and back-to-nature vibes. There are 15 tents here, each designed with chic minimalism in mind, complete with panoramic windows, a private outdoor terrace and many of the amenities you’d expect at a hotel such as a stylish washroom, sleek TVs and even a mini-fridge. The hub of thrilling outdoor adventures, Hatta Wadi Hub, is just a short walk away so you and your tribe can amp up the adrenaline with mountain karting, ziplining, paragliding and more.
2

The world’s first and highest 360° infinity pool

Bask under open skies like never before at AURA Skypool. As the world’s first and highest 360-degree infinity pool, the elegant pool-and-lounge destination evokes an ‘oasis in the sky’ feel thanks to its nature-inspired décor. Open daily from 10am to sunset, prices start from AED170 per person. There are three ticketing time slots available – enjoy a laidback morning by the sprawling 750sqm pool, a chilled afternoon sunset session, or combine both for a full day experience.
AURA Skypool
Experiences
  • The Palm Tower, 50th Floor, Palm Jumeirah
3

Discover Japanese delicacies at Gohan

Finding this restaurant is part of the fun. Open the understated door tucked away between the fridges of its sister restaurant La Cantine du Faubourg, and you'll find yourself in one of the most intimate new spots in Dubai Gohan. Tuck into small sharing plates of Japanese street food, focusing on sushi, skewers and gyoza, all given the La Cantine trademark twist. Lunch sees the sophisticated space filled with light, while the dinnertime ambience sees lights lowered for a more moody vibe.

4

Set your expectations high for Moonrise

With just ten seats, a strong social media presence and a stunning multi-course menu, Moonrise has already created a buzz in the Dubai foodie scene. Emulating the Japanese omakase dining experience, the emphasis is on seasonal produce and sourcing the very best ingredients. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to sample their signature dish: foie gras pani puri with pineapple chutney and truffles. Their location, a glass box at the tip of residential Eden House on Sheikh Zayed Road, gives unparalleled views of the city skyline too.

5

View spectacular sunsets at Love Lake Dubai

Immerse yourself in nature when you make your journey to the Al Qudra oasis to take in the sights and sounds of Love Lake Dubai. This popular spot features two, large, heart-shaped lakes connected to each other. With plenty of parking, visitors can picnic or set up barbecues in designated areas and take in the serene greenery while keeping an eye out for the wildlife, including many bird species. If you’re a fitness enthusiast, there is also a running track on-site, and Love Lake is very close to the Al Qudra Cycling Track.
6

A tribute to Expo 2020 Dubai

Journey into the desert and enjoy the greenery and views of the free-to-visit Lake of Expo 2020. Located near Al Maktoum International Airport, the area has a lake, trees and sand to resemble the Expo 2020 logo. A man-made marvel, the site includes walkways to get to the ‘island’ surrounded by water. A bird's-eye view from the top showcases the logo, so if you're flying in or out from Al Maktoum, look out for this extraordinary spot.
7

Get on your bike at Mushrif Park

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Put your pedal to the metal at Mushrif Park, one of the UAE’s oldest parks, which recently opened the first phase of its 50km mountain biking track. There are currently 20km of trails, with another 30km set to be completed soon. The track starts close to the park’s main gate and is 3m wide, with capacity for 3,000 cyclists a day. There are trails of varying difficulty, so whether you’re a beginner or an expert cyclist, you’re sure to find the perfect route for you.
8

DISHTRICT

Inspired by food districts around the world, DISHTRICT at Wasl 51 in Jumeirah presents a culinary adventure to savour. The emphasis is on fusion flavours, and it's all done brilliantly well. Think shatta crab salad – a Middle Eastern twist to a traditional dish elevated by a kick of hot sauce – Thai-inspired arancini, popcorn-style button mushrooms with truffle and parmesan, and lamb galouti tacos where a softshell base is topped with spiced lamb kebab and mint sauce. It's inventive and irresistible – come hungry!
9

Be creative at Al Safa Art & Design Library

The Al Safa Art & Design Library was built and curated specifically for designers and artists. Located on Al Wasl Road, it’s a striking contemporary building filled with stylish reading areas, galleries, co-working spaces, audio-visual rooms and a cafe. A large open courtyard hosts recitals and film nights in the summer too. It’s a truly modern space that inspires creativity and reflection for artists and visitors alike.
10

Marvel at the beauty of Mosque of Light

Located in the neighbourhood of Al Quoz, the Mosque of Light is another shining example of contemporary creativity in the Middle East. Designed by Sumaya Dabbagh from Dabbagh Architects, the mosque’s geometric mashrabiya-inspired details act as miniature windows, presenting a play of light inside for worshippers, while outside it’s a vision in white with a singular rounded minaret and sleek understated dome. For more creativity and artistic inspiration nearby, go gallery hopping in Alserkal Avenue.

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