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Dubai’s best outdoor malls, markets and food fairs

Sun, November 12, 2023

Spend an afternoon exploring the city's alfresco shopping and gourmet hotspots.

Spend an afternoon exploring the city's alfresco shopping and gourmet hotspots.

The Beach


If you like strolling along the shore while you shop, The Beach opposite JBR offers a plethora of cafes and stores, including minimalist Japanese lifestyle brand Muji, beauty haven Sephora and French fashion outlet Carmen. All through winter and during the annual Dubai Shopping Festival, the venue also hosts a buzzing artisanal bazaar, with rows of stalls selling food, trinkets, accessories and one-of-a-kind pieces.

City Walk


Nestled between Downtown Dubai and Jumeirah, this outdoor retail hub contains a Roxy Cinemas branch, La Ville Hotel & Suites, London-themed streets filled with entertainment and plenty of great places to eat like Farzi Cafe, L'ETO, Pickl burger joint and Butcha Steakhouse. Stroll the tree-lined esplanade for views of Burj Khalifa and check out murals by international street artists.



Discover Dubai’s homegrown street cred at this hip outdoor shopping and dining development. Stretching along Al Wasl Road, this colourful urban strip features retailers and cafes housed within tricked-out cargo boxes. You'll find many novel boutiques including Urbanist, and cool food spots like RSVP restaurant.

Spice Souk

Alongside the city's glossy shopping precincts are its traditional souks, which offer a glance into Dubai’s past and a chance to do some good old-fashioned bargaining. The outdoor Spice Souk and former trading hub in Deira is deeply embedded in the city's history. Make your way through narrow alleyways and see bags overflowing with heady spices, such as cinnamon, saffron and frankincense. While you’re in the neighbourhood, don’t miss the equally famous Gold and Textile souks.

The Ripe Market

Dubai Ripe Market

One of the first craft markets to set up in Dubai, The Ripe Market is hosted in idyllic outdoor locations across the city during the cooler months. You'll find it at Police Academy Park each weekend. Expect plenty of local vendors selling everything from fresh produce and organic treats to handmade gifts and jewellery, all set to a soundtrack of live music and family fun. Make sure you go hungry as vendors hand out plenty of samples, plus there are food trucks to buy from too.

Al Seef

Women Shopping at Al Seef Market

Located along one of Dubai’s most storied locations, right beside Dubai Creek, Al Seef is the perfect place to unwind. The waterside destination reflects both the city’s futuristic style as well as its roots, with modern buildings on one end and heritage-inspired structures on the other. This district is home to restaurants – try authentic kunafa at Nablus – fashion boutiques such as Zeneve, souvenir shop Harat Alzman Novelties and many more inspiring finds.

Global Village

Shopping Pavilions at Global Village in Dubai

With 26 country pavilions and shopping outlets galore, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to authentic buys from around the world at Global Village – the region's largest and first ever multicultural festival park. The 28th edition features over 200 eateries, with dozens of sizzling additions. Don't miss the floating market and new Road to Asia street, which features beautiful handicrafts from 13 Asian countries.

Expo City Dubai

Expo City Dubai

From 8 December 2023 until 7 January 2024, Expo City Dubai is being transformed into a winter wonderland, with a chalet-inspired festive market and fairground fun for all. There's plenty to peruse in the pavilions and elsewhere, plus lots to snack on at too. Feast on Lebanese flavours at Grand Beirut, pick up a sandwich at The Daily or grab a quick bite at plant-based PXB Cafe. There's even more if you're a foodie – from Italian indulgences at ECCO Pizza&Pasta to vibrant African fare at Alkebulan Food Hall, you won't go hungry.

Last Exit

Dubais Best Outdoor Shopping Last Exit Aerial View

The brightly coloured, Instagrammable Last Exit locations are a hungry driver's dream come true. Featuring a multitude of food trucks, the open-air venue is ideal for those who want to pick something up via drive-through, or fancy a stop to stretch their legs and have a casual snack. A perfect pit-stop, you'll find ATM machines, washrooms and more, with Al Khawaneej, Al Qudra and the E11 motorway (on both sides of the road) hosting the four Dubai venues.

Dubai Marina Walk

Marina Walk Dubai
Grab a cycle or don your trainers to explore the seven-kilometre Dubai Marina Walk, taking in the impressive yachts that fill the famous waterway. There are a host of homegrown and international eateries lining the route, but regulars rave about the collection of food trucks – including local favourite SALT – that are parked outside the Dubai Marina Mall stretch.

BAY by Social

Water show featuring fireworks at Dubai Festival City Mall
Family-friendly frolics are guaranteed at BAY by Social, set on the waterside at Dubai Festival City Mall. Feast on delicious dishes, sample flavourful brews at cosy coffee counters, win prizes from fairground games and top up on gifts from specialised vendors until April 2024. Looking to be wowed? Catch the free IMAGINE sound and light spectacular or enjoy the art installations, comedy shows and live music taking over the space.
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