What to Do in Dubai at Night – 13 Ways to Spend an Evening
Dubai is one of the UAE’s most popular cities, filled with incredible architecture, luxury travel experiences, and exciting cultural attractions. It’s a very lively city that doesn’t slow down at all once it gets dark, so many people often find themselves wondering where to go whilst holidaying in Dubai at night to continue enjoying all that the city has to offer.
From beautiful light installations to late-night sightseeing tours and romantic boat trips, there are plenty of options for things to do in Dubai once night falls. Whether you’re visiting with friends, your family, a partner or even on your own as a stopover to another destination, here’s our guide to the 13 best things to do in Dubai at night.
1. Climb the Burj Khalifa
When it comes to what to do in Dubai, one of the things you’ll hear recommended the most is a visit to the Burj Khalifa. As the tallest building in the world, it gets its fair share of visitors, so visiting at night is a great way to avoid the worst of the crowds and see the entire city illuminated below.
The views from the Burj Khalifa are better than anywhere else in Dubai, and at night you’ll enjoy a more magical and romantic atmosphere as you look out into the dark. Last entry to the building is at 11.30 pm, so you can book your ticket at any time in the evening and enjoy one of the city’s top tourist attractions.
2. Explore the Dubai Global Village
If you’re wondering where to go in Dubai at night for an immersive cultural experience, the Dubai Global Village should be at the top of your list. This is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city, open until late in the evenings and providing a place to eat, drink, shop, learn and have fun all at the same time.
The Dubai Global Village is known as one of the world’s largest tourism and entertainment venues, taking aspects of cultures from over 90 countries and showcasing them with displays, markets, shops, architectural models, parades and shows. It’s open from October until April every year and is perfect for travellers of all ages, whether you’re looking to treat your tastebuds, enjoy awe-inspiring sightseeing or spend the evening on a shopping spree.
3. Watch the Dubai Fountain Show
The Dubai Fountain Show takes place multiple times a day at the fountains outside of the Burj Khalifa, but is definitely best experienced at night. Lights, music and water all move together in a choreographed performance that always draws hundreds of visitors, which is no surprise when you consider that it’s the world’s largest performing fountain.
This is one of the best free things to do in Dubai at night and is great for families with children. Be sure to check the times of the show before you visit, so as not to miss out on any of the performance.
4. Camp in the Desert Overnight
Visiting the Arabian desert outside of Dubai feels like you’re entering a totally different world. If you want a truly unique experience during your stay, we recommend spending the night at a desert camp and enjoying a luxurious glamping experience where you can sleep under the stars on the sand.
A variety of different companies offer overnight camping trips to the desert, many of which will also include other activities like camel riding, sandboarding and a chance to enjoy traditional cuisine cooked in the desert. You can expect a high-class experience despite being far away from the city, with private tents, comfy beds and outstanding service from your hosts.
5. Take a Big Bus Night Tour
There’s no better way to see a new city than with an open-top bus tour, and if you’re looking for fun things to do in Dubai at night then boarding a Big Bus for the evening is a great idea. For 2 ½ hours, these tour buses will take you around some of the best spots in Dubai as you learn more about the history of the city and enjoy watching the lights of all the buildings and parks as you travel between attractions.
A bus tour at night is a great thing to do in the evening if you’re not so keen on walking around the city in the dark and is a great way to see as much of Dubai as possible if you’re only staying a short while. These bus tours tend to be quieter at night, letting you take in the sights and sounds around you without too many other distractions.
6. Visit the Dubai Underwater Zoo
Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo is a great option if you’re looking for fun things to do in Dubai, and with opening hours that last until the evening, it’s high on our list of the best places to visit at night.
One of the highlights of the Dubai Underwater Zoo is the 10 million litre tank that is home to over 400 different sharks and rays. As well as a huge array of aquatic life, visitors can also see penguins, crocodiles and otters, with options to feed, dive and interact with some of the creatures.
7. Catch a Show
If you’re looking for something cultural when wondering what you can do in Dubai at night, watching a show at one of the city’s arts venues is a great idea. Dubai Opera is a top choice; a 2000 seat performing arts centre that is home to music, dance, drama and exhibitions that offers a really diverse program of events for visitors.
La Perle is another performance highlight in Dubai, held in a novel ‘aqua theatre’ that tells the story of the city’s pearl diving history. It’s a spectacular event that combines dance and music with breathtaking stunts that will delight and inspire adults and children alike.
8. Take a Full Moon Yoga Class
If you’re not a fan of sightseeing and are looking for alternative things to do in Dubai at night, Full Moon yoga classes are a new trend that has massively grown in popularity. Offered by the Talise Spa, these classes take place once a month when the moon is full and offer a relaxing and rejuvenating spiritual experience that will calm and refresh your mind and body.
You will have to book well in advance to get a place at one of Talise’s yoga classes, but the chance to practice yoga on a private beach under the full moon is not an experience to be missed. Other spas and studios in Dubai have also started offering similar classes, but if you want to see where the trend began, we recommend you experience it here.
9. Enjoy a Night Cruise in a Dhow
A cruise in a traditional dhow is one of the best things to do in Dubai, and for a truly magical experience, you can enjoy a trip on the water at night. Cruises are available on the Dubai Creek, the Dubai Canal and from the Dubai Marina, taking passengers on a nighttime sightseeing tour that lets you experience some of the highlights of Dubai from the water.
Many dhow cruises come with the option to have dinner onboard, which is a great option for couples who are looking for romantic things to do in Dubai at night.
10. See the Lights at Dubai Garden Glow
Dubai Garden Glow is one of the best places to visit in Dubai at night, especially if you’re looking for things to do with children. This huge 40-acre park is filled with a variety of colourful light displays that visitors can explore on their visit, from immersive installations to magical tableaux.
All of the displays at Dubai Garden Glow are made out of recycled material and run on energy-saving LED lightbulbs, so it’s an impressive piece of sustainable architecture as well as a creative marvel.
11. Try Star Gazing
Whilst it can be difficult to see the stars when you’re right in the heart of the city, once you get out into the desert that surrounds Dubai the stargazing opportunities are phenomenal. There are plenty of organised trips available that will take you to some of the best spots in the desert to look at the night sky, often with guides who will be able to tell you more about the constellations above you and the stories behind them.
If you want an even more informative experience, the Al Thuraya Astronomy Centre is on the outskirts of Dubai and has its own planetarium, so you can enjoy both real and simulated versions of the night sky.
12. Go Clubbing
If big nights out are your thing, then going clubbing on a Dubai night out is a great way to see a different side of the city. Rules around drinking and partying in the city are a little stricter than most, but there is still a very lively nightlife scene with plenty of bars and clubs open until quite late and welcoming visitors who like to let their hair down and dance until the early hours of the morning.
A highlight of Dubai’s nightlife is BASE Dubai, which is an open-air venue that offers a unique experience for fans of clubbing. Plenty of the world’s top artists and DJs have performed at BASE, but the experience is unforgettable no matter who is playing at this venue, with impressive lighting and sound that is more like a theatrical performance than a traditional club night.
13. Visit the Dubai Marina and JBR
The Dubai Marina and Jumeirah Beach Residence Walk (JBR) are highlights of the city’s beachfront. As the sun sets, we recommend you take a stroll around either to watch the sky change colours and see the twinkling lights of the city start to flicker on.
Many of the shops and restaurants along the Jumeirah Beach Residence Walk stay open until late in the evening, so it’s a great place to have dinner if you want to stay close to the beach and enjoy the buzz of activity that happens down at the waterfront.
Is Dubai safe at night?
The city of Dubai is very closely monitored, which means that the crime rates are incredibly low. There may still be a chance of pickpocketing and theft in the busier, tourist areas of the city, but in general it’s a very safe place to walk around, even at night.
Of course, you should exercise the same common sense in Dubai as you would anywhere else; be careful if walking around alone, stuck to bust and well-lit spaces, and trust your instincts if you feel like something isn’t quite right.
Is Dubai good for nightlife?
Dubai isn’t a city that is known for its nightlife, but that doesn’t mean that it’s a destination where you can’t go out and have fun in the evening. Most of the bars in the city belong to hotels so there is no central ‘partying’ district or street, but there is a good range of clubs and music venues that mean it is easy to have a great night out in Dubai.