Dubai Mall is the largest shopping mall with entertainment and leisure facilities in the world.
It is one of the must-visit places in Dubai, which attracts over 100 million visitors every year.
What to see and do in Dubai Mall
The owner of the Dubai Mall is the company Emaar Properties. It was built together with Burj al Khalifa, as a part of the Downtown complex. Since its opening on 4 November 2008, this place has captured the attention of visitors and become one of the main tourist attractions in UAE. It covers an area of 1,124,000 square metres, which is approximately 200 football fields.
Moreover, it is not only a shopping centre. We can say that it is also a family entertainment place filled with shops, cafes, restaurants, an ice rink, an aquarium, a multiplex cinema, etc.
Entry to the mall is free, and you can spend there all day 🙂
So, let’s go for a walk to Dubai Mall, and check out what you can see and do in this fantastic place.
How to get to Dubai Mall
Dubai Mall is located in Downtown Dubai, on Sheikh Zayed Road, next to the famous Burj al Khalifa.
It is easy to get to the mall by car (a huge car park is available), taxi or by public transport.
So, take the Red metro line and get off at the Burj Khalifa-Dubai Mall station. It takes about 15 min to walk via a long and airconditioned footbridge to the mall. There are also moving walkways to go faster.
Another way is by public buses such as route 27 from the Deira Gold Souk station, and route 29 from Ghubaiba bus station.
The opening time of the Dubai Mall is every day from 10 AM to 12 PM.
Well, Dubai Mall is a shopping paradise for all shopping lovers 🙂
Bear in mind that clothing can be more expensive in Dubai because of import costs. On the other hand, luxury goods could be more affordable due to being tax-free.
By the way, one of the most popular festivals is the Dubai Shopping Festival with many various events, lighting installations and DSF drone shows. The last one was from 8 December 2023 to 14 January 2024.
There are more than 1,200 retail outlets with international and local brands, including two department stores such as Galeries Lafayette and Bloomingdale’s. Also, Level Shoes is a concept store of 40 designer boutiques with various brands of shoes.
Welcome to Fashion Avenue and the world of haute couture.
There you can find about 150 luxury brands, such as Versace, Burberry, Dior, Prada, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Fendi, Christian Louboutin, Manolo Blahnik, Valentino, Santoni, Tod’s, Armani, Gucci, Dolce&Gabanna, Hermes, Zegna, Zuhair Murad, Balenciaga, Pauline Moynat, etc.
Besides high-luxury brands, there are many other fashion brands, such as Tommy Hilfiger, Zara, Pinko, Mango, H&M, Adidas, Nike, Superdry, Marks & Spenser, Geox, Columbia, Under Armour, Bershka, Accessories, etc.
Enjoy shopping for beautiful jewellery and watch brands like Tiffany & Co., Cartier, and Rolex.
In the mall, you can find many international and local cosmetics and beauty brands, as well as electronics, cell phones, and computer stores.
China Town in Dubai Mall
China Town is located on the first floor, opposite the Ice Rink. It is the latest addition to Dubai Mall which brings the touch of Orient colours, tastes, and culture.
Walking around you can see red lanterns and various neon lights.
Visitors can enjoy Asian cuisine, shopping for clothes and accessories, or wellness experiences.
And of course, there is a giant panda sculpture 🙂
Entertainment facilities in Dubai Mall
Besides shopping, there are many interesting facilities for the whole family. Certainly, some of them you could not expect to see in the shopping mall, such as an aquarium or ice rink. But, Dubai Mall is different from all other shopping places.
An Aquarium and Underwater ZOO
One of the most interesting places is a huge Aquarium with Underwater ZOO.
Dubai Aquarium is one of the largest suspended aquariums in the world with a 10-million litre tank. It is 51 long, 20 meters wide and 11 metres high. You can walk through the 48-metre-long transparent tunnel with a 270-degree view of the marine world with more than 140 species. So, there are over 300 sharks and rays living in this tank, including a large number of Sand Tiger Sharks.
By the way, you can have a glass-bottom boat ride, watch divers feeding the sharks and rays, enjoy the marine world in the Cage Snorkeling or dive in the tank with sharks as well.
The regular price ticket of 199 AED (50 EUR) includes a visit to the aquarium tunnel, underwater zoo and Pingvin Cove and nursery. And the ticket for diving with various sharks is 790 AED (cca 200 EUR) per person.
Dubai Ice Rink
This Olympic-sized Ice Rink is located on the mall’s ground floor next to The Souk.
So you can enjoy skating, take classes in the Skating Academy available for all ages, or ice hockey practice. Various events, disco evenings and birthday parties on ice are organized there, as well.
The regular ticket is from AED 90 to 135 (23-34 EUR), depending on time and day, and skates are included in the price. You can find more information about Ice Rink here.
For cinema lovers, there is a court of Reel Cinemas with 26 screens. Also, there is a VIP Class – Cinema City. It is a kind of private cinema with a Bar & Lounge and dining with a Japanese-international fusion menu.
If you are brave and love horror moments, you can visit Hysteria, an experience of pure fear. You’ll find it on the second floor of the mall and next to The Lego Store. In the scary atmosphere, you walk through dark corridors and rooms, with various scary elements around you. The price of a ticket is AED 105 (25 EUR) per person.
And for kids, there is KidZania®, an award-winning children’s ‘edutainment’ concept of the interactive mini-city that combines play with learning in a fun and innovative way.
Kids will enjoy jumping in the Trampo Extreme entertainment park or playing video games in the Play DXB park.
The part of the Dubai Mall is also the Zabeel Sports District. It is a dynamic multi-sports complex which consists of courts for padel tennis, basketball, volleyball, badminton and cricket.
Dubai mall Waterfall
Yes, you red it correctly. There is a huge waterfall inside the Dubai Mall.
It is a kind of artistic installation with sculptures of human divers made of fibreglass. In fact, there are two large cylindrical walls 30 metres in diameter and 24 meters high. It is scaling three floors of the Mall and it became the favourite spot for taking photos.
Interestingly, the human structures represent pearl diving. It was one of the main sources of living in the Emirates in the past before the oil was found. That is why the waterfall is also called “Pearl Divers”.
The relaxing sound of the water and the illusion that human divers are falling through the water is really impressive.
Food & Drink court in Dubai Mall
There are over 200 restaurants in Dubai Mall, from cafes, fast food, bakeries, vegan and luxury restaurants. Almost on every corner, you will find something to eat or drink, cafes, and sweets. There is a wide variety of cuisines, and certainly, you will enjoy dishes from all over the world.
From some restaurants, you can enjoy a fantastic view of the lake and the Dubai Fountain show.
While we were looking for a place where to eat, we found a restaurant so familiar to us: Bosnian House.
It is a favourite place for all ex-Yugoslav residents because suddenly we heard all the languages spoken in the former Yugoslavia 🙂
And of course, the main dish is Bosnian Kebab, in Bosnian/Serbian languages “Ćevapi“. The small pieces of rolled minced meat are carefully prepared and grilled on a special grill. Usually, the portions consist of 5 or 10 pieces and it is served with fresh Somun (type of bread), onion, sour cream and Serbian Ajvar sauce, as well. The recipe originates from the Middle Ages – it was brought by the Ottomans to Sarajevo when Bosnia was under Ottoman rule.
Well, I can say that this portion of “Ćevapi” was very delicious, one of the best I have ever tasted 🙂
Something sweet: Hafiz Mustafa baklavas
Strolling around the mall, we saw a Hafiz Mustafa 1864 shop, famous for its baklavas and various desserts. We tasted its baklavas in Istanbul, and they were very delicious.
The shop is connected with a restaurant which extends outside the mall on the Promenade. From there we watched a fantastic Dubai Fountain dance and light show from Burj al Khalifa.
This time we tasted a dessert known as “Afet-i Devran Tres Leches Pistachio“.
The “signature dessert” is usually served with a special show at the front of visitors in Hafiz Mustafa’s branches.
The preparation is an unforgettable experience. So, the pistachio roll baklava is cut with a spatula into small pieces, and shaped. The chef put special Hafiz Mustafa’s organic buffalo milk ice cream on top, and then, he sprinkled unique Ala sauce from their particular pitcher over baklavas. Then, pistachio powder is added, which makes this dessert so tasty. The price of this unique dessert is AED 145 (36 EUR).
Souk Al Bahar
“Souk Al Bahar” means the “sailor’s market” in Arabic. It is connected to the Dubai Mall with a walking bridge across the Burj Lake.
Decorated in the old Arabian style, it is an interesting place with more than 100 shops, restaurants, and cafes which are facing the waterfront promenade. In this marketplace, you can find authentic jewellery, handcrafts, clothes, perfumes, carpets…
By the way, the fantastic Palace Downtown Dubai Hotel is located there. It is made and decorated in the traditional Arabic style, with modern and luxury rooms, a spa, a fitness centre, a palm-fringed pool, and 5 unique restaurants.
Burj al Khalifa and Fountain
As I have mentioned before, Dubai Mall is located next to the Burj al Khalifa, the highest building in the world. In fact, the entrance of the Burj al Khalifa is from the Dubai Mall.
The iconic building and Dubai Fountain are must-see tourist places in Dubai. Book online your ticket to visit Burj al Khalifa because it is always very crowded. And enjoy the amazing dance of sound, water and lights of the Dubai Fountain for free.
You can read more about the marvellous Burj al Khalifa and the fountain in the following post here.
Luxury hotels around Dubai Mall
Whether you seek indulgence, breathtaking views or cultural richness, the hotels around Dubai Mall ensure an unforgettable stay in this dynamic city.
There are a few luxury hotels to think about, such as The Armani Hotel in Burj al Khalifa, The Palace Downtown Hotel in Soak al Bahar, and The Adress Hotel Dubai Mall.
Also, there are Rove Downtown, Kempinski Central Avenue, Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown, and Heritage Hotel.
TIPS for visitors
You can spend a few hours or a whole day in Dubai Mall, depending on your time and interests.
Check out some tips for a pleasant visit to this incredible place.
- Wear comfortable shoes and dress appropriately. It is suggested to cover the shoulders and knees.
- The mall is huge and you will spend a lot of time walking around. Also, the mall is airconditioned at approximately 20 degrees, which could be a shock when you go out at 30 or 40 degrees.
- Pets are not allowed inside the mall.
- There is free WiFi in the mall.
- Download the Dubai Mall app to navigate through the mall, which can help you locate specific stores, attractions, and amenities efficiently.
- In the mall, you can find mobile recharge cards, delivery services, lost and found counters, ATMs, and prayer rooms for men and women.
For more information, you can always check the Dubai Mall website.
And of course, enjoy Dubai Mall, the most popular and largest place with luxury goods, delicious dishes and a lot of various entertainment.