10 Places to Visit in Dubai for Free (2024)

Dubai? Ah, the land of luxury, towering skyscrapers, and seemingly endless opulence. It’s easy to think a trip there would require a small fortune. But hold on a minute! Who said you need a bottomless bank account to explore this fascinating city? Think again!

We’re here to debunk that myth and unveil the 10 best places to visit in Dubai for free without breaking the bank. Yes, you heard that right—zero dollars required. So, whether you’re a budget traveler, a savvy explorer, or just looking to stretch your dirhams a little further, we’ve got you covered. Let’s dive into the best of Dubai on a dime!

Tunel with fishes and coral of Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo

1. Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo

Number one on our list of free things to do in Dubai is the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo. This aquatic wonderland is located in the huge Dubai Mall and offers a fascinating insight into the underwater world at no extra cost.

As you enter the mall, you’ll be impressed by the scale of the aquarium, which offers an unparalleled view of the underwater world through a huge acrylic glass panel. Admire over 140 species of marine life, including rays, sharks and beautiful colorful fish gliding through the crystal clear waters.

But the experience doesn’t have to stop there. Venture into the underwater zoo where you can encounter a variety of creatures, from playful otters to piranhas. And it’s all free.

Happy Girl infront of Burj Khalifa on a sunny day.

2. Best Selfie Spots for Burj Al Arab and Burj Khalifa

Are you ready to improve your Instagram look without spending a single penny? Head to two of Dubai’s most famous landmarks – the Burj Al Arab and the Burj Khalifa – to take some spectacular selfies.

Let’s start with the Burj Al Arab, often referred to as the most luxurious hotel in the world. Even though a stay in this hotel requires a considerable investment, it costs nothing to take a selfie with this sail-shaped marvel. At the nearby public beach, Jumeirah Beach, you can take a photo of the Burj Al Arab towering majestically in the background.

The next highlight of the program is a visit to the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. Although the ascent to the viewing platform comes at a price, there are many free viewing points to admire this architectural masterpiece. From the outdoor promenade of the Dubai Mall or the Dubai Fountain Boardwalk, you have an unobstructed view of the Burj Khalifa rising into the sky.

So grab your camera, say “Cheese” and watch the likes roll in!


Fancy seeing the skyline of the desert metropolis in the background? Then head to Sheikh Zayed Road, the most famous street in Dubai and home to Dubai's skyscrapers, such as the Emirates Tower.

3. Visiting Dubai Marina

Illuminated Dubai Marina letters at night with the Dubai skyline in the background

When it comes to exploring Dubai without breaking the bank, don’t miss Dubai Marina. There are countless free attractions you can enjoy in this bustling waterfront district. What exactly can you do here?

First of all, you should take a leisurely stroll along the Dubai Marina promenade. It’s a fantastic way to take in the breathtaking views of the towering skyscrapers, luxurious yachts and lively atmosphere.

Fancy a little more exercise? Then lace up your sneakers and head to the Marina Walk.

Viewing Point at Dubai Creek Harbour at sunset.

4. The Viewing Point at Dubai Creek Harbour

Are you ready for a new view of Dubai’s glittering cityscape? Then look no further than The Viewing Point, a hidden gem located on the beautiful Dubai Creek.

Located 11 meters above sea level, The Viewing Point features a 70-meter-long walkway that gracefully stretches across the calm waters of Dubai Creek. As you stroll along this elevated deck, you’ll be rewarded with fantastic views of the Downtown Dubai skyline. From the majestic silhouette of the Burj Khalifa to the impressive architecture of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Library and the Sheikh Zayed Road, every angle is a feast for the eyes.

Best of all, the Viewing Point is open around the clock, so you can experience the magic of the Dubai skyline at any time of day or night.

5. Free Experience Of Dubai's Culture And Heritage

Despite its reputation as a modern metropolis, Dubai has a vibrant history and deep-rooted heritage waiting to be explored. From ancient mosques to historic neighborhoods, there are countless places to visit in Dubai for free that give an insight into the soul of this dynamic city.

Bur Dubai Grand Mosque

At the Grand Mosque of Bur Dubai, you can feel a world of tranquillity and spirituality. This architectural gem is a testament to Dubai’s Islamic heritage and welcomes visitors of all faiths to admire its impressive design. The mosque is open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and is located opposite Dubai Museum.

TIP: The Jumeirah Mosque is another way to learn more about Islam or Dubai’s history.

Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood

Travel back in time as you visit Al Fahidi Historic Quarter. Also known as Al Bastakiya, this charming enclave offers a glimpse into Dubai’s humble beginnings as a bustling trading port. Admire the traditional wind tower architecture, stroll past restored courtyard houses and discover quaint galleries and cafés tucked away in hidden corners.

Coffee culture in the coffee museum

End your cultural journey on a caffeinated note at the Coffee Museum, a hidden gem in the heart of Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood. Step inside and be transported into a world of aromatic beans, coffee traditions and coffee folklore from around the world. Stroll through the themed galleries that explore the history of coffee, from its origins in Ethiopia to its journey along ancient trade routes.

Local markets

Section of a shop window full of gold jewelry, such as necklaces, earrings and bracelets.

An authentic experience of the Arab world is a visit to the souks. These local markets, such as the Gold Souk and the Spice Souk, take you into a world of aromas, local food and souvenirs.

Begin your journey at the Gold Souk, where you’ll be greeted by a dazzling array of glittering gold jewelry, from traditional Arabic designs to modern creations. Marvel at the intricate craftsmanship of the goldsmiths as they showcase their stunning pieces, ranging from delicate earrings and intricate necklaces to elaborate bangles and rings. Even if you don’t want to buy anything, it’s a feast for the eyes to admire the beauty and opulence of the displays.

Soak up the lively atmosphere, haggle over prices and gain an insight into the authentic spirit of the city – of course all for free entry.

Dubais Dancing Fountains at night.

6. Experience Dubais Dancing Fountains

The shows of Dubai Fountains are an absolute must! Head to the Dubai Fountain and enjoy the spectacular, choreographed water, music and light show that takes place every evening. The next cool water show awaits you at the Dubai Festival City Mall. The IMAGINE show is a captivating multimedia spectacle that combines water, light and fire effects with breathtaking projections.

Boardwalk at Palm Jumeirah Beach with the Dubai Skyline in the background.

7. Dubai's Coastal Charm: Beaches and Boardwalks

More fantastic free things to do in Dubai is hitting the beaches. With its pristine sands and crystal-clear waters, Dubai offers a plethora of beach options for sun-seekers and water enthusiasts alike. Here are a few free beach spots you should definitely check out:

  1. Al Sufouh Beach: Tucked away between Dubai Marina and the iconic Burj Al Arab, Al Sufouh Beach offers a quieter and more serene setting compared to some of the city’s more bustling beaches. With its soft sands and calm waters, it’s the perfect spot for a leisurely day by the sea.

  2. The Walk: Situated in the vibrant Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) district, this bustling pedestrian strip offers a delightful blend of (window)shopping and entertainment options, all set against the stunning backdrop of the Arabian Gulf.

  3. BoardWalk at Palm Jumeirah: For those looking for a unique beach experience, head to the BoardWalk at Palm Jumeirah. This picturesque promenade stretches along the crescent of the Palm Jumeirah, offering breathtaking views of the Dubai skyline and the iconic Atlantis hotel.

  4. Arabian Gulf Beaches: Finally, don’t forget to explore the numerous public beaches. From Kite Beach to Umm Suqeim Beach (also known as Sunset Beach), these free beach spots offer a mix of amenities and stunning views of the Dubai coastline.

China Town red and blue lights

8. Discover Dubai's Chinatown in the Dubai Mall

Dubai Mall’s Chinatown is a cultural blend of bright colors, enticing scents and vibrant energy that offers a fascinating glimpse into the heart of China in the middle of Dubai. Despite being thousands of miles away from the Middle Kingdom, this bustling district within the mall transports visitors to the streets of Beijing or Shanghai with its authentic restaurants, traditional stores and vibrant atmosphere. You fancy authentic Chinese cuisine, are looking for unique souvenirs or just want to enjoy the lively atmosphere – a visit to Chinatown promises an unforgettable experience that won’t cost you a dirham.

9. Escape to nature in Al Barsha Pond Park

Park with a lake and some boats outside of Dubai.

In the midst of Dubai’s urban landscape lies a relaxing oasis – Al Barsha Pond Park. This green sanctuary offers a tranquil place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Best of all, entry is completely free, making it the perfect destination for budget-conscious travelers and nature lovers.

Al Barsha Pond Park is not only a paradise for adults, but also a fantastic destination for families with children. The little ones can let off steam in the park’s playgrounds, which are equipped with swings, slides and climbing frames and promise hours of entertainment.

Thousands of pink flamingos in a lake with the Dubai skyline in the background.

10. Birdwatching at Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary

For nature lovers who want to immerse themselves in Dubai’s wildlife, a visit to the Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary is a must. This sanctuary is home to a variety of bird species, making it a birdwatcher’s paradise. From herons to eagles, you will have the opportunity to observe these magnificent animals in their natural habitat. Also look out for the popular flamingos, which are mainly found near the Ras Al Khor Road. They add a bright pink splash of color to the wetlands and make for an unforgettable sight. So, grab your binoculars and get ready for an unforgettable birdwatching experience at Ras Al Khor Wildlife Sanctuary – and it’s all free!

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