Dubai has a reputation for being an expensive city that tempts you to happily spend all your dirhams on five star hotels, fancy restaurants and expensive trips to shopping malls ... which is true! But there are also other fun and cheap alternatives to spend your free time in Dubai without digging a deep hole inside your pocket.
So, here are 5 budget friendly ways to spend your weekend in Dubai without having to live on bread and tea for the rest of the month.
1. Kayaking and paddle boarding (100 dirhams [$27])
Enjoy a day at Kite Beach where you can surf, workout, tan and take some really cool selfies all at once. Starting from as little as 50 dirhams, you can rent a kayak or a paddle board and spend an active day under the sun.
Ola’s tip: For a tasty and cheap meal after a long day on the beach, head to Bu Qatir where you can find the freshest catch of the day for as cheap as 60 dirhams.
2. Bounce Dubai (80 dirhams)
If it is too hot outside or if you are looking for a fun group activity then Bounce Dubai is what you need! This place makes you feel like a child again as you bounce all day long on giant trampolines while listening to head-banging tunes.
Ola’s tip: Make sure to get the group discount when you book for a large number of people.
3. Back in time at Al Fahidi (100 dirhams)
See a different side of Dubai with a trip to Al Fahidi historical district, which offers a glimpse into the city’s heritage and traditional architecture. You can visit the Dubai museum for only 3 dirhams, or buy beautiful pashmina scarves for 10 dirhams or take a trip in the water taxi (abra) for 1 dirham!
Ola’s tip: For a delicious meal after a long walk or for winding down with some tea and shisha, visit the Arabian Teahouse in Fahidi Street. It is a true hidden gem inside the old town.
4. Mini camping trip in Al Qudra Lake (200 dirhams)
Camping trips can be hectic, tiring and expensive, and that is why a mini camping trip at Al Qudra Lake is a better and much more economical option for nature lovers. The man-made lake in the heart of Saih al Salam is a great spot for setting up your tent and BBQ kit while enjoying the company of exotic birds and swans!
Ola’s tip: Take everything you need with you because there are no shops or facilities in sight.
5. Defying gravity at IFly (165 dirhams)
If you are looking for that adrenaline rush but don’t have the budget for a skydive experience, then IFly is your answer. The gravity defying chamber at Mirdif City Center allows you to weightlessly float inside a wind tunnel while enjoying a birde’s-eye-view over your surroundings.
Ola’s tip: Make sure to pre-book online to guarantee a cheaper ticket.