Dubai in the United Arab Emirates is known for the luxurious lifestyle of its inhabitants. The shopping, architecture and nightlife scenes are some of the most modern in the world. Though Dubai boasts sleek and elegant technology across the metropolis, the city also lies along the Persian Gulf.
Skyscrapers aside, the area is surrounded by beaches and manmade islands fit for exploration. The proximity to the water provides a prime location for outdoor and sports activities in Dubai.
You can choose between morning, full day and nighttime rides, each offering a ride through the red dunes by camelback, a delicious traditional meal, live belly dancing performances and more. If you enjoy hiking, choose a tour that also includes a trek through the Arabian desert.
A great alternative to camel rides is an action-packed ATV ride across the desert dunes. This exciting excursion allows you to sail across the natural wonder of the Arabian terrain on a speedy four-wheel vehicle.
Choose between a single or double-rider vehicle as you rip-roar through breathtaking landscapes such as Fossil Rock, Big Red Dune and Pink Rock. Strap in your quad bike or buggy with a helmet and gloves for a dune-bashing ride with an experienced guide leading the charge.
One of the most popular outdoor sports and activities in Dubai is a boat trip along the coastline of the magnificent city.
There are many different tour options, including speedboat trips past major landmarks like the Dubai Rulers Private Island, traditional boat tours along the Burj Lake and dinner show boat tours featuring delicious Arabic cuisine and a Tanoura performance.
You can also choose full-day tours that explore the Fjords of the Musandam Peninsula, rent a boat for a self-drive in the gulf, book a private tour for a lavish ride alongside the Dubai skyline or embark on a deep-sea fishing trip while in the coastal city.
Sandboarding is an extreme sport that involves riding down dunes on a board similar to those used in snowboarding. On this outdoor activity, you’ll strap in with both feet at the top of a dune for a wild ride in the Dubai desert.
Carve into the smaller slopes or show your skill on the more challenging dunes for this choose-your-own-adventure. Most sandboarding tours include a traditional Arabic meal and an evening show for entertainment. You can even book dune bashing or dune surf lessons to become an expert on the Red Dune drift.
Desert safari tours are one of the best ways to see as much of the Dubai desert as possible. These excursions begin with a hotel pickup in the city from where you’ll cruise on a six-hour Jeep safari through the Arabian wilderness with a professional driver guide.
Visit a real Bedouin campsite where you can see traditional henna and watch a belly dancer perform before heading back to Dubai. This adventure through the desert can also be done on a Hummer tour instead of a Jeep tour.
Dubai is situated right on the Persian Gulf, boasting crystal clear blue water that is perfect for water activities. Book a jet ski tour to feel your adrenaline build as you whip past the famous city skyline.
You can pick between group excursions, private tours or simply a vehicle rental which allows the freedom of picking your own route. You’ll visit breathtaking destinations such as the Dubai Marina and the architectural wonder of the Burj Al Arab Hotel.
Falconry is a trendy sport in Dubai and is part of the unique culture of the United Arab Emirates. Take a falconry tour to learn how to command the incredible birds and even hold one on your arm.
This family-friendly activity usually includes a safari to the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve where you’ll be able to spot all sorts of native wildlife. You can learn all about the history and importance of falconry while on a group or private guided tour.
Dubai is most impressive from the air, boasting breathtaking architecture, skyscrapers and manmade islands. One of the best ways to get a lay of the land is with an exciting helicopter tour.
Choose between a small group or private excursion to see the most iconic landmarks of the city such as the world’s tallest building, a palm-tree-shaped island archipelago and the 355-meter Jumeirah Emirates Towers.
Many helicopter trips include other outdoor activities such as hot air balloon rides and desert safaris in the price. The most unique way to enjoy a flight over Dubai is on a riveting Gyrocopter ride. These private mini helicopters fit just two people for a thrilling 20-minute cruise over the striking Palm Zone.
Taking a hot air balloon ride over The Great Sandy Desert of Dubai is one of the most magical experiences to be had. This once-in-a-lifetime excursion takes you more than 1200 meters above the ground where you’ll spot wildlife like camels and the breathtaking sunset over the horizon.
There are standard hot air balloon tours as well as combination trips that include a camel or quad ride through the dunes far below. You can also book a private hot air balloon ride for a more exclusive experience.
The city of Dubai offers many opportunities to scuba dive for visitors at all skill levels. You can begin with an aquarium diving experience where you’ll plunge deep into a controlled environment, surrounded by over 65,000 different types of marine creatures.
If you’re hoping to explore the beautiful blue waters of the Arabian city, you can opt for an introductory sea scuba diving tour at Jumeirah Beach for a maximum dive of 12 meters below the surface. There are also boat and shipwreck diving adventures and a PADI 2-day course to get a license during your visit.
This unique water adventure is one of the hottest new activities in Dubai. You’ll attach your feet to a high-speed jet that lifts you up on an adrenaline-pumping flight 14 meters into the air. Feel free to try tricks and stunts during this 30-minute jetpack adventure along the idyllic coastline of Dubai.
Snorkeling is a classic fun activity for the whole family to enjoy while in Dubai. Float above beautiful rocky reefs as you examine the colorful marine life down below through your mask.
Choose between snorkeling excursions complete with a boat ride to the Gulf of Oman or an indoor snorkeling experience in a city aquarium. At the Dubai Mall Aquarium, you can opt for the daring metal cage snorkeling trip to discover over 70 different underwater species including sharks and giant fish.
Strap in for the thrill of a lifetime on the Xline Dubai Marina Zipline from the Amwaj Towers. This exciting ride travels right across the bustling marina and into the Dubai Marina Mall, providing the most spectacular views of the city as you go.
Sail high on this zip lining adventure above the blue-green water as you admire the exquisite architecture and skyscrapers of the record-breaking city.
Glide high meters above the water on a rip-roaring parasail ride in Dubai. Most excursions take place at Jumeirah Beach, where you and up to three friends can get an aerial view of the wealthy city. Most tours last about an hour from start to finish, featuring incredible overlooks of Palm Island and the Dubai marina.
Skydiving over the Palm Drop Zone is one of the most popular outdoor activities in Dubai. On this once-in-a-life trip, you’ll fly up 4000 meters in a plane before a hair-raising 60-second drop. Embrace the feeling of a true free-fall at 54 meters per second while taking in stunning views of Dubai far below.
You’ll have the chance to bring home both photos and videos of your incredible skydiving experience. There is also the opportunity for indoor skydiving sessions at the IFly Dubai arena where you defy gravity without the associated risks.
Kayaking in Dubai is a simple yet fun way to cruise through the beautiful waters of the exotic city. You can choose between group sightseeing tours or a classic beach float while checking out the famous skyline and splendid scenery.
For a more controlled experience, select a clear-bottom kayak tour across beautiful Burj Lake to visit the Dubai fountain right in the heart of the city.
Horse riding tours in Dubai are the perfect way to step away from the glitter of the city center for a more rural adventure. You’ll cross through desert dunes and through barren forests on horseback to become immersed in the nuances of the Arabian desert.
Choose between guided or private horseback riding tours and combination excursions that include camelback treks and dune surfing in the ticket price.
The most unique horse-riding tour is a nighttime excursion that takes place every full moon. This eerie yet ethereal trip is led by the lunar light, leaving the white-colored horses aglow.
Dolphin lovers will delight at the opportunity to play with dolphins at the Atlantis Waterpark in Dubai. This shallow water encounter allows you to interact with the incredible mammals for a full 30 minutes. Watch as the aquatic creatures perform jaw-dropping tricks with their trainers as you learn fascinating facts about their habits and lifestyle.
Test your talent for paddle boarding while taking in the sights and sounds of Dubai on this fun outdoor water activity. You’ll make your way into the stunning Gulf of the city for breathtaking views of the Atlantis Hotel and beyond. You’ll pass by luxury homes, the buzzing marina, Burj Al Arab and Burj Khalifa all while riding on your own personal paddle board.
Book a go-karting experience during your visit to Dubai for an adrenaline-pumping outdoor activity at the city’s famous mall. Your ticket will include access to a challenging course where you’ll race against others and the time to win.
You’ll be outfitted in helmets and jumpsuits before boarding your electric kart and hitting the track. Choose between timed sessions or open race events during your visit.
Glide through the Dubai marina while attached to the back of a speedboat for a fun adventure. Once you arrive, you’ll be geared up in the correct equipment for your ride, and inform your instructor of your experience level before hitting the water.
You’ll cruise across the bay on either a wakeboard or an eight-person raft while catching views of the famous Dubai skyscrapers. Hold on tight to your rope or raft as you test your water-sports skills.
Another option for exploring the Dubai dunes is an exciting KTM dirt bike tour. On this excursion, you’ll head out to the desert on a 500CC dirt bike where you’ll go flying and bashing across the arid region. You’ll enjoy 2 hours on the bike as you check out the scenery outside of the city center.
This unique tour in Dubai instructs visitors how to catch your own crabs for a fresh seafood dinner. You’ll join your group and guide for a short journey to Umm Al Quwain, located right on the Persian Gulf. From there, you’ll dress in your crab-catching gear and board a small boat for a short ride out into the water.
Use a torch to catch as many fresh crabs as you can before heading back to shore. A chef will prepare your meal to enjoy buffet-style before returning to Dubai.
Book an escape room experience in Dubai to add a layer of suspense to your trip. These 60-minute challenges encourage you to use your best puzzle-solving skills to outwit your game master. Work with your team to gather clues and find a way out in this race against time.