Global Village is reopening with all the usual fanfare and splendour on October 18, ladies and gents. Dubai’s iconic entertainment destination will open its doors at 6pm next Wednesday for a spectacular 28th season that will run through until April 28, 2024.
That’s six months of shopping, dining, concerts, shows and more. Dubai’s most visited attraction that’s a favourite of tourists and residents alike has lined up an exciting array of events for its 2023-2024 edition. This time around too, the number of pavilions remains the same at 27 national-themed pavilions. You should brace yourself for over 40,000 shows and 400+ performers to entertain you.
What to see inside Global Village
While details on international concerts by big stars (a Global Village staple) will be dropped closer to the opening, we know what thrilling shows and performances are on the horizon. Let our ultimate guide of what to see and do in Global Village help you out.
27 themed pavilions conveying over 90 different cultures will enthral you. Some are modelled after iconic structures and landmarks of a country, so photo-ops are going to be plenty. Others recreate the bustling bazaars and streets of their cities with traditional wares – from decor and clothing to street food, jewellery and spices. All pavilions regularly hold cultural performances and folk dances on their own stages. You’ll witness Omani folk dances and flamenco from Spain salsa all within the same hour.
The theme park element at Global Village is packed up neatly inside the Carnaval area with 170 gravity-defying rides and over 125 arcades and skill games. You’ll know how to find this fun zone thanks you all the shrieks and screams of delight as well as the flashing lights.
From carousels for the little ones to stomach-churning rides like a giant wheel and roller coasters for adrenaline junkies, you can find it all here. Family-friendly fun-fair games such as shooting hoops, darts and more will let you win just giant squishy plush toys but also luxury items like iPhones and Playstations.
3. Ripleys Believe It Or Not
The international chain of museums full of strange and curious wonders and oddities has its own branch in Dubai inside Global Village. Pop culture galleries featuring comic book superheroes, mirror mazes that will boggle your mind, and visual illusions like a moving 4D theatre are just a few of the 250 displays to explore inside this ‘odditorium’. Last year, a 14-foot killer crocodile, Chamber of Horrors (a haunted house experience) and Cristiano Ronaldo’s Money Legs exhibit made of more than US$100,000 of shredded currency were the highlights.
4. Dining and food
Over 200 restaurants and food stalls pepper Global Village’s sprawling expanse of 17,200,000 sq. ft. Pop-ups by popular restaurants such as Pakistani restaurant Bundoo Khan’s or Khachapuris at Georgian eatery Old Tiblisi returns yearly. It’s the street food stalls here that take the cake every season with unique dishes that turn into viral TikTok hits. Whether it’s Chiki’s loaded chicken sandos, miracle French toast or octopus skewers.
Make sure you walk down Road of Asia for authentic street food, ingredients and food products from 13 Asian countries including Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Nepal, Bhutan, Philippines. The Chaat Bazaar section is a hub of spicy samosas, burst-in-your-mouth pani puris and other Indian delicacies. Meanwhile, the Railway Market recreates Bangkok’s Maeklong Railway Market with endless desserts, candy, cakes, pastries, chocolates and ice cream.
The Floating Market is teeming with docked boats-turned-food stalls that serve Asian seafood dishes, steaming, from Japan and Korea to Indonesia and Malaysia. Two other food-centric streets to check out here are Fiesta Street and Happiness Street.
5. Shows and events
The dizzying drums of AINJAA, the drums troupe will return to the destination. From the Philippines America’s Got Talent alumni Urban Crew will make jaws drop with their acrobatic performances.
Out of Japan, the Fusion Japan team will take over the Main Stage to amuse onlookers with slick hip-hop moves. the Dhol Foundation are flying from the UK in February to showcase the magic of South Asian drums and Celtic tunes blending.
Action aficionados sound pencil in the fast, furious and futuristic stunt shows by Cyber City Stunt Show. Set in the year 2075, there’ll be flying bikes, LED-covered police cars and a tank whizzing past.
Roll up, roll up as the circus will also come to town – Merry-Go-Round, a live circus troupe featuring jugglers, fire breathers and Acro dancers has been confirmed. Meanwhile, The Toy Shop is a theatrical act about toys coming to life after dark.
Kids’ Theatre returns this year too with the following theatrical productions to entertain younger audiences: The Wonderers, PJ Masks, and Peter Rabbit. A variety of interactive workshops will also be held at the Kids’ Theatre.
6. Fireworks at Global Village
As always, what is a visit to Global Village without witnessing a scintillating display of fireworks? Fireworks will light up the skies above the domed and arched entrances of this tourist hotspot every Friday and Saturday at 9pm.
How to get Global Village tickets?
Simply log into www.globalvillage.ae or download the Global Village mobile app to get a variety of tickets to suit your budget and needs and bag a 10% discount.
There are 3 types of tickets: The Value ticket is valid from Sunday to Thursday (excluding Public Holidays). Any Day tickets offer you the flexibility of visiting on weekends and public holidays. Finally, Family Packs will launch once Global Village opens.
Ticket prices start from AED22.5 and include access to concerts by international stars, pavilions and rides and other entertainment performances.
What are Global Village timings?
Doors open at 4pm every day of the week. Stroll around the park from Sunday to Wednesday till 12am. However, on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 1am is the closing time. Tuesdays are exclusively for ladies and families. Unless it’s an official public holiday.