Was it just us or did this week feel awfully tedious and never-ending? If like us, you too have been counting down the days to the weekend this page is the perfect place. Our list of 49 things to do in Dubai this weekend ensures it’s going to be a beautiful two days of eating, drinking, and experiencing some really cool music festivals, live screenings of Cricket World Cup matches and more.
1. Bring the house down at Defected Dubai Music Festival
Defected Records’ first-ever Dubai festival kicks off on October 13. The three-day festival running until October 15 will take partygoers from warehouses to beaches to a stunning pool with sets by house music legends such as Monki, Rio Tashan, Roger Sanchez, Sam Divine, You’re in for an unforgettably magical and musical weekend. Get tickets here
2. Get your fashion update for the season at Dubai Fashion Week
Dubai Fashion Week is running until October 15 in d3 (Dubai Design District) and it’s your ultimate destination for all the new trends, looks and styles. The annual fashion event’s S/S24 edition features fashion showcases by top brands such as Carolina Herrera, trunk shows, pop-ups and more. Find details here
3. End the week on a funny note at this stand-up comedy event
Dubai-based comedy collective Dubomedy’s Stand Up All Stars show will get the giggles rolling at Zabeel Theatre, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray on October 14. Five of the best local comedians will take to the stage – Ali Al Sayed, John Achkar, Mina Liccione, Miqdaad Dohadwala and Imah Dumagay knock you out with punchlines. Get tickets here
4. Watch spectacular Arab films at Cinema Akil
Cinephiles, Arab Cinema Week is running until October 15 at the arthouse theatre, Cinema Akil. It’s your chance to immerse yourself in feature and short films from Lebanon, Sudan, the UAE, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Syria, Iraq, and Palestine. The films being screened also include the creations of six female directors. Get tickets and schedule here.
5. Have a freaky Friday at this special screening of The Exorcist with live actors
Prefer your films less cerebral but with brains and guts spilling out? Roxy Cinemas is celebrating Friday the 13th, the spookiest day of the year (besides Halloween), with a one-off showing of the latest instalment of the classic horror franchise The Exorcist. Two cinema halls will be decked out with live actors in costumes who’ll pop up when you least expect it and have you shrieking. Maybe in delight but mostly in fear. Full details here.
6. Head to Ripe Market’s outdoor event and shop local
The Ripe Market is back for the winter and they’re setting up stalls and shops in Academy Park, Umm Suqueim from October 14-15. That’s just the first round, the market will continue taking place every Saturday and Sunday until May 2024. Besides the organic farmers market that gives it its name, Ripe will also feature stables, a pop-up by Smash Room, a plants nursery by Lavender Garden Centre, boot camps and carting tracks and more. You can also shop for artisan food products, handmade accessories and fashion, sign up for free yoga classes and be entertained by live music performances. Find more details here
Entry is free; from 9am-9pm on Saturdays and 9am – 7pm on Sundays
7. Sit back inside a Japanese bamboo garden terrace
Honeycomb Hi-Fi, Dubai’s first vinyl and listening bar in the Pullman Downtown Hotel has transformed its terrace area to resemble a Japanese garden until November 10. The special bamboo garden will be decorated with chopstick holders, coasters, noren curtains, and a display area for Japanese beverages. The outdoor space will also offer a limited-time beverage menu.
Friday to Saturday from 7:3 pm – 3am. WhatsApp 054 289 1688 for bookings
8. Train those muscles with celebrity Pilates instructor Yasmin Karachiwala
Fitness trainer to the stars, Yasmine Karachiwala, is conducting classes at her Dubai studio in the Greens, PAD (Pilates and Dance). From October 14-16, you can book a session for AED 250 with the fitness guru who’s known for sculpting the bodies of Bollywood stars such as Katrina Kaif, Deepika Padukone, and Alia Bhatt. Classes will take place at 6pm on October 14, 10am on October 15 and two sessions at 10:15am and 6pm on October 16.
For bookings call 04 294 1745 or visit their website
9. Fight Breast Cancer by attending this charitable wrestling match
To mark Pinktober and Breast Cancer Awareness month, Dubai’s only wrestling tournament, WrestleFest DXB is hosting special face-offs on October 14 at Warehouse 4 in Al Quoz to raise funds for Breast Cancer Awareness initiatives. Regional and local Pro wrestlers of different nationalities will fight each other in the ring to bodyslam a common foe – breast cancer. Proceeds from the matches will go to Pink Caravan, the UAE-based Breast Cancer initiative. Tickets from AED 60 are available here.
11. Raise your steins at Lilly’s month-long Oktoberfest celebrations
Lilly’s Social House Bar & Restaurant is bringing a slice of Germany to Business Bay all October long with traditional Bavarian beer and food such as bratwursts, schnitzels, pretzels and more. Guests get a 15% discount on all German hops and food.
From 3pm to 3am daily; call 04 8732192 or WhatsApp 056 263 8721 for bookings
12. Get ahead on festive shopping at this free Diwali exhibition at Taj JLT
Diwali, the Indian festival of lights is a full month away, which means it’s shopping time. A special festive exhibition by Xpatzhub featuring homegrown bands is happening at the Taj Jumeirah Lake Towers on October 14. 120 exhibitors will have set up stalls featuring festive clothing, jewellery, skincare products, footwear and accessories and also gift items.
Entry is free; from 12pm-10pm
13. Check out this burger-themed hotel room in City Walk
We’ve heard of freshly laundered sheets that smell good. But sheets that look good enough to eat? Now that’s a first. A one-of-a-kind collaboration between homegrown hotel brand Rove Hotels and SLAW burgers has resulted in a limited-edition menu of burgers and sides. Besides, this collab has also resulted in a themed room fitted out with SLAW-branded bedsheets, neon sauce lights dripping down the walls, burger-themed wall stickers, a SLAW-inspired PS5, and much more. The menu is available throughout Rove Hotels but this kooky room is tucked away in Rove Hotel City Walk.
Call 04 561 9999 or WhatsApp 050 517 6833 for details
14. Laze around by an infinity pool at Adress Grand Creek Harbour
The resort’s stunning infinity pool with Dubai Creek views is now accessible all-day with a special day pass that gets you 20% discounts at Luma Pool Lounge and The Spa. Kids in tow? You can park them at the Qix Kids Club for free while you cut some laps in the pool. Passes cost AED 200 per adult and AED 100 per kid.
From 7am-7pm; call 04 275 8888 for bookings
15. Celebrate the Indian festival of Navratri at Dubai Sports City
Atrangi Navratri is happening from October 13-15 at Time Square, Dubai Sports City. The grand celebration will feature traditional dances like Garba and Dandiya which you can participate in. Beats 16 Band will perform on the 13th and 14th. On October 15, rock out to Dubai’s largest Disco Dandiya celebration. The family-friendly event has an adults-only area and kids below teh age of 10 can enter for free. Tickets cost AED 45 for a single-day pass and AED 100 for a 3-day pass; buy them here
16. Groove the night away to Syrian singer Hussein Al Deek at Bazaar
Bazaar, the Beirut-born club in Meydan Grandstand is bringing in Syrian singer Hussein Al Deek on October 13. Dance the night away to his hits such as No’tit Doefi, Maaik Aal Mot, Sawa Sawa and more at the vibrant venue.
Open from 9pm-4am; call 050 998 3873 for reservations
The epic sporting rivalry of the India-Pakistan cricket teams will come to a head at their first round-robin matches on October 14 at 12:30pm UAE time. Wondering where you can watch this historic showdown in Dubai in stadium-like settings with fellow fans? We’ve got you covered with a list of 13 sports bars, pubs and cafes screening the match live. Click here for details.
Take a walk in the park this long weekend as one of the city’s favourite outdoor attractions returns for its 2023-2024 season. The Dubai Miracle Garden will open doors to the public on October 1 after closing for the summer on June 4. Pose against and take pictures with insane floral creations such as an Emirates A380 Airbus made of flowers, a giant grassy green teddy bear, topiary castles made of shrubs, heart-shaped tunnels and more.
Click here for our full guide of what to see inside the Miracle Garden.
31. Savour a stylish Parisian breakfast until 3pm at Foquet’s
Who said only the early bird catches the worm? Or in this case, breakfast. Fouquet’s Dubai is extending weekend breakfast until 3pm, so you can enjoy a meal with an air of je ne sais quoi even at noon. Located in the Burj Plaza in Downtown Dubai, you get to lounge under red parasols with Burj Khalifa views while tucking into scrambled eggs, crumbly pastries, Normandy-style crepes and the perfect cafe au lait.
From 8am-3pm; call 04 524 5301 or email email@example.com
32. Take the family to this souk-themed family brunch where kids eat free
It’s a whole new world at the Meydan Hotel’s new ‘Souk Brunch’. Not just because it’s themed after the vibrant Arabian food markets and stalls of yore but also because it’s one of the few buffet brunches in town where kids 12 and younger can eat for free! Talk about nailing the concept of Arabian hospitality. There’ll be entertainment galore too – a henna artist, a live calligrapher, music by a DJ and a dedicated play zone for kids. From AED 249 per person.
Every Saturday; from 1pm-4pm. Call 04 381 3111 or WhatsApp 056 525 4040 for bookings
33-44. Watch Rugby World Cup matches live at these venues
Rugby fans can witness the battle for the Ryder Cup at over 12 different sports bars and restaurants in Dubai screening the matches live on giant screens. They’re offering special meal deals, have set up fan zones to recreate the communal energy of a stadium and offer discounts on drinks. Find the full list here
45-46. Play hard at these fabulous parties by The Spot after working hard all week
The Spot’s spectacular weekend dos are back with a bang. Choose from Friday afternoon pool parties, brunching at one of Dubai’s prettiest restaurants and paint the town red this weekend in Dubai. Get more info and tickets below
47. Freak out at this Friday at this fab ladies’ night
Girls who just wanna have fun this weekend in Dubai should head out to MEDA, the new tapas bar and dining spot in Taj Dubai in Business Bay. Their Chicas Night ladies’ night offer gets each gal 3 hours of unlimited grape or selected cocktails and a choice of 2 tapas from a curated menu for AED 119.
From 6pm-11pm; call 056 711 2277 or book online
48. Spice up your Sundays with free salsa classes at Trader Vic’s
Usually, we’re stumbling around Trader Vic’s, the tiki bar and restaurant chain, thanks to one too many Mai Tais. On Sundays though, you’ll be swaying around the Trader Vic’s in Hilton Dubai Palm Jumeirah because of free salsa dance classes. In-house professional salsa dancers, Frank and Paula will teach you basic salsa steps such as cuadrado, copa, and patada in a one-hour session.
From 4pm-5pm; call 04 230 0073
It’s one thing to gaze awestruck at Starry Night and Sunflowers but it’s a whole other deal to be surrounded by it in 360 degrees – entire rooms will be transformed into a canvas. That and more is what awaits you at this glorious Van Gogh x Japan digital art exhibition at the Theatre of Digital Arts in Dubai. Plus, you can also participate in tea ceremonies, ikebana flower arrangement workshops and more. It’s only on until October 31, so hurry! Get tickets here