When you think of Dubai, you may well imagine world-class shopping and luxurious hotels. While Dubai is a playground for the rich and famous, you’d be surprised to find it has just as many options for budget travelers. If you want to enjoy Dubai to the fullest on a limited budget, this guide will show you where to go and what to do.
Top Budget Activities
Most people wouldn’t consider Dubai a cheap destination. However, these budget-friendly things to do enable you to have the most fun without breaking the bank.
Explore Dubai via Metro
Transportation is where the biggest chunk of your travel budget is allocated. Therefore, finding a cheap way to travel can slash a huge percentage off your budget. Getting around Dubai via Metro is a practical and smart solution.
You can easily get from point A to point B while living as the locals do. You can explore as many sights in Dubai without hurting your pocket. Purchase the NOL card and use it for metro rides, buses, and trams. All you have to do is hop on the Metro and swipe the card for every ride, which makes it more convenient.
Beach Day at La Mer
La Mer Beach is one of the most popular destinations in Dubai for its cool street art and lovely beach views. But there is one more reason for its popularity – it’s cheap. This attraction is available for tourists for free (except when you buy from one of the many food stalls nearby).
People flock to this beach to cool off or have a beach picnic (don’t forget your sunscreen!) during summer. It is also popular in the winter. It’s an excellent spot for a leisurely stroll or people-watching. Make sure to try the famous Amorino ice cream, which comes in a rose-shaped ice cream cone.
Marvel at the Dubai Fountain
The Dubai Fountain is one of the top attractions in Dubai and many people are surprised to find out that it is also one of the cheapest things to do. If you are looking for budget activities in Dubai, go to the Dubai Mall where you can watch the fountain show for free. The fountain spans 900 feet in length and the water dances to various tunes.
If you want to get a closer view of the fountain show, you can pay 20 Dirhams or 5.45 USD to gain entry to the Dubai Fountain Boardwalk. This access gives you a front-row view of the marvelous display. Recently, pedal boat trips were launched which is another excellent way to experience the stunning show from a new perspective.
Check Out the Dubai Marina
The Dubai Marina is a free destination in Dubai, which encompasses many attractions including JBR Beach. You might be surprised that it is listed as one of the budget activities in Dubai since it is an affluent neighborhood. However, the Dubai Marina Walk is perfect for anyone who likes to sit by the water and soak up the view.
There are several luxury yachts, high-end restaurants, and the Dubai Marina Mall nearby. Visiting any of these destinations would entail a huge chunk of your budget. If strapped for cash, you can sit back and enjoy the night lights.
Visit Zabeel Park
While Dubai’s cityscape is dominated by skyscrapers, there are lots of green spaces in the city and that includes Zabeel Park. The city of Dubai is all about promoting sustainability, and this park is proof of that commitment.
Known as one of the largest green spaces in Dubai, Zabeel Park is also a budget-friendly attraction. The entrance to Zabeel Park is only 5 Dirhams or 1.40 USD. It is home to various attractions and activities, such as the Ripe Market (open every Friday and Saturday from 9 AM to 7 PM), a bike track, a mini-train for kids, a boating lake, and picnic tables. It’s the perfect spot to enjoy a laid-back day in Dubai.
Go on the Abra Ride
Hopping on an Abra Ride is the easiest and most convenient way to cross Dubai Creek. It is also a cheap form of transportation that offers a unique experience and one-of-a-kind views.
The Abra is a traditional wooden boat that runs on a motor and features a single bench. The cost of each Abra ride is only 1 Dirham or 30 cents. Thus, it is cheap to get around and immerse yourself in the Dubai local experience.
Tour the Jumeirah Mosque
If you’re a fan of architecture and culture, you’ll want to include a visit to the Jumeirah Mosque in your travel itinerary. Daily tours are available at the Jumeirah Mosque for 20 Dirhams or 5.45 USD. The tours are organized by the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding and are a great way to learn more about the history of Dubai’s largest mosque. Each tour takes about 75 minutes, and visitors can ask the guide questions if they want to know more about the culture and history.
If you’re planning to visit the Jumeirah Mosque, take note of and follow the proper dress code.
Learn History at the Dubai Museum
The Dubai Museum is one of the best places to learn about the history and evolution of Dubai. The city is known for its pearl diving past and trading history. You will learn more about the city’s historical past by exploring the various artifacts and exhibits on display at the museum.
An entrance ticket to the museum only costs 3 Dirhams or 80 USD cents. Therefore, it’s a great addition to your itinerary if you’re looking for budget activities in Dubai.
Go on a Street Food Tour
Dubai offers world-class and luxurious dining experiences that might seem out of reach for some tourists. But even on a budget, you don’t need to deprive yourself of delicious, authentic cuisine. You can find many food stalls that sell delicious cheap food. Several homegrown restaurants also serve local delicacies, such as shawarma or hummus, which can satisfy you without wrecking your budget.