Dubai's beaches, sandy areas with plenty of atmosphere
Although people don’t usually visit Dubai for its beaches, they’re certainly an attraction and an ideal complement to long days of sightseeing amidst the skyscrapers. These sandy beaches, many of which are located on man-made palm islands, offer a beachfront that has everything you could wish for. It’s a real pleasure to walk on the fine sand or take a dip in the gulf’s warm waters. However, the surrounding attractions are so tempting that it won’t be long before you succumb to them. You’ll soon want to go surfing or kitesurfing, have a drink in the nearby bars, stroll along the promenade, or even visit the nearby shops.
One of the most common concerns when travelling to Dubai is what women should wear on the beach. There’s a double standard here, as tourists can wear swimming costumes or bikinis while on the beach (don’t even think about going topless). Nor will people say anything to you if you walk along the promenade in a sarong. However, you only have to look in shop windows to see that they are full of so-called “burkinis”, swimming costumes that expose the bare minimum (the feet, hands, and face). Also, bear in mind that many hotels have private beaches, so if the hotel chain isn’t a local one, it can follow its own rules.
- Sunset Beach o Umm Suqeim Beach
- La Mer Beach
- Kite Beach
- JBR Marina Beach
- Drift Beach
- Open Beach
- Dónde alojarse en Dubái
Sunset Beach o Umm Suqeim Beach
We begin our tour of the best beaches in Dubai at one that’s just wonderful, Sunset Beach. Also known as Umm Suqeim Beach, it’s one of the most popular beaches for photo opportunities with the Burj Al Arab hotel in the background. I’m sure you’ve seen one on Instagram. You can walk for several kilometres on this large stretch of fine white sand and practise sports such as paddle surfing and kitesurfing. One of the most beautiful moments on this beach is at sunset. Don’t miss the sunset with the sea and the Dubai skyline in the background.
La Mer Beach
This is one of the most complete beaches in Dubai, as not only does it offer you a beautiful sandy beach dotted with palm trees in one of Jumeirah’s most exclusive areas, but there’s also an attractive range of activities on offer here. At Mer Beach you can start the day by strolling along the beach, lying in a hammock or doing some water sports, and continue with a good dose of culture and cuisine. There are a number of art installations on this beach, as well as lively bars and restaurants with a wide range of cuisine. Without a doubt, it’s a perfect place to enjoy as a couple or even as a family because it has a water park, the fun-filled Laguna Waterpark.
Kite Beach is a paradise for sports lovers. And not just water sports such as kitesurfing, which fills the sky with the multicoloured tones of the kites, but also surfing, paddle surfing, and even beach volleyball. If you’re sporty, enjoy this adrenaline- and fun-filled environment, and if you want to warm up beforehand, go for a walk along a 14 km stretch of promenade that runs alongside the beach. Of course, there’s no need to overdo it either. You can also simply enjoy the crystal-clear waters of this beach, its fine sand, and the fast-food places nearby. The hamburger restaurant Salt has a very good reputation, so let us know what it’s like.
JBR Marina Beach
This is another of Dubai’s best beaches, one of the most popular with visiting families. It’s located in the Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) and has all the services you could need. It’s spacious, clean, tidy, with bars and restaurants within walking distance. It’s impossible to get bored on this beach in Dubai as it offers a wide range of activities such as yoga, surfing and sailing classes, jet ski and kayak hire, camel rides along the beach, and very close by, at The Beach, there’s a large shopping area with beautiful boutiques.
A common feature of Dubai’s beaches is the enclosing of private spaces. Hotels often do this and set up exclusive beach clubs where you can spend a fantastic day with everything you need. Can you see yourself on one of the luxurious Balinese beds at Drift Beach, swimming in an infinity pool overlooking Palm Island Bay? What’s more, you don’t even have to be staying there. You only have to pay a fee depending on whether you want to spend the day, or eat in its excellent restaurants, etc. It’s undoubtedly a treat you deserve. If you’re travelling with your family, bear in mind that children under the age of 16 aren’t allowed to enter.
There are beaches in Dubai, as you can see, and some of them are very popular due to their proximity to the city’s Downtown area. Open Beach is public and perfect for a dip or a bite to eat before heading back to work or in between your sightseeing. Being public and free, it doesn’t look as spectacular as the hotel beaches, but it’s worth it to unwind and listen to the lapping of the waves. The views of the city skyline are also stunning from here.
Where to stay in Dubai
There are many choices in terms of where you could stay and enjoy Dubai’s architecture and beaches, but here are some of the best. If you’re looking for apartments because you’re travelling with friends or family, take note of the Barceló Residences Dubai Marina, located south of the Palm Jumeirah. It’s a tower with 253 luxury apartments just a few minutes from the beach. And if you want to stay overnight on the palm island itself, you should opt for Dukes The Palm, a magnificent five-star hotel with rooms, suites, and apartments. And all the exclusivity you could wish for, including a private beach.
If you’d prefer something closer to Downtown, you’ll like the Occidental Al Jaddaf, a four-star hotel ideal for business or leisure travellers with 365 spacious rooms as well as good restaurants.
We must also mention two other hotels that are also very good, the Occidental Dubai Production City, which is close to the Expo, and the Occidental Sharjah Grand, located in a city close to Dubai and that’s on the beachfront.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the most beautiful beaches to visit in Dubai?
There are several spectacular beaches in Dubai, from the beach itself to the atmosphere and the water sports available. Don't miss Sunset Beach (or Umm Suqeim Beach), Kite Beach, JBR Marina Beach, and La Mer Beach.
Which beach in Dubai is most recommended for families?
The beach that families like the most in Dubai is JBR Marina Beach because it offers all the services they might need. It's wide, clean, and tidy and has shops, bars and restaurants within walking distance. Also great is La Mer Beach, which is surrounded by a water park.
Which beaches in Dubai have the best atmosphere?
Dubai has a great atmosphere on many beaches, from the beautiful Sunset Beach to La Mer Beach or JBR Marina Beach. But if you're looking for a more “upmarket vibe”, head to a beach club such as Drift Beach, where a lot of good-looking people hang out.