Even though Dubai is an Islamic country, it is a great amalgamation of various kinds of people from all around the globe. This region is one of the world’s wealthiest and also home to some of the most astounding and fascinating festivals. Festivals in Dubai are not only celebrations but also a display of the city’s opulence and grandeur. Festivals in Dubai range from cultural and religious events to competitive ones.

If you are planning to visit Dubai any time soon, make sure to attend one of the many festivals that Dubai city offers. There is something for everyone here.

Here is a list of 8 exciting festivals in Dubai not to be missed:

1. Dubai Shopping Festival

Shopping in Dubai
Shopping in Dubai

The Dubai Shopping Festival is one of the biggest and most exciting shopping events/ festivals in Dubai and also across the globe. The festival is an annual affair carried out for over a month. It is undeniably the best time to be in the city during this festival. First started in 1996, this festival is held across the city in various locations. The DSF encourages everyone to go out and shop, there are great deals on high-end brands, across the city’s exquisite shopping locations. Apart from shopping, there are also events related to food, concerts, parades, game shows, etc. The entire city joins in on the festival spirit. The Dubai Shopping Festival for this year will be held from 15 December 2022 to 29 January 2023.

Locations: Dubai Festival City Mall, Al Seef, Dubai Creek, The Dubai Frame and La Mer.

Also Read: 10 Best Places To Go Shopping In Dubai

2. Art Dubai

Art Dubai
Art Dubai
Image Credit: Art Dubai

Art Dubai is one of the leading festivals in Dubai. It is widely known as the region’s largest contemporary retail art fair. This leading international art affair was founded in 2007 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. Art Dubai is held in March every year. It hosts both young and established actors from around the globe making it one of the most diversified art events. It attracts several kinds of visitors including art collectors, curators, patrons, admirers, etc. It also hosts the Global Art Forum, an important art conference in the Gulf, with some of the leaders from the world of art. The 16th edition of Art Dubai is going to take place between March 3-5, 2023.

Location: Mina a’Salam, Jumeirah Beach Rd, Al Sufouh 1, Dubai.

3. Dubai International Film Festival

Film Festival
Film Festival
Image Credit:
Atlas Travel

The Dubai International Film Festival has film and cinema lovers from all over the world pouring in for one of the most celebrated festivals in Dubai. Starting in 2004, this film festival has been celebrating all kinds of films year on year. Numerous actors, directors, producers, etc. also attend these screenings and hold events during the festival. Viewing of the movies is held at 3-4 locations across the city where cinephiles can enjoy them. An interesting aspect of this festival is the cultural mix. The festival has also encouraged and helped several local filmmakers across the years. The Dubai Film Festival is most probably held in December.

Location: Al Sufouh, Al Sufouh 2, Dubai.

Also Read: 6 Bollywood Movies Shot in Dubai

4. Dubai International Jazz Festival

Dubai International Jazz Festival
Dubai Jazz Festival
Image Credit: Dubai Jazz Fest Facebook Official Page

Out of all the variety of festivals in Dubai, this one is for the music lovers. This sparkling jazz festival in Dubai has featured some of the world’s top jazz and mainstream singers. This jazz festival has been held annually since January 2003. One of the best jazz festivals in the region, the number of visitors has been increasing every year. The Dubai International Jazz Festival stage has seen many legends and some of them are Mariah Carey, Deep Purple, James Blunt, and John Legend. The festival definitely matches up with the entertaining vibe of Dubai.

Location: Dubai Amphitheatre, Al Sofouh.

Also Read: 6 Bollywood Movies Shot in Dubai

5. The Dubai Marathon

Dubai Marathon
Dubai Marathon
Image Credit:
Dubai Marathon Organization

The Dubai Marathon is an annual road marathon and also one of the biggest annual athletic meets in the region. The marathon draws thousands of participants each year. It was also labelled as the ‘World’s Richest Marathon’ in 2008 because it would pay a million dollars to anyone setting a world record. First place winners of both the men’s and women’s categories get a reward of $250,000. The Dubai Marathon is a 42.2 km long track. For the elite athletes the race starts at 6 am and for the masses at 7 am. There are also several other running events. The 22nd edition of the marathon will be happening on 10th December 2022, Saturday.

Location: Dubai Creek Club St, Port Saeed, Dubai.

6. Dubai World Cup

Dubai World Cup day in Meydan Racecourse
Dubai World Cup day in Meydan Racecourse
Image Credit: Sukhanova Daria

One of the world’s richest cities also hosts one of the richest horse races in the world. The pool prize of the horse race is literally USD 10 million. This race has been hosted in Dubai every year since 1996 at the Nad Al Sheba Racecourse. There are world-class jockeys, trainers and horses present in the race and is the city’s greatest social event. The race currently offers a purse of $35 million. The World Cup night has a series of 8 Thoroughbred horse races and one Purebred Arabian race. The Dubai World Cup festival is held annually on the last Saturday of March.

Location:  Al Meydan Rd, Nad Al Sheba, Nad Al Sheba 1. Dubai.

7. Taste of Dubai

Dubai Food Festival
Dubai Food Festival
Image Credit:
Galyna Voronenko

This is the largest unofficial food festival in all of the Emirates. Taste of Dubai offers a chance for its visitors to taste food from all over the world prepared by aspiring and professional chefs. Every year even some celebrity chefs join the line with their live cooking demonstrations attracting a majority of the crowd. The event also offers a designated kids zone and a shopping area. Here you can also find signature dishes of some of Dubai’s best restaurants way cheaper than their original price. Taste of Dubai is generally held around March.

Also Read: Dubai Food Festival: The Essential Foodie Guide

8. Dubai International Boat Show

The Dubai International Boat Show
The Dubai International Boat Show
Image Credit: Maksym Poriechkin

One of the classiest festivals in Dubai, the Dubai International Boat Show attracts luxury vessels from around the world. There are exhibits from some of the world-renowned yacht brands. VIPs from all around come in to watch the fleet of ships and also the artwork in Marina Art Gallery is on display. There is live music and entertainment throughout the day and the atmosphere is quite laid-back. The Dubai International Boat Show will be held from 1st to 5th March 2023.

Location: Dubai Marina, Dubai.

So, what are you waiting for? Get ready to submerge yourself in some of the best festivals in Dubai.

Planning to visit Dubai anytime soon? Let us take care of your Dubai Visa and flights to Dubai. To save more on your Dubai trip, explore our budget Dubai tour holiday packages and get packing!

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