The Beach Scene in Dubai
That irresistible mix of a beachfront setting, a balmy breeze and good food to… is anything more evocative of that holiday feeling? Enjoy Dubai’s finest eclectic beach venues where you can eat, swim and socialise - all in one place.
Burj Al Arab Terrace
Best For: Poolside Pampering
For the first time, you can experience this ultimate Dubai icon without having to check in as a hotel guest, thanks to the new terrace extension that opened in 2016. The air-conditioned luxury cabanas by the gorgeous infinity pool are fully kitted out with upholstered beds, fresh fruits, coffee and mini-bar, state-of-the-art sound systems and a variety of poolside amenities (the Royal Cabanas even come with luxe private bathrooms). After taking in the rare ‘from the other side’ views of the Burj Al Arab that only a privileged few get, check out the Californian fusion menu of Scape Restaurant & Bar.
Best for: Laid-back lounging
As much a party hotspot as it is a beach breakfast venue, this is the ultimate day-through-night destination. Whether you want to top up your tan on the seashore; pose by the pool (infinity, naturally!); or chill in their landscaped gardens, there’s a corner here that’s perfect for anyone. The contemporary casual menu has a focus on natural, healthy and sustainable ingredients – think Atlantic lobster and king crab bruschetta, and smashed avocado with goat’s cheese crumble, and free-range organic scrambled eggs – at affordable prices. The vibe changes as the sun goes down and there’s always something fun going on here, with a stellar lineup of gigs and performances on their weekend calendars, plus a popular brunch..
Probably Dubai residents’ favourite beach, this public stretch of sand owes its name to the kite surfers who throng here. Whether you want to enjoy watersports or just grab a towel, hat and SPF to soak up some sun, you can’t go far wrong here. The vibrant beachfront promenade is livened up with an array of eating options, from gourmet burgers to smoothies and pancakes, and live music action on weekends. Don’t miss Salt, which has acquired a cult following for its signature sliders.
Sunset Beach - for waveriders
Rent a surfboard or SUP from nearby Surf House Dubai and hang ten with the city's top waveriders. Home to Dubai's biggest swell in winter, this Umm Suqeim surfing beach has one of the city's most spectacular views of the Burj Al Arab, offering plenty of distraction as the sets roll in. A community of passionate boardriders has formed around this patch of sand and Surf House Dubai (owners and expats Scott Chambers and Daniel Van Dooren grew up riding the waves here) is at the centre of it all. With a relaxed set-up offering organic RAW coffee, yoga, workshops, rental boards and even SUP meditation classes, they've succeeded in creating a vibe only before found in the world's most famous sleepy beach towns.
Black Palace Beach – for young families
This secret stretch of public beach on Al Sufouh Street is still relatively unknown, making it popular with young families and those who shun crowds. Nestled between Media City and the royal summer palaces, the beach faces Palm Jumeirah and its gentle shores are perfect for splashing and paddling. Those on a budget will appreciate the lack of retail temptation.
JBR Beach - for The Lot
Swanky entertainment and shopping district The Beach has given new life to this Dubai Marina spot. What's easily now Dubai's most stylish public beach is a one-stop-shop for sea, sand, shopping and snacks, with world-class facilities, cafes and play areas for children. As well as beach cabanas for those who don't like to get sandy, there's plenty to entertain, including camel rides and an offshore waterpark shaped to spell – you got it - “Dubai”.
The JBR Beach runs along the The Walk promenade with its juice bars, burger joints and gelato counters amongst fashionable boutiques and the fanciest cars in town. Stop by Adventure HQ to pick up an inflatable pool lounge before heading to the water.
The Jumeirah Beach Residence stretch of coastline is a colourful mélange of beach umbrellas and sun seekers (it’s a public beach), al fresco dining and weekend markets, overlooked by towering apartments and luxury hotels. You can choose from a plethora of restaurants, cafes and grab-and-go kiosks at open-air mall The Beach - from a hearty comfort food feast at celeb chef Tom Aikens’ Pots, Pans and Boards, or nostalgic British fare at Retro Feasts, to authentic Hellenic at Eat Greek, and Indian classics at House of Curry. You can always work off the calories at the free outdoor gym or running track after.
Palm Jumeirah - for luxe loungers
This man-made island is one of Dubai's hottest addresses and you'll have to pay to play here. The Palm, as it's known locally, is home to a bevy of luxury five-star hotels, each with their own paid-entry beaches. Whether it's seclusion, romance or beats and burgers, for those who want to live it up, the options are endless. From Atlantis, The Palm's party-prone Nasimi Beach, where there's a strict no kids policy, to the vibe at Jumeirah Zabeel Saray or the slow Med-style groove at Riva Beach Club, on the Palm, lounging is an art.
Dubai’s newest beachfront destination is set in the eastern shores of Palm Jumeirah. Spread over 120 metres of coastline, Vista Mare is home to shops and seven different restaurants specialising in international cuisines. From modern European (The Tap House) and Italian (Simply Italian), to slightly more exotic Caribbean (Breeze Beach Grill) and Ethiopian cuisines at Gursha, it’s all here, and it’s all authentic. For chic dining, head to Aji offering Nikkei cuisine (that’s Japanese-Peruvian for the uninitiated) accompanied by stunning views, upscale design and creative drinks right on the
Dubai's best beach clubs
Spend a lazy day at one of these luxurious beach clubs
With sun, sea, sand and sumptuous dining by day and live music and an energetic atmosphere by night—Dubai's beach clubs have earned an international reputation with celebrities and travellers alike. Here are some of the best in the city.