From sitting on the beach to seeing live music, there are a lot of things around Dubai and Abu Dhabi that wouldn’t cost you a pretty penny.
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Watch Dubai Mall’s dancing fountains
Seeing the dancing fountains at Dubai Mall is a kind of rite of passage, especially if you’re new in town. Even if you’ve been in Dubai for a while, the fountains continue to stun audiences. On top of that.
Watch New Year’s Fireworks
Good news! Recently, the Burj Khalifa announced that the New Year’s Eve fireworks will be making a triumphant return this year. The good news is that you can just visit the Dubai Mall and see the display free of charge – unless of course you pay for access to one of the planned viewing platforms that will be set up around Burj Khalifa.
Watch a movie
We kid you not, now that the weather is becoming better, free outdoor cinemas are set to dot Dubai’s weekend calendar. One such example is Al Seef’s outdoor cinema which will begin from November. More free outdoor cinemas will pop up in the coming months and you better be sure we’ll let you know where they’re going to be!
Take an abra
You might read that and wonder: “KT, that’s not free. That’s Dh1!”, but hear us out. Dh1 is not much when you think of it. And if you’re spending Dh1 to cross the creek, why not throw in an extra Dh1 for some karak chai to go?
Be an art connoisseur
Tucked away in Dubai’s Al Quoz district is Alserkal Avenue. It’s a massive complex dotted with art galleries and cafes at every corner. Quoz far away? There’s also the annual Sikka festival taking place in Bastakiya. The good thing about both is that you can go visit them free of charge.
Now off to Abu Dhabi!
Visit Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
Arguably Abu Dhabi’s most famous landmark, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is on the Lonely Planet list and for good reason. There’s no entrance fees or anything, you just need to wear respectful clothing. You can see 82 domes, over a thousand columns and 24-carat gold chandeliers and the world’s largest handmade carpet.
Run with racecars (sort of)
Lace up your trainers and run (or cycle) around the same track that F1 cars go around. Yas Marina Circuit has weekly events where you can enjoy free fitness sessions and of course enjoy the world-famous track at your own pace!
Live like the old days at Heritage Village
Ever wondered what the UAE was before skyscrapers, technology and whatnot? The Heritage Village gives visitors a glimpse of what life in the UAE was. Know more about the UAE’s pearl-diving past, arts and crafts and living in tents without spending a single dirham.
Watch the city go by at the Corniche
The same as Dubai’s “sit down in the beach and contemplate” activity, people-watching along Abu Dhabi Corniche is not as boring as it sounds like. You’ve got the urban capital on one side and the endless water on the other. What’s not to like?
Watch a free movie OR listen to live music
It’s not just Dubai that has free movie, the Capital has it too. There are free film screenings at Manarat Al Saadiyat which show Hollywood classics and thought-provoking Indian flicks. Not your scene? There are a couple of great open mics around Abu Dhabi such as Rooftop Rhythms and GoPlayTheWorld where you can enjoy anything from music, poetry, dance and stand-up comedy.
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