With 25 acts, incorporating light shows, singing, spectacular costumes and traditional dancing, the Al Saheel show is better than ever. But it’s the four-legged fellas that steal the show, wowing the crowds with Spanish dressage, stunt riding, and a thrilling ‘horses with fire’ act. There are even talking ponies and – wait for it – a horse that skips. Lasting 90 minutes, this locally-produced show takes place at the specially built HoofbeatZ™ Pavilion, located at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club at Arabian Ranches. Running every Thursday and Friday evening at 7.30pm, tickets cost Dhs225 for adults and Dhs100 for kids, or there’s a Dhs325 hospitality ticket that includes a behind-the-scenes tour of the stables to meet the equine stars.
Al Saheel horse show (050 181 0401; www.alsaheel.com).
Get in touch with your primordial instincts with a spot of full moon drumming. Great fun for all the family, the desert drumming sessions are as enjoyable for long-term Dubai residents as they are for visitors. The desert camp’s location also allows some gentle dune bashing, while the tasty barbecue, camel rides and henna artists complete the experience. The brilliant drumming sessions are perfect for everyone, from tots to grandparents – make sure you book your spot.
Full moon desert drumming (www.dubaidrums.com).
Roll up! Roll up! Time to start cleaning out your cupboards – this could well be the last flea market before the summer temperatures sizzle. The event, which has gone from strength to strength, is now one of Dubai’s favourite weekend hotspots, even though the fun kicks off at a horribly early 7am. Browse the stalls for bargains and book the kids in for unlimited fun on the gigantic bouncy castles, or book your own stall for Dhs250, allowing you to peddle your wares all morning.
Safa Park Flea Market (www.dubai-fleamarket.com).
Take them to the top for a treat they’ll never forget. The lifts in the world’s tallest building are back in action, so what better way to test their vertigo by booking your trip to the observation deck? We’d recommend a mid-week session to avoid the weekend crowds. At 126 storeys high and with ample numbers of telescopes available, you may well be able to see your house from the summit. Book in advance for sensibly-priced tickets – kids under three go free, children under 12 cost Dhs75 and over-12s and adults are Dhs100. Trips to the top without prior bookings will set you back a dizzy Dhs400 a head.
Burj Khalifa observation deck (800 28 843 867; www.atthetop.ae).
Take a trip down to the Dubai Dophinarium and check out Flipper and friends at the dolphin and seal show. It will enthrall your little ones – all for a bargainous Dhs50 for adults and a brilliant Dhs30 for kids. The dolphin shows kick off at 11am and 6pm.
Dolphin show at Dubai Dolphinarium (www.dubaidoplphinarium.ae).
Pure edutainment for tots aged two to seven, Cité des Enfants is a five-zoned, fun-filled play centre for children located at Playnation in Mirdif City Centre. Don construction gear and build a house of foam bricks, discover the movements of joints in your skeleton, encounter the elements of water, air and light in the experiment zone or take part in organised cognitive workshop activities. Learning has never been so much fun. Prices range from Dhs130 to Dhs245, depending on the size of your brood.
Cité des Enfants at Mirdif City Centre (800 543 7873; www.citedesenfantsme.com).
If you’ve passed the basement window of Bloomingdale’s, you’ll have spotted the cupcake-making team at Bloomingdale’s Bakery. An attraction in themselves, we could spend hours with our noses pressed against the window watching the staff smooth, twirl and tweak those fab frosted toppings. But these delicious fairy-light delicacies have to be sampled to be believed and are the perfect after-school treat for well-behaved little girls and boys. Buy a box of eight – although at Dhs14 each they don’t come cheap – and enjoy a sweet afternoon picnic by the fountains. Heaven!
Magolia cupcakes at Bloomingdale’s Bakery (www.thedubaimall.com).
Perfect for cooling off as the weather heats up, don’t miss the chance to enjoy the Brazilian carnival, fireworks, a laser light show and a dolphin show at Atlantis’s Aquaventure waterpark from 7pm until midnight. The celebrations are a fantastic treat for little ones aged three to 11, who get in for Dhs165, and great fun too for mum and dad (Dhs200 each). A top end-of-week treat for all the family and a brilliant way to chill out before the weekend.
Cool Summer Nights at Aquaventure (04 426 1000; www.timeouttickets.com).