Family fun in Dubai

Magical circus show, great family food and the Dubai drummers

Thursday 27

A surreal and beautifully choreographed matinée show, telling the story of workers’ lives at a magical factory. The tale features music and dance, trapeze displays, trampoline artists and an impressive cast of acrobats, dancers and clowns drawn from the ranks of Cirque du Soleil. Birdhouse Factory is a perfect Thursday evening treat for families. The show starts at 8pm and runs until May 29. Tickets are Dhs150 each.
Birdhouse Factory Cirque Mechanics, Madinat Theatre (04 366 6546;

Don’t forget to make the most of our special voucher in the May issue of Time Out Kids: for every adult meal ordered, you get a kids’ dish for free. Named Time Out Dubai’s Best Family Restaurant at this year’s Restaurant Awards, the chicken breast with rosemary potatoes is to die for, while the chocolate fondant pud is sublime.
FREE! Kids’ nosh at Carluccio’s The Dubai Mall, Dubai Marina Mall and Mirdif City Centre (04 434 1320).

Friday 28

For a fun-packed family brunch that won’t break the bank but will keep the tots amused, book your Friday table at the Mövenpick Hotel in Bur Dubai. The brunch includes a kids’ function room crammed with all sorts of fun activities and child-friendly snacks, as well as cheery staff to keep them amused. The brunch runs from noon to 4pm and adults pay Dhs229 for food and house beverages, or Dhs169 with soft drinks. Kids go half price.
Brunch at the Mövenpick Hotel (04 336 6000).

Saturday 29

For one day only, parents and children alike can learn new skills, find leisure interests and consult with experts about everything from language classes to yoga, arts and crafts and more. It’s the perfect way to discover what could potentially occupy them all summer.
FREE! Hobbies and leisure consultant day Eton Institute (04 433 2423;

If you and the tots rock up between 8am and 10am on this last Saturday of May, you can get a special family discount on your entrance tickets to Dubai’s favourite waterpark. Mums and dads get in for Dhs165 each, while the little monsters cost Dhs135 apiece.
Wild Wadi family morning (04 348 4444;

Get your crafty little devils down to Magrudy’s Jumeirah branch from 10am until noon for a two-hour supervised session of literary and arty fun. Great for kids aged five to eight, the Dhs150 charge includes a copy of the featured book. Email to reserve your spot.
Magrudy’s young learner mornings (04 344 4009;

Sunday 30

Try a fun and creative play session at the new Peekaboo play centre in the Persian Court at Ibn Battuta mall. The centre, which features basket-loads of activities to keep tots and preschoolers amused, also offers a new babysitting service. Parents who book in advance can drop off their tots at the centre, where they’ll be cared for while mums do the shopping. It doesn’t come cheap, though – the first hour is Dhs90 (Peekaboo entry costs Dhs40, plus Dhs50 babysitting fees) and Dhs60 for every additional hour.
Play at Peekaboo Ibn Battuta (04-429 7949;

Monday 31

De-stress, improve their coordination and hone their sense of rhythm: Dubai Drums is running classes for kids who want to learn the African djembe from 7.30pm-8.30pm. Dhs50 per person.
African drumming at Ductac (04 341 4777;

This well-run, family-friendly museum, in the Bastakiya area near Bur Dubai, covers almost all aspects of life in the Gulf, from ancient times to the modern day. The lifelike historical sets tell the stories of the pearl divers, the spice and gold souks and the daily lives of the Bedouin. It’s the perfect day out for little culture vultures, and is very easy on the pocket: adults cost Dhs3 and kids are just Dhs1. Open daily 8.30am to 8.30pm.
Dubai Museum (04 353 1862;

Tuesday 1

This week’s class teaches parents how to educate kids on the value of money (something we should all pay attention to, given that we’re living in the world’s spending capital). Learn about the pros and cons of pocket money and when to offer rewards, as well as advice on teaching your kids about being economical and saving their cash. The coach is Therese Sequeira, a parent educator, and the session runs from 10am to 11.30am. One session costs Dhs60, or you can pay Dhs200 for a series of four.
Parenting class: the value of money KidsFIRST Medical Centre (04 348 5437;

Wednesday 2

Hone their street style, encourage their rhythm and keep them fit at the same time. The hip hop classes for kids are perfect for building confidence and coordination, especially for little groovers who love the latest street tracks. Classes run from 4pm to 5pm.
Hip hop for kids Dubai Ladies Club (04 349 9922;

Thursday 3

A great way to keep cool this summer: pop down to Aquaventure for a real night-time carnival atmosphere. Stilt walkers, street entertainers, stalls and delectable Latin street food are just some of the extras on offer at these special summer evenings, while great rates apply to the dolphin show and ray-feeding sessions. Of course, kids can also experience the usual thrills and spills of the waterpark’s slides and attractions, all topped off with laser shows and fireworks. At Dhs200 for adults and Dhs165 for guests less than 1.2 metres tall, it doesn’t come cheap, but it’s a fab special treat during the heat of the summer.
Cool summer nights at Aquaventure (04 426 2200;

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