Family fun in Dubai

Martians, bongoes, surfing and, of course, Mother's Day in Dubai

Thursday 17

Get merry with Martians
Mars Needs Moms premieres today – and brings with it a message mothers the world over will appreciate. The action-packed adventure in digital 3D is all about a boy who wishes his mother would stop nagging him to do his household chores. But his wish comes true when aliens from Mars steal his mum so she can take her mothering skills to their world. Nine-year-old Milo suddenly realises just how much he misses her, and with the help of a gadget-mad friend and a rebellious, sassy Martian called Ki, he embarks on a fantastical adventure to bring her back.
Showing at all cinemas, timings vary.

Friday 18

Bang a bongo at midnight
Not half as barmy as it sounds, the full moon desert drumming sessions run by Dubai Drums are a fabulous affair – and an activity the whole family can enjoy. Held at a special desert encampment with enough of a desert drive in to give newbies to Dubai and little ones an exciting time, your evening is then taken up with a smashing barbecue, camel rides, henna art and of course, the desert drumming sessions. The kids have a whale of a time running up and down the dunes in the moonlight, while mums, dads and visiting grandparents can kick back, relax and enjoy the evening’s ambiance.
Dhs190 for adults, Dhs85 for 5-14 year-olds (under-5s’ free). 6.30pm onwards, Gulf Desert Camp,

FREE! Celebrate the cerebral
It’s Brain Awareness Week, so pop along to Borders at Mirdif City Centre where you can challenge each other to a brain duel, take part in quizzes and try out all sorts of curious exercises and games designed to train and challenge the old – or young – grey matter.
Free. 11am-4pm, Borders, Mirdif City Centre.

Saturday 19

EDITOR’S PICK FREE! Learn to be a sporty beach bum
Take a free lesson in the latest surfer craze, called skimboarding. A smaller board but with all the same tricks to learn, the skimboarder stands about 6m from the ocean with skimboard in hand and waits for a wave. When they see one, they run towards it and jump onto their board as quickly as possible. Once on the board, the skimmer must remain as stable as possible and prepare to skim onto the ocean.
Free, Noon-4pm, Black Palace Beach, Umm Suqiem (050 672 1351).

Roast with the most
Dig into some seriously top nosh at the The Address Montgomerie’s famous restaurant, Nineteen. As well as lots of superbly succulent meat, the trimmings are fantastic. A package includes the full main course, a sumptuous starter and your pick from the bulging dessert buffet.
Dhs235 (including soft drinks), Dhs325 (including selected house beverages), nippers under 12 eat for free. 12noon-3.30pm (04 390 5600).

Sunday 20

FREE! Storytelling sessions at The Old Library
Enjoy a lively tale or two in these popular story-telling sessions suitable for tots to five and six-year-olds. Keep the kids enthralled for an hour – then you can browse and choose a few books to take home afterwards. Perfect for book-loving little ones. Pre-registration is essential, so call beforehand to avoid disappointment.
Free. 10.30am, Ductac, (04 341 4777, ext 207).

Monday 21

EDITOR’S PICK Make Mum’s Day!
It’s Mother’s Day – so no squabbling, whining, leaving your toys all over the place or generally being a pain in the bum. In fact, you should be treating your mum with the appreciation she deserves and booking her in for a pampering session at Sisters Beauty Lounge for a free blow dry with every spa mani/pedi or full facial. Hopefully, dad will be taking her out somewhere nice tonight, so breakfast in bed and a morning at the salon will be the perfect treat. And if you forget on the actual day, don’t panic. The Mother’s Day Special is available all week.
From Dhs300, The Village Mall, Dubai Mall, Mirdif City Centre (04 339 8500).

Tuesday 22

Settle those sibling rivalries
Get some top tips from parent educator and teacher, Therese Sequeira. The hour-long weekly workshop aims to help parents settle differences amicably between siblings, and cope with jealousy issues.
Dhs60, 10am, KidsFIRST Medical Centre, Umm Suqiem 3 (04 348 5437).

Wednesday 23

EDITOR’S PICK Get on and off your trolley
There’s nothing little ones like better than trying out a new mode of transport. Downtown Dubai has introduced luxury trolley buses so visitors can get around the development in style. Why not pop to Downtown and explore? One ticket for the day allows you to hop on and hop off as many times as you like and under 12’s travel free! A trip to Dubai Mall for junior, perhaps?
Dhs20 (under 12’s free) Downtown Dubai.

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