Dubai will awe you with something unique every single time you come for a visit. The city is ever-expanding and constantly changing with new surprises and discoveries popping up practically around every corner. Astounding architecture, record breaking skyscrapers, palm islands and sand beaches seemingly made from gold dust, Dubai is an unparalleled city with no other metropolises to compare to, and it is definitely a sight worth seeing.
For your dog-friendly journey to be memorable, we have meticulously constructed a travel plan to visit the best locations within the city and its suburbs, enjoy the lively streets and then relax on the shores of an astoundingly warm sea.
Dubai Awaits - Most Memorable Locations (That You Can Visit With Your Dog)
Dubai is famous for a lot of things, but what probably comes to everyone’s mind first is its remarkable architecture with futuristic sci-fi-like buildings. We recommend that you start your journey here, in the heart of the downtown metropolis.
The tallest building in the United Arab Emirates (and at the time of writing this, in the world) is the Burj Khalifa. Commonly dubbed “The Sky City”, one can see why. With its tallest point standing at a whopping 828 meters, the tower is home to a workforce of a small city, roughly 10’000-12’000 people work here. Various shopping centers, restaurants, parking lots, offices, a hotel and 900 apartment condos span the height of the tower. Standing at the base of the tower is a feeling one cannot express in writing!
If you walk a little further north, you will see the Rose Rayhaan (Rose Tower). This tower feels small in the backdrop of the Burj Khalifa, yet it currently stands as one of the top ten tallest buildings in the world with its total height coming to an astounding 333 meters. The Rose Tower is lined with blue and silver glass and accented with golden ornaments. The building is curved, hiding its corners in large cylindrical columns, creating the illusion that you are looking at a futuristic rocket or spaceship.The tip of the structure is lined with white panels that resemble rose petals.
Not two minutes from the Rose Rayhaan you can find the Jumeirah Emirates twin towers spanning 54 and 56 stores each. These two skyscrapers are linked to each other at the base and share similar cylindrical and triangular motifs. These towers gain their notoriety due to their uniqueness among skyscrapers of having a perfect triangular structure.
While walking through the city, we strongly recommend checking out the O-14. This snow white azure 21 store office building noticeably stands out amongst the “typical” buildings on Al Abraj Street. Within its concrete exoskeleton, the designers of the building have created hundreds of cylindrical holes providing the building with light and ventilation while helping alleviate the heat, housing the actual glass-faced skyscraper within.
Another notable structure is the Cayan Tower. This building gains its reputation from being one of the most skewed buildings in the world, with its roof being turned a whole 90 degrees to its base. Astoundingly, this design actually benefits the building by limiting the bane of all tall buildings - wind gusts. During the night thousands of light bulbs and LEDs illuminate and accent the uniqueness of the Cayan Tower.
If you walk a little from the city center, it might be worthwhile to visit the landmark of Dubai - Burj Al Arab (The Sail Hotel). This world-famous landmark stands amongst the waters of the Persian Gulf with its base on an artificial man made island. This is one of the most expensive hotels in the whole world, but luckily, you do not have to be its patron to fully take in its beauty from afar, while taking your pet for a walk.
If you want to see something truly unique, the Dubai Frame should definitely be on your list. If you look through it in one direction, you can see the new neighborhoods of Dubai, when if you look the other direction, you can see the “old” town. There is something picturesque about a picture frame that is 150 by 93 meters!
You may have heard that Dubai is famous for its man made islands. While the city boasts several of them (World Islands, Deira Islands, Burj Al Arab, Bluewater Island, Palm Jebel Ali), the most famous one is,of course, the Palm Jumeirah. This palm-shaped island composes a land area of nearly 6 square kilometers and is home to roughly 10’000 residents. If you cannot decide which of the islands to visit, start with this one!
While the city has an outward appearance of a futuristic megapolis with its ultramodern skyscrapers, shopping centers and buildings, Dubai is also the home of a vast array of historical locations, after all, people have been living in this area for nearly 4000 years!
One of the most important roles in the development of “modern” Dubai was played by a relatively small bay - Dubai Creek. This mass of water splits the city in two - the Deira section in the north and the Bur Dubai in the south. Small villages dotted the shores of this bay for thousands of years, using its waters for fishing and pearl hunting.
In the beginning of the 20th century traders from India and Pakistan placed several trading posts on the shore of the Dubai Creek (Bur Dubai side), using its ease of access to water and major trade routes for convenience, trading textiles and silks with the inhabitants of the area. With the growth of tourism to the United Arab Emirates, the assortment of their goods greatly expanded, with the bazaars now selling not only luxurious fabrics, but also jewelry, souvenirs, footwear and much more. One of these markets is definitely worth seeing, if not for its historical importance, then for the vast array of imported goods and the memorable atmosphere of a very busy marketplace.
On the opposite shore of the Dubai Creek in the Deira district, several spice and gold traders made their home, and currently it is one of the best locations in the city to procure authentic arabian sweets and spices, Algerian dates, vanilla extracts, fresh turmeric, saffron, dried rosebuds and much much more!
Several docks, piers and wharves are located on the shores of Dubai Creek. These are usually home to small boats (dhows), which were mainly used by less wealthy merchants in the previous centuries (and are still used by small goods vendors), but are also currently used as tourist cruise boats, where visitors can learn a lot of interesting points and facts about the life of arabian sailors.
All in all, Deira is a historical district, containing an interesting mix of Egyptian, Moroccan, Indian and authentic Dubaian cultures. This is, perhaps, the only place in the world where busy and populated eastern markets and bazaars meet narrow old western european streets and neo futuristic architecture.
Another famous landmark located in the Deira district is the Deira Clocktower, which was erected as a symbol of Dubai and has been listed amongst the 17 most beautiful clock towers around the world. The tower is located in the center of a busy car roundabout, surrounded by beautiful date palms and a system of fountains. The concrete structure of the tower itself reminds the viewer of a very unusual flower bud, while the snow-white curved “petals” serve as structure for the cubic housing for the actual clock, facing the four corners of the compass.
If you get tired of the busy city streets, you and your pet might be interested in the Zabeel Park. This “green” oasis with fountains and a plethora of shady alleys and walkways was constructed for the relaxation of tourists and city residents alike. The well-groomed central square of Zabeel Park is home to the Stargate game complex, various locations where you could rent a quad or a catamaran and a full football field. Irrespective of the time of day, the atmosphere within this park is always relaxing and tranquil.
When thinking of Dubai, you are probably also thinking of sunny beaches and the sea! While being the home to thousands of inhabitants, the Jumeirah Island hosts one of the best beaches in Dubai (which makes it one of the best beaches in the world) - the Jumeirah Beach. This man made beach is the true definition of an oasis in the desert. Not only is this beach dog-friendly, making it an already great find, the coastline is dotted with gazebos to hide from the blistering sun, walkways to enjoy with your pet, benches to relax on, kid playgrounds to let your young ones loose and much more! The Jumeirah Beach has one small caveat, however. On Saturdays, this beach is open only for the women and the kids (the other days of the week it is open for everyone)!
If a busy populous beach is not your cup of tea, the Kite Beach might be more to your liking. While being dog-friendly, this beach lacks any kind of tourist infrastructure (no benches, gazebos or playgrounds here), making it by default much less popular. You do get a beautiful view of the Persian Gulf and of the Dubai skyscraper skyline, however! This place is ideal for a calm walk with your pet, while not losing on any of the beautiful waterfront sight-seeing.
How about a nice rest after a busy day? We have compiled an awesome list of dog-friendly hotels, where you can relax and recuperate for even more adventures the next day!
Where to Stay in Dubai - A List of Comfortable Dog-Friendly Hotels
We are starting our list with a four star hotel, so you know it's going to be a good one! The DoubleTree is located not far from the city center, and is fairly accessible to the vast majority of landmarks. All rooms come with a mini-fridge, a safe for your valuables, tea and coffee, a TV and free Wi-Fi. The luxury suites come with your very own mini kitchen and a living room.
The hotel features a restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, having a menu you can choose from during each course of the day, and having the option of having the food delivered to your suite.
There are various activities you can do on the hotel grounds, including a spa, a 24-hour fitness center, a rooftop and a swimming pool with the view of the Dubai skyline.
If you want to stay at this hotel with your dog, there will be a one-time fee of 300 dirham.
The Vida Downtown is located ten minutes walking distance from the Burj Khalifa, and only a few minutes away from the Dubai Mall, Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo and it is surrounded by small shops and cafes. The hotel features an open swimming pool, a great fitness center and a modern, yet cozy, restaurant.
All suites in the Vida Downtown are designed using bright colors, exquisite furniture and a remarkably comfortable bathroom.
The hotel staff will let you move in here with your dog, only if its weight is less than 10 kilograms, and only two dogs are allowed per suite. There will be a one-time fee of 150 dirham for each dog, and the hotel will provide pet food and water bowls upon request.
The Indigo Dubai Downtown is located only twenty minutes walking distance from the Dubai Mall and not far from the Dubai (Musical) Fountain and the Burj Khalifa. The hotel features a beautiful terrace where you can sunbathe and a bike rental service, to make sightseeing with your pet that much easier.
The rooms in Indigo Dubai Downtown are equipped with everything you may require, air conditioning (this one is important), a small office table, kettle, mini-bar, safe, TV and a beautiful view of the Dubai skyline from the windows. The hotel has a breakfast restaurant where you can pick from “continental dishes” or a buffet.
If you want to stay at the Indigo Dubai Downtown with your dog, there will be a weekly surcharge or 200 dirham, with food and water bowls being provided upon request.
This hotel is located two minutes away from the abovementioned Jumeirah Beach so you know your evening walks with your pet will be covered! The Delta is also located near The Walk (a large shopping center) and by a yacht dock where you can rent a vessel of your liking.
The hotel guests are provided modern suites with the view of the city square, a fitness center, an open swimming pool, free Wi-Fi, a hookah lounge with a beautiful view of the Palm Jumeirah Island, an option to deliver food to your suite from a nearby 24-hour supermarket and much more!
When booking your room, let the hotel know you are planning on staying with a dog. The hotel policy allows pets up to 35 kilograms, and there will be a one-time surcharge of 150 dirham, with food and water bowls provided upon request.
The 25hours Hotel One Central is located in the city center, with a 15-20 walk to nearby beaches. Several popular bicycle and pedestrian walkways are located not far from the hotel, which are perfect for exploring with your pet. The hotel features various activities like a restaurant, an open bar, a garden, a sunbathing terrace, a sauna, a game room with billiards, a 24 hour service desk and much more.
Each suite comes with air conditioning, a small living room, a TV, a safe for all your valuables and a modern bathroom. The hotel will also provide you with slippers and a bathrobe, and several luxury rooms will have a patio.
The hotel restaurant cooks a daily fresh breakfast, served at a buffet, and room service delivery of food and beverages is available.
If you want to stay at this hotel with your dog, there is no surcharge!
We have touched up on only a small fraction of famous landmarks and cool points of interest in Dubai, so let it be known that there is a plethora of exciting activities and amazing places to see that will captivate your attention for days if not weeks. Unlike many other cities, the vast majority of these locations are visitable with your furry friend, be they extraordinary clean beaches, historical districts or modern buildings. Dubai is perhaps one of the most dog-friendly touristic places you can visit in the world with a colossal spectrum of places to see and things to do, and we are sure it will become one of your favorite cities too. Visit Dubai with your dog - submerge yourself in a world of bright architecture and the waters of a warm sea!