Since we spend over half of the year baking under an unforgiving desert sun, we are taking advantage and making the best use of our fantastic winter weather here in the UAE and getting the kids outside as much as possible. From hidden gems that don’t get as much love as they should to exciting…Read More
With Christmas Day just around the corner, Santa Claus is making the rounds to visit every little boy and girl in Dubai. So make your way out to a desert wonderland, take a trip to his very own stage on the beach and many more wonderful places where Father Christmas will be waiting to shower you and the kiddos with some festive spirit!
Santa's Grotto at Souk Madinat
The spirit of Christmas will take over Souk Madinat Jumeirah as Santa Claus sets up his Dubai workshop. Running until 26 December, entrance to Santa’s Grotto will be free and manned by elves, where children will be able to enjoy the magic of Christmas daily from 4pm to 7pm.
The central courtyard will also be transformed into Santa’s workshop with a packed schedule of kids workshops and art stations from 10 to 26 December, running between 12pm to 10pm. Activities include canvas painting, string art, creation of DIY snow globe jars; decoupage with Christmas themed cut-outs, and painting sessions where kids can paint their own Christmas house, and more.
Escape To The North Pole at La Mer
Can’t travel? Who cares when the North Pole has come all the way here to Dubai?
Journey through a forest maze, filled with snowy trees, larger than life candy canes and snow men – all surrounded by white fences. Spot a golden reindeer or two and take pictures with your loved ones enveloped in glittering lights – as you journey to meet Santa Claus himself! Running every Thursday – Friday until 25 December from 4pm to 8pm, you can click a picture with the white-bearded man to capture the special moment.
Santa's Grotto at WAFI
A Dubai festive tradition we’re super happy to see happening again this year is the famous Santa’s Grotto over at WAFI. Your kiddos are going to love stepping inside his workshop, getting a framed photo with Santa and receiving an adorable toy. Your boys and girls can even enjoy an arts and crafts section where they will be able to stuff their own stockings from a fun selection of toys.
Sun, Santa & Surprises at The Beach
Head to The Beach where you and the kiddies can meet and greet the merry man from the North Pole and his elves! To meet Santa, simply spend AED 100 at any of the dining or shopping outlets at The Beach, Thursday to Saturday between December 10th to 25th. Then present your receipt and have your family photo taken and sent to you as a keepsake.
Over the holiday season, The Beach is also hosting a range of festive roaming entertainment acts including stilt walkers and juggling elves. And, if that’s not enough, you and your family can get ready to be enchanted by a shoreside festive magic show.
Winter In Wonderland at City Centre Me'aisem
City Centre Me’aisem has once again transformed their parking lot into a wonderful winter wonderland where your kiddos not only can meet Santa but also munch on seasonal yummy favourites, catch a movie under the stars, play some games, and snap photos with some whimsical festive decorations.
Meet Santa & Christmas Show at Couqley
Couqley French Bistro & Bar has invited Father Christmas along with his loyal Elf Phil, to spread the season’s joy! The afternoon will be a combination of (socially distanced) photo opportunities, classic holiday music, and gift distribution for the children by Santa and his helper. In addition to meeting Santa Claus, children will also be able to attend the magic Elf Phil’s show.
Santa’s Best Kept Secret at Publique
Walk into the ultimate winter wonderland at Publique and make it a December to remember!
Santa Claus will be making daily appearances from 4pm to 6pm. If you haven’t already sent off your wish list, then you can write your letter to Santa and pop it in the post – they’ll make sure it reaches the North Pole
You can even capture the festivities and take a selfie with Dancer, Prancer and Santa’s Sleigh – there’s a weekly prize for the best picture uploaded to Instagram too so get tagging!
The Festive Experience at Dubai Festival City Mall
Dubai Festival City Mall’s festive experience is the perfect destination for the whole family! The fun and magic start as soon as you enter – walk through the specially created tunnel of imagination. The enchanted Polar Bear Valley takes you on a magical walk through beautiful ever green fir trees, snow drifts, polar bears and reindeers to get to the Festive Market which features a huge tree, visible from the Business Bay Bridge, as well as a Santa’s Grotto with meet and greet available with the big man himself.
You and the kiddos can enjoy the special lighting of the tree performance every evening with snowfall and hourly sing-along performances. There are also Carnival rides for all ages along with The Magical Wishing Maze, Light Tunnels, Polar Bear Walk, Festive Singalong and Stage Shows, Festive Jugglers and Mimes. For those of you with a sweet tooth and food cravings, the Festive Experience will have a selection of retail and food and beverage kiosks to choose from. Need to keep the kids busy? There are special workshops for them too!
New for this year, the Festive Maze takes you on a journey through a magical wonderland under a canopy of twinkling lights. Will you be able to find your way through the colourfl festive walkways? You are greeted by Frosty who takes you through the valley of the shooting stars, you will then journey through the clouds on your way to the wishing tree. On route there is an opportunity to stop and have a selfie at Festive House before you arrive at the Wishing Tree. The Wishing tree is as old as Winter itself; you can take a selfie with the trees smiling face as you leave your wish with the Keeper of the Tree before exiting the maze via a fun wall of mirrors, then through to the giant star photo opportunity.
Winter Garden at Habtoor Palace Dubai
Habtoor Palace Dubai’s enchanting Winter Garden is back this season, promising you and your kids jolly festivities for the entire family.
The garden will be decked out in dazzling decorations, holiday carols will fill the air, and fun entertainment is guaranteed for the little ones. Every day, a jolly Santa will arrive and the evening continues with a live singer playing all the seasonal classics to bring in the festive spirit.
To add to the winter cheer, there will be a variety of kiosks and food stalls, serving up a delicious Yuletide of traditional delights alongside a selection of Christmas beverages.
Christmas at Ski Dubai
Santa is back at Ski Dubai, which has been transformed into a magical winter wonderland complete with cheerful entertainment, delicious treats, Christmas activities for the kids, and sparkling décor.
Share the wonder of their magnificent 40-foot tree bedecked in dazzling splendor, and sance along with elves, sing with the carollers, decorate your Gingerbread cookies, play in the snow and meet and greet Santa and Mrs. Claus.
This year, you and the kiddies can even enjoy a Christmas movie at Ski Dubai’s very own Snow Cinema.
The Ripe Festive Market
Head down to the Ripe Market’s Festive edition for some holiday shopping and cheer. Throughout December and until Boxing Day, the Market will offer all sorts of seasonal activities to make your holidays holly and jolly.
Parents and kiddos will enjoy a Santa’s Grotto, Photos with Father Christmas, Christmas Tree shopping, a Tree Lighting ceremony, Gingerbread making, Cookie Decorating, and so much more! Yummy seasonal foods and beverages will be on offer as well, so you can eat out on your market day out.
Desert Festive Market at Bab Al Shams
Santa Claus is heading to the desert this Christmas! Take a trip out to Bab Al Shams that has transformed into a desert-themed wonderland sure to get your spirits high. You and your little elves are in for a jolly good time as you stroll through festive stalls and F&B kiosks and treated to hot chocolate, mince pies and Christmas cookies.
Then it’s on to daily 30 minute carol renditions against a backdrop of fabulous Christmas decorations and a 40 ft. Christmas tree, complete with a Santa chair and horse carriage set-up. And you are not going to want to leave before your Meet & Greet with Santa to receive a festive gift for your little one.
Talk To Santa Claus Live On Christmas Eve
If you would rather stay in the comfort of your own home this year but still want your little ones to have a chance to meet the merry Big Man, you can always choose to do your Meet and Greet virtually.
On Christmas Eve, Santa Claus is going live on Facebook to update your kiddies on how his night delivering presents is going and to share some Christmas Magic. This is your little ones’ perfect opportunity to have a chat with Santa and ask him questions on his very own Facebook page.
In Abu Dhabi
Christmas Day Brunch and Santa Visit
Christmas Day is going to be a jolly one over at Le Méridien Village.
Enjoy a culmination of all your festive favourites under one roof; mouthwatering beef & turkey will be served from a live carving station as well a selection of sizzling grills. Tuck into the freshest seafood and end the meal with sweet treats such a Yule Log and Plum cake.
And tell your kiddos to keep an eye out for the Big Man in Red!