3 Days in Dubai: The Perfect Itinerary (First Time Visit)


How to spend 3 Days in Dubai: The Best Itinerary + Where to Stay

You’re planning to spend 3 days in Dubai and you’re looking for the best things to do?

You’re at the right place!

In order to help you plan your stay, I have prepared for you this perfectly optimized 3-day itinerary in Dubai that will allow you to discover all must-see attractions of the city.

In addition to the best places to visit and activities for each stage of your itinerary, I will also give you all my best tips and accommodation suggestions depending on your budget.

So, what are the best places to visit in Dubai in 3 days? Where to stay?

Let’s find out!

How to avoid waiting in line (and save a lot of time!) at Dubai’s tourist attractions

Since the early 2010’s, Dubai has tourism has boomed, the city quickly becoming one of the most popular tourist destination in the world.

Every year, millions of travelers flock to Dubai to experience the city of luxury and excess, see its impressive skyscrapers and crazy tourist attractions.

Unfortunately, this means endless waiting lines at all the must-see attractions such as the Burj Khalifa or the famous Dubai Aquarium.

Luckily, I have 2 solutions that will help you save a lot of time during your 3-day trip to Dubai 😎.

1. The Dubai Explorer Pass

The first solution to save (a lot of) time and money during your stay in Dubai, is to buy the Dubai Explorer Pass.

City Passes for other cities such as Rome, Barcelona or Seville are duration based (24h / 48h / 72h). The Dubai Pass however is valid for 30 days from its first activation, and the only thing you will need to choose when booking is the number of tourist attractions you would like to visit: 3, 4, 5 or 7 attractions.

So it’s up to you to decide how many activities you want to do before purchasing your pass.

The pass allows you to choose between 50 attractions. All the best things to do in Dubai during your 3-day visit are of course included!

Important note: When booking, you don’t have to specify the activities you want to do, only the number of activities (For example, you buy the “Dubai Pass – 5 activities” and choose the activities you will do later, after your purchase).

After ordering your Dubai Pass, you will receive a confirmation email with a voucher (to print or download on your smartphone). You will then need to show this voucher at the entrance of each attraction.

The great thing is that you don’t need to exchange this voucher for a “real ticket”, so you will save a lot of time!

After purchasing the Dubai Explorer Pass, you will also be given all the necessary information about the attractions and activities: Opening hours, directions…and if you need to reserve a time slot (like for the Burj Khalifa) or if you can go when you want (Aquaventure Park, Aquarium…).

Here is a brief summary of the most popular attractions included in the Dubai Explorer Pass:

  • Burj Khalifa: access to the observation deck on the 124th and 125th floors
  • Aquarium and underwater zoo
  • Ticket for the Hop On Hop Off Bus
  • Boat trip in the Marina or in Dubai Creek
  • Aquaventure Waterpark at the Atlantis Hotel
  • Desert Excursion with Barbecue
  • Motiongate Dubai
  • Legoland Dubai
  • IMG Worlds of Adventure.

To get the full list of activities, simply click here: Dubai Explorer Pass: all activities list.

Book your Dubai Explorer Pass now by clicking on the green button:

Burj Khalifa
Burj Khalifa, included in the Dubai Explorer Pass

2. Skip-the-line tickets for Dubai’s best tourist attractions

The second solution to save time during your trip is to buy skip-the-line tickets in advance for the attraction and activities you want to do during your 3 days in Dubai.

You will save not only time but also some money!

Yes, in Dubai, online tickets are often cheaper than the tickets sold directly at the ticket office.

The good news is that you can find skip-the-line tickets for all the best attractions in Dubai, such as the Burj Khalifa or the famous “La Perle” show.

I will now give you a list of all skip-the-line tickets and excursions that I will mention in this 3-day itinerary. For your convenience, you will also find these links throughout the article.

To see the prices and book, it’s very simple, you just have to click on the links below:

3 Days in Dubai: Must-See Attractions:

Voyage Tips - Advice

If you want to do other activities in Dubai, you should always book on this website (reliable and safe, selling only official tickets): book your tickets for Dubai attractions here.

One Last Tip for a Perfect 3-Day Stay in Dubai

If you already know your travel dates (or as soon as you will have them!), you should really book your accommodation.

As Dubai is one of the most touristic cities in the world, the hotels offering the best value for money are often fully booked months in advance.

As a seasoned traveler, I can assure you that it’s always by planning as far in advance as possible that I’ve found the best hotels or apartments deals.

You agree that it would be a shame to somewhat ruin your stay in Dubai by ending up in a not-so-great hotel that costed you a fortune, right? 😅

So your best bet is to take 5 minutes now to have a look at traveler’s favorite hotels in Dubai.

And if you like one of the hotels you find, book it!

It’s fast, it’s easy and most accommodation offer free cancellation. That’s the best way to protect yourself from the inconvenience of finding nothing but mediocre rooms at exorbitant prices.

To check the best hotels deals in Dubai, simply click on the green button below:

After securing your dream stay, it’s time to continue reading this guide!

Dubai in 3 days: the best itinerary

Let’s now see how to visit Dubai in 3 days.

For each day, I will give you a detailed itinerary with all the details you need for your visits, along with a map of Dubai. This will help you optimize your trip and enjoy a stress-free stay in Dubai!

I assume that you will be staying in Dubai for 3 full days and that you have purchased the Dubai Explorer Pass or Skip-the-Line tickets. This way you will be able to see as many places as possible during your 3 day stay!

If, after reading this article, you still have questions (or need help organizing your vacation), you can ask me in the comments section at the very end of this article.

So, what can you visit in Dubai in 3 days?

Day 1 – Old Dubai

Dubai itinerary day 1
Dubai in 3 days: Day 1

Day 1 visits:

A. Deira district
B. Bur Dubai
C. Dubai Museum
D. Dubai Frame
E. Dubai Garden Glow

A. Deira district

Your 3-day itinerary starts in Deira, one of the oldest districts of Dubai.

As it’s the most authentic and traditional part of the city, Deira district is very popular. You will for sure love strolling around and visiting its souks.

Here are the 3 souks of Deira:

  • The gold souk, with imposing, shiny gold jewelry (very impressive but maybe a bit difficult to wear in everyday life! 😅). But don’t worry, if you’re looking for something more discreet, you’ll find this too.
  • The Perfume Souk on Sikkat Al Khail Street. Even if you’re not a fan of perfumes, you can find very nice bottles there. They are perfect as travel souvenirs for friends or family (remember to have them well packed).
  • The Spice Souk, with countless spices: curry, chili pepper, saffron…

To make the most of your visit to Old Dubai, you should opt for a guided tour.

The best tour lasts 3 hours and allows you to discover Deira, the souks, as well as the Dubai Museum (also included in my itinerary). Your tour guide will tell you everything you need to know about old Dubai and the local lifestyle!

And if, during your 3-hour tour, you want to buy souvenirs, he can also help you bargain prices in the souks.

You need to book your guided tour of Old Dubai by clicking on the green button below:

*This guided tour of Deira and Bur Dubai includes everything from section A to C of this first day itinerary.

Voyage Tips - Advice

To get to Deira, take the metro to Al Ras station.

In Dubai, Friday is a holy day (like Sunday in Europe). Stores in Deira (but also in other parts of Dubai) are usually closed in the morning and reopen in the late afternoon. Don’t forget it when you organize your visits!

Good thing to know: Deira is also the best place in Dubai to change money.

The exchange rates are better here than at the airport or in the malls.

Deira Gold Souk Dubai
The Gold Souk of Deira

B. Bur Dubai

Bur Dubai is the second neighborhood you should visit in Old Dubai.

It’s very easy to get there, from Deira: you just have to cross the river! Simply take an abra (small traditional boat) for 1 AED per person and reach Bur Dubai in a few minutes.

Once arrived, you can first visit the house of Sheikh Saeed Al Maktoum. It is now a museum featuring photos and documents about the history of the city.

It’s not mandatory to visit, but the place is very pleasant for a short walk along the river.

Then you can go discover Bur Dubai district. Here are the best places to visit:

  • The Old Souk, to purchase souvenirs of all kinds: magnets, plushes, bags. Don’t hesitate to negotiate the prices!
  • Hindi Lane and Meena Bazaar: An Indian zone with beautiful fabrics and traditional Indian restaurants. You can eat cheap here.
  • Sheikh Mohamed Cultural Center: Every day, lunches are organized in a traditional house with an inhabitant of Dubai. You need to Click here to book it.
  • The Al-Seef Market: A nice place to take a walk while admiring the traditional houses architecture (replicas). You can find restaurants and stores in the area.

Voyage Tips - Advice

Another popular activity in Bur Dubai is to go on an evening boat ride on the Creek river.

It’s perfect to enjoy a good meal and discover old Dubai from another perspective! There are 2 versions of this boat trip (click on the orange links for more details):

A cruise is also included in the Dubai Explorer Pass.

Bur Dubaï Old Souk
The Old Souk in Bur Dubaï

C. Dubai Museum

If there is one museum you should visit during your 3-day stay in Dubai, it’s for sure the Dubai Museum!

And you won’t have to go far: it’s also located in Bur Dubai.

The museum traces the entire history of Dubai: you will learn more about the first tribes who lived there and see how the rapid growth during the 1960’s economic boom turned Dubai into a modern city.

Featuring many objects of the nomads daily life, weapons and reconstructions of everyday life scenes, it’s undoubtedly the best way to understand the evolution of the city.

The entrance fee is only 3 AED, pretty cheap considering the quality of the exhibitions.

*Please note that the museum is closed on Friday mornings.

Dubai Museum
Dubai Museum, a must-see during your 3-day itinerary in Dubai

D. Dubai Frame

During your 3-day itinerary in Dubai, you’ll probably want to explore the modern part of the city too!

And for that, there’s no better way than to head to Dubai’s brand new attraction: The Dubai Frame.

You are now immersed in a completely different world, far away from the atmosphere of Old Dubai.

You can climb to the top of this 150-meter high structure in the shape of a giant photo frame and enjoy a magnificent panoramic view of the 2 completely different parts of Dubai: Old Dubai on one side and Downtown (Burj Khalifa) on the other.

And to make it a bit more sensational, (otherwise you wouldn’t be in Dubai), part of the floor is made of glass!

Even if this attraction has only recently opened, the Dubai Frame is already a huge success and visitors are flocking to see it.

To avoid queuing at the ticket office and get straight to the elevator that will take you to the top, you should buy your ticket online by clicking on the green button below:

* The Dubai Frame is not currently offered in the Dubai Explorer Pass, so don’t forget to buy your ticket with the link above!

Voyage Tips - Advice

To get to Dubai Frame from Old Dubai, you have 2 options:

  • Take the metro at Al Fahidi station and get off at Al Jafiliya station .
  • Take a taxi for the 5 km from the museum to Dubai Frame. It’s cheap and the taxi drops you off closer.


Dubai Frame
Dubai Frame

E. Dubai Garden Glow

Once you’re back on solid ground, you’ll want to head to Dubai Garden Glow (your last visit of this 1st day).

This large park features hundreds of sculptures (most of them depicting animals) coming to life every evening during light shows with musical backgrounds.

The Dubai Garden Glow really appeals to young and old kids alike. Perfect for a family outing!

The ticket for Dubai Garden Glow costs 65 AED. It also includes entrance to the dinosaur park located nearby.

Some of the dinosaurs move and growl when you walk close to them, kids really love it!

You should first go to the Dinosaur Park before sunset and then visit Dubai Garden Glow after dark.

Dubai Garden glow is open from 4pm to 11pm.

Voyage Tips - Advice

In addition, you can also visit the following parks (see at the ticket office):

  • The Magic Park (30 AED), where you can take funny pictures thanks to optical illusions
  • The Ice Park (45 AED), that I don’t particularly recommend: it’s in my opinion too expensive for just seeing a few ice sculptures.

Dubai Garden Glow
Dubai Garden Glow

Day 2: Sightseeing and activities in Dubai

Dubai itinerary day 2
Dubai in 3 days: day 2

Day 2 visits:

A. Etihad Museum
B. Jumeirah Mosque
C. La Meer
D. Dubai Mall
E. Dubai Fountain Show
F. Burj Khalifa

A. The Etihad Museum

To start the second day of your 3-day trip to Dubai, you will visit the Etihad Museum.

To get there, take the metro to the World Trade Center and then take a taxi.

Etihad Museum is the perfect place to learn more about the Declaration of Union and the creation of the United Arab Emirates in 1971.

This treaty was the basis of the country’s economic development!

Films, testimonies and interactive terminals will teach you everything about the history of the treaty and its founders, the 7 Sheikhs of the Emirates.

In my opinion, the Etihad Museum is a perfect complement to the Dubai Museum you visited on the previous day.

The entrance fee is 25 AED for about 1 hour visit.

Etihad Museum Dubai
Etihad Museum in Dubai

B. Jumeirah Mosque

Jumeirah Mosque, located about 10 minutes walk from the museum is one of the only mosque in Dubai that non-Muslims are allowed to visit.

To visit the Mosque, you must be accompanied by a guide. He will teach everything you need to know about Muslim traditions and the 5 pillars of Islam.

The tours take place every day (except Fridays) at 10am and 2pm. They last about 1h15.

Please note that you can only enter the mosque with your legs and shoulders covered (this applies to both men and women). In addition, women must also cover their hair.

Jumeirah Mosque is located only 10 minutes on foot from the Etihad Museum and on the way to the next stop of this itinerary. So even if you don’t want to take the tour, you can at least admire its architecture as you walk by.

Voyage Tips - Advice

If you want to take the guided tour, you should rather visit the mosque first and then go to Etihad Museum, as the latter doesn’t open until 10am.

Since the mosque is only a 10-minute walk from the Etihad Museum, it doesn’t make much difference.

Jumeirah Mosque Dubai
Jumeirah Mosque

C. La Mer

To get from the mosque to “La Mer” waterfront promenade, you will only have to walk for 5 minutes.

In La Mer, you will find many restaurants and cafes with terraces. Perfect to have lunch by the sea!

And if you’re not hungry, you can still take a nice walk along the promenade or rent deck chairs and umbrellas. Farniente is also part of a successful vacation!

La Mer Dubai
La Mer in Dubai

D. Dubai Mall

You can’t spend 3 days in Dubai without going to the most visited shopping mall in the world: the Dubai Mall!

More than 1200 stores await you here: Luxury boutiques or international brands like H&M… There is something for everyone’s taste.

The hardest will probably be to find your way around this huge shopping center! Hopefully, you can download the Dubai Mall app or grab a map and find your favorite shops easily.

And if you’re not a fan of shopping, that’s not a problem either: there are also numerous cinemas, an ice rink, a go-kart track, arcade games and even a flight simulator!

While in Dubai Mall, you should also go to the aquarium and underwater zoo: Sharks, rays, and all kinds of fish from around the world can be seen here. There is also King Croc, the star of the aquarium and one of the largest living crocodiles in the world.

To avoid waiting in line to purchase your ticket and save money, you should buy your tickets online in advance.

There are 2 types of tickets for the aquarium, you simply need to click on the orange links to book the one you want.

This activity (aquarium and underwater zoo) is included in the Dubai Explorer Pass.

Voyage Tips - Advice

To get to Dubai Mall from La Mer, you should take a taxi (5 km ride). Unfortunately, there is no metro station near La Mer.

In Dubai Mall (and in general) you must wear decent clothes: legs and shoulders must be covered. Signs of affection like kissing or holding hands are not allowed.

Dubai Mall
Dubai Mall – Dubai in 3 days

E. Fountain Show

When night falls, exit the mall and head towards the fountains located outside.

The Dubai Fountain Show takes place every 30 minutes between 6pm and 11pm.

There are several version, with different music tracks, so don’t hesitate to watch a few shows if you are around for the evening!

Since the show is very touristy (honestly, I didn’t expect to see so many people!), it’s better to arrive a bit early to get a good spot by the water.

You can also admire the spectacle up close by opting for an abra tour on the lake.

You need to book it by clicking the button below:

Voyage Tips - Advice

Another nice place to see the show are the 2 terraces of the Apple Store, in the Dubai Mall.

You will need to get there early if you want a good spot.

Dubai Fountains
Dubai Fountains

F. Burj Khalifa

After the fountain show, it will be time to go up the Burj Khalifa: it will probably be one of the most thrilling experience of your 3 day trip to Dubai!

You will for sure love to see the city of Dubai from the 124th floor of the world’s tallest skyscraper.

And if you want to climb even higher, that’s possible too!

The highest observation deck in the world is located in Dubai, at 555 meters on the 148th floor of the Burj Khalifa.

Just like in this itinerary, you should really go to the top of the Burj Khalifa at night, the view is a lot more impressive when the whole city is illuminated!

To visit the Burj Khalifa, you really need to buy your ticket in advance. You will save a lot of time and it’s cheaper than booking it on site.

Different tickets are available (click on the orange links for information and to book):

If you want to visit both the Aquarium and Burj Khalifa, you should buy this ticket:

The ticket to the Burj Khalifa is included in the Dubai Explorer Pass.

Voyage Tips - Advice

To get to the Burj Khalifa, go to the LG level of Dubai Mall and then follow the signs “At The Top Burj Khalifa“.

Burj Khalifa view
View from the panoramic platform of the Burj Khalifa

Day 3 in Dubai: The best places to visit (option 1)

For the last day of your 72-hour stay in Dubai, you can choose between 3 options depending on your interests.

Dubai itinerary day 3
Dubai in 3 days : Day 3

Day 3 visits (option 1):

A. The Walk and The Beach
B. Dubai Marina
C. Mall of the Emirates
D. Global Village or La Perle show

A. The Walk and the Beach

To start with, let’s head to “The Walk”, a nice waterfront promenade boarding “The Beach” public beach (Yes, people from the marketing where inspired when naming these places!).

The Walk features many chic boutiques and restaurants and you can rent deckchairs or enjoy watersports at The Beach.

To reach The Walk and The Beach, simply take the subway to DAMAC station and then the tramway to Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR).

Jumeirah Beach Residence The beach
The Walk and The Beach/ JBR

B. Dubai Marina

Let’s now go to Dubai Marina, about 15 minutes walk away.

There, you can take a walk around the harbor while admiring yachts and skyscrapers or go to Dubai Marina Mall.

And if you want, you can even take a cruise on a luxury yacht!

The great thing is that it’s not as expensive as you may think.

The best cruise allows you to discover Dubai from a new perspective for 2-3 hours and even pass by the famous Atlantis Hotel, known for its distinctive architecture. Lunch (barbecue) is even included.

Departures for this luxury yacht cruise take place several times a day, during the high season.

To book your luxury yacht cruise in Dubai, you need to click on the green button below:

This luxury cruise is also included in the Dubai Explorer Pass.

Voyage Tips - Advice

During your visit to Dubai Marina, you should also try one of Dubai’s best activities:the world’s highest urban zipline! A must-do during your 3-day stay in Dubai!

You will start from the rooftop of a building, at more than 170 meters high. While flying among skyscrapers and over the Marina, you will reach a top speed of 70 km/h. Adrenaline rush guaranteed!

And to share your feat with your friends, you will be happy to learn that photos and a video are included in the price.

To book your zip-line ride in Dubai and have an extraordinary experience, all you have to do is click on the following button:

If the ticket isn’t available, you can also check on this other website (click here).

Dubai Marina
Dubai Marina

C. Mall of the Emirates

After spending some time at the Marina, it’s now time to take the metro to the Mall of the Emirates.

This is one of the other major malls you should visit during your 3-day stay in Dubai.

The reason?

It’s world famous for its indoor ski slope!

When inside, you will really feel like you’re in a mountain resort (Except for the spectators looking at the “ski resort” through the glass windows!). It’s like being locked inside a snow globe! 😆.

You don’t need to bring your ski equipment, everything is provided.

So if you feel like skiing, you need to book your ticket for Ski Dubai by clicking here.

And if you don’t want to ski, that’s not a problem either. You will also find dozens of stores for every budget and several restaurants in the Mall of the Emirates.

A great thing to know if you’re spending 3 days in Dubai with your family: you can go to the children’s area located on the top floor of the Mall of Emirates. It features arcade games and a mini funfair.

Mall of the Emirates
Mall of the Emirates

D. Global Village or La Perle show

For the evening, you will have 2 options:

1) Global Village

Global Village is a cultural theme park located outside the city.

There, you will find dozens of pavilions representing most countries of the world. China, Thailand, Japan, Iran, United States and more: there is a lot to see and it’s very well done!

At the Global Village, you can discover, taste and buy products (objects, clothes, food) from all over the world at hundreds of small kiosks.

As the place is huge, plan at least 3 hours to see all the pavilions and have some time to try the food stalls.

The Global Village is open daily from early November to early April, but only after 4pm (closed the rest of the year). The entrance fee is 15 AED.

Practical info and tips:

You should really visit the Global Village in the evening, when all buildings are fully lit.

On Mondays the entrance is reserved for families with children and for women.

From Mall of the Emirates, take bus 106 to get to Global Village. The round trip costs AED 20 and the bus ride takes 30 minutes.

2) “La Perle” Show

La Perle is clearly THE most popular show in Dubai!

Featuring world class artists and acrobats, La Perle is the show you don’t wanna miss during your 3-day trip to Dubai.

As there are only 2 shows per night, make sure to book your tickets in advance by clicking on the button below:

The closest metro station to the venue is Business Bay. Then it’s best to take a taxi for the remaining 4 km.

Global Village Dubai
Global Village in Dubai

Day 3 in Dubai – Palm Jumeirah and Aquaventure Park (Option 2)

The second option for your 3rd day in Dubai is to spend the day on the man-made island of Palm Jumeirah.

In the shape of a palm tree and visible from space, it’s where the famous Atlantis Hotel is located, together with the city’s largest water park: the Aquaventure Park.

With its slides and swimming pools, it’s the best place in Dubai to spend a great day with your family during your 3-day stay!

In addition to the water park, you can enjoy 2 more activities at the Atlantis hotel:

  • Swimming with the dolphins in Dolphin Bay. If you book this activity, you will get free access to Aquaventure Park on the same day.
  • Visit The Lost Chambers Aquarium to see rays, sharks and other fish. The aquarium is located on the first floor of the Atlantis Hotel.

Tickets for these attractions must be booked by clicking on the following links:

There is also a combo ticket: Aquaventure waterpark + The Lost Chambers. You need to buy it here:

* Aquaventure Waterpark is included in the Dubai Explorer Pass.

For the last night of your 3-day trip to Dubai, you should go to the spectacular “La Perle” show.

There are 2 performances per day, at 18:30 and 21:00, so even if you spend the day at the water park, you will have enough time to go back to the hotel to get ready for the show!

La Perle needs to be booked here:

Voyage Tips - Advice

To get to the Atlantis Hotel and Aquaventure Park:

  • First, take the subway to DAMAC Properties station
  • Then take the tram to Palm Jumeirah station
  • Follow the signs to reach the monorail – 5 minutes on foot
  • Take the monorail – The round trip ticket costs 30 AED. There is a monorail every 15 minutes between 9h and 22h.

Atlantis The Palm Hotel Dubai
Hotel Atlantis The Palm

Day 3 – Day trip in the surroundings of Dubai (Option 3)

The last option for your 3rd day is to opt for an organized day trip to explore the surroundings of Dubai.

And the most popular day trip from Dubai is for sure the desert excursion!

The best tour in the desert includes:

  • Pickup at your hotel
  • A jeep tour in the dunes
  • Lunch or dinner at a desert camp (with belly dance performance and henna tattoos.)
  • Sandboarding (snowboarding down the dunes)
  • A camel ride
  • Return to your hotel at the end of the day.

This desert tour is actually so good that you will get a full refund if you don’t like the tour!

To make sure that you make your reservation through a reputable and reliable agency, you should book your desert tour in advance by clicking on the button below:

You want a bit more action?

Then you should opt for one of the 2 following tours:

Choose the tour you like best: both tours are really fun!

A day trip to the desert is also included in the Dubai Explorer Pass.

Voyage Tips - Advice

Instead going to the desert, you can also opt for another amazing day trip during your 3 days in Dubai: A full day in Abu Dhabi!

The capital of the United Arab Emirates is especially famous for its magnificent Grand Mosque and the Louvre Museum Abu Dhabi.

There are several options, simply click on the links below to see the details/prices and book your excursion:

desert Dubai
Excursion into the desert of Dubai

Where to stay in Dubai?

You now know all the best places to visit during your 3-day trip to Dubai!

However, you still need to do 1 important thing before leaving: booking your hotel.

In order to help you out, I have prepared a list of the best hotels in Dubai depending on your budget, ordered by districts.

I’ve also put together a special list of the most beautiful luxury hotels if you want to treat yourself or for a special occasion!

In any case, you should book as early as possible to get the best prices. The hotels that offers the best value for money in Dubai are often fully booked months in advance!

The best hotels in Downtown Dubai (near the Burj Khalifa)

  • DoubleTree of Hilton Dubai – Business Bay: Located 1.5 km from Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Mall. Very spacious and comfortable room, well decorated and equipped from 110€ per night, breakfast included. Strong points: free shuttle to the Dubai Mall, good breakfast, comfort, tranquility. This my favorite hotel in Dubai for its exceptional value for money!
  • Rove Downtown: Only 600 meters from the Dubai Mall. Bright and clean double room with view on Burj Khalifa, from 150€, breakfast for 15€. Strong points: Access to the Dubai Mall on foot, helpful staff, free shuttle service to the beach, Dubai Museum or Madinat Souk.
  • Taj Dubai: Located 800 meters from Burj Khalifa. Modern and luxurious room with bay window overlooking the city and marble bathroom starting at 220€ per night, breakfast at 32€. Strong points: The magnificent view from the roof, the Indian decoration, the large swimming pool. An excellent hotel in Dubai city center, perfect for a romantic stay!
  • Palace Downtown: Located on the lake at the foot of the Burj Khalifa, this 5-star hotel offers magnificent rooms with balcony, with an exceptional view of the Burj Khalifa. From 380€ per night, breakfast at 39€. Strong points: the exceptional location, the beautiful surroundings, the very attentive and helpful staff. This is my recommendation for a luxury stay in Downtown Dubai!
Palace Downtown - luxury hotel at the foot of the Burj Khalifa
Palace Downtown – luxury hotel at the foot of the Burj Khalifa

The best hotels in old Dubai (Deira and Bur Dubai)

  • Golden Sands Hotel Apartments: Located in Bur Dubai, 1.5 km from the Dubai Museum. Apartment equipped with kitchenette and washing machine, from 80€ per night, breakfast from 11€. Strong points: Cleanliness, the heated swimming pool, the comfortable apartments
  • Swissôtel Al Ghurair Dubai: Located in Deira district. Warm and spacious room from 115€, breakfast at 27€. Strong points: the pleasant staff, the view, the good breakfast. It’s my favourite in Old Dubai for its excellent value for money!
  • Hyatt Regency Creek Heights Residences: Located next to Creekside Park. Very spacious, super comfortable and very well equipped rooms starting at 130€ per night, breakfast at 33€. Strong points: 5 minutes walk from the metro, the warm welcome, the quiet location, the spa.
  • Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek: 5* hotel located in Deira bay. Double room with balcony overlooking the bay from 150€, breakfast at 29€. Strong points: The proximity of the metro and the shops, the beautiful swimming pool, the comfortable bed and the amazing view. This is my recommendation for a luxury stay in Old Dubai!

Dubai’s best beach hotels

  • Delta Hotels by Marriott Jumeirah Beach, Dubai: Located 300 meters from the beach. Rooms and apartments with sea view from 125€, breakfast at 27€. Strong points: The view, the comfortable beds, the location near the beach and the harbor.
  • Amwaj Rotana, Jumeirah Beach – Dubai: Located along “The Walk”. Rooms with balcony overlooking the Gulf and Palm Jumeirah from 175€, breakfast at 24€. Strong points: the exceptional view, the proximity of the tram and metro, restaurants and shops at the foot of the hotel.
  • Sofitel Dubai Jumeirah Beach: Located 150 meters from the beach. Contemporary room with balcony and sea view from 230€, breakfast at 22€. Strong points: the infinity pool, the very good breakfast, the spa, the ideal location to enjoy the sea.
  • Grosvenor House Hotel and Apartments: Located on the port promenade. Elegant and bright double room from 290€, breakfast at 42€. Strong points: Comfort, access to the private beach, the quality of the food.

The most beautiful luxury hotels in Dubai

  • Atlantis The Palm, Dubai: One of the emblematic hotels of the city, located in Palm Jumeirah. Room from 300€, breakfast from 42€. Strong points: Includes access to Aquaventure Park and The Lost Chambers aquarium, private beach, swimming pools.
  • Rixos The Palm Hotel & Suites – Ultra All Inclusive: Also located in Palm Jumeirah, this luxury hotel offers all inclusive rooms (all meals included) from 452€. Strong points: the quality of the meals, the setting, the amazing rooms.
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai: Located directly on the beach of JBR Walk. Elegantly furnished rooms with balcony and sea view from 500€ per night, breakfast at 39€. Strong points: 6 swimming pools, a private beach, the spa, the very helpful staff.
  • Armani Hotel Dubai: Located in the Burj Khalifa Tower! Rooms decorated by the fashion designer Giorgio Armani, starting at 550€ per night, breakfast at 41€. Strong points: the privilege of sleeping in the Burj Khalifa, the refinement of the place, the view.
  • Kempinski Hotel & Residences Palm Jumeirah: Located in Palm Jumeirah. Luxury suite with living room and dining room starting at 750€, breakfast included. Strong points: The private beach, the huge swimming pool and the beautiful gardens.
  • Burj Al Arab Jumeirah: THE luxury hotel, one of the rare 7* hotels in the world! The “smallest” suite is 170m² and prices start at 1290€, breakfast at 74€. I can assure you that your stay in Dubai will be truly exceptional and unforgettable!
Burj al arab
Burj al Arab – 7* Hotel in Dubai

Dubai in 3 days with your family

This 3-day itinerary is also ideal if you plan to discover Dubai with your kids.

Even if Dubai is quite big, the public transport network is really good, making it super convenient for families to move around the city. You can reach most destinations very easily by metro.

And for the other places to visit, you can always take a taxi. In Dubai, they are everywhere and very affordable.

Another great thing is that there is no risk of scam like in Thailand for example. In Dubai, every driver puts on the taximeter and will charge you the right price.

Here is the list of the best things to do in 72h in Dubai with your family:

  • Visit the Souks of Old Dubai, kids will love this colorful place and will enjoy buying a little souvenir from their trip to Dubai!
  • Dubai Garden Glow and the dinosaur park located nearby
  • Beaches (The Walk and The Beach / La Mer)
  • Aquarium and underwater zoo at the Dubai Mall
  • Dubai Fountains show
  • Visit the Burj Khalifa
  • Aquaventure Waterpark of the Atlantis Hotel
  • Global Village, a concentration of traditions from all over the world in one place

As you can see, most tourist attractions in Dubai are perfect for a family trip!

Voyage Tips - Advice

You can also modify the 4-day itinerary in Dubai I suggested above or add the following activities. They are ideal with kids!

  • Laguna Waterpark: Smaller than Atlantis Waterpark, it however features more activities for young children
  • Miracle Garden and its millions of flowers
  • Dubaï Creekside Park: one of the few places in the city with many large green spaces. Your kids can let off steam here!
  • IMG Worlds of Adventure: A huge indoor amusement park
  • Dubai Parks and Resorts and its 3 theme parks (cinema and cartoons, LEGO and Bollywood).
  • The Green Planet, to discover animals and plants of the rainforest.

More places to visit during your 3-day stay in Dubai

This suggested itinerary really allows you to see as many must-see attractions as possible in 3 days.

However, you can totally personnalize it by modifying or adding activities!

So if you want to know more about the other places to visit in the city, you should read my guide: Dubai: The 30 Best Things to Do.

Map of your 3-day itinerary in Dubai

To help you visualize your daily itineraries during your 3 days in Dubai, I have created this map with all the places to visit day by day. You can view the legend of the map by clicking on the top left button, the one with a little arrow.

You can thus see the suggested itineraries for each day.

Flight prices to Dubai

As always, you should book your plane tickets as early as possible to get the best prices.

To check the rates and schedules for flights to Dubai, you can use our flight comparator, in partnership with Skyscanner:

If after reading this guide you still need help to plan your 3-day trip to Dubai, don’t hesitate to ask me your questions in the comments section below.

Book your trip now and save money!

You’re traveling to Dubai? These articles will help you !

Discover all my articles about Dubai: All my articles to help you plan your trip to Dubai are listed there.

  • Dubai Pass: The best way to save time and money in Dubai!

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Best places to visit in Dubai in 3 days
Best places to visit in Dubai in 3 days

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

Discussion2 Comments

  1. David

    My understanding from reading your blog that the Dubai Explorer Pass will give me a digital ticket on my smartphone and miss all waiting queues. That is straight up walk into the attraction or reserved time slot.

    Is my understanding correct?

    • Vincent

      Hello David,

      Yes, that’s right.
      Once you have purchased your Dubai Explorer Pass, you will receive an email listing all the attractions and activities included. For each one it will indicate if you need to book a time slot in advance or if you can go at any time.

      Enjoy your trip to Dubai!

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