Fancy a picnic in the park this weekend with your family? Here's a guide to Dubai's top 10 parks that you must visit and enjoy
24 September 2013| Last updated on 14 January 2020
Despite living in the middle of the desert, there are some beautifully lush parks to be explored in Dubai...
Although we are living in one of the harshest desert climates, Dubai Municipality has made sure there are lots of green spaces and parks available for UAE visitors and residents - from inner-city sanctuaries for a quick lunch break to giant, sprawlings parks that have to be driven around with its own special taxi service.
We take a close look at some of the best parks in Dubai and what you will find in them...
1. Safa Park
Created in 1975, Safa Park is a 150-acre urban park in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The park is bordered by Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Wasl Road, Al Hadiqa Street, and 55th Street.
There are many facilities there including playgrounds, washrooms, and a funfair. It has abundant open areas that are perfect for picnics and games of rounders.
The park contains three lakes, over 200 species of birds, and nearly 17,000 different trees and bushes. Within the park, one can find grassy lawns, which cover 80% of the whole park, a little forest and a hill to offer panoramic views of the park.
A waterfall flows out of the hill and into the largest lake which contains a fountain and touring boats. There are four entrances to the park, one from each road that borders it.
The park is also famous with walkers and runners and you will see them walking around the perimeter of the park.
2. Mamzar Beach Park
Also sometimes spelled "Mamzer", Mamzar Beach Park is one of Dubai's best beach parks. It is absolutely massive - so big you can drive your car in! It has acres of open grassland and five beaches as well as a huge outdoor swimming pool. It's perfect for barbeques and picnics.
It has great facilities including small cafes, small grocery stores, wash facilities, changing rooms, children's play areas, bikes for hire and amazing views over the Sharjah Lagoons.
It is a little way out being on the way to Sharjah but it is so worth the trip! You really feel the cares melt away in this brilliant park. It gets very busy at the weekends and sometimes totally full over holiday weekends.
There is a small fee to get in - AED 5 per person if you are walking in and 30 Dhs per car if you are driving in. The pool charges a nominal fee for entry too - AED 10 for adults and AED 5 for children
You can also hire chalets for the whole day which is great if there is a large group of you as it gives you a base to return to. Chalet rentals in Mamzar Park cost AED 200 per day for 12 people, and AED 150 for 8 people.
3. Al Barsha Park
Part of the greening of the Dubai Pond Parks project, Al Barsha Pond Park is popular with local residents. The park is large and has giant ponds that have a walking or running track around them, perfect for exercising. You can also cycle round.
There are loads of places for kids to play and also areas for relaxing and enjoying the outdoors. It has tennis courts, volleyball courts, football pitches, basketball courts, and fitness machines - so a really great park to keep fit in.
If you are coming from the direction of Lulu’s on the Um Suqeium Road heading towards The Greens on the back road through Barsha, there are 2 large junctions, one with an Emirates Bank (you turn right there if you’re going to Mall of the Emirates); the next junction has the Al Mawakeb School. If you turn left down at that junction, Al Barsha Pond Park is just past the school.
4. Mushrif Park
Mushrif Park is just past Mirdiff on the Khawaneej Road and is well worth a visit. The park has acres of woodland as it was originally a ghaf tree.
There is a small zoo with goats and you can ride a camel or ponies there, train rides, a swimming pool you can pay to use as well as the "It's A Small Small World" replica house area featuring mini houses from all around the world! Sounds mad? It's great! We loved the English-inspired house and the Red Indian Teepee house. Entry is so cheap at AED 5 per person or AED 30 per car.
It's a great place for family picnics as well as strolls under shady trees.
5. Creek Park
Dubai Creek Park is in the heart of the old city on the shores of Dubai Creek. It is one of the oldest parks in Dubai and is still as popular today as it was then… families fill the park at the weekends and the evenings.
The park has the benefit of being in the cool breeze from the creek and also has loads of plants and greenery along with mazes and a nature trail. There are also children's’ play areas dotted throughout the park as well as the Children City Centre and Dubai Dolphinarium.
You can ride the cable car, ride the miniature train, rent bikes, and visit the small but adequate café. You can also bring your own food for a picnic or party at the park. There is a paved walk all along the shore of the creek which is great for roller skating, as is a large stone amphitheatre area.
There is an AED 5 entry fee that has to be paid to enter the park and you have to pay this even if you have tickets to Dubai Dolphinarium or are planning to go Children's City, but it's a small price to pay to spend time in this amazing park with great views over Dubai Creek and the old Dubai skyline.
6. Safa Park 2
Not to be confused with Safa Park, Safa Park 2 is a much smaller and quieter, cute little park. It has lovely green spaces and a great play area for the little ones.
7. Za'abeel Park
One of the largest parks in Dubai, Zaabeel Park is located in between Karama and the Za’abeel area. The park is very busy during weekends due to its proximity to residential areas which is great to see. The park is cut in two by the Sheikh Zayed Road but has road bridges connecting the two halves.
It has a wide range of activities, including the StarGate children’s entertainment zone. It also contains wide open spaces, an adventure playground, play areas, a lake with boat rides, sculptures including a giant chess board-inspired Rubik’s cube type structure, a large amphitheatre area, covered areas for barbeques and picnics and some amazing flora.
It's hard to believe this tranquil park is straddling the busy highway of Sheikh Zayed Road... it's a great place to visit at the weekend with friends and family alike- get picnics together and organise some games for a wonderful weekend!
8. Al Rashidiya Park
Al Rashidiya Park is a small family park that is quite close to Dubai International Airport and is next to Rashidiya Metro Station on Dubai Airport Road. It is a quiet less hectic park than some and is great for a family outing.
There are lots of well-equipped playground areas for the kids and plenty of seating in the shade for the grown-ups. There is a small entry fee and Wednesday’s and Saturday’s are for ladies and children only. Combine your visit with a trip to Bin Sougat Centre for a nice afternoon out.
9. Satwa Park
Satwa Park is an inner-city park that is situated behind Al Moosa Towers on Sheikh Zayed Road. The park has lots of green and shady areas, places to sit, kids' playgrounds football pitches, basketball courts, volleyball courts, and tennis courts.
There is also a proper, rubber running and jogging track for all the fitness people out there which is 6 metres wide and slightly raised so you can see into the park whilst running around the outside. There is a lovely central plaza with a fountain surrounded by palm trees which is a lovely place to sit, relax, and read the newspaper.
10. Umm Sequiem Park
This small park is situated near to Jumeirah Beach Hotel and is a lovely green space to spend time in. It is a family park and only women and children are allowed in during the week.
Men are allowed in with their families at weekends though. So it's a great park if you want some peace and quiet away from the eyes of men. There is a small beach, a small café and children’s play areas. Not a whole day park but good for a few hours getaway in the morning or afternoon. It is located on the shore just before you get to the open beach that leads to the Burj Al Arab.