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Top 9 Theme Parks In Dubai And How To Choose The Perfect One For You

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Atiqah Mokhtar  •  Aug 16, 2019

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If there’s one thing that can be said about Dubai, it’s that things are rarely done small scale. And there’s no better illustration of this than the sheer number of theme parks that exist in the city. When we were planning our trip to Dubai, we were quickly amazed by the variety of world-class theme parks that are available for visitors to enjoy.  Credit: Giphy  We had a tough time deciding which theme parks to go for, which is understandable given the choices available - from water parks to family-friendly ones to those that cater to thrill-seekers. We decided that we would write a comprehensive guide to Dubai’s best and most well-known theme parks to help you have an easier time figuring out which ones you want to go for when you visit Dubai 😉   Dubai Parks & Resorts  Starting off our list is the biggest integrated theme park in Dubai: Dubai Parks and Resorts. This mega theme park actually has four separate theme parks (MOTIONGATE, BOLLYWOOD PARKS, LEGOLAND and LEGOLAND Water Park), each a standalone attraction in its own right!     The parks are all located within proximity of each other and are connected by a common retail and shopping area called Riverland. To buy tickets for any of the theme parks, you can choose to purchase access for one park for a day, or alternatively up to two parks in one day. When we visited Dubai, we decided to go to MOTIONGATE and we booked our tickets on Klook! We found this option not only cheaper but also convenient because it allowed us to skip queues on arrival - all we had to do was bring our printed out tickets and just scan the barcode at the gantry to enter into the park. 
1. MOTIONGATE 
Type of rides: Mix of high intensity and family-friendly rides Great for: Movie buffs or families looking for rides featuring kid-favourite Dreamworks characters like Kung Fu Panda and Madagascar.  MOTIONGATE is a theme park that features rides and attractions inspired by Hollywood. The park has three zones each dedicated to a particular movie studio (Columbia Pictures, Lionsgate, and DreamWorks Animation), as well as one zone featuring The Smurfs! 
Credit: motiongate Dubai on Facebook   If you’re a Hunger Games fan as well as an adrenaline junkie, you’ll be in for a treat. The Capitol Bullet Train roller coaster (in the Lionsgate zone) is a ride that is truly exhilarating, with a section of the roller coaster that goes back up a vertical track!  
For families with young kids, you’ll be sure to love the DreamWorks Animation zone. For one thing, the zone is located indoors, so you’ll be able to escape Dubai’s heat (it can get particularly hot, especially in the peak summer months of July and August). 
 Here, you’ll also be able to go on many kid-friendly rides such as Kung Fu Panda: Unstoppable Awesomeness (a motion simulator ride) as well as Melman-Go-Round (the Madagascar-themed merry-go-round). There’s also the Madagascar Pursuit roller coaster, but don’t be fooled into thinking it’s a tame ride - the roller coaster is one of the fastest in the park!  
 #HHWT Tip: There are also regularly-scheduled meet-and-greets with some iconic characters like Po from Kung Fu Panda and the penguins from Madagascar, so be sure to get a park map at the entrance and scan the QR code to get the latest schedule for meet and greets. 
Credit: @motiongatedubai on Instagram   In the Columbia Pictures zone, you’ll get to explore rides and attractions featuring movies such as Ghostbusters, Hotel Transylvania, Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs and more. We particularly loved The Green Hornet: High Speed Chase roller coaster ride, which was quite thrilling!  
  Credit: @motiongatedubai on Instagram  The Smurfs Village zone features gentler rides perfect for younger kids, such as the Smurfs Studio Tours and the Woodland Play Park. Overall, MOTIONGATE is an all-in-one park that offers fun for the whole family and caters to everyone’s needs.  Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: From AED245 per person (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: Sat - Wed (2pm – 9.30pm); Thu - Fri (2pm - 10.30pm)Timings may change according to seasons, so do check their website ahead of your visit for timings. 
2. BOLLYWOOD PARKS 
 Type of rides: Live performances, 4D theatres, kid-friendly rides Great for: Lovers of all things Bollywood 
  Credit: Dubai Parks and Resorts on Facebook   Are you a fan of Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan and Bollywood blockbusters like Don and Dabangg? If you are, BOLLYWOOD PARKS is a must-visit. It’s a one-of-a-kind theme park that celebrates everything related to Hindi cinema, and you’ll see attractions that bring the scenes from some of your favourite movies to life. 
 Credit: @dubaiparksandresorts on Instagram   The park hosts a wide array of live performances and theatre shows that make you feel like you’re in the scene of a movie. While many of the park's main offerings lie in its live shows, there are also some rides that feature famous movies like Don The Chase as well as Krish: Hero’s Journey.  
 
Credit: @bollywoodparksdubai on Instagram  Another aspect of the park is the beautiful structures and sets that you surely won’t be able to resist snapping pictures of! From white palaces to elaborate courtyards, it’s an amazing place to soak in the views.   Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: From AED175 per person (non-UAE resident) (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: 2pm - 11pm daily (summer timings)Timings may change according to seasons, so do check their website ahead of your visit. 
3. LEGOLAND 
Type of rides: Family-friendly rides and Lego-based attractions Great for: Families with kids aged from 2 -12 
Credit: @legolanddubai on Instagram  Whether you’re a child or just young at heart, Legoland is sure to charm. With colourful attractions and rides featuring the iconic toy blocks, the park is aimed to cater to families with kids aged 2 to 12. There are interactive rides, shows and LEGO building experiences that will captivate and inspire all who visit. 
Credit: Legoland Dubai   Kids will love rides like the Driving School (where they can ride Lego brick cars!), the Lego Technic Twister, and the Dragon’s Apprentice ride (a rollercoaster suitable for younger kids). There are also attractions where kids can practice their Lego-building skills, such as the Lego Master Builder Academy.   #HHWT Tip: Legoland Dubai’s website has a handy feature that lets you look up and filter attractions by height, so it’s easy to see which rides are suitable for the little ones in your family. 
 Credit: @visitdubai.ar on Instagram  Don’t forget to make a pit-stop at Miniland! Miniland is an indoor attraction that features replicas of iconic landmarks from Dubai and around the Middle East made entirely out of Lego.  You’ll be astonished by the painstaking detail of each building.  Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: From AED220.50 per person (non-UAE resident) (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: Sat - Wed (10am - 6pm); Thu - Fri (10am - 8pm). Timings may change according to seasons, so do check their website ahead of your visit. 
4. LEGOLAND Water Park 
Type of rides: Family-friendly water slides and rides  Great for: Families with kids aged from 2 -12 
Credit: Legoland Dubai on Facebook    If you’re looking for a splashing fun time, you can check out Legoland Water Park. This other Lego-themed park in Dubai Parks and Resorts features over 20 slides and water attractions. Similar to Legoland, the attractions are aimed at families with children ages 2 - 12, so it’s a great park that will keep kids happy!  
Credit: Legoland Dubai on Facebook   Besides the myriad of fun slides, you can’t miss the wave pool as well as the fun Build-a-Raft River where you can build your own LEGO vessel to float along a lazy river.  Website  Admission fee: From AED220.50 per person (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: 10am - 6pm daily. Timings may change according to seasons, so do check their website ahead of your visit. 
5.  IMG Worlds of Adventure
 Type of rides: Mix of high intensity and kid-friendly rides Great for: Those who are fans of Marvel or Cartoon Network; those who prefer indoor parks 
 
IMG Worlds of Adventure is an indoor theme park that also happens to be one of the largest in the world! You’ll find no shortage of amazing attractions to enjoy at this park, from roller coasters that’ll make your heart drop to kid-friendly rides like carousels and play areas. When we visited this park, we booked our tickets with Klook which conveniently allowed us to proceed straight to the entrance gantry with our printed tickets 😉    
 
The park is separated into several zones, all full of wonderful things to uncover. For those who are Marvel fans, you can’t miss out on the Marvel zone that has rides featuring beloved characters such as Ironman, Thor, The Hulk and more.  
Credit: imgworlds on Facebook   If you’re looking for a thrilling ride, try Spider-Man Doc Ock’s Revenge, a rollercoaster that has carriages that rotate as you’re careening around the park (though it’s worth noting it might not be for everyone, especially those prone to motion sickness). 
Other rides in the Marvel zone include Avengers Battle of Ultron, a 3D ride where you get to team up with the Avengers to battle Ultron, and the Avengers Flight of The Quinjets, a ride that’s suitable for all ages. 
 
 Don’t forget to check out the merchandise shops for some unique Marvel gear to bring home, and be sure to keep an eye out for familiar characters that might make an appearance (or check the timings that are displayed at the entrance of the park). 
  The Cartoon Network is a zone that will be a hit with kids while also being a blast from the past for many adults. The zone has rides featuring cartoons like Adventure Time, Powerpuff Girls and Ben 10, which gave us a strong sense of nostalgia as we explored the area.  
 Some of the must-try rides include Mojo Jojo’s Robot Rampage, though please do note that it’s surprisingly a lot more exhilarating than you would think for a ride featuring the Powerpuff Girls 😂 But don’t worry, there’s also more kid-friendly rides, like Adventure Time: The Ride Of Ooo With Finn & Jake (a suspended carriage that goes through a track that runs around the park). 
 Credit: imgworlds on Facebook   If you’re looking for the ultimate adrenaline rush, the Lost Valley zone has one of the best roller coasters we tried while we were in Dubai - The Velociraptor. This super exciting roller coaster has a section that runs outside of the park and will be sure to give you an experience you won’t forget!  Overall, IMG Worlds of Adventure has a great mix of rides that would make it a family-friendly theme park, plus, it has the added advantage of being indoors where you can escape Dubai’s often hot weather.   Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: AED285 per person (Book on Klook!)  Opening Hours:  11am – 10pm on weekdays, 11am – 11pm on weekends (hours may be subject to change, check the IMG website ahead of your visit for latest hours) Address: E311, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Rd, Dubai 
6. Ski Dubai 
Type of rides: Indoor ski park Great for: A snow-filled good time! Suitable for all ages. 
Credit: Ski Dubai on Facebook   A winter wonderland, in the middle of a city that sits within the Arabian desert? Yup, that’s right! At Ski Dubai, you can make all your snowy dreams come true at this indoor ski resort that’s the first of its kind in the Middle East. 
 Credit: @latsam on Instagram    Ski Dubai is located in the Mall of the Emirates (one of Dubai’s biggest malls) and spans an impressive 22,500 square meters! Here, you’ll be able to do all the snow activities your heart desires, from skiing and snowboarding to bobsledding, exploring ice caves, or even just making snow angels! The park offers different packages based on activities available - you can opt for the Snow Park package to have access to the general snow areas (where you can sled, have snow fights, and even ride a zorb ball), or you can go for the Slope package if you want to hit the snow slopes and get some skiing or snowboarding action. However, please note that in order to hit the slopes, you need to have existing ski/snowboarding skills (intermediate level 2).  
Credit: Ski Dubai on Facebook   But wait! It gets even better: Ski Dubai is also home to penguins! The park has a colony of  Gentoo and King Penguins that you can meet up close. The park offers combo packages that you can opt for that give you access to the Snow Park as well as an encounter with the penguins where you can learn more about these special creatures.   Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: Snow Park tickets start from AED190 (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: Sun - Thu (10am - 11pm); Fri (9am - 12am), Sat (9am - 11pm) Address: Mall of the Emirates, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Rd, Dubai 
7. VR Park
 Type of rides: Virtual Reality rides and games suitable for all ages Great for: Those looking for some indoor fun with unique high-tech attractions 
Credit: VR Park Dubai by Emaar on Facebook   Looking for something a little different from a regular theme park? Well, why not step into something a little more futuristic at the world’s largest virtual reality theme park? VR Park is conveniently located right in Dubai Mall (which is also where other attractions like At The Top Burj Khalifa, Dubai Aquarium and the Underwater Zoo are located), making it an easy place to visit while you’re in Dubai. 
Credit: @vrparkdubai on Instagram   Entrance to the park is free and works on a pay-per-game basis, though you may also opt to buy passes that give you access to either a selection of games or go by a prepaid system. There is a range of virtual reality games that cater across the age spectrum, so everyone can join and pick the games that fit their needs! 
 Credit: @vrparkdubai on Instagram  Besides the virtual reality games, the park also has a selection of arcade-style games that have been decked out in some pretty snazzy decor - it’ll make it seem like a whole new experience!   Website | Facebook | Instagram  Admission fee: Free entry, with payment charged per game. You can book passes for games from AED100 per person (Book on Klook for 4-hour unlimited passes) Opening Hours: Sun - Thu (10am - 12am); Fri (9am - 1am), Sat (9am - 12am) Address: Level 2, Dubai Mall, Financial Center Road, Dubai, United Arab Emirates    
8. Atlantis Aquaventure Waterpark  
 Type of rides: Water slides (from high-intensity to kid-friendly), beach, river and play areas Great for: Those looking for exciting water park rides 
 Atlantis Aquaventure is a water park adjacent to the Atlantis The Palm hotel, located on Dubai’s iconic Palm Jumeirah island (the archipelago shaped like a palm leaf). It’s a water park that boasts some amazing rides - it’s the third theme park we managed to visit while we were in Dubai, and one that we all agreed made for a super fun (if hot!) outing.  
 
 Credit: @superwomantravels on Instagram   One of the things we found pleasantly surprising about the park was how many thrilling rides there were. Don’t be fooled into thinking it’ll just be regular slides - Aquaventure has not one, not two, but several water rides that will get your heart pumping.   https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv8z8CWlTqx/ Don’t miss out on The Leap Of Faith slide as well as Poseidon’s Revenge (a slide where you stand on a platform that gives way, letting you freefall down the slide! 😯). 
 
  But don’t worry, it’s not just adrenaline-pumping rides - there’s plenty of things available for those who want something more mellow. From the lazy river to a play area specially designated for families (called Splashers Island), to a stretch of private beach where you can laze by, it’s a park that can cater for the whole family.  
 When we visited Aquaventure, we booked our tickets on Klook! You can get a full day pass + The Lost Chambers aquarium combo ticket for a cheaper price when you book with Klook. You will still need to redeem your Klook voucher at the ticket counter to get your tickets, however, there are special counters for pre-purchase admissions to do this (which didn’t have any queues when we arrived!).  #HHWT Tip: You should also purchase your locker rental at the counter if you plan to store items while you’re in the park. There are small and large lockers (which are located in the changing rooms) available at AED45 and AED75 respectively. Towels have to be rented at the park, therefore do bring your own if you don’t want to pay for towels.   Website | Facebook  Admission fee: Starts from AED320 for adults and AED260 for kids (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: 10am – 6pm daily Address:  Atlantis The Palm, Crescent Rd, Dubai 
9. Wild Wadi Waterpark 
 Type of rides: Water park and beach Great for:  Those looking for a water park with a mix of thrilling and mellow rides  
 Credit: @kurtkurt on Instagram  Wild Wadi is a water park in Dubai with a well-established track record. It was the first water park to open in Dubai in 1999, and it’s been popular ever since! The park is located near Jumeirah beach, in full view of one of Dubai’s iconic buildings, the Burj Al Arab, which makes for great pictures! 
Credit: Wild Wadi Waterpark on Facebook   Wild Wadi has its fair share of exhilarating rides. For maximum excitement, go for Jumeirah Sceirah, Burj Surj, and Tantrum Alley for some epic water slide action. You can also have fun trying your hand at surfing and bodyboarding at one of several surfing pools located in the park, or splash about Breakers Bay, the largest wave pool in the Middle East.  
 
Credit: Wild Wadi Waterpark on Facebook   For a more relaxing time, ride a float along Juha's Journey, a 360 m long river that winds around the park. There’s also Juha’s Dhow and Lagoon, a play area for families that kids can splash about and play in.   Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: Starts from AED284 for adults and AED231 for kids (Book on  Klook!) Opening Hours: Sun - Wed (10am - 7pm); Thu (10am - 6pm); Fri (10am - 10pm); Sat (10am - 8pm) Address: Jumeirah Street, Next to Burj Al Arab, Jumeirah 2 - Dubai - United Arab Emirates   Bonus: Ferrari World   Type of rides: Best known for having the world’s fastest roller coaster Great for: Lovers of all things fast and/or Ferrari 
 Credit: Ferarri World Abu Dhabi on Facebook    Ferrari World isn’t located in Dubai, but it would be a shame not to include it given its popularity as well as proximity - the park is located in Abu Dhabi, which is less than 1.5 hours drive from Dubai.  
 Credit: Ferarri World Abu Dhabi on Facebook    In true Ferrari fashion, the park is home to the fastest roller coaster in the world, the Formula Rossa. The ride can go from 0 to 240km/hour in 4.9 seconds 😱 Given the speed, you’ll be required to wear special glasses while riding the roller coaster. 
 Credit: Ferarri World Abu Dhabi on Facebook   The Formula Rossa isn’t the only ride you need to try. Take a whirl on The Flying Aces, another roller coaster that also happens to have the world’s highest roller coaster loop, hitting speeds of up to 120km/h. Besides the awesome roller coasters, there are also plenty of kid-friendly rides such as the Tyre Twist (their version of the spinning teacups), the Tyre Change Experience as well as the Scuderia Experience (driving simulator game).    Website | Facebook | Instagram Admission fee: From AED295 (Book on Klook!) Opening Hours: Mon - Wed; Sat - Sun (11am - 8pm); Thu - Fri (11am - 10pm) Address: Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates   When it comes to theme parks, Dubai has something for everyone. Whether you want to have fun in an indoor park to escape the heat, have some fun in the sun splashing around water parks, or want to see your favourite movies comes to life, you’re bound to find a theme park that will get you excited and contribute to your epic getaway to Dubai. So it’s time to start planning that Dubai adventure! Check out our 6D5N itinerary and our essential tips for first-timers to Dubai to get you kick-started on your journey!