The Best Way to Spend 2 Days in Dubai

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Planning just 2 days in Dubai can be an overwhelming task. There are so many amazing attractions in Dubai, which makes narrowing it down all the harder! That’s why we’ve created this 2-Day Dubai itinerary.

It not only covers the vibrant sights, but also includes cool suggestions ranging from the thrills of Dubai theme parks, to the beauty of its unspoiled nature, and  the timeless allure of Dubai’s historical and cultural landmarks.

You’ll learn how to make the most of your two days in Dubai here.

C’mon. Let’s go!

Cover photo for 2 Days in Dubai itinerary: Historic building in Al Fahidi, Dubai UAE
Al Fahidi

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CONTENTS: In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about how to maximize your 2 days in Dubai. Depending on your preferences, your Dubai itinerary might look something like this overview:

Detailed 2 Day Itinerary – Dubai

Now that you have an overview of your two days Dubai itinerary, let’s get into the important details of each day and each stop. We’ve broken the days into morning, afternoon, and evening recommendations.

Of course, we’ve designed these “must see” attractions as a 2-day itinerary, but you can very easily break it down into a 3-day Dubai itinerary or longer.

Knowing how many days in Dubai is enough really depends on how ambitious you’re feeling and the time you have available.

Tip: Rent a car with driver in Dubai to make getting around easier.

Day 1 of 2 Days in Dubai

How to Spend Your First Morning: In Old Dubai 

Check in to your hotel, take a heavy breakfast (you’ll need it), and set out to experience the astonishing contrasts of Dubai’s old and brand-new attractions. 

Start at Old Dubai.

Indicative of its name, Old Dubai represents one of the city’s most historical neighborhoods. It sprawls mainly over Bur Dubai and Deira. Both regions are divided by a natural salt water creek, the Dubai Creek

Here are the must-see experiences in Old Dubai.

Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood

Markets at Al Bastakiya Quarter in Dubai
Al Bastakiya

No other spots in Dubai embrace the city’s past as this 19th century district. Preserved to its original state, it’s also known as Al Bastakiya Quarter. 

You’ll find it is filled with several understated sandstone structures featuring wooden courtyards and traditionally designed air coolers called wind towers. 

As you walk past these buildings, it reminds of the modest lifestyle of this once quaint fishing settlement. Many of these buildings are now converted into museums and art galleries, while some take the role of cool art cafes like Basta Art Café

Dubai Museum

Large Canons outside Dubai's oldest fort, Al Fahidi
Al Fahidi Fort

You’ll find the Dubai Museum contains some amazing exhibits that showcase Dubai’s humble past. Another fun fact: It’s also tucked away in the city’s oldest fort, Al Fahidi Fort

Abra Ride

Old Dubai: a boat ride across Dubai Creek
Old Dubai abra ride

A visit to Old Dubai would be incomplete without taking an abra ride across Dubai Creek. All you have to set aside for this attraction is just AED 1, which is the equivalent of about 25 cents USD!

From the Bur Dubai side, it journeys you to Deira where you can continue to discover its souks (markets). 

Traditional Souks

Gold Souk (Arabian bazaar) in Dubai UAE
Gold Souk

Even the most jaded travelers will agree that a Dubai trip is not complete without ambling along its Arabian bazaars, locally called “souks.” 

You can visit the Spice Souk, Perfume Souk, and many others. But if you’re short on time, do make a quick visit to at least Gold Souk.  It deserves a trip as every square inch of this place is literally dedicated to selling  gold jewelry. 

You must fit this in as part of your itinerary for Dubai in 2 days, if at all possible.

Evening in Downtown Dubai  

Now that you’ve gotten a bit enlightened and cultured about Dubai, venture over to Downtown Dubai.

For most of you, particularly first comers, this spot will be high on your Dubai checklist, because it’s home to some of Dubai’s most distinguished attractions. 

Here are some of our favorites.

Burj Khalifa

Tallest building in the world - Burj Khalifa in Dubai UAE
Burj Khalifa

Take a Dubai Trolley ride through this wealthy 500-acre neighborhood and further see that you ascend to one of the lofty observation decks at the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa

A quick tip is to visit here right in time to catch the spellbinding sunrise views, along with the whole of Dubai and far off. 

Related Article : If you enjoy getting a birds-eye view when you travel, here’s what it’s like at the top of the tallest building in Los Angeles.

The Dubai Mall

Another definite must-discover in Dubai is the Dubai Mall. But don’t write it off as your mediocre mall. It’s vast and encompasses attractions that to cater to every interest. 

For instance, shoppers are sure to get dizzy with the amount of shopping options available, thanks to over 1,200 outlets.

Foodies, too, will be dazed as they browse through over 200 dining options. 

And, not to mention the various leisure and entertainment attractions that appeal to all age groups. You might be surprised to find these located in a mall.

Just to name a few:

  • Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo
  • VR Park
  • KidZania Dubai
  • Dubai Ice Rink  

It’s hard to chose a favorite, but if you’re short on time, definitely check out the Dubai Aquarium in the Dubai Mall.

Plus, you’ll find plenty kids’ activities in Dubai at the mall, too!

Dubai Fountain Show 

Just before you retire for the day, watch the spectacularly lit Dubai Fountain Show at Burj Lake outside of the Dubai Mall. 

This choreographed aquatic performance is so mesmerizing, you might even feel a bit spellbound.

The good news is, you don’t have to spend a single penny to enjoy this free attraction in Dubai.

But, a bit of splurge in the form of an abra ride in Burj Lake or a dining at a venue overlooking the fountain will take your viewing pleasure to the next level. 

Day 2 of 2 Days in Dubai 

Morning Adventures

You’ve got some decisions to make about how to spend your morning on day two in Dubai. That is, unless you start early enough – then you can do it all.

Hot Air Balloon Ride 

If you get an early start, begin your day with a hot air balloon ride over the breathtaking beauty of Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve at sunrise.

The views are so stunning, invigorating, and serene that it’s hard to put it into words. I might venture to say it’s magical.

Morning Desert Safari

Desert Safari in Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve at sunrise
Desert Safari

If you don’t want to take this pre-dawn adventure, a good alternative is a desert safari in Dubai, which almost guarantees you an epic escapade with full throttle action and thrill via:

  • A 4×4 dune bash
  • Camel ride
  • Sandboarding

You can enhance your desert fun in a more relaxed manner with cultural experiences, like:

  • Henna painting
  • Shisha smoking
  • Falconry 

You’ll find great desert safaris in Abu Dhabi, too.

Mid-Morning Adventures: Visit a Theme Park

Once you’re back on mainland Dubai, travel straight to one of the city’s many theme parks. Here are some of the most popular you might choose from:

IMG Worlds of Adventure 

Worlds largest theme park:  IMG Worlds of Adventure in Dubai
IMG Worlds of Adventure

For an exciting blend of kid and adult rides, head down to IMG Worlds of Adventure. It’s the world’s largest theme park where each of its four zones enthrall every theme park craze, including:

  • Marvel
  • Cartoon Network
  • Lost Valley
  • IMG Boulevard

Dubai Parks and Resorts  

To access multiple theme parks on a single visit, look to Dubai Parks and Resorts. It’s is the region’s first integrated resort. Just choose the right pass for your interests.

It hosts four parks, including:

  • LEGOLAND Dubai
  • LEGOLAND Water Park
  • Motiongate Dubai
  • Bollywood Parks Dubai 

Ski Dubai 

Finally, those who want to ditch all those usual rides and attractions but love adventure should drop into Ski Dubai.

It has superb facilities for skiing and other activities, plus its massive snow park and elegant mountainous settings inside Mall of the Emirates will appeal even to those not interested in theme parks. 

Afternoon Excursions in Dubai

Palm Jumeirah 

Aerial view of Palm Jumeirah, man made islands in a palm-tree design in the Persian Gulf
Palm Jumeirah

Following lunch, spruce yourself up to discover the world’s most distinct and stylish man-made islands. The massive Palm Jumeirah is iconic for its palm-tree like design that juts out into the Persian Gulf. 

A monorail ride is one of the recommended ways to take in the entirety of this island, along with its stylish residences, marvelous architectural gems, and unrivaled waterfront sights. 

Here are just some of the things worth doing at Palm Jumeirah.

  • Capture some pictures against Atlantis
  • Visit the Palm resort
  • Hit many amazing rides and slides at Aquaventure Water Park
  • Enjoy great food and drinks from kiosks along the spectacular Boardwalk 

If time permits and of course via pre-booking, you can even set out on daring adventures like skydiving. Doing so further offers the most unrestricted views of this wondrous island enhanced by a crescent on its top. 

A short drive from here lies some of Dubai’s most visited and photographed attractions. This includes:

  • The sail-shaped Burj Al Arab
  • The striking Jumeirah Mosque
  • Madinat Jumeirah, which is nothing short of an Arabian citadel, thanks to its collection of high-end hotels, superb wellness options, and a souk. 

Dubai Evening Activities – Day 2 

Palm Fountain Show and Dhow Cruise at Dubai Marina 

Dhow cruise in Dubai Marina at night
Dhow Cruise Dubai

Palm Jumeirah is astonishing both by day and night. Its Pointe is at its liveliest as the sun goes down, especially with its recently launched Palm Fountain. It’s the largest fountain in the world, so don’t miss it. 

Following this, close your Dubai holiday on a calm and relaxed note by embarking on a dhow cruise at Dubai Marina. It sails you down this uber trendy waterfront district in a traditional Arabian wooden vessel

Lasting for about two hours, it’s not all about the spectacularly lit night skyline that you get to absorb from water. You’ll find there is ample food and awe-inspiring entertainment to ensure a perfect wrap to your holiday. 

You might also consider enjoying a yacht party Dubai if you are visiting in a group.  

Final Thoughts on 2 Days in Dubai 

Two days in Dubai might not give you your fill of everything that this wonderful city has to offer.  But, we’re sure these things to do in Dubai in 2 days will give you a slice of its luxury, classics, and ingenious creativity.

No doubt, you’ll return with special moments and memories that last a lifetime.

And if you’re looking for more things to do in Dubai in 2 days, here’s another post featuring several free attractions you won’t want to miss.

It’s a great way to make your Dubai trip more affordable.

Does this list of Dubai attractions sound sound like how you might like to spend 2 days in Dubai? Which of these Dubai attractions would you most look forward to? Have you been to any of them already? Tell us about your plans or experiences for spending 2 days in Dubai in the comments below!

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This article is a collaborative post and may contain affiliate links. As always, all opinions expressed are my own. For more information, please see the following Disclosure.

Cover photo credit, Al fahidhi – Makalu (Pixabay)