BEST TOURS IN DUBAI TO BOOK
Are you heading to Dubai and wondering about the best Dubai tours? Then find out about fun day tours from Dubai that are worth the money.
No matter how often I visit Dubai, I always find new places and more things to do; I never actually get bored. It almost feels like home to me, and whenever I hear people saying, “Dubai is boring” and “there is not much to do and see,” I almost feel offended. Of course, people could discuss many things, but Dubai being boring surely is not the case.
So, before you think there are only malls and skyscrapers, I have listed my favorite and the best tours in Dubai.
By the way: I have also listed the best places to stay in Dubai and the 50 best things to do in Dubai.
Here are the top tours in Dubai that are worth your money!
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. This means I might earn a small commission when you buy a product (at no extra cost for you) after clicking on my link. More about it here.
HOW TO BOOK TOURS IN DUBAI
I normally book tours via GetYourGuide. I love GetYourGuide because you can normally cancel tours and activities up to 24 hours in advance without any cancellation fee – this is especially great because we never know what might happen (that is out of our control). And you often do not have this option when booking with tour agencies directly – not even when you book with the best tour operator for Dubai.
So, the top Dubai tours are normally offered via GetYourGuide and because I use them (and pay for the tours myself) I recommend them and have linked to them in this post.
BEST EXCURSIONS IN DUBAI
Here they are, some of the best Dubai tours and excursions.
DESERT SAFARI IN DUBAI
One of the best guided Dubai day trips is a desert safari.
If you go to Dubai and skip the desert, you are missing out! The desert is not only extremely picturesque but also a lot of fun. It almost does not matter what tour you do – a Dubai desert trip should be on your itinerary.
Of course, it plays a role in what you personally like and what tour you book. So, here are my favorite desert safaris in Dubai.
DUNE BASHING AND BBQ
If you want to do something different, book a dune bashing Dubai tour, including BBQ.
There are many different tour operators, and many tours are similar. However, some tour packages and services differ slightly. Some pricier tours have complimentary alcoholic drinks included with the BBQ, while others only offer soft drinks and water, for instance.
Typically, you will be picked up from your hotel, and then you head to the desert and start with some dune dashing – The dune bashing part is fun!
After a few minutes of dune bashing in a 4×4 (including some photo stops), you will have a nice dinner in the desert (in a traditional Arabic camp) and can get some henna paintings and watch a belly dance show.
More desert safari tours: If you prefer a more active tour in the desert, book one that offers sandboarding or a tour where you can drive a buggy.
As for the best desert safari tour operator in Dubai, I recommend GetYourGuide yet again. There are several options so that everyone can find the best Dubai desert safari tour for their own needs.
Desert safaris often are not full-day Dubai tours but take about 4-10 hours.
- A Dubai Desert Safari – after dune dashing, you have a BBQ in the desert (my favorite tour)
- Stay overnight in Dubai’s desert – a night to remember
- Prefer a morning desert safari? Then click here to find out more
BURJ KHALIFA TOUR
Okay, though I mentioned at the beginning that it is not only about skyscrapers, I cannot ignore the fact that the tallest building in the world is in Dubai: Burj Khalifa. And to be honest, getting “to the top of Burj Khalifa” is pretty fun and a must Dubai excursion.
Plan in a few hours for this activity. You should definitely book your ticket in advance – the lines are crazy most of the time, and even with a ticket, you might have to stand in line.
I have been at the top three times and probably will visit again. Burj Khalifa, 828 meters high, offers tickets for levels 124+125 or level 148.
With the latter ticket, you can visit all three levels. You can also skip all the lines and go to the top quickly, so it saves time, but it’s much more expensive. The view is slightly better, but if you are in no rush or on a budget, then the view from levels 124+125 is just fine.
More tours of Dubai – Burj Khalifa: If you would like to combine your Burj Khalifa tour with a lovely dinner (or lunch), you can get a combo ticket for Burj Khalifa and a meal. You will find two different restaurants inside the building where you can get these tickets.
I booked one of them myself, and it was definitely worth the money. Check out my Burj Khalifa guide for more information.
- Get the best price for tickets – Levels 124 & 125
- Skip the lines and get tickets for levels 124 & 125 and 148
- Check out rates for a dinner that comes with a view and tickets for Burj Khalifa
OMAN TOUR – MUSANDAM DAY TRIP FROM DUBAI
A trip to Musandam, Oman, from Dubai, is a fun activity and one of the best guided tours in Dubai (or better from Dubai). However, this is not for those who dislike longer bus rides because it is a full-day trip from Dubai.
The Musandam Governorate is a mountainous Omani peninsula projecting into the Strait of Hormuz, separated from the rest of the country by the United Arab Emirates.
It takes a few hours to get to Musandam, but once you are on a dhow (traditional wood boat), you can relax and unwind (especially after some busy time in Dubai).
Though the drive was too long for my taste, and the water in Oman was quite dirty (petrol in the water, I am not sure if that is something Musandam constantly struggles with), I enjoyed the trip and think it is overall great value for money. While I don’t want to say everything was perfect (it is time-consuming), I recommend this tour as it gives you a small glimpse of a different country.
You have several tour operators, but the services are similar.
ABU DHABI DAY TRIP FROM DUBAI
Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, is a beautiful day trip destination from Dubai. If you do not rent a car and drive yourself, I recommend going on an organized tour, as taxi costs add up and you need a taxi in Abu Dhabi to get to several main tourist attractions.
Of course, you have to book a tour that includes a trip to the majestic and fantastic mosque – Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi!
The most beautiful building in the world is the main attraction in Abu Dhabi – unlike most mosques in Dubai, this one is also open to non-Muslims. So, you can visit it and explore many parts of the mosque on your own.
Make sure not to book your tour on a Friday or on a religious bank holiday, as the mosque is closed for visitors.
However, there are different day tours from Dubai to Abu Dhabi – some combine a trip to Abu Dhabi downtown, the big Ferrari theme park, or the quiet new Louvre museum. So, when you book your tour to Abu Dhabi, check out carefully which sights will be visited.
Here are some popular day trips from Dubai.
Enjoy a day at Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi – a full-day tour from Dubai
SHARJAH TRIP FROM DUBAI
One of the top Dubai activities – though not very popular – is a trip to Sharjah. The lovely city bordering Dubai (depending on your location, it might take only 20 minutes to get to the city center) makes a great day trip. Sharjah has quickly won me over!
I preferred the quietness and calm compared to Dubai– and it is green! But there are more to see than the green parks, exciting shopping malls (though much quieter than in Dubai), a beautiful promenade, and a water fountain show – Sharjah is the smaller version of Dubai (in green!).
However, if you want to have a night out and enjoy a few drinks – Sharjah is not for you as drinking is forbidden and more conservative than Dubai in general.
Book yourself a tour to see the most exciting tourist attractions in Sharjah. And with a trip to Sharjah, you have also visited another Emirate (it is not only a city but also an Emirate).
I actually recommend staying longer than a day, but it is a top tour if you are in Dubai for a shorter time – here are some tours that will show you Sharjah in a nutshell
DUBAI WATER PARKS
Water parks in Dubai are very popular – apparently, people enjoy some time in the water on warm days. I am not a water park person, but I visited both of the most famous water parks in the UAE, and it was fun – both times. So, I want to say that water parks in Dubai can be fun even if you are not into water parks. And if you are, you will love it!
Whether you book a tour to Wild Wadi Waterpark, which belongs to the Jumeirah group (and so it comes with a view of the Burj al Arab, the most famous hotel in the world), or a tour to Aquaventure, which belongs to the Atlantis Hotel on the Palm (and so it comes with a view of the Atlantis Hotel); both are places where you can easily spend a day.
They are perfect for hot days and the “chilly” ones (as it never gets really cold in Dubai).
If you are on a budget, I recommend bringing your snacks & drinks, and towels as these are expensive to rent, but if you don’t have a tight budget, also book one of the cabanas and enjoy a day in the waterparks.
Kids traveling to Dubai will love either one, but they are both great for people of all ages. You have tons of slides, pools, and other water activities you can do there.
- Find the best rates for a trip to Aquaventure Waterpark
- A new water park has opened in Dubai, La Mer: Laguna Waterpark
BOAT TOURS IN DUBAI
If you have been following my stories on Instagram, you will realize how much I am into boat tours… and how often I hop on a boat.
Any kind of water transportation is great for me. Tour Dubai in a boat. It’s perfect for several reasons:
Boat tours are fun. And they allow you to do Dubai sightseeing the easy way. They offer you the best breeze on a hot day (and there are many of those hot days in Dubai). So, these are just some of the reasons why they are my favorite activities in a city of superlatives – if you book the right tours, you can even spend a romantic time on the boat, including a dinner – or you do a fast speedboat tour. The choices are endless.
Here are some of my favorite boat tours for you.
- Check prices for a Marina Speedboat Tour.
- Enjoy a boat cruise on a traditional dhow with dinner on board
- Enjoy the dhow cruise, which is included in a sightseeing bus ticket
DUBAI CITY TOURS
Dubai is a huge city! I know this is not new to most people, but getting around and seeing the most interesting places can be daunting.
Some of the popular places are spread out and far from each other, so it takes time and nerve to get from point A to point B (you might spend quite a lot of time stuck in traffic).
As mentioned earlier, it is not only about the malls and skyscrapers; but if you have a limited amount of time (let’s say less than two days), you should consider booking a city tour.
This will allow you to be shown around, and see several of the hot spots in Dubai easily.
Taxis and public transportation are pretty affordable in Dubai. Still, prices add up, and a tour might be even cheaper than hopping on taxis or the metro/bus, depending on the places you want to see and learn about the history of the city or at least the history of certain parts of Dubai.
WRAPPING UP DUBAI DAY TOURS
Taking a Dubai trip is well worth the money as there’s an overwhelming number of places to visit. All there’s left to do is pack for your trip to Dubai. I hope this post has helped you to find the perfect tour and excursions in Dubai for your trip! Enjoy!
And if you are still looking to fix your Dubai itinerary?
- Then find out about a perfect 3-day Dubai itinerary
- If you stay longer, click here to get my one-week Dubai itinerary.