Dubai is famous for malls and through summer, they are the perfect place to escape from the desert heat. Inside you’ll find not only shops but restaurants, hotels and even entertainment centers. However, it may be hard to know which mall to go to or where to even start! So here’s your quick guide to all the key malls in Dubai and which ones are best for each type of shopping. Also, some handy tips for the larger malls.
Of course we have to start with the biggest and most famous of them all. This is the largest mall in the world and is home to Dubai fountains. This vast space is now even larger with their extension ‘Fashion Avenue’. Every section is dedicated to certain areas so it’s probably best if you make a plan for visiting this one. They also have a handy app you can download that will help guide you through this huge mall. Almost every single shop you could possibly need is here but it would most likely take a couple of days to visit them all!
There’s also lots of key tourist destinations inside including the falling man fountain, and the world’s largest aquarium. If you have children, there’s even a virtual reality theme park along with a cinema. Dubai Mall parking does get congested at busy times and the parking is huge, so make sure to make a note of where you parked your car! There’s handy paper token dispensers to help, or you can take a tip from the locals and park in Souq Al Bahar to avoid traffic. Parking is free in both malls except premium valet parking.
This mall has different themes in different sections and a wide variety of shops. This makes it an interesting mall to wander around in and is definitely prime for some photos. It also great for bargain shopping, as often the shops have sales and there’s a mix of affordable shops. There is also a cinema that isn’t as busy as many of the others in Dubai. Inn Battuta is smaller than the other malls but it is a fair walk if you’re going from one side to the other! Parking, like in Dubai Mall is free, except for the premium valet service.
MALL OF EMIRATES
A balanced mall with a mix of regular shops and high-end designer shops. This is a great all-round mall with a cinema, a good selection of restaurants and two connected hotels. Similar to Dubai Mall, it gets busy on evenings and weekends and it’s nearly as large to try and navigate around. Parking is free on weekends and in the week you get the first four hours for free, excluding valet. You can get more free parking if you visit the cinema but the ticket needs to be validated.
DUBAI MARINA MALL
A much smaller mall compared the other giants here in Dubai but this Mall perfect for Marina residents or those staying nearby, and like the others includes a variety of restaurants and a cinema. There’s a selection of a mixture of shops including fashion, beauty and electronics. Parking is free all the time except valet like the other malls.
FESTIVAL CITY MALL
If you want several things for the kids to do but are trying to avoid the crowds of Dubai Mall, Festival City Mall is a great mall with its own water laser show which plays at set intervals like the Dubai fountains. Again a great all-round mall with a good mix of shops, restaurants and a cinema. Parking is free.
DUBAI OUTLET MALL
If you’re looking for discounted luxury goods, this mall is perfect for you. It’s styled in a way that makes it seem like you’re walking along a street in Tuscany with glass skylights and paved streets. It’s a nice escape especially during the summer where you can feel like you’re outside, without being actually outside. It’s a relatively lengthy drive from Dubai as it’s located by Dubai’s Parks and Resorts, but it does make a nice day out. Parking is free.
MIRDIF CITY CENTRE
In terms of the types of shops, this mall is similar to Ibn Battuta but without any themed sections. Again, there’s a range of shops from fashion to sports and includes restaurants and a cinema. If you’re living close by or happen to be in the area, it’s a good mall for getting everything you need. However, there aren’t any particular unique shops so it isn’t one you would purposely drive across the city for, unless you live close by or want a quieter experience. Parking is also free.
Dubai is a city of malls and there are many smaller malls in all different parts in the city with similar shops but a smaller selection. The larger malls are possible to spend an entire day just wandering around, grabbing bits to eat and having an enjoyable day out with the entire family. Due to the intensely hot summers, malls have become the perfect hiding spots for residents to enjoy their time in the air conditioning. So we hope you enjoyed this quick guide to Dubai Malls and don’t forget to tell us which one is your favourite shopping destination!
ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
These insights are from our feature blogger Danni B.
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