Iftars, free yoga classes, football matches, pop up markets, walking tours and more. Here’s what to do in Dubai this weekend…

Thursday 16

1. Go see an art exhibit


This is the perfect exhibition to visit over Ramadan –  the work of three photographers showcasing the intimate spaces in which practicing Muslims go about their daily and monthly rituals of fasting and prayer. From the north of Italy to Lebanon and then around the GCC, the photos show the unifying sense of community that ritual brings to Muslims around the world (and how some people have to be inventive in order to be able to practice Islam). See more of the photos here, or go see it yourself today in Al Quoz.

Gulf Photo Plus, Al Serkal Avenue, Al Quoz. 10am to 4pm. Tel: (04) 380 8545. More info on website.

2 Try an iftar with a twist


We love Ramadan and we love iftars, but we’re currently feeling like we couldn’t possibly eat another spoonful of hummus and we’ve reached peak tabouleh. Well not all iftars feature Arabic and Levantine food, and a good alternative option is LA-import Japanese restaurant Katana’s ‘tapas’ style offering. For Dhs180 you’ll get a generous range of sharing plates (from spicy tuna rolls to angus rib eye robata grill) as well as two summer mocktails. For Dhs245 you’ll get even more food. Plus, the Burj Khalifa view from the restaurant is second-to-none so it’s a great option for visitors.

The Address Hotel, Downtown Dubai. Daily, from iftar onwards. Tel: (04) 277 8808. More info on website

3. Watch the football


England are taking on Wales in the EURO 2016 tournament, with kick off at 5pm tonight (Ramadan hours mean most of us will be able to get out of work to watch it too). With the amount of British expats in the city, we imagine most of the major spots to watch the match – Barasti, Lock Stock etc – will be packed. We’ll be at Media One Hotel’s specially-designed space on level 42, which features stadium-style seating (pictured) so that everyone gets a good view of the big screen. Definitely get there early for some pre-match bevvies if you want a good seat.

Level 42, Media One Hotel, Dubai Media City. Kick off 5pm. Tel: (04) 427 1000. More info on Facebook.

Friday 17

4. Buy some quirky pieces (and grab dinner while you’re at it)

no. 57 boutique cafe

The Mine Pops is a cute gallery-based market, and it’s back from tonight until July 6. The night Ramadan market will see fashion, home accessories and other creative wares for sale. There will also be a pop up food concept on site from No. 57 Boutique Cafe (serving an a la carte menu from iftar until 3am, as well as shisha). Not fasting? Here’s a list of 82 places open for daytime dining this Ramadan.

The Mine Gallery, Al Quoz. 8pm to 2am, every night until July 6. Free entry. Tel: (04) 379 1704. More info on Facebook.

5. Eat a decadent Indian iftar


Speaking of iftars featuring different cuisines, you’d be hard pressed to find a more delicious option than the spread at excellent Indian restaurant Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar. With 11 dishes that cover the culinary diversity of India, you’ll leave very full (we ate iftar there this week, and in the process sampled the best dahl we’ve ever eaten. A big call, yes, but we’re willing to make it).

JW Marriot Marquis, Business Bay. From iftar until 8pm, daily throughout Ramadan, Dhs325. Tel: (04) 414 2000. More info on website 

6. Go to a pop up fashion market


The Dubai Mall is hosting a pop-up fashion market at the Fashion Catwalk until June 25 that will feature pieces from eight regional designers including Arwa Al Banawi and Fetha (pictured is a design from Dima Ayad). This is one for people who take fashion seriously (and are willing to splash a bit of a cash too).

The Fashion Catwalk, Dubai Mall. 10am to 2am daily. Tel: (800) 38224 6255. More info on website. 

Saturday 18

7. Go to a free Jumeirah yoga class

Lululemon are hosting free yoga classes at Talise Fitness this month, with the first one this morning (the others will be held on June 25 and July 2). The class is from 8am to 9am, and mats are provided, although do book your space before going as it will fill up.

Talise Fitness, Madinat Jumeirah. 8am to 9am, free. Tel: (04) 366 6821. More info on Facebook.

8. Get bendy in honour of International Yoga Day


So today is International Yoga Day, and there will be two huge workshops running at Dubai World Trade Centre in honour of the occasion. From meditation sessions with Pierre Ravan to a yoga class with internationally acclaimed yogi Baba Ramdev (pictured – he has an impressive 7 million Facebook followers), this is a must for anyone into their asanas.

Dubai World Trade Centre, 7.30pm to 11pm today only, free. More info on Facebook. Register here. 

9. Celebrate a British classic


Today is International Beef Wellington Day (there really is a day for everything), and to celebrate Gordon Ramsay’s spot Bread Street Kitchen in the Atlantis is putting on a very fancy version of the dish. With truffle and foie gras, the meal for two will cost Dhs545 and will be available today only.

Bread Street Kitchen, Atlantis The Palm, Palm Jumeirah. Tel: (04) 426 2000. atlantisthepalm.com.

10. Learn Arabic calligraphy


Arabic calligraphy is as much a work of art as a piece of writing. You can learn to create something beautiful for your own home in this three-hour workshop combining calligraphy, screen printing and gilding with gold leaf, a tradition that’s been popular in the region for centuries. (Oh, and here are five other creative workshops to try in Dubai.)

Toil And Tinker, The Courtyard, Al Quoz,  Dubai, 2pm to 5pm. Tel: (04) 3410977. Taxi: The Courtyard Al Quoz (opposite Bounce Middle East). toilandtinker.com

11. Ramadan walking tour


Discover how Dubai’s old neighbourhood celebrates iftar with this cultural walking tour around Deira from foodie tour favourite Frying Pan Adventures and Gulf Photo Plus. There’ll even be a chance to sample some traditional dishes and get tips on capturing the best photos by night.

Al Ras, Deira, Dubai, 5.30pm to 10.30pm, Dhs595. Tel: (056) 4718244. Metro: Al Ras. fryingpanadventures.com

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