Amazing street art, a festival for book lovers, a lazy brunch. Oh, and there’s this rock band called Guns N’ Roses coming to town (you may have heard of them?). Here are 15 things to do over the next three days in Dubai…

Thursday 2

1. Check out some 3D art

One of the city’s most popular free art exhibitions – the Dubai Canvas 3D Art Festival – made its return this week. This year, however, it’s moved from JBR to the pavements of City Walk, which will become a canvas for some of the world’s best 3D painters.

City Walk. March 1 to 7, 4pm to 10pm weekdays, 10am to 12am weekends. More info on website.

2. Watch a star from The Voice

Simply Italian is launching a live music night with Jad Abi Haidar – a semi-finalist on the Arabic version of The Voice. Between 8pm and 2am, guests can enjoy free-flowing beverages for Dhs190 while listening to Jad’s classic soul tunes. When he isn’t performing in Arabic, Jad is described as an “old school rocker with a raspy voice”.

Simply Italian, Club Vista Mare, by the Shoreline Apartments on The Palm Jumeirah. Live music nights every Thurs from 8pm. Tel: (04) 558 8354.

3. Spend a night at the opera

One of the world’s most popular productions is gracing the Dubai Opera stage tonight, staged by the Welsh National Opera. Madam Butterfly tells the story of the relationship between a Japanese geisha and an American naval officer, which ultimately ends in tragedy. We’re not crying, you’re crying…

Dubai Opera, Downtown Dubai. March 2 to 4, 8pm. Tickets from Dhs300. Tel: (04) 440 8888. More info on website.

4. Try Burger & Lobster’s new vege menu

burger lobster

It might seem sacrilegious for a chain that found fame in its trendy two-product menu to get all diverse on us, but that’s exactly what Burger & Lobster has done. The international chain now aims to appeal to vegetarians with a new meat and lobster-free menu. Options include freshly-made soups and three veggie burgers.

Burj Daman, DIFC. Daily noon to 2am. Tel:(04) 514 8838. More info on website.

5. Take to the streets

Head on down to Bay Avenue for Street Nights, an awesome street art, culture and food event to coincide with the Dubai Food Festival. There will be heaps of street eats on offer, as well as live music and shopping at a night bazaar (the perfect place to pick up a unique gift). Be sure to stick around for the BBoy competition, which will see skilled breakdancers battling it out on the dance floor.

Bay Avenue, Business Bay. March 2 to 3, 5pm to midnight. Free entry. More info on Facebook.

Friday 3

6. Rock out at Guns N’ Roses 

The Sweet Child O’ Mine legends are taking to the stage in Dubai for the first time ever, performing at the Autism Rocks Arena. This is the real deal, folks – you’ll be seeing original band members Axl Rose on vocals, Duff McKagan on bass, and Slash on lead guitar. Their many hits are basically every rock cover band in the world’s bread and butter, so you can expect plenty of sing-alongs…

Autism Rocks Arena, Outlet City. Fri March 3, doors open at 4pm. Tickets from Dhs400. More info on website.

7. Run up a skyscraper

Jumeirah Emirates Towers

Now in its 14th year, the Dubai Holdings SkyRun sees thousands of participants race up 52 floors of Jumeirah Emirates Towers. If you’re wondering what could persuade anyone to put themselves through that kind of torture – 1,334 steps, to be exact – the money raised goes towards a good cause. This year’s charity is the Al Jalila Foundation, funding research for obesity education and treatment.

Emirates Towers. Fri March 3, first race at 8am. Dhs250. More info on website.

8. Embrace the power of the written word

The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature kicks off today, with more than 100 writers taking part in the nine-day event. Check out our book lover’s guide here of who to see and when.

InterContinental Hotel, Dubai Festival City. March 3 to 11. Tickets from Dhs50. Tel: (04) 3559844. More info on website

9. Celebrate all things South African

The lawn of Emirates Golf Club is going to become a celebration of the glorious South African tradition that is the braai (barbecue) today. There will be live music during the family-friendly day from Desmond & The Tutus, with Paul Snodgrass emceeing too. Then, at 9pm, things will turn up a notch at the HOUSEofAFRIKA after-party, featuring DJ Clock.

Emirates Golf Club, near Nakheel Metro Station. Fri March 3, doors open 3pm. Early bird tickets from Dhs100. Tel: (050) 871 7493. More info on Facebook.

10. Witness a 90s superstar

You might not recognise the singer’s name, but you’ll definitely know this song. Haddaway is the force behind the 1993 banger What Is Love, and he’s performing live tonight at Billionaire Mansion.

Taj Hotel, Burj Khalifa Blvd, Business Bay. Fri March 3, 7pm to 3am. Free entry. Tel: (04) 510 3100. More info on website.


11. Indulge in a lazy brunch

Missed your Friday brunch binge? Try a laidback Saurday session at Bussola instead. The Westin Mina Seyahi Beach Resort’s lovely little terrace spot now offers a new lazy brunch. Named La Tavolata (The Table), the brunch includes a selection of chef’s specials paired with Italian house drinks.

Westin Mina Seyahi Beach Resort and Marina, Dubai Marina. Every Sat 2pm to 5pm, Dhs250. Tel: (04) 511 7136. More info on website.

12. Get paddling

Inspired to get out on the water during the Dubai International Boat Show? DXB Paddling is a free event that invites all experienced paddle boarders, kayakers, sufskiers, outriggers and rowers to compete in a 15km long distance and relay race around the Palm Jumierah.

Start and finish line at Dubai Marina canal, close to DIMC, by The Beach. Sat March 4, from 12pm. Races will be launched from 2pm. For more info and to register visit the website.

13. Watch a pitch perfect performance

They’ve worked with stars like Sir Elton John, Mariah Carey, Sting and Madonna, and even lent their vocals to the soundtrack of The Lion King… and now you can hear them live. The London Community Gospel Choir are holding a family-friendly Gospel on the Grass event as part of ChoirFest Middle East. Head on down for your dose of Saturday soul…

The Els Club, Dubai Sports City. Sat March 4, 7.30pm to 10.30pm. General admission Dhs250, 18 and under Dhs50, under 5 free. Tel: (04) 347 7793. More info on website.

14. Pretend you’re on The Amazing Race

The Rush-A-Way challenge is back and this time it will take place in JLT, helping participants discover the community’s hidden treasures. There will be 150 teams of two tackling 10 specially-crafted challenges around the area, in a bid to win the grand prize of Dhs10,000.

JLT Park in Cluster O. Sat March 4, reporting time 8.30pm. Registration fee Dhs125 per person. Registration open until Fri March 3. Tel:(04) 451 0801. Visit the website for more info and to register.

15. Catch a free film

In the mood for a movie after all the Oscars action this week? Well grab some popcorn and a beanbag, because Dubai Marina Mall’s free outdoor film festival continues this weekend. Tonight you have the choice of the animated space flick Capture the Flag at 5.30pm, or you can sing along to Mamma Mia at 8pm.

Dubai Marina Mall. Every Fri and Sat for the rest of the month. Free. Tel: (04) 436 1020. More info on website.

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