16 new UAE attractions we can't wait for
From Madame Tussauds to a super sized snow park…
In 2018, we saw the opening of some top attractions across the UAE – Dubai Frame, Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi, and the world’s first floating hotel, QE2 Dubai, to name just a few.
But there’s plenty more attractions still to come. From iconic waxwork museum Madame Tussauds to the Mohammed Bin Rashid Library, we’ve rounded up 16 UAE attractions we can’t wait to see make their debut over the next year or two…
Mohammed bin Rashid Library
Ok, we are so excited about this one. Mohammed bin Rashid Library is a huge new world-class library, located in Al Jaddaf (across the Creek from Dubai Festival City). The seven-storey building has been designed to resemble an open book sitting on a rehl – a traditional lectern which holds the Quran. Although an update on opening has not been given, it’s been progressing well and we can’t wait to wile away the day inside when it opens.
Opening: Second half of 2020
Before you eye roll at Dubai opening another mall, you might want to learn what’s inside this one. As well as over 550 shops and 180 restaurants, entertainment facilities will include a 1km indoor ski slope with 12,000 square metre winter village, super sized crystal lagoon, pulse-racing electric go-karting track and a giant dancing fountain. It’s opening in the second half of 2020.
Opening: Late 2019/ early 2020
A new Dubai attraction is set to open soon, and it’ll allow you to walk around a skyscraper an eye-watering 200 metres in the sky. First announced in 2017, the new attraction is called Sky Walk, and will take shape at the soon-to-open Address Sky View hotel in Downtown Dubai. While we’ve heard little about the jaw-dropping new attraction since it’s announcement in September 2017, it’s been confirmed to What’s On that the breathtaking Sky Walk is still going ahead. Although no opening date has been given, the hotel is accepting reservations from December 15. So, we could be scaling the new Downtown skyscraper before the year is out.
Fancy seeing Dubai from a different point of view? What about 240 metres high from a panoramic viewing deck? That’s what you’ll get at The View at The Palm, a new landmark found 52 storeys high on the Palm Jumeirah. Expected to open in 2020, The View at The Palm is a public observation deck that will allow guests to see panoramic views of the Palm Jumeirah and beyond from the 52nd floor. It’ll be accessible via Nakheel Mall on the Palm Jumeirah.
It’s the jewel in the crown of Bluewaters island off JBR, and Ain Dubai, the world’s largest observation wheel, is set to be completed next year. According to a statement from developer Meraas, Ain Dubai will be completed in time for Expo 2020 celebrations. At over 250 metres high, Ain Dubai will become the world’s tallest observation wheel when it opens, and will be able to carry up to 1,400 passengers at a time across 48 double-glazed capsules. Some of these capsules will be private ‘fine-dining’ pods that seat up to 12 guests, so you’ll be able to rent one out for a special occasion. Six of the capsules will also have a licensed bar (we’re guessing it will become THE spot for sundowners in JBR).
Zombie Apocalypse Park (ZAP)
Nakheel Malls is teaming up with Sharjah Golf & Shooting Club to bring a brand new concept to Deira Islands. Zombie Apocalypse Park (ZAP) will be a giant entertainment zone themed around the living dead. ZAP will be the first attraction of its kind to open in the UAE when it opens in mid-2020, and will be based in The Night Market at Deira Islands. The 65,000 square foot space will feature 12 attractions including a haunted house, axe throwing, archery, haunted corn maze, trampolines, target shooting, zombie apocalypse attack and more.
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First announced back in 2008, famed waxwork museum Madame Tussauds is tipped to open next year on Bluewaters, the island development off The Beach at JBR. While details about who might appear in the first Middle Eastern location are scant, Madam Tussauds typically features a range of famous faces including singers, actors, politicians, sports star and historical figures. The London branch also has many figures from the British royal family – so here in Dubai could we be seeing a double of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai? Fingers crossed…
Museum of the Future
Unveiled in 2015, the architecturally striking Museum of the Future is currently under construction in front of Emirates Towers on Sheikh Zayed Road. The large silver structure is designed in the shape of an eye, hollowed out in the middle. At the time of announcement, Sheikh Mohammed wrote on Twitter: “Today we have launched Museum of the Future, featuring innovation labs and a permanent exhibit for future inventions. Museum of the Future is integrated environment empowering creative minds to test, fund and market ideas for futuristic prototypes and services. It is a first step of many to come, marking the beginning of great achievements”. It’s set to open in 2020.
Aquaventure Waterpark extension
Opening: Summer 2020
Aquaventure waterpark at Atlantis The Palm is set to become one of the world’s biggest next year with the addition of a huge 34-metre tall new tower. Trident Tower will introduce an impressive 12 new slides to the waterpark on Palm Jumeirah when it opens in the summer of 2020. The new tower will feature rides for thrill seekers of all ages, including the world’s longest ProSlide MammothBLAST, a 449-metre, family-friendly water coaster and raft rockets that will propel riders through wind channels, drops and uphill climbs for an exhilarating ride.
Ras Al Khaimah
At the start of 2020, Jebel Jais will introduce a controlled bungee jump. The bungee jump will sit a height of 1,500 metres above sea level, and 23 metres off the ground. Adrenaline junkies will be flung into the air, with a free fall of 8 metres and controlled fall of 15 metres as they hurtle through the air.
The National Aquarium
The National Aquarium, located in Al Qana, Abu Dhabi will be a 7,000 square metre space with ten zones, housing 33,000 marine animals. All of the 33,000 creatures are responsibly and ethically-sourced and the facility will have 80 qualified marine experts to answer any and all questions. There will be 250 species on display, including the largest reptile in the UAE, thought to be a seven-metre long python.
Snow Abu Dhabi
The UAE is set to get a ‘cool’ new attraction as a new snow play park, four times the size of Ski Dubai is opening on Reem Island, Abu Dhabi next year. The new destination will feature 13 rides and attractions including Snowflake Garden, Flurries’ Mountain and Crystal Carousel. The temperature inside promises to be a cool -2 degrees celsius, giving guests the chance to enter ice labyrinths, build snowmen and play around in the 50cm deep snow.
Zayed National Museum
Slated to open on Saadiyat Island in what’s set to become Saadiyat Cultural District is Zayed National Museum. Announced in 2007, the museum promises to showcase and celebrate the life and achievements of the late Sheikh Zayed, and the UAE’s journey from the ancient past to the present day. The museum’s design is themed on the feathers of a falcon, with each steel feather containing a gallery space – the tallest will be an impressive 125m high. It was announced recently that it’ll open in 2021.
Guggenheim Abu Dhabi
The Louvre Abu Dhabi finally opened its impressive doors in November 2017 – and although little information of its neighbour, The Guggenheim, has been given, Saif Ghobash, undersecretary at the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, confirmed in April 2019 that mega new tourist attractions Guggenheim Abu Dhabi and Zayed National Museum are still very much in progress. “All I can say now is that with Louvre Abu Dhabi done and completed a year ago, all the other projects have been put into full gear” he was quoted saying. Sounds promising.