Found yourself with an empty schedule for the next few days? 

The search for the best things to do in Dubai at the weekend isn’t exactly the easiest endeavour. Why? Because there are so many options – like a chocolate festival, cabaret shows, free children’s activities, new menus, live performances, and more.

Without further ado, here is our shortlist of 12 incredible things to do in Dubai this weekend:

Friday, May 19

Relive those Expo 2020 memories

Terra Expo City Dubai

It’s International Museum Day and to celebrate, Expo City Dubai is offering free entry to its flagship pavilions on Friday. Visitors can enter Alif – The Mobility Pavilion, Terra – The Sustainability Pavilion, The Women’s and Vision Pavilions, as well as each of the three Stories of Nations Pavilions free of charge. Plus, if you have little ones, make sure you bring them along as there are specially curated educational programmes and a treasure hunt across seven attractions.

Expo City, Dubai. Friday, May 19, free entry. @expocitydubai

Meet someone at a mingle night


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Dubai can be a difficult city to meet new people: friends or even a potential partner. This weekend, get off the dating app and head to a singles night at Coco Lounge in Media One Hotel. Entry costs Dhs100 for men (buy one get one free) and for ladies it’s Dhs150 or you can sign a male friend up to get free entry. As well as a live DJ and vibrant atmosphere, minglers can get 20 per cent off at the bar or three-hour unlimited drinks packages for just Dhs180.

Coco Lounge, Media One Hotel, Media City, Dubai. Friday, May 19. Dhs100 for men, Dhs150 for ladies. @mingledxb

Get ready for a dazzling cabaret

Looking for a new concept to try in Dubai? Head to Andalucia at Al Habtoor Polo Resort for its all-new Dinner Show. The Rocking Opera will star West End talent Aaron Pryce-Lewis and Glain Rhys, who have performed in Les Miserables and Phantom of The Opera. The performance will be held on Friday, May 19 and Saturday, May 20 at 7.30pm. The evening is inclusive of dinner and drinks, starting from Dhs450 per person.

The Dinner Show, Al Habtoor Polo Resort, Wadi Al Safa, Friday, May 19 and Saturday, May 20, Dhs450 per person. Tel: (050) 937 2905, (show bookings), (0)4 436 2222 (staycations),

Consume irresponsible amounts of chocolate at this cocoa festival

Chocolatiers and top pastry chefs from across the region are joining forces for a weekend full of chocolate competitions, tastings, workshops… and a chocolate fashion show. Across the three days, Salon du Chocolat at Galeries Lafayette will be packed with festivities including workshops, masterclasses with renowned chefs from around the world, tastings, and a special Salon du Chocolat Junior section for little ones to get creative. Register your attendance here.

Salon du Chocolat, Le Gourmet, Galeries Lafayette, The Dubai Mall, May 18 to 20, 2pm to 10pm. @salonduchocolatme

Saturday, May 20

Check out a chic new brunch

Whether you prefer yours shaken or stirred, fruity or bitter, dry or dirty, this Italian-themed brunch at Basta has all your food and drink cravings sorted.  Taking place on Saturdays from 1pm to 4pm, the summery brunch is priced at Dhs325 per person and includes an impressive selection of premium beverages including martinis, cocktails, and chilled aperitivo, as well as unlimited Italian dishes, from delectable antipasti to fresh seafood and grilled mains.

Basta, St Regis Hotel Downtown Dubai, Dubai. Every Saturday, 1pm to 4pm. Dhs325 per person.

See Trey Songz live

Bottoms up! R&B singer and songwriter Trey Songz has been making his rounds through Dubai’s biggest nightclubs and hangout spots and this weekend is no different. Trey Songz will be performing on Saturday at The Penthouse at Five Palm Jumeirah. It’s free entry for ladies and will cost Dhs300 for gents including three drinks.

The Penthouse, Five Palm Jumeirah, Palm Jumeirah, Sat May 20, from 9pm. Free entry for ladies, Dhs300 for gents. @fivepalmjumeirah

Cheers to the weekend at Ekai

Planning on heading out to DIFC this weekend? You might want to make a pitstop at Ekai… The buzzing lounge bar has launched an ‘early dinner’ three-course set menu with a welcome drink for just Dhs109. On the menu, guests can tuck into a selection of antipasti to start including beef tartar and whipped feta, honey sriracha chicken sliders or Josper roast beef for main, and tangy passion fruit cheesecake or traditional Italian cannolo for dessert.

Ekai, Burj Daman, DIFC, Dubai. Set menu available daily from 6pm to 8pm. Tel:(0)4 554 3392.

Take the little ones to a free workshop at Dubai Hills Mall

Shvili and Osteria Mario

A great way to keep busy out of the summer heat…Taking place from Wednesday to Saturday, Osteria Mario and Shvili have launched a free two-hour eduplaytional workshop for children. While the parents enjoy a relaxing meal at Shvili, an authentic Georgian restaurant, children can take part in aqua make-up workshops, a drawing competition, arts and crafts and crown decorating, pizza cooking classes, and more. 

Osteria Mario and Shvili, First floor, Dubai Hills Mall, Dubai. Monday to Sunday, from 10am to

Sunday, May 21

Tuck into a hearty Sunday roast

the coterie

Is it even a Sunday without tucking into a traditional roast dinner? We think not… Served all weekend long The Coterie’s roast is priced from Dhs135 and includes a choice of roast beef, lamb, chicken, or a vegan alternative, complete with trimmings of Yorkshire pudding, rich gravy, root vegetables, cauliflower & leek cheese, roast potatoes, and stuffing.

Level 2, P6 Car Park, Ibn Battuta Mall, Jebal Ali Village. Tel:(0) 58 566 4240.

Swim, eat, drink, repeat

koko bay

The ultimate boho escape on the Palm, Koko Bay is your one-stop shop for a fully redeemable beach day. Bring along your furry friends and enjoy a cheeky drink or two while you sit right on the water and delight in one of their many delicious dishes. We recommend the pulled duck and lettuce cups. A beach day in the week will cost Dhs150 while on weekends, it will cost Dhs250 and both are fully redeemable.

Koko Bay, Palm West Beach, Palm Jumeirah, open Mon to Thu 10am to 12am, Fri 10am to am, Sat 8am to 1am, Sun 8am to 12am. Tel: (0)4 572 3444 @kokobayuae

Ceviche and sundowners

above eleven

The perfect spot to catch up with friends over ceviche and sundowners, this new Peruvian restaurant on Palm Jumeirah offers panoramic views of the Arabian Gulf, Ain Dubai, and the marina. Order the ceviche platter (Dhs265) to share which includes the chef’s special seabass, crispy calamari, and sweet potato; nikkei with tuna, goma seeds and black tapioca; the gluten-free amazonia made with seabream; and forestia, a vegan gluten-free option made with shimeji and portobello mushrooms, avocado and sweet potato.

Above Eleven Dubai, Rooftop, West Palm Beach, Jumeirah Marriott Resort Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, 4pm to 2am daily, Tel: (0)4 666 1420,

Try the new menu at Fi’lia

Looking for a spot for dinner with a view? For the second year in a row, Fi’lia has been awarded a prestigious Bib Gourmand by Michelin. Now, the stunning Italian eatery has launched an exciting new menu with simple and delicious dishes. Guests can tuck into the truffle beef carpaccio or the stracciatella with oven-baked feta to start, followed by the soft pillowy gnocchi in truffle butter sauce or the lamb shank Osso bucco agnello with creamy polenta, and to finish the classic Pavlova with coconut and passionfruit cream and mango gelato.

Fi’lia, 70th floor, SLS Dubai Hotel & Residences Dubai. Daily, 12.30pm to 12am. Tel:(0)4 607 0737.

Images: Supplied/Social