Best Places to Visit in UAE with Family for Free

  • April 3 2024
Best Places to Visit in UAE with Family for Free

What makes family travel so special? The shared laughs, the new discoveries, and the stories you’ll tell for years to come—not the luxury resorts or exquisite cuisine!

You can make a lot of memories on a budget-friendly family vacation if you plan ahead and make wise decisions.  

As it is said, “It’s not about the destination, but the journey”.

Spending limits can be creatively turned into exciting adventures when traveling with loved ones, adding to the trip’s specialty.  

Let us help you experience once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to learn about the rich history and culture of UAE.

With that in mind, this blog entails top places that you can visit in UAE with family for free or as low as Dh15.  

So, let’s get started.  

Family-Friendly Attractions in the UAE: Top Free Attractions in Dubai & Sharjah

visit Dubai

The United Arab Emirates is a country of luxury and state-of-the-art technology. It is a well-liked travel destination because of its beauty and allure.

The UAE is famous for its pricey experiences, luxury hotels and shopping, but it also offers a lot of free activities and attractions that allow tourists to enjoy the country’s natural beauty, rich culture & history for free.

The country offers a variety of travel experiences—from bustling metropolises to serene natural settings.  

The top free attractions in the UAE are mentioned below.

Enjoy Family Time at Jebel Hafeet

Jebel Hafeet

As you drive, ride or if you are feeling really strong, hike up to the summit of the second-highest peak in the UAE—Jebel Hafeet—and take in the breathtaking natural beauty of the country.  

Discover the numerous forts, museums, and tombs in the nearby tourist haven, which overlooks the Oman border and the splendor of Al Ain.

Location: Al Ain, South of Dubai

Read also: 10 Reasons to Live in Dubai: It’s Not What You Think It Is!  

Visit The Sharjah Buried Village

Sharjah Buried Village

One of the best free things to do in Sharjah is exploring the enigmatic buried village if you are looking for an adventure in the desert.  

Due to its closeness to the town of Al Madam, it is frequently referred to as Al Madam Ghost Village.

This settlement has been abandoned and is totally covered in desert sand. According to the locals, the Al Kutbi Tribe once lived in the village.

The inhabitants were probably driven out by the area’s hostile sand and desert conditions.  

Location: Off Al Shuwaib Road, Near Al Madam, Sharjah

Watch The Dubai Fountain's Water Dance

Dubai Fountain

Visit the waterfront promenade of the Dubai Mall to witness the dancing jets of the Dubai Fountain in action.  

Under the shadow of the world's highest skyscraper, this state-of-the-art totally free experience is a classic thing to enjoy with family.

You can enjoy the show after 6 PM; every 30 minutes, the water shoots up to 140 meters in the air while dancing to Bollywood hit songs, traditional Arabic music, and other melodies.  

Location: Dubai Mall, Downtown Dubai, Dubai

Zabeel Park

Zabeel Park is arguably one of Dubai’s free leisure opportunities when it comes to green space near the city center.

You can visit the park to cool off and enjoy some fun time with family—whether it’s the playgrounds, grills, ambiance of the amphitheater, or the neighboring Dubai Garden Glow.

Location: Near Jafiliya Metro Station, Dubai

*Cost: Only Dh5 per head

Read also: How Is Living in Dubai Different from Living In Sharjah?

Enjoy Peaceful Art Gallery at Alserkal Avenue

Alserkal Avenue

Alserkal Avenue, one of the city’s most well-known art districts, is brimming with originality. The galleries—which are situated within ingeniously built warehouses—offer free tours.

Custot Gallery features modern art, while Elmarsa Gallery features works from North Africa.

Now, this neighborhood has transformed into almost 500,000 sq. ft. of urban area with a variety of community events as well as food, fashion and musical activities.  

Location: 17th Street, Al Quoz 1, Dubai

Visit The Al Eslah School Museum

Al Eslah School Museum is one of the well-known historical sites in Sharjah that allows free entry.

Founded in 1935, it was the first official educational institution in the area. Visitors can participate in non-educational sessions and see how the old school’s classrooms used to appear.  

It's a great place to host special occasions.

Location: Heart of Sharjah

Read also: Why Invest in Sharjah: Strategic Location, Booming Economy & More!

Fun time At Abra Ride

Abra Ride

Why not take an Abra ride instead of driving all the way to the beach if you want to beat the heat?

It's undoubtedly a fun experience.  

Location: Bur Dubai (Creekside), Dubai

*Cost: Dh 1 per ride

Take A Tour to Old Dubai

Dubai Creek Harbor

Explore Dubai’s old district to see outstanding artistic creations amidst customs and culture.  

Restored old houses with rooms and courtyards host prestigious art galleries in the Al Fahidi Historical Neighborhood, which is near the scenic Dubai Creek.

Enjoy the amazing sand-colored wind towers and don’t miss the Coffee Museum, which explains the history of this delectable beverage dating back centuries.  

Location: Al Fahidi St, Al Souq Al Kabeer, Bur Dubai, Dubai

Sharjah National Park

Sharjah National Park

Enjoy an abundance of greenery as you walk around more than 100 acres of Sharjah's largest park, marveling at the beauty of the local flora and fauna.

Location: Al Dhaid Road, Sharjah  

*Cost: Dh 2 per head

Read also: Top 10 Areas to Live in Sharjah

Visit Sharjah Art Museum

Sharjah Art Museum

One of the most fascinating places in the emirate is the Sharjah Art Museum, which is situated in the arts area in the heart of Sharjah. It hosts some of the biggest art exhibitions in the Gulf.

This three-storey museum features both temporary and permanent exhibitions featuring a wide range of artistic mediums and styles.

There are 4000 books in Arabic, English and other languages in the museum library.  

For art enthusiasts, one of the greatest free things to do in Sharjah is to visit this magnificent museum.

Location: Arts Area, The Heart of Sharjah, Near Corniche Post Office

Free Activities in Abu Dhabi

Now, let’s see what free things you can do in Abu Dhabi.

To really appreciate the capital of the UAE, you don’t need to spend a lot of money. As a matter of fact, there are places in Abu Dhabi where you can travel for free.

You can explore the most well-known sites in the city as well as museums, parks, and natural wonders for absolutely free.

Even the Experience Abu Dhabi Shuttle Bus offers free transportation to popular tourist destinations.  

Explore Al Jahili Fort

Al Jahili Fort

Visit Al Jahili, one of the biggest forts in the UAE, while you are in the city of Al Ain. You are free to roam through and explore the display halls and lovely grounds of the fort.

Get in shape at Hudayriyat Island

Discover the best playground for fitness enthusiasts in Abu Dhabi.  

Take a ride on the scenic bike paths or play tennis on the court. Hudayriyat Island is your free pass to an active lifestyle in the middle of the city thanks to its wide variety of cutting-edge sport facilities.  

Enjoy Relaxing Time at Corniche Beach

Corniche Beach

Go to Corniche Beach if you want to spend a cheap day at the beach.  

It is a lovely place to enjoy the sun, and the beach stretches 2 kilometers with white sand and blue waves.  

Also, there is a designated family area for gatherings of beachgoers

Visit Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

When visiting Abu Dhabi, you should not miss the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque because of its magnificent architecture and celebration of cultural diversity.  

It costs nothing to enter the mosque or take one of the informative cultural tours provided by local Emirati interpreters.

Read more: Explore 10 of the Most Astonishing Areas in Abu Dhabi

9 Handy Tips for Planning Budget-Friendly Family Outings

Being on a tight budget doesn't mean you have to give up on having a good time. Here are some suggestions to make the most of your family trip without straining your finances:

1- Opt for Off Peak Times

Consider planning your outings during quieter seasons like summer to take advantage of prices for accommodations and activities.

2- Plan Ahead  

Make sure to book flights and places to stay in advance to secure the rates and avoid last minute price increases.

3- Choose Affordable Accommodations  

Choose budget-friendly options such as hotels, serviced apartments or vacation rentals instead of going for luxury resorts.

4- Use Public Transportation  

Take advantage of Dubai’s cost-effective public transportation options like buses, metro and trams rather than relying on pricey taxis.

5- Explore Free Attractions

Spend quality time with your family by visiting attractions like beaches, parks and markets that don't require entrance fees.

6- Hunt for Discounts

Keep an eye out for discounts on attractions, dining spots and activities by checking websites, apps or tourist passes for deals.

7- Dine Locally  

local dining Dubai

Save money by enjoying meals at local eateries, street food vendors and cafeterias rather than going to fancy restaurants.

8- Control Your Spending

We know that’s hard but establish a limit for shopping and resist the temptation to splurge at shopping centers and high-end stores.

9- Pack The Essentials  

Remember to bring sunscreen, snacks and water to prevent additional expenses while you're out and about.

Read also: Is Dubai Safe to Live And Work?



How can I enjoy Dubai without money?

You can enjoy Dubai without spending money! Discover the city’s free attractions such as beaches, parks and markets. Take a walk by the waterfront or have a picnic in one of the lush green areas. Explore landmarks like mosques and museums that offer free entry. So, you can experience the ambiance and breathtaking views in Dubai without emptying your wallet.  

Which place is free in Dubai?

Dubai offers a lot of free attractions to explore. Some options include:

  • Beaches; Soak up the sun, sand and sea at beaches like JBR Beach, Kite Beach and Al Mamzar Beach.
  • Parks; Unwind in the surroundings of parks such as Zabeel Park, Safa Park and Al Barsha Pond Park.
  • Markets; Wander through souks like the Gold Souk and Spice Souk in Deira to immerse yourself in the atmosphere without spending any money.
  • Dubai Fountain Show; Witness the captivating water and light spectacle at Dubai Fountain, near Dubai Mall—an experience that doesn't cost a dime.
  • Jumeirah Corniche; Enjoy a walk along the Jumeirah Corniche, where you can take in the breathtaking views of the coastline.


How child-friendly is Dubai?

Dubai is very welcoming to families, providing a variety of activities and attractions for children of all ages. From theme parks and water parks to entertainment centers and beaches ideal for families, there are plenty of options.  

Many hotels and restaurants cater specifically to families with kids by offering amenities such as kids’ clubs, play areas and special menus. Moreover, Dubai features parks, playgrounds and recreational areas where families can bond outdoors. In general, Dubai aims to create an enjoyable atmosphere for families exploring the city.

How to do a cheap Dubai trip?

To plan a budget-friendly trip to Dubai, consider traveling during off-peak seasons, booking flights in advance and opting for affordable accommodations. Utilize public transportation options that are easy on the wallet and explore free attractions like beaches and parks. Look out for discounts on activities and dine in local eateries to save money on meals. Keep shopping expenses in check by packing essentials. By planning thoughtfully, you can experience Dubai without breaking the bank while making lasting memories during your visit.

Which month is the cheapest for Dubai?

Usually, the affordable time to travel to Dubai is in the summer, from June to August. This timeframe is considered the off-peak tourist season in the city because of the heat, with temperatures surpassing 40°C (104°F).  

So, hotel rates often decrease significantly during these months offering a budget option for visitors. However, it's important to consider that traveling to Dubai in summer might not suit everyone due to the high temperature.

Summing It Up

family trip in Dubai

From the beaches in Abu Dhabi to the culture of Sharjah and bustling life of Dubai, there's a little something for everyone to enjoy.  

Make sure you don't miss out on these budget-friendly activities that create lasting memories. If Dubai is on your radar for a move, take a look at our helpful list of 10 cheapest areas to rent in Dubai.

Or do you need help finding a home for your family? Explore our customized rental guide on how to rent the perfect property for you and your family? Get started on planning your affordable family trip today!