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Where to watch New Year’s Eve fireworks in the UAE

As the countdown begins, here are the most dazzling firework displays in Abu Dhabi and Dubai – and where to watch them for free.

Whether it’s the countdown to midnight or singing Auld Lang Syne, everyone has their own New Year’s Eve traditions. One tradition that we can’t do without is firework displays, and the UAE sure knows how to put on a show.

So, whether you’re after dancing fountains or drone displays, which the gram will never do justice, we’ve got you covered. Best of all, you don’t have to spend the big bucks, as there are superb spots to watch the sky light up for free. Just make sure you get there early and nab your spot, as 2023 awaits.

Here’s where to watch New Year’s Eve fireworks in the UAE.

Abu Dhabi
UAE National Day 2022
Abu Dhabi Corniche

Grab a spot in one of the restaurants or bars, which sprawl out onto the pavements, so you can watch the New Year’s Eve firework display in the UAE. As it’s one of the most popular and longest running firework shows in the capital, expect big crowds. Plus, since the corniche runs for eight kilometres, we won’t judge you for saving on the dirhams by strolling or standing.

Al Maryah Island

Come for the fireworks, stay for the bars and restaurants. Al Maryah Island is a great spot to catch some free fireworks, but also to enjoy some fabulous food. The display takes place at Boardwalk, and we’d recommend arriving early, so you can soak up the atmosphere. Otherwise, you’ll have to settle for watching on the big screens.

Sheikh Zayed Festival

You may think that five dirhams can’t get you much, but in Abu Dhabi it gets you a ticket to Sheikh Zayed Festival’s spectacular firework display. The location hosts weekly firework shows – yes, really. On New Year’s Eve, this is turned up a notch. In true UAE-style, expect dancing fountains, lasers and holograms.

Yas Bay

Yas Bay is a great choice for families and big groups. The exciting waterfront, with its cafés, bars and restaurants, is a stellar spot to see Yas Island’s firework displays. Not content with just one firework display, there are two: one at the child-friendly time of 9pm and another a midnight. So, sit back and watch as the capital lights up in an array of colours.

Where to watch Burj Al Arab’s New Year’s Eve fireworks

The iconic Burj Al Arab’s New Year’s Eve firework display is always a showstopper. This year’s party offerings include a four-course meal and performers in the atrium at Sahn Eddar and under the stars at Sal. Prices for both start from AED 12,000 – so if you don’t have the cash, there are other ways of catching a glimpse of the fireworks.

Black Palace Beach

What makes this spot special is that it’s in between Palm Jumeirah and Burj Al Arab. Translated: two firework displays from one location. Black Palace Beach is a hidden gem, and it has earnt the nickname Secret Beach. Don’t expect any amenities here, as there are no sun loungers or restaurants – just you and the beach. Oh, and the fireworks.

Kite Beach

This family-friendly spot is a great place to see Burj Al Arab’s New Year’s Eve firework display. Whether you’re walking along the 14-kilometre running track or with sand between your toes on the beach, it boasts an uninterrupted view of the beautiful building all lit-up.

Souk Madinat Jumeirah

Souk Madinat Jumeirah has plenty of (what feels like) front-row seats to Burj Al Arab. Thanks to its location, it’s probably one of the closest places you can see the fireworks. Take your pick from one of the many restaurant terraces. Plus, you’re more than welcome to grab a spot on one of the walkways or bridges, and just enjoy the vibes.    

Umm Suqeim Park

Expect to see big families gathering at Umm Suqeim Park, as the park is primarily for children, women and families. It has a relaxed atmosphere, as you’ll often find kids on the swings or sandpit, and people picnicking. As it’s located behind Burj Al Arab, it’s a fabulous spot to watch the fireworks. Plus, you’ll feel the sea breeze as you see in the new year.

Where to watch Burj Khalifa’s New Year’s Eve fireworks

The Burj Khalifa has one of the most famous firework displays in the UAE, if not the world. With images of this spectacle getting beamed across the globe, you know you are watching a blockbuster show. This year, it’s outdoing itself, as it is set to host a record-breaking event with the world’s biggest laser and firework show. 

Dubai Water Canal

The canal provides a great view for The Burj Khalifa’s New Year’s Eve firework display.This 3.2km walkway is serene during the year, but busy on New Year’s Eve. Spanning from Business Bay to Old Dubai, there are well-positioned bridges for you to get those seasonal snaps. Plus, depending on where you stand, you may well get catch more shows across town.

Souk Al Bahar

The bridges of Souk Al Bahar offer a widescreen view of The Burj Khalifa. Overlooking the fountains, this is a hot spot to see the New Year’s Eve firework display and dancing fountains. While there are public benches, these are not situated at the front of the action. So, try to get to the front, as it will be worth it.

The Dubai Mall

With its cafes on the pavements and restaurants with terraces, you have plenty of options in and outside The Dubai Mall. The next option is to go to the walkway between The Dubai Mall and Souk Al Bahar, which will give you a great view of the New Year’s Eve firework display and the dancing fountains.

Where to watch Palm Jumeirah’s New Year’s Eve fireworks

On New Year’s Eve, Palm Jumeirah is alight with firework displays. The biggest display in Dubai comes courtesy of Atlantis, The Palm’s New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner, A Night with the Stars. The event welcomes the singing sensation Kylie Minogue and hosts a dazzling firework display – to enter, however, you need a spare AED 4,500. Fear not, there are other options, which cost zero dirhams.

Club Vista Mare

Club Vista Mare is a gorgeous spot to see in the new year. The promenade is hosting its own New Year’s Eve fireworks display, which is free for anyone to watch. We’d recommend finding a spot on the lovely stretch of beach, and enjoying the stunning views, which include Burj Al Arab and Palm Jumeirah.

Palm Jumeirah Boardwalk

At Palm Jumeirah Boardwalk, there’s plenty of room to watch the New Year’s Eve firework displays. The walk spans 11 kilometres, it’s six metres wide and is built over the rocks of The Palm’s breakwater. Plus, when you get the midnight munchies, there should be food trucks. We’d recommend hopping onto the monorail and avoiding the roads.

Palm West Beach

Whether you want to book a table at one of the beach clubs, from Surf Club to SĀN Beach, or simply stroll down this wonderful walkway, it’s a buzzing spot to catch the New Year’s Eve fireworks on Palm Jumeirah. The location should also mean that you see the sky light up Atlantis, The Palm at Club Vista Mare.

The Pointe

The Pointe is a brilliant place to catch Atlantis, The Palm’s New Year’s Eve fireworks. Situated at the tip of Palm Jumeirah and with views of the Arabian Gulf, you can sit at one of the many restaurants with outdoor seating or simply stroll along the stretch.

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Kohinoor Sahota - Deputy Editor
A sucker for a good story, if you invite Kohinoor to a gallery, comedy night, new restaurant, hiking trip, cycle ride, pool day or just about any activity, preferably with the promise of wine, she’ll probably say yes – that is if she isn’t busy planning her next adventure.

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