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31 marvellous things to do in the UAE this May

Here’s how to make the most of the month ahead.

From destination dining to concerts and family fun – we have something exciting for you every day this month.

Monday 1 May

Go up, up and away

Are you ready to take off? The Dubai Ballon is the latest attraction at Atlantis, The Palm, which takes visitors up to 300 metres in the air and boasts spectacular views spanning the Arabian Gulf to Dubai Marina. So, if you’re looking for a romantic experience – a proposal, anyone? – then this could get a yes. General tickets start from AED 175 for adults and AED 75 for children.

GO: Visit https://thedubaiballoon.com for more information.

The Dubai Balloon

Tuesday 2 May

Enjoy a five-course grape pairing menu

Prime68, JW Marriott Marquis Dubai’s popular steakhouse, has partnered with South African Thelema Mountain Vineyards to host a five-course grape pairing dinner, promising a unique culinary experience for food and grape enthusiasts. Each course will feature locally sourced ingredients, expertly prepared to showcase the flavours of Prime68’s signature steaks and dishes, paired with a specially selected glass of grape to round out the experience. Tuesday 2 May, from 6pm to 11pm. AED 495 per person.

GO: Visit marriott.com for reservations and more information.


Wednesday 3 May

Take part in a Mexican masterclass

As part of this year’s Dubai Food Festival, chef Shaw Lash will host a series of masterclasses at Lila Wood-Fired Taqueria on Jumeirah Beach Road. Participants will learn about the in-house grinding process of corn for the best retention of nutrients for making tortillas. Chef Shaw will also provide a live kitchen walk-through, explaining other traditional culinary techniques used in Mexico. Available on 2 and 3 May, from 3pm to 5pm. AED 265 per person.

GO: Visit www.opentable.ae for reservations and more information.


Thursday 4 May

Join a four hands dinner

Issei at Radisson Hotel Dubai DAMAC Hills is hosting a Four Hands Chef Dinner to celebrate Dubai Food Festival. Here, head chef Luisa Serna from Peru and Gabriela Chamorro of “The Girl and The Goose” supper club will take diners on a journey through Latin American cuisine. Expect Sweet Plantain Furikake, Tuna Ceviche Nikkei, Seabass Issei, Arroz con Choclo and a special dessert, “From Phillo with Love.” Available on 4, 5 and 6 May, from 7pm. AED 325 per person.

GO: Email issei.dubai@radisson.com or call 04 879 1111 for reservations and more information.

Issei Dubai

Friday 5 May

Immerse yourself in Afropop

AfroPop singer and songwriter MKO will lead an immersive concert at Dubai’s Theatre of Digital Art. Prepare to be captivated by an unforgettable experience with visuals, mesmerising performances and the infectious rhythms of Afropop. MKO will bring a slew of musicians to the stage, including Abri Hamdan, Devon Kosoko, DJ Tribe, Ikom Boy and ZigZag. Friday 5 May, from 8pm. AED 15o (regular seating) and AED 300 (VIP seating).

GO: Visit www.toda.ae for reservations and more information.

dinner shows

Saturday 6 May

Escape into a fairytale

Enter a magical world of wonder as Disney Princess – The Concert comes to Dubai’s Coca-Cola Arena. The cast will perform over 30 Disney Princess songs, including classics like Let It Go from Frozen, A Whole New World from Aladdin, Reflection from Mulan, and How Far I’ll Go from Moana. The family-friendly show will be accompanied by Expo City Dubai’s Firdaus Orchestra and will feature an all-star cast of West End and Broadway performers. Available from 5 to 7 May. Tickets from AED 150.

GO: Visit coca-cola-arena.com for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Sunday 7 May

Sing along to the Backstreet Boys

Backstreet’s back. The American pop group Backstreet Boys will perform at Etihad Arena on Sunday, 7 May. Nineties kids will be buzzing with excitement, as this is your chance to see Nick Carter, Howie Dorough, AJ McLean, Brian Littrell and Kevin Richardson. We’re expecting them to play their greatest hits including We’ve Got It Goin’ On, Quit Playing Games (With My Heart), Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) and As Long As You Love Me. Plus, the classic I Want It That Way, which has been streamed more than one billion times on Spotify.  

GO: Visit www.etihadarena.ae for more information.

Backstreet Boys in Abu Dhabi

Monday 8 May

Dine inside the Burj Khalifa

Armani/Ristorante has launched its new spring menu, crafted by chef Giovanni Papi. Focusing on fresh seasonal ingredients, the new dishes include Uovo in Primavera (organic fried egg, green peas textures, fennel, apple, prestige caviar, and goose crumble), Black Angus carpaccio, Scampo (pan-seared langoustines, baby carrot, salicornia, and blood orange), Rombo Chiodato (Turbot poached in extra virgin olive oil, zucchini flower variations, and a Mediterranean emulsion) and the Spigola Selvaggia (seared line-caught sea bass, white asparagus, leek fondant, and ocean elixir). Available daily, from 6:30pm to 11:30pm.

GO: Call 04 888 3666 for reservations and more information.

Armani Valentine's

Tuesday 9 May

Check out a new dinner show

Prepare to be enthralled as Billionaire Dubai presents its electrifying show, A Shot of Adrenaline. Featuring five special acts, including two new artists, as well as mesmerising singers and dancers, guests are in for an exclusive spectacle that will leave them breathless. For the first time in Dubai, the world-renowned Aerial Sword Swallower, Lucky Hell, will perform her jaw-dropping techniques. In addition, the exceptionally talented Knife Throwing duo, Blade2Blade, will keep audiences on the edge of their seats. Available Tuesday to Sunday, from 9pm.

GO: Call 04 510 3100 for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Wednesday 10 May

Immerse yourself in a gastro-theatre

The culinary genre of gastro theatre is only growing in popularity, pairing haute cuisine with visual art and technology to create an immersive dining experience — but it can come with a hefty price tag. AED 2,318 to be exact. Guests at the newly-opened Krasota Dubai are invited to enter a gastronomical theatre, an auditorium with a large circular table for 20 diners, with a pixel-perfect 3D multimedia performance projected across the curved walls and adorned table. Each act of the gastro-performance – essentially each course of the set menu – is dedicated to and inspired by the creations of eight world-renowned artists, complemented by audio-visual multimedia content. Available daily at 3pm, 6pm and 9pm.

GO: Visit https://krasotadubai.restoplace.ws for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Thursday 11 May

Catch Jay Shetty Live at Dubai Opera

He has more than 12 million followers on Instagram, is a New York Times bestselling author and has the kind of wisdom that is only reserved for monks – which makes sense, as he was once an actual monk. We’re talking about none other than Jay Shetty. The advice from his most recent book, 8 Rules of Love, is currently trending. So, catch Jay Shetty Live at Dubai Opera on 11 May, as it looks set to be a hot ticket.  

GO: Visit www.dubaiopera.com for tickets and more information.

things to do in May

Friday 12 May

Journey to Neverland

Get ready to embark on an extraordinary adventure as the classic tale of Peter Pan comes to life at the Abu Dhabi Cultural Foundation Theater. Join Peter, the boy who never grows up, as he and Tinker Bell whisk Wendy and her brothers away from their London home on a magical journey to Neverland. Get ready for thrilling adventures with the Lost Boys, encounters with Captain Hook and even a hungry crocodile. Expect skating, flying, and special effects from the Imperial Ice Stars. Friday 12 May at 6pm. AED 175 per person.

GO: Visit https://feverup.com for tickets and more information.

things to do in May

Saturday 13 May

Get Social at this new brunch

City Social has announced the launch of its very first brunch, where diners can expect modern European cuisine influenced by Japanese flavours, free-flowing drinks, live entertainment, and views of the ever-changing skyline. Tucked away on the 43rd floor of Grosvenor House Dubai, Jason Atherton’s restaurant serves a three-course brunch menu of Fried Spiced Chicken, Aged Beef Tartare, Koji Scottish Salmon, Scallop Ceviche, Poached Black Tiger Prawns, Black Angus Beef Rib Eye, Roast Cod and Aged Parmesan Risotto. Brunch-goers can enjoy White Chocolate and Coconut Pannacotta, Cheesecake Choux Buns, Apple Doughnuts and a Cheese Trolley for dessert. Saturdays from 12:30pm to 4pm. AED 550 (house beverages) and AED 750 (bubbly).

GO: Visit www.citysocialdubai.com for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Sunday 14 May

Rev your engines

Abu Dhabi, start your engines because Monster Jam will be celebrating its 30th anniversary, returning to Abu Dhabi for the first time since 2013. In the action-packed competition, world-class male and female drivers will show off their skills. The 5,500kg vehicles do backflips, two-wheelers and go up to 110kph. Monster Jam has plenty of family-friendly experiences. During the Monster Jam Pit Party, guests can get their selfies on. The line-up includes Grave Digger, El Toro Loco and Max-D. Visitors can get close-up to the vehicles and meet the drivers and crew. Friday 13 and Saturday 14 May, from 2pm. Tickets start from AED 135.

GO: Visit www.etihadarena.ae for more information.

Monster Jam in Abu Dhabi

Monday 15 May

See Dara Ó Briain live

Known for his quick wit and razor-sharp observations, Dara Ó Briain will bring his unique brand of comedy to Dubai Opera as part of the Dubai Comedy Festival. With a career spanning over two decades, the Irish comedian has become a household name in the entertainment industry, with numerous sold-out shows across the globe. His ability to blend topical humour with his own personal experiences has made him a fan favourite, while his live performances have been described as a masterclass in observational comedy.

GO: Visit www.dubaiopera.com for tickets and more information.

Dubai Comedy Festival

Tuesday 16 May

Laugh with Jimmy Carr

One of the UK’s most renowned comedians, Jimmy Carr, will take the stage at Dubai Opera on 16 May, bringing his trademark acerbic wit to Dubai Comedy Festival Carr has not only been praised by critics for his ability to improvise but also has a reputation as a risk-taking performer who is always willing to push the boundaries of what is considered acceptable in comedy. Known for his quick-fire one-liners and hilarious observations on modern life, Carr has become a household name in the comedy world. 

GO: Visit www.dubaiopera.com for tickets and more information.

Jimmy Carr

Wednesday 17 May

Visit the region’s largest indoor adrenaline park

Catering to just about every age, Adrenark Adventure brings more than 20 thrilling activities to the capital. Located in Al Qana, some of the most spine-tingling activities include Through the Roof, a drop tower that literally transports you through the roof. Aerial adventure seekers can glide through the air on the Speed Glider. In this fun-filled adventure activity, participants wear a harness and sit in a roller glider, which is attached to the cable. Other key attractions include the UAE’s first multilevel e-karting track and a kaleidoscopic ride with LED slides and treasure caves.

GO: Visit: www.alqana.ae for more information.

Adrenark Adventure

Thursday 18 May

Solve a murder mystery

Step back in time and immerse yourself in the Prohibition era with the brand new musical at Flashback Speakeasy. Fan favourite Ayesha Reid returns in the role of Fran, Eleonora Barbacini will belt out a cover of One Night Only that will blow you away, and Jay Abou from The Voice will join the cast as Mac. Dress in your 1920s attire and twirl your Hercule Poirot moustaches while gathering clues throughout this immersive dining experience. Thursdays from 8pm to 11pm. AED 299 (soft beverages), AED 380 (house beverages) and AED 550 (bubbly).

GO: WhatsApp 055 180 7559 for reservations and more information.

Flashback Speakeasy Bar & Lounge

Friday 19 May

Enjoy a fancy French breakfast

Experience a luxurious French breakfast at Josette, where you can sink into plush chairs while indulging in delectable French flavours. Satisfy your breakfast cravings with a specially curated menu that offers a range of dishes from Omelette au Crabe (king crab leg omelette with Hollandaise sauce) to Ouef Royale (poached eggs with smoked salmon and Oscietra caviar). If you have a sweet tooth, you can choose from a selection of viennoiserie, Pain Perdu, and the famous table-side flambé Crêpes. To complement your meal, Josette’s serves fresh juices and their signature Chocolat Chaud (hot chocolate). Available daily from 9am to 11:30am.

GO: Email reservations@josette.com or call 04 275 2522 for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Saturday 20 May

Brunch beneath the lemon trees at Lucia’s

Indulge in the ultimate Southern Italian-inspired paradise with Lucia’s Caprese Brunch. The brunch includes an array of sharing starters, such as Trio Di Crudo, Burrata, Insalata Di Mare, Fritto Calamari, and Parmigiana Di Melanzane. You’ll also get to choose a main dish from a selection that includes Lasagna Alla Bolognese Di Wagyu, Risotto Ai Frutti Di Mare, Orata (Sea Bream Fillet), and Gamberoni (tiger prawns, cherry tomatoes, and bisque). Dessert lovers will be satisfied with the delightful selection of treats on offer, including Tiramisu Classico, Cannoli Siciliani, and Capri Lemon Tart. Expect exceptional entertainment from an Italian singer, guitarist, and Lucia’s resident DJ. Saturdays, from 12:30pm to 4pm. AED 385 (soft beverages), AED 445 (house beverages) and AED 495 (premium beverages).

GO: Email reservations@luciasdubai.com or call 04 422 4321 for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Sunday 21 May

Retreat to a desert nest

Forget about glamping, it’s all about nesting at The Nest by Sonara Camp, an eco-friendly overnight experience in the desert. Architect Gianni Ranaulo has expertly designed the 14 desert rooms – better known as nests – which have undulating roofs that resemble sand dunes, and blend beautifully into the desert landscape. The team are experts at creating unique experiences, which let guests wake up amidst the peaceful dunes and admire the surrounding Dubai Conservation Reserve. Each nest includes a bedroom area, ensuite bathroom and an outdoor majlis where you can watch the stunning sunsets and sunrises. Plus, each room comes with a complimentary mini-bar and mudeef (helper) on hand.

GO: Visit www.nara.ae for more information.

The Nest by Sonara Camp

Monday 22 May

Have lunch at The Park

With a cafe, coffee bar, bakery and deli overlooking The Park in JLT, Splendour Fields offers a leafy sanctuary set amongst an urban jungle. The new deli and business lunch menus include a baguette or a slice of quiche, 100g of salad from the deli, and an espresso-based house coffee. The business lunch menu also includes a homemade farm-to-table soup. Available on weekdays, from 11am. AED 49 (deli lunch) or AED 59 (business lunch).

GO: Email hello@splendourfields.com or call 056 603 0897 for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Tuesday 23 May

Be the first to visit SeaWorld Abu Dhabi

If you’re after more animal experiences in the UAE, make sure you check out SeaWorld Abu Dhabi. The marine life theme park located on Yas Island will open on 23 May. In true UAE style, the attraction plans to break world records and be home to the world’s largest aquarium. The aquarium will house 25 million litres of water and more than 68,000 marine animals, which range from sharks to sea turtles. The park spans 183,000 square meters and eight themed realms, will feature up-close animal encounters, entertainment, rides, plus dining and shopping experiences.

GO: Visit www.seaworldabudhabi.com for more information.

SeaWorld Abu Dhabi

Wednesday 24 May

Enjoy sunset sips

Mi Amie at Jumeirah Emirates Towers continues to impress with its winning combination of food and views. Take in the cityscape while sipping on cocktails with the new sundowners’ offer. The beverages include Ocean Drive (gin, rosemary, dragon fruit and tonic), Vice City (vodka, apple, ginger, vanilla and cinnamon) and the Sunset Spritz (Aperol, grapefruit, prosecco and soda), while entertainment comes from DJs, singers, dancers and a trumpeter. Available daily, from 5pm to 7pm. Beverages from AED 40.

GO: Call 04 319 8567 for reservations and more information.

Mi Amie

Thursday 25 May

Hit the pool at Dubai’s new Tomorrowland Resort

Terra Solis Dubai offers chilled vibes at one of the region’s largest desert swimming pools. The super-sized swimming pool, open to both overnight guests and day visitors, takes centre stage at the heart of the desert destination. Visitors can enjoy a vibrant yet relaxing setting under the Dubai winter sun with some of the finest music by carefully selected Tomorrowland resident DJs and local heroes. The pool features cabanas and sun loungers, an eye-catching bar with a wide selection of drinks and cocktails and the Sala shisha lounge. AED 200 (weekday access with 50% redeemable on food and beverages).

GO: Visit https://terrasolisdubai.com for reservations and more information.

things to do in January

Friday 26 May

Boogie with Black Coffee

WHITE Dubai will host the Grammy Award-winning Black Coffee at its 10,000-capacity arena in Dubai Harbour. A pioneer of the kwaito genre, Black Coffee’s signature jazz-soaked sound blends traditional African beats with ethereal house music. Expect warm-up sets from Paul Svenson, Fredrick Stone and Alex Twin. Friday 26 May, from 6pm. Tickets from AED 100.

GO: Visit https://tickets.virginmegastore.me for reservations and more information.

Black Coffee

Saturday 27 May

Tuck into the Traiteur Brunch

The Traiteur Brunch is back with its summer edition. The Le Petit Traiteur Brunch at Brasserie Du Park promises a delightful experience with delectable cuisine and waterfront views. The four-course meal starts with Comte Cheese Beignet, Angus Beef Carpaccio and a cold seafood platter. The main course includes a selection of sushi and sashimi, ASADO paired with Truffle lemon butter sauce, and a cheese room. The dessert bar is the perfect end to this culinary feast, offering a wide variety of treats to satisfy any sweet tooth. Saturdays, from 1pm to 4pm. AED 550 (sparkling package) and AED 650 (premium sparkling package).

GO: Visit www.hyattrestaurants.com for reservations and more information.

things to do in May

Sunday 28 May

Scare yourself silly

Thrillseekers will be excited to hear that a new rollercoaster has opened at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. The all-new Mission Ferrari is a multi-sensory 5D attraction, and includes the world’s first sideways coaster drop. The new rollercoaster combines state-of-the-art technology with show sets, and includes an exhilarating inverted loop.

GO: Visit www.ferrariworldabudhabi.com for more information.

Mission Ferrari

Monday 29 May

Visit a new exhibit

The Pristine Seas: Bringing the Ocean Back exhibition at The National Aquarium draws inspiration from the National Geographic Pristine Seas project. Visitors can explore expeditions ranging from the tropical coral reefs of the Southern Line Islands to the icebergs of the Antarctic Peninsula. Plus, the exhibition highlights the importance of marine protected areas, and how teams support local as well as indigenous communities. 

GO: Visit https://thenationalaquarium.ae for more information. 

The National Aquarium

Tuesday 30 May

Get snappy

Located in Mushrif, Dubai Crocodile Park is home to one-of-a-kind crocodile experiences. The family-friendly experience allows visitors to admire the reptiles up close, where the 250 Nile crocodiles live in a climate-controlled 20,000 square-meter facility. Inside, you’ll find a history museum, large outdoor areas and an African-themed aquarium. Plus, there are opportunities to view the animals up close and underwater. 

GO: Visit www.dubaicrocodilepark.com for more information.

Dubai Crocodile Park

Wednesday 31 May

Visit Abu Dhabi’s new water circus

Cirque Du Liban’s Fontana made a splash in Dubai and now hopes to do the same in Abu Dhabi. The troupe are coming to the capital for the first time and are setting up a circus at Marina Mall. Cirque du Liban’s Fontana is the first travelling water circus in the Middle East. So, the show will take place in the tailor-made Aquatic Theatre. The thrilling theatrics range from a dancing musical fountain to motorcycle stunts. During the show, you’ll be wowed by a range of circus performers including dancers, trapeze artists, singers and good old-fashioned clowns. Available daily until 2 July.

GO: Visit www.cirqueduliban.com for more information.

Fontana Abu Dhabi

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