A guide to the best beaches in Dubai

Dubai is a superb seaside destination with several sandy beaches to choose from, many of them impressive manmade lengths. You can simply lie back, relax and soak up the sunshine. Or you can get active and try a range of watersports featuring pretty much every kind of water activity and adventure you can think of.

Some of Dubai’s beaches are completely free to access, while others will charge a small fee. There are also seaside resort hotels with their own private stretch of beach reserved for their guests. To help you get the ultimate holiday beach day when you visit, we’ve put together a list of some of the best public access beaches in the region.

Al Mamzar Beach

Al Mamzar Beach is the collective name for five Blue Flag-awarded sandy stretches located in little bays along the coastline. Popular with residents and tourists, it’s a place for families and friends to spend the day picnicking and relaxing together.

There’s a palm-fringed park area with two swimming pools, alongside a range of cafes and shops from which you can hire sunloungers and umbrellas. Part of this beach is free, with full access available at a nominal fee.

Note – Mondays and Wednesdays are for women and children only.

Jumeirah Beach

Blue Flag awarded Jumeirah Beach is a free public beach with handy facilities such as showers, while behind the beach is the recently redeveloped Jumeirah Beach Park. For a small fee you can access the park area, which features a long promenade for walking, jogging or having some fun roller-blading.

You’ll also find several cafes for snacks, shaded areas where you take a break from the sun and a kids’ play area. From the shoreline you can get a superb view of one of the most iconic buildings in Dubai – the distinctive sail-shaped Burj Al Arab Jumeirah.

Kite Beach

As you may expect from the name, Kite Beach – also known locally as Sheikh Hamdan Beach – is a favourite spot for kite surfers. This free access beach is popular with families too, so you’ll see many a relaxed picnic group, beach volleyball game and tennis match. Located away from the crowds of the bigger beaches, this is a quiet area with a laid-back atmosphere.

There are facilities such as showers on the beachfront, but there aren’t any cafes or places to get snacks except for the occasional food van. We recommend taking some nibbles and plenty of water with you if you’re planning to spend the whole day here.

JBR Open Beach, aka Russian Beach

JBR Open Beach, also known as Russian Beach, is located in the middle of the hotel resort district. It’s just opposite the amazing Burj Al Arab building so you’ll get fantastic views of Dubai’s stunning skyline from the sand. There are changing rooms and showers dotted around, so you can comfortably spend a family day here with the kids.

There are usually several beach volleyball games in progress to watch, or you could start your own game. And on the track parallel to the seafront you can take a slow stroll, have a jog or cycle. Due to its central location there are also several restaurants to be found for lunch or a snack.

Burj Al Arab Beach

Burj Al Arab Beach is a broad stretch of sand big enough for playing a variety of sports, such as football and volleyball. It’s divided into two main sections – a surfing area for all watersports activities and an area exclusively for swimming.

The surfing area is suitable for both beginners and advanced surfers, while you can hire boards nearby if you don’t have your own. The swimming area is where you’ll find families with little ones paddling and adults taking a relaxing dip.