Dubai is a city that stands head and shoulders above many others in its ability to cater to both indoor and outdoor action, meaning there is no shortage of fun activities to keep kids busy over the hot summer months.
Whether you’re a resident in Dubai or just visiting, you’re bound to find something here you’re kids will enjoy with this listing of 60+ kid-friendly indoor activities in Dubai.
We’ve broken it down into a few categories and provided you with this handy map you can save to keep track of all your favourites and discover something new:
- Keeping active
- Theme parks
- Interactive museums
- Animal interactions
- Getting wet
- Edutainment & pretend play
- Crafty Kids
- Soft play
- Chill time
- Pampering time
- Playing home town tourist
See the map or keep reading to find out more
Keeping active – top indoor Sports Activities in Dubai
Many centres are multi-purpose including sporting activities for your older kids and more edutainment/soft play for the younger ones – we have tried to fit them to their best category!
Dubai World Sports
Returning for another summer season at Sheikh Saeed Halls, Dubai World Trade Centre there are over 20 sports to choose from in this fabulous initiative to keep Dubai residents active. A popular choice with kids is the Ninja Warrior course in the 1500sqm Just Action Area – you can purchase a Just Action Pass for 50AED an hour which includes Rockwall Climbing and other sports such as Parkour and Trapeze.
These entirely indoor seasonal spectacular runs from 5th April to 22nd September 2021.
With a claim to fame as the largest trampoline park in Dubai, it is far more than just trampolines. You’ll find the double-decker kids arena & foam pits, trampoline football, basketball and volleyball, parkour, archery tag, 3D wall running, Bubble Soccer and more.
Located in Al Quoz, differential pricing over/under 110cm.
Bounce & X Park
Located in Al Quoz, not just trampolining you can also enjoy the X-Park freestyle playground, an obstacle course for adrenaline junkies. The challenges can be completed standalone or as part of a circuit and include Parkour, a boulder wall and zip line. Minimum height for X-Park is from 125cm.
Bounce Dubai is also perfect for your junior bouncers as young as 3 to enjoy getting their bounce on, there is differential pricing over/under 110cm with some restricted areas.
Jump Boxx Indoor Trampoline Park
Defy gravity, flip, fly and jump your way through more than 120 interconnected trampolines over 25,000 feet! There are also dodge ball courts, slam dunking hoops and a foam pit to enjoy. The trampoline area is open to over 5’s while the Jumping Jaxx soft play is for your under 5’s.
You’ll find Jump Boxx in Uptown Mirdiff.
Adventure Zone by Adventure HQ
An extension to their popular retail stores for outdoor adventurers, you can join in the fun and interactive indoor experiences at their Times Square and Galleria Mall branches in Dubai. Activities on offer include obstacle courses, climbing pinnacle, cable climb course. Galleria also has a low ropes course and Fun Climb Wall.
Bouldering at Rock Republic
Free-range climbing without the ropes, bouldering is all about your own body strength, an entire body at the largest venue of its type in the Middle East.
Open to kids aged 8 years old and up in Dubai Business Park.
Experience indoor climbing in the largest facility of its kind in Dubai with 60 bouldering and 70 climbing routes. They run kids classes on weekends suitable from 4+ in Capital Golden Tower, Business Bay.
Not just skiing and snowboarding on the 400m slope you can also try zorbing and zip lines at one of Dubai’s classic sub-zero experiences (ok, it’s about 1c!)
Dubai Ice Rink
A classic favourite in Dubai Mall – though make no mistake you can build up a sweat still floating along the ice! If you haven’t been for a while, try out the IceBykes a fun new edition to public and Freestyle sessions.
Discover the extremely physical discipline of Parkour with classes from as young as 3 years old, through to birthday parties and camps as well as private training, located in Al Quoz 1.
Includes a trampoline park and Ninja Warrior course and at their permanent location in Al Quoz (also part of the Dubai Worlds Sport mentioned above over summer).
Defy gravity while flying through an air-conditioned tunnel 4 metres in the air in this simulated free fall. Instructors will guide you through your “fall”, similar to the feeling of skydiving or bungee jumping, all indoors.
Found in City Centre Mirdif.
Dubai Bowling Centre
Found in Al Quoz, Dubai Bowling Centre is 16 lanes of action-packed fun. The centre also includes a gaming area, trampolines and VR Zone and a Little Stars edutainment area (because nobody in Dubai wants just one sport, right!?)
Enjoy karting to laser tag at this fun multi-purpose venue in Sports City. On a Wednesday evening, you can also enjoy free entry to run, walk or cycle the outdoor track. There is indoor karting available as well as a virtual experience Race Room.
We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gym (Temporarily Closed – New Location coming soon)
Open to the 1 to 10-year-old crowd “play with purpose” is designed for kids physical, cognitive and social development. As well as the normal kids’ gym equipment you’d expect, there’s also a zip line, trampoline and arts and crafts area.
A huge inflatable indoor playground, Air Maniax is designed for kids 2 years plus. It includes a Mini Warrior Assault course and an interactive warrior assault course for your older kids, as well at the inflatables arena with tones of games, ZipZag and Lazer Frenzy – arcade-style laser tag.
Located in Al Quoz, there are various packages from 1 or 2-hour park access passes to family passes and Lazer Frenzy of ZipZag only.
(There are a few more very active options that we’ve classified under soft play centres below)
Theme Parks & Games Centres
Take a virtual reality journey with interactive rides, VR Games and arcade style amusement. Free to enter but you need either a games card for the “Super 7” favourite rides or get credit loaded to join in. Located at the Cinema car park end of Dubai Mall.
IMG Worlds of Adventure
Dubai’s only entirely indoor theme park includes thrilling rides with Marvel experiences through to Powder Puff girls in the Cartoon Network zone. Enjoy the Velociraptor and Predator roller coasters in the Lost Valley.
Due to height restrictions best suited to your older school-aged kids. In Dubailand off the E311.
Dubai Parks & Resorts – Legoland, Motiongate & Bollywood Parks
3 theme parks and a water park all in one location and connected by the Riverland entertainment district. Here you will find Legoland Dubai (+ Water Park), Motiongate Dubai and Bollywood Parks.
Whilst the parks are classified as outdoors, large parts are actually inside – Dreamworks at Motiongate particularly is a great indoor retreat with many thrilling rides, best suited to your 105cm+ crowd.
Based in the Jebel Ali area of Dubai (near the Abu Dhabi border).
TEPfactor team adventure
A unique indoor experience. An indoor cave with 21 challenges to complete, that will test patience, fitness logic and skill. All you need is 2 to 6 players. There are 16 basic challenges that need to be completed before you can unlock the final 4 challenges and the ultimate final chest.
Teams can take as long as needed to complete. You are charged only for the time taken, usually between 2 to 4 hours. Suitable from 8 years plus and located in The Walk, JBR.
Jumble Dubai (Temporarily closed due to relocation)
An urban maze, this is another physical and mental team experience. Suitable for your older kids 12 years+ get a group together to develop confidence and problem-solving skillls.
Museums and interactive fun
OliOli Children’s Museum
On the surface, it may seem like a soft play, but OliOli is actually an interactive children’s museum. Journey through eight highly engaging galleries with 40+ exhibits that will allow children to explore their engineering skills, splash their way through interactive displays or even build their own life-sized forts. The highlight for many is Toshi’s Nets – a giant swinging climbing frame.
Museum of Illusions Dubai
Based in the new Al Seef waterfront district, beat the heat by heading into the Museum of Illusions for some mind-bending optical illusions and plenty of instagrammable moments!
Being stuck in the desert doesn’t mean we are short on animal action with many encounters taking place entirely indoors. A strong focus on education but kids will be too busy having fun to realise.
Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo
Found in the heart of Dubai Mall, little ones can enjoy seeing the giant 10 million litre suspended tank for free, or head inside the aquarium and through the 48-metre-long tunnel as sand tiger sharks and rays glide overhead.
There are educational displays and presentations throughout to learn more about the marine habitats of its residents. You can also add on experiences including cage snorkelling with the sharks, or take the glass-bottomed boat.
The Lost Chambers Aquarium at Atlantis
Offering a different experience to Dubai Aquarium and underwater zoo, at the lost chambers you step into a sci-if-esque underwater world. Technically the largest aquarium in the UAE, the lost chambers are home to
The Green Planet Dubai
Explore the great outdoors, entirely indoors! Based around the world’s largest man-made life-sustaining tree, the Green Planet biodome takes you on a journey through three distinct sections of a tropical rainforest. This entirely indoor ecosystem is home to more than 3000 different species of plants and animals, including the ultra-popular sloth!
Don’t forget to head to the basement at the end for the Ausitralian Walkabout experience.
Dubai Butterfly Garden
Whilst neighbouring Dubai Miracle Garden shuts over the hot summer months, you can continue to enjoy The Butterfly Garden throughout the year. A tropical indoor environment with over 18000 fluttering creatures to keep you entertained, as well as rare fish.
In Dubailand (near Arabian Ranches/E311).
The Dubai Dolphinarium
See the Dubai Dolphin and Seal show at Dubai Creek Park. Dolphin encounter experiences are also available.
The paths might be scorching outdoors and the walk from the car park too much to bear for water parks; so where can we still have a good splash when the outside water temperatures are hotter than a spa?
Splash Island Water Park at Blue Wave
Entirely indoor fun, kids can enjoy all the fun of slides and splash pad activities in the temperature-controlled Splash Island. Blue Wave also offers swimming lessons that run over the summer too.
Edutainment and Pretend Play for younger ones
(This section can also be combined with crafty kids and soft plays below – it’s rare to find a centre these days that doesn’t have more than one speciality with a strong emphasis on trying to combine simple soft play with more edutainment experiences).
A real-to-life city built just for the kids inside the Dubai Mall. Children are issued boarding passes then embark on a journey through the real world where the Kidzos currency rules and you need to earn a living undertaking different “careers” in order to spend your Kidzos on leisure activities.
Kids are fully supervised during easy activity as they learn new skills and manage their funds for an extremely rewarding and educational day out.
Mattel Play! Town (Temporarily closed due to COVID-19 restrictions)
Part of the City Walk complex, this is the place to come for the imaginative play includes toddler & preschooler favourite characters Barney, Thomas & Friends, Fireman Sam and Bob the Builder.
Fun N Learn
Fun N Learn learning through play centres are idea for your little ones who enjoy imaginative play, dress up and arts & crafts – inside your nearest Fun City – multiple locations in Ibn Battuta, Mercato Mall, Century Mall, Oasis Centre on Sheikh Zayed Road, Arabian Centre and Mirdif City Centre.
An edutainment activity centre as well as soft play, this has a huge three story soft play area with ball pit and trampolines as well as a racing track, it’s one of the best that combines activities and free play.
Based in Umm Suqeim Road, Al Barsha 2.
More than just soft play, they run playgroups, arts and crafts sessions as well as classes.
Located in the Souk al Bahar and The Market Mall.
Any budding builders will love Dig it! Located at The Springs Souk, Dig It provides an opportunity for children to dig, move, tunnel, build and create. As well as mechanical arm diggers and remote control trucks, there’s a full-size digger to try out! In addition to a large soft play area with slides, there’s a mini soft play for children under three.
Places to indulge your creative side while keeping cool.
Cafe Céramique Dubai
Found in Town Centre Mall on Jumeirah Road, part cafe part art studio enjoy the ambience of the cafe and produce your own stunning artwork to take home.
Found in Alserkal Avenue Al Quoz – Dubai’s home of art and creativity – this art community space includes a studio and workshops as well as DIY painting sessions. A family-friendly space and welcoming of newcomers there’s no age limit.
Dubai International Art Centre
There are no shortage of indoor art classes on offer in Dubai, Dubai International art centre is just one provider. Courses include drawing and painting for children aged 4 and over as well as Manga workshops for children over 8. In addition to visual art courses, the centre also offers students the chance to develop their creative writing skills. You can find out more here.
Soft Play in Dubai
Simply need them to burn off some energy and interact with other kids? Dubai has a plethora of indoor play centres. Some of the biggest and best not already listed above include:
Giant 5 level play structure with trampolines and climbers plus ball pit for the toddler. Also includes a kids salon. You can find them dotted over the city including Arabian Ranches 2, J3 Mall, The Pointe on the Palm, Al Barsha Mall and in the JBR/Marina area.
Kidz Palooza (Temporarily Closed)
Seven play zones including the Market, the Art Gallery and Toddler Town includes saloon and spa services for mum and dad, you will find it in Times Square Mall, Sheikh Zayed Road.
A real combination centre it was hard to categorise! Play structures to arcade style games make it appropriate across different age groups. Found in Union Coop, Al Wasl Road, Motor City and Centro in the Villa.
Your typical UAE fun mall with everything from soft play to arcade styles rides and games You will find branches across the city including Mall of the Emirates, City Centre Deira, City Centre Mirdiff, City Centre Shindaga, City Centrre Me’aisem, Arabian Ranches and Burjuman.
Funky Monkeys Playland
One of the cities largest indoor soft play centres with both indoor and outdoor edutainment. Explore the Lego land, craft stations, cooking class and laser games. Found in Al Wasl Centre on Sheikh Zayed Road.
Pixies and Ponies (Temporarily Closed)
Large activity centre and soft play for younger children, as well as arts and crafts and a dance studio for your slightly older ones. Found in Wasl Vita Mall, Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah 1.
Indoor play structure with ball pit designed for 6 months to 9 years. Found in Sustainability City.
Get ready to jump, climb and explore whilst parents can enjoy the cafe. Climbing frames, colourful ball pools, crawl tunnels and giant slides. also includes trampolines and climbing wall. First Avenue Mall in Dubailand
Have we missed your favourite? Let us know email@example.com and we’ll add them to our list.
Chill time in Dubai
More for your tween and teen crowd try these awesome ideas for movies and relaxation with your friends.
The Point & Reel Cinema
Newly opened The Pointe on Palm Jumeirah includes Guy Fieri’s Dine-in Cinema. Meanwhile, your younger ones can be kept active and engaged at Cheeky Monkeys play centre.
ThEATre at Vox (formerly known as ThEATre by Rhodes)
All the cinema watching luxury you could expect only in Dubai! You will not only get an exclusive private lounge and a meal to enjoy with your movie but a blanket, pillow and footrest, too. You’ll find it at Vox Cinemas, Mall of the Emirates and City Centre Mirdif.
Chillout Ice Lounge
Get coated up to experience icy mocktails or hot warming cocoa inside the Chillout Ice Lounge in Times Square. Admire the ice sculptures while taking part in one of Dubai’s most unique sub-zero experiences. Goats, gloves, socks and boots all provided!
Prepare to be stunned at Dubai’s number one show! Whilst the story line isn’t particularly easy to follow the variety of acrobatics, aquatic and other visual effects in this show are osure to wow. Family, hotel and dinner packages are available.
Souk Madinat Jumeirah Theatre
Dubai’s first theatre venue is part of the Madinat Jumeirah complex. The theatre has played host to everything from ballets to musicals and many fun rotating children’s acts. Keep an eye out for upcoming performances over the summer months.
Brightly coloured cinemas that show family-friendly movies in an environment you can feel comfortable your children aren’t playing up. There are multiple Dubai venues hosting these brightly colours theatres including Burjuman, City Centre Deira and Mall of the Emirates
A cafe stocked with over 500 board games! Game Masters are on hand to help you learn something new in this socially interactive environment for both adults and kids. Found in Hessa Street, Al Barsha
Pampering Kids Day Spa
Spoil your little princess with a day of pampering designed just for little ones.
Hello Kitty Beauty Spa
Posh pampering for all ages but an especially fun element if you’d like to take your little princess with you for some pampering. They cater to both Queens and Princesses for kids aged 11 years and below. They can be found at Town Centre Jumeirah
Play home town tourist
There are plenty of touristy activities you can enjoy still over the hot summer months, with the advantage of avoiding the usual queues and crowds!
At The Top Observation Decks, Burj Khalifa
Experience the world’s tallest tower on the 124th/125th-floor observation deck of Burj Khalifa. Far less crowded than during the cooler months but advance bookings still essential.
Found in Zabeel Park, the giant gold frame that recently joined the Dubai skyline transports you between old and new Dubai. A glass elevator raises you 150m into the sky before you take on the glass-floored walk across the frame.
You are treated to 360-degree views of old Dubai and Sharjah to the east and new Dubai and the towering skyscrapers of Downtown to the west. There are also educational displays on the ground floor from the Dubai of yesterday on your way up, and a 3D presentation on the Dubai of the future as you exit – one of Dubai’s best new indoor tourist attractions!
Learn more about the UAE’s modern history. Based on the site of this historic Union House, this shiny new museum steps you through the country’s journey to unification. Lots of interactive displays and an important history lesson.
Far more than just skiing and snowball fights, you can extend your experience at Ski Dubai to include a Peng-Friend encounter. A small colony of Gentoo and King Penguins have their own VIP enclosure with direct encounter experiences available.
Further Dubai & UAE resources
Don’t forget to check out these other great posts with family information about the UAE
- Abu Dhabi Best Indoor Activities for Kids
- Best Water Parks and Splash Parks
- Best of Dubai with toddlers
- What should you expect taking a baby to Dubai
- The UAE’s best outdoor places for families
- UAE’s best eco-tourism spots
- UAE’s best summer staycation spots
- What to do with long Eid-breaks – Dubai & beyond
What do you have planned for this summer? Any indoor gems around Dubai you think we might be missing?
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This post has been compiled by our editor Keri, a travel writer and mum of three with nine UAE summers under her belt. You can see more of her UAE and overseas adventures on her personal blog Our Globetrotters and on Instagram. Updated in May 2021 by our contributing writer Lynette Fortey-Burnett.