Entertainment in Dubai

Sport and Activities in Dubai

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A wide range of sport and leisure activities are on offer in Dubai, from traditional camel racing to skiing on real snow!

Dubai hosts a number of major sporting events, including a Formula 1 Grand Prix, a European Tour golf event (the Dubai Desert Classic) and the world's richest horse race, the Dubai World Cup.

For those who prefer to participate rather than spectate, there are ample opportunities for sporting activity, from water sports to running in the Dubai marathon. For something completely different, you can visit a purpose built ski complex, with real snow (www.skidxb.com). Time Out Dubai has a good listing of sports clubs of all types in Dubai. Golfers are well served, with a choice of clubs in and around the city. At the Emirates Golf Club, home of the Dubai Desert Classic, you can enjoy two par-72 courses and a Bedouin-tent inspired club house, in what is considered by many to be the finest golf club in Dubai.

During the winter season (Thursdays and Friday mornings, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., from October to March) you can view the unique sport of camel racing, part of the heritage of the UAE. Admission to the many camel tracks is free and the considerable prize money on offer ensures a lively atmosphere.

Fitness and Health Clubs are popular in Dubai, with many clubs offering daily, monthly or annual membership. A daily pass costs between 30 and 60 AED per day. Annual membership starts at around 3000 AED. Many of the international hotels have extensive fitness facilities and these are usually available to the public for a daily fee.

  • The Aviation Club - located on the Deira side of the Creek and home to Dubai's prestigious tennis tournament, this club offers six tennis courts, a swimming pool, squash courts, a nine hole golf course and a fully equipped gym.
  • The Big Apple - located in the Emirates Towers, this well equipped gym offers fitness training and group classes on a daily pass or very reasonable annual membership basis
  • The Hyatt Regency Hotel (Deira Corniche), Metropolitan Hotel (Sheikh Zayed Road), Sofitel City Centre Hotel (Port Saeed) and Crowne Plaza Hotel (Sheikh Zayed Road) all offer use of their health and fitness facilities for a daily fee.

Fans of water-based activities will not be disappointed in Dubai. Offshore fishing is popular, with boat charter prices starting from around 1500 AED for a half day. Try:

  • Yacht Solutions - offering both motor and sailing yachts for pleasure cruising and fishing
  • Club Joumana - +971 4 883 6000, offers a crewed fishing boat for half and full day excursions
  • Bounty Charters - +971 4 50 552 6067, experienced owner operator offering half and full day trips on his fully equipped game fishing boat

Keen sailors will not be disappointed. Dubai Offshore Sailing Club is recognised by the Royal Yachting Association and offers sailing courses year round. The club has a lively social calendar, including races every Friday. Scuba diving and snorkelling are also available, although the east coast, a couple of hours' drive away, is considered a better diving location than Dubai itself. A number of local clubs offer PADI diving training and trips.

Update 16/09/2006


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