So… our beloved RIPE market has moved to Zabeel Park– get over it mamas! We have all been looking forward to the seasonal opening of RIPE, ever since school started back in September, and last week I decided to hit up Zabeel Park to give it a test whirl.
For those of you who haven’t been to Zabeel Park yet, we can only say- whatcha waitin’ for! It is one of the biggest parks we have here in Dubers and it is a really nice one. Somebody told you it’s far or tricky to get there? erm ok… it’s just after the Trade Center round about, 5 minutes from Jumeirah 1 and DIFC. Easy as pie, and only took me 10 minutes from my home near Satwa.
And how is Zabeel treating RIPE? May the almighty strike me down; but I actually think it works even better than Safa Park. First of all you’ve got space, it doesn’t feel crammed in and both looks and feels a lot more ‘zen’. There is more grass (that is actually green) less mud and much easier to navigate a stroller on the paved little roads. Another big plus is the adventure playground that is right next to the entrance, it is shaded and offers quite a bit of rocky climbs for the younger crowd. Watch out for the slides though, they burn little bums in the hot weather, which apparently can only be treated with ice-cream (well, not directly on the bottoms mamas!)
Having a quick browse around the stalls I happily noticed that there is a nice mix of good old favourites such as Birds n’ Bees (with their adorable coloured lights) Coochy Coo (personalised gear for kiddies) and the mandatory/beloved petting zoo! There were also quite a few newcomers and I personally am really happy to see POMME Kids (stylish kids’ furniture), HappyBox (arts and crafts boxes for mamas low on inspiration) Shawleez (cool ‘shawl-wear-gone-dresssy’ perfect for the cooler months ahead) and My Cinnamon Girl (dresses for little girls that are to die for!) to highlight some of them. My family however, ended up leaving the market with a gigantic lime-coloured bunny courtesy of FatBoy. Not sure exactly how that happened, but I’m going to blame the heat. Because as nice as a family trip to RIPE can be, it was absolutely baking on the day we went and I felt rather sorry for all the red-faced stallholders soldiering on.
Being a bit of a foodie (‘posh’ for hungry) I always love a good browse around the food stalls and this year certainly is no disappointment. First of all you’ve got the organic fruit and veg, coconut oils, nut butters, seeds and spices from the RIPE farm shop, thank you very much! And of course the good old burgers and sausages made on site plus the Raw Coffee Company and Skinny Genie’s baked goodies are familiar faces. There are also quite a few fun new raw food options as well as the awesome Bookmunch Café having a food and snack stall for families.
There you go mamas, that wasn’t too scary now was it? Change is good. Join the fun, head over to Zabeel. We only wish we could say the parking was better than Safa Park. It’s not.
See you on Friday!
Entrance Fee: AED 5/p.p
Ripe Food & Crafts Market
Zabeel Park, Gate 1, Dubai