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Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Play & PartyPost Category - Play & PartyPlay & Party - Post Category - OutdoorOutdoor

These glorious cooler months are ideal for taking your little ones for some outdoor fun. From green parks to sandy beaches and some of the city’s best playgrounds, here are our top picks of the best places to play al fresco in Dubai. Get set to climb, run, bike and scoot mamas!

Al Barsha Pond Park
Smack in the middle of Al Barsha’s housing district you will find no less than 50 green acres with a large man-made lake (this is Dubai after all) in the middle. Sassy Mama loves Barsha Park for a little scooter adventure followed by a chilled picnic. And should you still be in the mood for some exercise after chasing little people around, there is a padded jogging and cycling track to take on. There is plenty of parking available and toilets available by the exit.

Do remember that you are not allowed to bbq here but honestly, isn’t that just a great excuse to pick up some take out or even get a pizza delivered? We think so….

Location: Between 329th Street and 23rd Street, Al Barsha 2, Dubai
Entrance Fee: AED 5 per person or AED 30/car

Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Al Ittihad Park
For mamas living on the Palm, the Ittihad Park is a regular stomping ground. It has a 3.2 km running track for active mamas and bubs in or on vehicles of all shapes and forms plus 2 playground areas. Not for the really young ones but from 3 years and up it kind of works.

Sassy Mama Tip: Got a mini botanist on your hands? The park has a collection of trees and plants from across the UAE with signs on them.

Location: The Trunk, The Palm Jumeirah, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Al Khazzan Park
Al Khazzan Park is a small and cozy family park, with a decent shaded area where mamas can relax while supervising their little ones at the play area next to it. Perhaps not worth driving longer distances for but a great option for Al Wasl and Al Bada’a mamas looking for an extended outdoor space to hang out with the fam.

Location: 1st interchange on Sheikh Zayed and Al Wasl Roads (off Al Safa Street), Al Wasl, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Al Mamzar Beach and Park
We would be prepared to go as far as to say that Al Mamzar Beach and Park qualifies as a Sassy Mama hidden gem. This beach park definitely has one (or several) up on Jumeirah Beach Park. The clean, white beaches are supervised with changing rooms and plenty of shade. For AED 200 you can rent an air -conditioned chalet for the family offering more shade and privacy – ideal for tots who still sleep at lunch-time (we wish!). Jelly fish in the water? Splash about in the swimming pool instead which has a dedicated kids pool for water babies.

At beach number 1 (the beach is divided into different sections) there is a water fun park for kiddies with bouncy castles and other goodies that can be enjoyed at an additional fee.

Sassy Mama Tip: Fridays tend to get very busy, but most other days the place is practically empty.

Location: Al-Mamzar Creek, Deira, Dubai
Swimming pool: AED 10 per adult and AED 5 per child

Al Satwa Park 3
This neat little park is one of the newest ones in the city. We’re talking playground, jogging track, full-sized soccer pitch, basketball, volleyball AND tennis areas. Great place to spend a morning with your little ball enthusiasts!

Perfect for mamas needing their little ones to work off some energy before the weekly grocery shopping at Union COOP, which is just two blocks down the road (tried and tested trick)!

Location: 308th Street behind Millennium Plaza Hotel, Al Satwa, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Al Wasl Park
A personal Sassy Mama favourite, Al Wasl Park is a hidden gem in the residential area of Al Bada’a just of Wasl Road in Jumeirah 1. Perfectly sized for keeping the kids under surveillance but enough space for scooter and bike fans alike. Afternoons are best as there always seems to be a nice breeze (even during the scorching summer months) and families from the neighbourhood come to play, bringing the place to life.

Location: Off Al Wasl Road behind the Iranian Hospital, Al Bada’a, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Creek Side Park
Second largest park in the city and a Dubai favourite, the Creek Side Park is beautifully located with a promenade along the Creek. The grass is really well kept and the flower arrangements are very pretty. There are areas for the kids to play with swings and climbing frames, camels to ride plus bikes to rent (nope, can’t bring your own bikes.) If that isn’t enough, take a ride on the cable car that runs over the park. The Children’s City, Wonderland and the Dolphinarium are located here too.

Sassy Mama Tip: Give the little train ride a miss. Bumpy and boring.

Location: Al Riyadh Street, Umm Hurair 2, Dubai
Entrance Fee: AED 5

Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Burj Khalifa Island Park
One for our downtown mamas! We wouldn’t call it a proper park, more a plot of grass in the city but additional, green outdoor space is a premium here in the desert mamas! The Burj park is also a fab option for watching the Dubai Fountains if you can’t face the mall crowds at Dubai Mall. And given the central location, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants nearby if you fancy a bite.

Sassy Mama Tip: The park is open 24/7 but has very little shade so we tend to hit it up in the evening mainly for “fountain watching” and dinner.

Location: Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Boulevard, Base of the Burj Khalifa Tower, Downtown, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Dubai Miracle Garden
A slightly different option for an outing, since it is a botanical garden made up of crazy floral creations rather than a park where the kids can go wild. Although a bit OTT (to say the least!) it is only a ten minute drive from MOE and worth a visit to check out the billions of flowers planted in all sorts of shapes and combinations. You aren’t really allowed to touch the flowers so this one is definitely best saved for little girls going through a “flowery-pink-phase” and toddlers that have grown out of the worst “itchy-fingers-phase”. Miracle Garden actually has the Guinness Book of Records for the longest wall of flowers.

Sassy Mama Tip: Make sure to check out the spectacular Butterfly Park (opening end of May 2014) where butteflies from all over the world can be admired.

Location: Barsha/Dubailand Area, Al Barsha South 3, Dubai
Entrance Fee: AED 20 per person aged 3 years and up

Jumeirah Lakes Towers Garden
This former lake turned into a park quickly became a regular stomping ground for Marina and JLT-mamas alike. Although it isn’t exactly huge, there is enough space for running and scootering around as well as some grassy areas for accompanying mamas to chill out. There is a sandy play area for kids with swings and seesaws and even a small basketball court if you are into a bit of “slam dunk” with your littlies. Jogging track on the way mamas… if you fancy a run that is.

Location: Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Mushrif Park
Looking to get away from it all without going too far? Then a 30 min drive from Dubai (beyond Mirdif) will take you to Mushrif Park, which is the biggest park in Dubai (as far as we know!) The park has a somewhat green and then a slightly more sandy side (for lack of better words). But don’t get too excited about the greenery bit, it does feel rather arid. The main attraction, and it is a good one, is the International Village consisting of 13 kiddie-sized traditional houses from around the world, perfect for curious toddlers with active imaginations. There is also a little animal pen next to the International Village but truth be told, you can walk past that one and go for a camel ride instead – available in the park.

If the architectural discovery sessions leave you feeling hot, take a dip in one of the two (his and hers) 25 meter swimming pools. Swimming caps mandatory but who cares if you’re only surrounded by fellow mamas and bubs.

Location: Airport Road, just beyond Mirdif (E111 towards Sharjah), Dubai
Entrance Fee: AED 10 per car Swimming pool: AED10 per adult and AED5 per child

Sassy Mama Guide to Parks and Outdoor Playgrounds in Dubai

Safa Park
One of the main park gigs in the desert! Safa Park makes our top list with its 64 hectares of lawns, little scooter paths, playgrounds, cafes, bbq pits and the list goes ooooon. Hey there is even a little lake where you can feed the ducks and fish if you fancy or rent out a boat for pirate adventures. If the kids are climbing the walls at home, bring them to the paid bouncy castle and children’s rides section by Gate 2 to help them put that energy to use. And for the sporty peeps (know anyone?), there is a 3.4 km purpose built jogging track surrounding the park. Start counting laps mamas!

Sassy Mama Tip: The Dubai Flea Market is held here once a month, which is pretty neat. Enter through gate 4 and pick up some oldies (not people)! And during the cooler parts of the year, the RIPE famers market happens every Friday morning selling lots of organic goodies for the whole fam. AND, if that’s not enough to tempt you, Safa Park is home to the Archive café – an absolute gem.

Location: Between Sheikh Zayed and Al-Wasl Rd, Jumeirah 2, Dubai
Entrance Fee: AED 3

Safa Park 2
This neatly tucked away park has nothing more in common with the gigantic Safa Park than its name. And that’s key here mamas- either you have a smart GPS (we didn’t) or you don’t. But get here and it is totally worth circling Umm Suqeim for a while. This park has three separate well-kept playgrounds, one of them shaded. Lots of trees to keep the cool and nice spots for mamas to chill out. There is even a little café offering surprisingly healthy snack options for big and small. This place is very popular for outdoor birthday parties during the cooler months, so get here early if you are planning one!

Location: Near the Al Manara/Al Wasl interchange, Al Safa 2, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free Entry

Umm Suqeim Park
Size doesn’t always matter and this little (tiny by Dubai standards) park is definitely worth a visit, especially for mamas with younger ones. A staple for the surrounding residents’ kids, there are sandy play areas for the littlies to enjoy and they even have infant swings, which isn’t a given in most other parks. There are small pavements for tiny scooter-born creatures and a little coffee shop (with toilets- yay!) selling refreshments.

Sassy Mama Tip: Go during the week when it’s ladies only. Weekends are just too crowded.

Location: Opposite Burj Al Arab Beach, Junction Jumeirah Beach Road and Al Thanya Road, Umm Suqeim 2, Dubai
Entrance Fee: Free

Za’beel Park
This really is a great family park; or actually two parks that are connected by footbridges making a rather massive area. There is a huge adventure playground, bbq pits and a lake with boat rides and a wave machine!!! Za’beel park’s gardens are absolutely beautiful and are also home to Stargate, a technology-themed indoor theme park with roller coasters and rides plus the mandatory soft play and an ice rink.Hire a bike if you are in the mood and take it for a spin around the park. Fancy a bit of mini golf? Yep, they have that too.

Location: Creek End of Sheikh Zayed Road, Zabeel, Dubai
Entrance Fee: AED 5

And remember: While we adore taking our little charges to play at many of Dubai’s fabulous parks and playgrounds, do bear in mind that many of the parks have little to no shade on offer. So do make sure to head down in the early morning or the late afternoon to beat the heat!

Have fun mamas!

Featured image sourced via Pinterest, image #2 sourced via Pinterest, image #4 sourced via Pinterest, image #5 sourced via Pinterest, image #6 sourced via Pinterest

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