A Complete Guide to Dubai Canal: Cruises, Tips & More

Dubai Water Canal Tolerance Bridge

Everything You Need to Know about Dubai Water Canal

Dubai water canal view of Dubai city
Dubai water canal view of Dubai city

Dubai, one of the seven Emirate cities of U.A.E, has always surprised the world with its architectural marvels. Right from the Burj Khalifa (hugest building in the world) to the Palm Islands (man-made islands), no project has failed to wow anyone. Each new addition to the city has only increased the attraction that tourists have towards Dubai. One of the recent additions is the Dubai Canal, a 3.2 km man-made canal that runs through the Sheikh Zayed Road. Inaugurated in 2016, the Dubai Canal is popular among-st locals and visitors alike.

1.All About Dubai Water Canal

The Dubai Canal was created to introduce a waterfront area in the middle of the city. The canal is directed from the Dubai Creek and runs along Safa Park and Jumeirah District and flows into the Persian Gulf. Inspired by San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, the Canal is flanked by the 12 km Marasi Business Bay Promenade where visitors can walk, cycle, skate and enjoy various other leisure activities. Apart from all this, the water canal offers connectivity within the city. You can take a boat or ferry across the Dubai Water Canal to travel within the city. Here are some of the important details that you need to know about this new citizen of Dubai city.

Dubai water canal waterfall view
Dubai water canal waterfall view
  • Running tracks, footpaths, cycling lanes and sitting areas can be seen along the Dubai Canal.
  • 5 pedestrian bridges can be seen above the Dubai Water Canal. Three of them run from one end of the canal to the other. While all of them have escalators on both sides, one bridge has a concrete slope for the aid of cyclists.
  • You can see a mechanically operated waterfall where the Sheik Zayed Bridge connects with the canal. While there is no opening and closing time for the water canal, the waterfall operates between 8 PM to 10 PM. The best thing about this Dubai water canal waterfall is that it is motion-operated. When it senses a boat or an abra nearby, the waterfall stops to let it pass.
  • The water canal is environment-friendly. All the street lights that you can see here are powered by solar energy.
  • The canal has several charging stations where you can keep your phones for charging while enjoying the view of the canal. This ensures that your cell phones never go out of battery when you are the water canal.
  • The water canal has 9 marine stations, 5 of which are located along the canal and 4 on the business bay area. You can take a ferry or a water taxi to travel across the canal. Abras and dhow cruises are also available if you want to enjoy the view of the water canal in leisure.
  • The water canal is flanked by restaurants, eateries, luxury hotels, boutiques, cafes and entertainment areas. In short, there is no chance of getting bored during your visit at the water canal.
Dubai Water Canal Tolerance Bridge
Dubai Water Canal Tolerance Bridge

2.What is the Best Way to Enjoy Dubai Water Canal?

There are various options for you when it comes to enjoy and explore the water canal. You can take a walk on the bridges, or perhaps cycle or relax at one of the benches at the promenade. However, if you want to enjoy the canal and the beautiful sights of the city, it would be best to opt for an abra ride or a dhow cruise. Abra rides from Dubai Festival City Mall start at 6.30 PM and 9 PM and can last 30 minutes, 60 minutes and 90 minutes (you can opt for one of these). If you want something more, you can choose to go on a dhow cruise dinner on the water canal. Apart from viewing the glitz and glamour of the city, the dhow cruise also offers delicious 3 course dinner and amazing entertainment. The  Dubai water canal cruise begins at 8 PM from the pier near the Dubai Festival City and lasts for 2-2.5 hours during which you can enjoy all the highlights that the Dubai Water Canal offers. The Dubai water canal tickets for abra ride and dhow cruise can be taken from the place of boarding.

3.How to Reach Dubai Water Canal?

Dubai water canal bridge
Dubai Water Canal Bridge

The water canal in Dubai is located right in the middle of the city and can be reached easily. You can visit the water canal in your own car, cab or even metro. Cabs are available to the canal from anywhere in the city. If you are visiting the water canal in your own vehicle, drive towards the Dubai World Trade Centre and take an exit beside St. Regis Hotel which would take you to the Sheikh Zayed Road Bridge. Parking for visitors is arranged underneath the bridge. In case you want to travel by metro, take the red line going towards U.A.E Exchange. You need to get down at Business Bay station from where you have to walk towards Sheikh Zayed Road Bridge. Here, you would find a lift that would take you to the water canal.

Tourist seeing the view of Dubai water canal
Tourist seeing the view of Dubai water canal

Tips to Visit the Dubai Water Canal

  • You can visit the Dubai Canal anytime during the day or night. It does not have opening and closing hours. However, the best time to visit is definitely in the evening, especially after sunset when you can get a good view of the sparkling city. Even the waterfall functions in the evening.
  • Do not forget to take your camera as you can get some really good shots of the city here.
  • If you are visiting the canal in your own vehicle, you can park it in the parking area (under the Sheikh Zayed Road Bridge). However, remember that it is not free parking. You can also pay through SMS using a number code.
  • If you are a tourist or visitor in Dubai, do carry your passport whenever you are sightseeing in the city, even when you visit the Dubai Water Canal.
  • The work at the Water Canal is not complete and hence you may find people working and piles of sand and other materials around the promenade.
  • Do not litter anywhere near or around the promenade or canal. Do your bit to keep the place neat and clean.
  • If you are visiting the place during evening time, it is better to wear loose, comfortable clothes. Do not forget to carry a shawl or a jacket during winters as the weather can be a bit cool during the winter months. However, do not forget to wear a cap or scarf and sunglasses if you are visiting in the day time as the sun can be harsh during the day.

The Dubai Water Canal has, undoubtedly, turned to be one of the hot spots for locals and tourists even though there is lot more work to be done. There are malls and residential complexes to be constructed, cafes and restaurants to be opened and several other interesting things to be introduced. Still, the canal is the perfect place to go to if you want to get your daily dose of exercise or even if you want to do nothing at all. Dubai is home to some of the most precious and unique gems known to mankind, and the Dubai Water Canal is surely one of them. So, make sure that you do not miss it during your holiday in the Emirate city of Dubai.

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