Largest theme park in the Middle East

About a half hour’s drive from Dubai lies a huge theme park complex, Dubai Parks & Resorts. Almost 500 acres, it holds no less than four different amusement parks, one of them a water park, not to mention hotels, a beautiful waterfront cultural and culinary complex called River Land, set against the backdrop of buildings from different eras, plus a huge indoor outlet. Let’s go for a ride.

“Dubai Parks & Resorts is the largest theme park complex in the Middle East, with an unparalleled mix of thrilling amusement parks, a family-oriented water park, and all the shopping, entertainment and culinary experiences you can think of, plus great accommodation options within the parks complex, and all of that just 3.5 hours’ flight away from home,” says Ron Hashahar, Product Manager at TAL Aviation, representing Dubai Parks & Resorts in Israel.

Hotel Lapita

The 4-star hotel is part of the Marriott chain, and one of three hotels at Dubai Parks & Resorts (the others are Rove at the Park and the upcoming Legoland). Lapita is built as a holiday village, with cottages designed in a Polynesian style and a variety of rooms: from a standard double to villas for up to 7 people, featuring a backyard and private pool. The rooms are well-designed and fully equipped with luxurious bathrooms and a balcony overlooking either the pool or the river towards Riverland. The rich breakfast buffet offers a large selection of culinary delights from around the world, and guests can also enjoy three restaurants and lots of other amenities: two pools, a large spa with Jacuzzi, sauna and gym, youth and children clubs and more.

Lapita Hotel
Lapita Hotel. Photo: PR

The hotel is within walking distance of the Riverland complex leading to all the theme parks, and all can be reached on foot or in a hotel buggy.

A great benefit for hotel guests is free admission to all theme parks, and that can really add up to significant savings on entry fees.

Motiongate Dubai

For me, this was the most impressive and thrilling theme park at Dubai Parks & Resorts. Motiongate is where rides and attractions meet your favorite movies, with four different studio complexes: Dreamworks, Columbia Studios, Lionsgate and Smurfs Village. All facilities, rides, restaurants and shops are based on replicas of famous movie scenes and sets. From the Madagascar roller coaster to some tamer family rides, you’ll get the chance to encounter Shrek, the Smurfs, Kung Fu Panda, Ghostbusters and many other beloved characters.
The Dreamworks complex lies indoors, making it the perfect respite on a hot summer day.

Smurfs express at Dubai Parks & Resorts
Smurfs express at Dubai Parks & Resorts. Photo: PR

Bollywood Parks Dubai

Yes, there is a whole theme park dedicated to the biggest film industry in the world. Join the crowds, and you’ll be greeted with replicas of Indian buildings, with the original Mumbai train station, brought to Dubai and reassembled in the park to serve as a restaurant. This is the place to enjoy traditional Indian design, markets, delicacies and Indian music playing non-stop to create and enchanting cultural experience.
The park has dozens of attractions for all ages, the largest swing in the world, the Raj Mahal Theater (a replica of Taj Mahal), where you can enjoy traditional dance performances throughout the day, plus a movie theater complex, where you can move between rooms, shoot scenes from an Indian film and watch the result at the end.

Bollywood Parks
Bollywood Parks. Photo: PR

Legoland Dubai

The park is divided into two: a theme park and a water park. It is geared specifically for the 2-12 years old, but is actually a great and fun family attraction.
The theme park has roller coasters and other rides, as well as shops and huge figures, all made of Lego. You can also check out Dubai from above, in a Miniland where all skyscrapers and famous Dubai buildings are built from Lego, then take a plunge in a Lego submarine and check out an aquarium full of fish, sharks and Lego dolls – a thrilling adventure for the young, and young at heart.
Head to the water park, and you’ll enjoy dozens of water slides, tubing, playgrounds, pools (including a wave pool), and even river where you can build your own Lego raft. There’s really no better place to be on hot summer days.

Legoland. Photo: PR


For a theme park complex, the culinary scene at Dubai Parks & Resorts is exceptionally high level. From the restaurants dotting Riverland and the on-site hotels, to unique traditional Indian restaurants in Bollywood Parks Dubai and so much more.
Namaste India is one of the best restaurants we’ve experienced on this tour. Spectacularly designed, it offers the full cultural experience and is perfect for a quick respite from all the attractions or for a leisurely dinner.

French Village, River Land
River Land. Photo: PR

Guidelines during COVID-19

The UAE is one of the leading countries in dealing with the current pandemic, with vaccination rates among the highest in the world.

Upon arrival to your hotel, one can see how much effort and thought is given to maintaining guidelines and hygiene. Hotel staff always stand behind plexiglass and wear gloves and masks at all times, while in the parks themselves, staff members make sure that visitors maintain social distance distancing and wear their masks. On every ride in the park, all seats are fully disinfected after each and every round. All of these create a safe environment and allow park visitors to enjoy themselves while being fully protected against corona.

The author was a guest of Dubai Parks & Resorts, represented in Israel by TAL Aviation.


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