Dubai is home to some of the world’s most jaw-dropping of human creations. One of these attractions is Atlantis, The Palm resort. The resort is the perfect embodiment of luxury, starting from its 5-star status to its location on the stunning artificial Jumeirah Island.
But, like most vacationers planning a trip to Atlantis Dubai, you are probably wondering what on-site activities would be great to add to your itinerary. After all, part of the fun of traveling to new and beautiful places is to try out exciting activities.
So, what are the top 10 things to do at Atlantis Dubai? Well, this resort has a lot to offer. Tanning at the numerous white sandy beaches, swishing down water slides, flying through one of the world’s most extended zip lines, visiting the larger than life aquariums, dining at the best restaurants, getting some retail and spa therapy, swimming with the dolphins, you name it. The whole of Atlantis is a vacationer’s paradise.
With so much to do, it is good to have a plan going in to avoid wasting your trip. So we have weeded through all the endless activities in Atlantis and come up with ten must-try activities that range from fun and relaxing, to daring and downright insane.
⑩. Visit Aquaventure Water Park
It would be a crime to travel to Atlantis and not visit the resort’s famous Aquaventure water park. After all, the park is the heart of the resort and one of the most frequented destinations in Dubai.
If you have ever been to a water park, you already have an idea of what to expect – water slides, towers, kids pool & slides section, and a “lazy river.” Aquaventure water park offers all this but in usual over-the-top-Dubai-style.
Rated as Dubai’s number one water park on TripAdvisor, Aquaventure has 30 slides that spread over 17 hectares of land. The slides cover different degrees of pulse-racing stunts with every slide offering its own unique experience.
You have the option of racing a friend down the Slitherine twin-tube slide or going through a high-speed 60km/h drop in Poseidon’s Revenge capsule that lands you into a 116m course that you ride through in an upside-down position. Other crazy rides include the Stinger, Falls, The Storm, & The Surge tube slides, which toss you wildly up and down powerful jets of water before dropping you through a series of tunnels.
If fast-paced adrenaline spiking activities are not your thing, you can also chill by the poolside, take a journey down the park’s (not so) lazy river with a cocktail in hand, or hang out with your kids on Splashers Island.
One thing you will not find in other water parks is Aquaventure’s animal-related activities. You can cozy up to dolphins and sea lions, get chillingly close to stingrays, watch a shark feeding performance, or, better yet, go on a shark safari.
⑨. Slide down the Leap of Faith
Although the Leap Of Faith waterslide is inside the Aquaventure water park, it deserves a spot of its own on this list. If you will only be visiting Atlantis for only a day, the very first place you should visit is the Leap of Faith.
The slide combines the dizzying height of nine stories with an almost vertical design that sees you skid through fast at an extremely high speed. And that’s not even the crazy part. The slide ends with you falling into a narrow tube that runs through a lagoon inhabited by sharks and stingrays, which circle the tubbing as you slide through.
⑧. Go on a Crazy Zipline Ride
Another activity that will get your heart thumping is the resort’s Atlantean Flyer Zip Line. Like the Leap Of Faith slide, this ride is not for the faint of heart.
Usually, a zip line is scary but relatively tame compared to the likes of parachuting off a plane or bungee jumping. You pop on a helmet, get harnessed to the zip line circuit, jump off a not-so-high platform, and before you know it, the ride is over. So, how crazy could the Atlantean Flyer be?
First off, it is the longest zip line in the Middle East. The ride sends you whooshing across the Aquaventure park. What’s more, the zip line suspends you 65 feet above the ground. Picture the towering leap of faith, only slightly higher. That is how high up in the air the Atlantean Flyer will have you free-falling.
Another plus for the Atlantean Flyer is zip line is that it gives you a bird’s eye–view of Aquaventure, the entire resort, and part of Dubai’s magnificent skyline. It is the next best thing to hiring a chopper tour over Dubai.
⑦. Swim with the Dolphins
Who would not want to go swimming with the dolphins? Chances are this activity is already on your bucket list. Well, it is one of the best experiences at the resort. It features a dip with the dolphins and a host of other activities that help people visiting the resort for just a day have the best 24 hours of their life.
The Dolphin Bay is open for everyone from 8 years of age, but children under 12 years have to be accompanied by a paying adult. The great thing is that you do not need to have the caliber of an Olympian swimmer to hang out with the dolphins. The bay features a host of activities designed to suit everyone with options including:
- Dolphin Encounter – If you are not confident of your swimming abilities, the dolphin encounter experience is perfect for you. It happens in shallow waters where you get to play, feed, and cuddle with the adorable dolphins.
- Dolphin Adventure – This happens in the depths of the lagoon where you not only play with but also swim with the mammals. You can even kick things a notch higher by going on a daring dolphin-aided surf through the lagoon. For this, you stand on a board, which the dolphins push around the bay while swimming at fast speeds. By the end of your visit, you will understand for yourself why dolphins are man’s favorite sea mammal.
- Dolphin Trek – The Dolphin Bay happens to be one of the most sophisticated dolphin sanctuaries in the world. The bay has three lagoons that collectively hold 26 million liters of water and feature the use of the finest quality silica sand (sourced from Saudi Arabia) in their construction. The trek experience takes you on an up-close tour of the bay. You will scuba dive into the lagoon and hang out with the playful dolphins underwater. There will be a trained instructor with you at all times to ensure everything goes smoothly.
- Education Session – Now, this activity is for those who want to learn a little more about the dolphins. A marine specialist presides over the session and covers everything from how these adorable bottlenose marine mammals live and communicate to their biological make-up.
One upside to the Dolphin Bay is that its location is within a short walking distance from Aquaventure Park. So, you can tick off two of our listed activities within a short period. Tickets to the dolphin bay come with complimentary access to the park and vice versa.
⑥. Get Tanned at the Beach
There are a few things you simply must do while at Atlantis, The Palm resort. Relaxing at the beach is one such activity. Featuring clear waters (that glow blue or turquoise depending on the environment), blue skies, soft white sands, dazzling views of the city, and climate that is perfect for splashing in water all day long, the resort has some of the best beaches in the world. There are also plenty of activities to try out at the beach. You could try kayaking, paddleboarding, or heading into the water with a pedal boat.
When choosing which beach to relax in, you have a choice between private beaches (Royal Beach, Aquaventure Beach & Nasimi Beach & club) and public beaches (Al sufouh’ Black Palace’ Beach, Jumeirah Open Beach). Public beaches are open 24/7 while the private ones open between 9 or 10 am and sunset and require non-guests of the resort to pay an entry fee.
⑤. Travel back to Mythical Times at The Lost Chambers
Did you know that the name ‘Atlantis’ is by no means a random cool name chosen by the resort? It is symbolic of the long lost city of Atlantis because the Palm Jumeirah, a human-made island, (which the resort sits on) rises from the sea.
The myth of Atlantis tale dates back thousands of years. According to legend, Atlantis was a utopian city containing immense riches and treasures. Blinded by the love of money, the inhabitants of the city became greedy and morally corrupt. So, this prompted the gods to punish them with a night of fire and earthquakes. That brought about an end to the city. Everything in it sank to the bottom of the ocean in a location unknown to anyone.
The name, though, is not the only reference the Atlantis resort borrows from the legend of the lost city. The Lost Chambers aquarium seeks to re-create what the Atlantis city would look like today. Home to 65 000 marine animals, the aquarium consists of a series of hallways containing gigantic tanks, each displaying an array of different fish species coupled with ruins and artifacts of the long-lost city of Atlantis. Whether you are into marine creatures or not, the Lost Chambers aquarium is simply too mesmerizing a site to not visit.
④. Go on an Underwater Tour of one of the World’s Largest Marine Aquarium
If you think the Lost Chambers is a treat, wait until you go on a behind-the-scenes tour of the Ambassador Lagoon. It is the largest tank in the Lost Chambers Aquarium. What’s more, this is among the top ten biggest aquariums in the world. As a result, the Ambassador Lagoon holds elements of the Atlantis city and 250 species of fish. You can expect to spot several shark species, stingrays, piranha, goldfish, giant grouper, blue damsels, yellow bar angelfish, plus so much more.
Unlike a walk through the Lost Chambers, there are no clear glass aquariums to keep you away from the sea creatures in an Ambassador Lagoon tour. You get to tour the lagoon by diving into its depths.
Tour packages come in several options, including snorkeling, scuba diving, and an aqua trek. All options are open to everyone, including young kids aged ten and above and non-certified divers.
The Aquatrek tour takes you some 10 meters down to the bottom of the lagoon. It stands as one of the deepest aquatreks in the world. You will be wearing a wet suit and a high-tech helmet attached to an oxygen tank that will make it possible to breathe underwater. Once you get to the bottom of the lagoon, you will simply walk through its expanse in a guided tour that will bring you face-to-face with the lagoon’s inhabitants.
The walk among the sea creatures can last between 30 minutes to 1 hour. It can be the scariest and thrilling thing you’ve ever done in your life yet. That is why you should not skip it. It will cost you over AED 600 to experience this crazy once-in-a-lifetime experience.
③. Dine in Style
If your idea of dining in style is heading to your local sushi joint or having breakfast at Tiffany’s, you have another thing coming at Atlantis. Ever dreamt of sitting down to a meal created by none other than the TV series hell’s kitchen very own host, celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay? Perhaps you are a Nobuyuki (Nobu) Matsuhisa fan and would do anything to get a taste of the groundbreaking Japanese-Peruvian blends of this famous Japanese celebrity chef. Atlantis is a place where you can fulfill your food fantasies by dining at the resort’s host of celebrity restaurants.
Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Street Kitchen and Bar specialize in British cuisine with classics such as fish and chips, puddings, beef wellington, and family-style brunch that will remind you a little of homemade cooking. Nobu restaurant, in turn, delivers creative Japanese delicacies (sushi, sashimi, etc.) infused with Peruvian ingredients and vice versa (e.g., wagyu beef tacos with a Japanese twist).
Another option includes award-winning chef Gregoire Berger’s Osiano restaurant, which serves Mediterranean cuisine. There is also Hakkasan restaurant featuring high-end delicacies such as Peking Duck with caviar, Chilean sea bass glazed with honey for those with a refined palette, and the list goes on.
As for those who want something simpler or a little closer to home, Atlantis also hosts several signature and casual restaurants. Wavehouse serves burgers, pizzas, barbeque dishes, and family-style meals. There are also buffet restaurants like Saffron and Kaleidoscope, which cover meals from all over the world.
One thing all the restaurants have in common is world-class food, which you get to enjoy against some amazing backdrops. From dream-like Japanese garden, under the outdoor setting, terrace seating, and even aquariums for wall décor, the ambiance at these restaurants is simply sublime.
People often complain of the restaurants charging exorbitant dining charges, but it is worth it to splurge a little money to dine as the rich do. Ramsay’s restaurant, for instance, charges AED 325 per person on wellington Wednesday for the famous beef wellington with truffle mash & spiced carrots. At Nobu, AED 395 will get you signature Nobu dishes along with soft beverages. The prices are reasonable considering you will be enjoying famous world dishes.
Besides, there is a price for everyone with these restaurants. At the cost of AED 135 per head, you can enjoy the legendary British Sunday Roast (complete with all the trimmings – roast/mashed potatoes, pudding, stuffing, bread/mint sauce, and vegetable or gravy) at Ramsay’s restaurant. Kaleidoscope is another affordable restaurant where prices start at AED 222 per person (for food only) with kids eating for free. At the same time, White Beach is a signature restaurant that offers Friday Brunch beginning from AED 245.
②. Do Some Shopping
It is a tradition to buy souvenirs from all the places you visit across the world, and the Atlantis resort allows you to do just that. You will find memorable souvenirs from several shops such as the Dolphin Bay Boutique, Mont Blanc shop, Al Tantawi Novelties and Gifts Trading LLC, and a ton of shops situated at significant attraction points such as Aquaventure. But that’s not all.
In Atlantis, you can do more than buy little souvenirs thanks to the ‘Avenues (a series of shopping arcades). If you are always looking for an excuse to go shopping, the Avenues are it. Some people even travel to Atlantis Dubai just to do some shopping.
The shops offer everything from in-season fashion items and unique gifts to holiday outfits and sweets. There is even the Marina Pharmacy Group – one of the leading pharmacies in Dubai, where you will find medicines, cosmetics, vitamins, first aid kit, and also medical equipment.
①. Spoil Yourself
After a day of running up and down shops, splashing through water activities, lounging at the beach, or partaking in adrenaline spiking exploits, some ‘me-time’ makes the perfect ending to your adventures. In Atlantis, there is no better way to relax than pampering yourself at the ShuiQui Spa.
ShuiQui is a state of the art spa with serene surroundings, lavish treatment rooms, and everything you need to relax and rejuvenate. You can go for an aromatherapy massage, facial scrub, hit the sauna, lose yourself in a Jacuzzi, or go for a makeover at the men’s and women’s style salons.
At Atlantis, The Palm resort, there is something for everyone. An array of daring feats for the thrill-seekers, tons of water activities for those looking for a beach-style holiday, and even world-class stops for the lavish traveler. It will not be hard to find something to keep you occupied throughout your stay in the resort.