The best family hotels in Dubai for a fun and sun-filled holiday

Dubai skyline

by Rebecca Lancaster |
Updated on

Dubai. It’s a land of soaring towers and glitz and glamour. Of candlelit desert picnics and shop-till-you drop malls. But did you know that Dubai is also good for kids? From entire hotels devoted to LEGO to action-packed water parks and desert safaris, Dubai’s best family friendly hotels have plenty to keep smaller guests entertained. And as every parent knows, when the kids are happy, everyone’s happy.

Despite Dubai’s reputation for luxury, the Emirati community hold hospitality and family as core values, meaning you can expect a warm welcome when you arrive with children. That means many of the family hotels in Dubai have exceptional Kids’ Clubs, dedicated children’s swimming pools, special menus, and some even include access to theme parks and water parks.

The best family hotels in Dubai at a glance

How we selected these hotels

To make sure we're recommending the best hotels in Dubai for your family holiday, we spoke to parents who have lived in and visited the city, including Fiona Vlemmiks who works for the baby care brand Pura, and has lived in the city with her young family for a number of years. Read on to discover the best family hotels in Dubai, whether you’re looking for the best value hotel, a 5* option, those with water parks, or want to get out of the city on a desert adventure.

Best overall family hotel in Dubai

Jumeirah Al Naseem hotelJumeirah Al Naseem

As one of the hotels in the Madinat Jumeirah complex, Jumeirah Al Naseem not only boasts its own exceptional facilities, but offers you access to the 40 restaurants, five pools, and a private beach. As one of the newer properties, you can expect supremely comfortable accommodation that leans more towards ‘quiet luxury’ than overly flashy, making it a more family friendly option. Throw in access to the famed slides and tunnels of the Wild Wadi Waterpark and 500sqm of play areas in the 'KiDS’ Club, and you’ll see why Jumeirah Al Naseem is our choice as the best family hotel overall in Dubai. 

For parents with children over the age of 3, the ‘KiDS’ club has plenty to keep smaller guests entertained, from crafts and planned games to an outdoor playground and jungle gym. Children under the age of 3 are also welcome when accompanied by a parent or nanny.

Best family hotel in Dubai for LEGO fans

LEGO fans and their families will love Dubai’s LEGOLAND Hotel, where themed rooms and endless LEGO fun will capture the imagination of children and the young at heart. From the dragon-guarded entrance to the Bricks family restaurant and themed rooms with separate areas for the kids, this hotel is a dream for LEGO enthusiasts. 

Not only is the hotel fun for all the family, but it’s also just 130 ‘kid steps’ from LEGOLAND Dubai Theme Park and Waterpark. Tickets to one of the parks are included with each night’s stay so if you stay for at least two nights, you’ll be able to visit both parks. Luckily, after jam-packed days of riding the rollercoasters or building your own LEGO raft, the hotel is close enough to stroll back and collapse into your Pirate Room or Kingdom Suite. There’s also plenty to keep you busy at the hotel, from creative workshops to a pool, a castle play area, and treasure hunts in your room on arrival.

Best value family hotel in Dubai

Centara Mirage hotel in DubaiCentara Mirage

This bright and breezy property is one of the best budget family hotels in Dubai, and offers brilliant value with its beachfront swimming pool and waterslides, outdoor playground, fun-filled water sports and a family friendly lounge. The hotel is water-themed, and water babies will have plenty to keep them active with a lazy river, kids’ water play area, waterslides, and cliff jumping points. Just don't forget to pack your waterproof sunscreen.

Three age-specific Kids’ Clubs and a monthly programme of activities keep smaller guests entertained while you slip off for afternoon tea or a well-deserved spa treatment. Children can also join in the pampering with their own candy-themed kids’ spa complete with edible treatments and joy-filled décor. A choice of meal plans, including Half Board and All-Inclusive, means you can tailor your stay to suit your family; while some of the rooms feature bunk beds, making it a fun option for younger children.

Best all-inclusive hotel in Dubai for families

With its ‘All Inclusive All Exclusive Rixos Experience’, Rixos The Palm is one of the best all-inclusive hotels in Dubai for families. It sits on just under a mile of private beachfront on the iconic Palm Jumeirah with views over the Arabian Gulf and the sparkling skyline of Dubai; although children may be distracted from those views when they spot the Rixy Kids Club, the Rixy Kids Carnival with its inflatable obstacle courses and bouncy castles, and the Rixinema where they can enjoy their favourite films from giant bean bags. Add in an Aqua Park with three water slides and a colourful jungle-themed gym, and you have a wonderland of activity designed with kids in mind. 

Not only do parents benefit from the peace of mind of knowing their kids are happy, but the all-inclusive experience means you won’t need to worry about racking up a huge bill on food and drink. With no fewer than 11 all-inclusive bars and restaurants to choose from, a well-equipped gym and fitness activities, the world is your oyster at Rixos The Palm.

Best Dubai hotel for younger children

While the LEGOLAND Hotel (scroll up for our review) is likely to be a favourite for younger children, Le Méridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina is certainly a contender for the best Dubai hotel for younger children. Two separate kids’ clubs mean that younger children between 4 and 12 years old get their own space, while Le Meridien Teens Club is aimed at teenagers between the ages of 12 and 15. A playground will keep younger kids happy, while the nine-hole crazy golf course and games room is perfect for slightly older kids. To cool off, the shaded children’s pool is perfect for little ones, while the Jungle Bay Waterpark has a range of activities and slides, including more gentle options for younger children. Private cabanas allow families to escape the heat while still enjoying the beautiful gardens.

Best hotel in Dubai for water babies

Dubai’s heat means you’re likely to spend a lot of time in the water, and Atlantis The Palm is a great choice for those who prefer their pool time to have a little more adventure and activity. With two pools to choose from, children can splash as much as they like in the lagoon-style Family Pool while those who prefer a spot of relaxation can escape to the Palm Pool. But the water-based fun doesn’t end at the pool. Staying at Atlantis The Palm gives you access to Aquaventure, the world’s largest waterpark. From swimming with dolphins to discovering 65,000 marine animals in the Lost Chambers Aquarium, or trying out the 105 record-breaking rides, slides, and activities, water babies could easily spend the entire stay in the park without getting bored.

After all that activity, you have five family friendly restaurants to choose from, including Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Kitchen and Bar and 20 live cooking stations at Saffron. And parents aren’t forgotten: why not book a babysitter and head to Nobu or Hakkasan for a truly special meal.

If waterparks are your thing, take a look at Mother&Baby’s recent review of the best hotels with waterparks for families.

Best family hotel in Dubai for escaping the city 

While the bright lights and entertainment of the city draw most visitors to the heart of Dubai, why not combine it with a family friendly desert experience at Bab Al Shams. It won’t take much imagination for children to step inside a world of Aladdin and Arabian Nights when they spot their first camel or the golden fort-like walls of the hotel amidst the dunes. Arabian horse riding, desert drives, star gazing, and treks on camelback allow the whole family to live out their Arabian Prince and Princess dreams; while back at the resort, the giant chess, an adventure playground, and activities such as Arabic calligraphy will keep the whole family entertained.

Best family hotel in Dubai for older children

Pool at the Lapita Dubai Parks and Resorts Lapita Dubai Parks and Resorts 

For thrill-seeking teens, little compares to Lapita which comes with access to Dubai Parks and Resorts, including RIVERLAND Dubai, LEGOLAND Water Park, LEGOLAND Dubai and MOTIONGATE Dubai. From adrenaline-inducing rollercoasters to DreamWorks Animation-themed adventures and LEGO-themed water play, there’s something here for everyone. Back at the hotel, four bars and restaurants, Family Rooms, two lagoon pools, a lazy river, and a Kids and Teens Club make this a luxuriously relaxing option for families with older children. While the hotel isn’t on the beach, you can take the shuttle service to Jumeirah Beach in around 30 minutes.

Best family hotel in Dubai for kid-friendly facilities

You’d be hard-pressed to find a hotel in Dubai that doesn’t boast a kids club, but many only accept children from 3 years old. At the Fairmont The Palm, children as young as 18 months can join in the fun, whether playing with jigsaws and crafts, or splashing around in the splash park. Older children, up to 12 years old, have plenty to keep them entertained, from dressing-up clothes to PlayStation, Wii, and Xbox games in the chill-out zone. In-house guests get 2 hours' complimentary use per day - though there is a charge for children under 3 years old.

The fun and games don’t stop there; the Fairmont The Palm has a fantastic family pool, with multiple levels and depths making it perfect for all ages. A nearby ice cream counter will keep you refreshed, while the nearby playground and sprinklers provide even more entertainment without having to move too far from your lounger. Interconnecting rooms, complimentary cribs and cots, and babysitting and childcare services (which are chargeable) make this one of the best places to stay in Dubai with family.

Best 5* hotel in Dubai for families

Pool at Atlantis The RoyalAtlantis The Royal

Choosing the best 5-star hotel in Dubai for families is near impossible – you’re spoilt for choice with a tempting array of luxury properties, all managing that fine balance of keeping both grown-ups and children happy. But if we had to choose just one, Atlantis The Royal comes in at the top spot of reviews time and again. It’s not hard to see why. Boasting eight restaurants from celebrity chefs, and one Michelin-starred restaurant, it’s a dream for foodies. And if your kids’ tastes lean more towards chicken nuggets than cordon bleu, there’s another four casual restaurants to choose from too. Ultra-stylish rooms, luxurious Frette bathrobes, and an adults-only rooftop infinity pool allow parents to indulge, while babysitting services and a fantastic Atlantis Explorers Kids’ Club keep children entertained. Like Atlantis The Palm, the hotel comes with complimentary access to the incredible Aquaventure Waterpark.

Is Dubai good for kids?

When you combine the Emirati love of hospitality and children with the largely younger ex-pat population, you have a destination that's fantastic for kids. From waterparks to family friendly restaurants and theme parks, Dubai's hotels are great for families.

As with all destinations, check the Foreign Office advice before you book and make sure you're aware of the travel situation, entry requirements, and any vaccinations you might need.

Can a family share a room in Dubai?

Yes, a family can share a room in Dubai. Many hotels will offer extra beds in one room (these may be sofa beds or rollaway beds) or you could book interconnecting rooms so that your children and yourselves have a little extra space. The options available to you will vary from hotel to hotel, so check with the hotel or your travel agent before booking.

Which month is best for kids in Dubai?

While Dubai is a year-round destination, if you’re travelling with children, you’ll probably want to avoid the summer months of July and August when temperatures can head well over 30 degrees. November to March is the ideal time to visit Dubai with the family in tow as you can expect pleasant temperatures in the 20s – perfect for escaping the cold of winter in the UK.

Is Dubai expensive for a family holiday?

There’s no denying that Dubai can be an expensive destination and the sky’s the limit if you’re splashing out on a stay somewhere like the Burj Al Arab. But Dubai can be wallet-friendly if you plan ahead and choose your hotel carefully. In some cases, children under 5 eat for free and hotels will occasionally have offers where children can stay and eat for free, so it’s worth keeping an eye out for the best offers on hotels in Dubai. Many hotels will also offer a range of meal plans, from half board to all-inclusive, so factor in your children’s eating habits when you’re planning the trip.

Rebecca Lancaster is a Digital Writer for Mother&Baby, drawing on ten years of parenting her two children to help others navigating their own parenting journey. As a freelance writer, she spent ten years working with leading lifestyle brands, from travel companies to food and drink start-ups, and writing everything from hotel reviews to guides to the best British cheeses. She’s particularly interested in travel and introducing her children to the excitement of visiting new places, trying different foods (less successfully) and experiencing different cultures.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us
How we write our articles and reviews
Mother & Baby is dedicated to ensuring our information is always valuable and trustworthy, which is why we only use reputable resources such as the NHS, reviewed medical papers, or the advice of a credible doctor, GP, midwife, psychotherapist, gynaecologist or other medical professionals. Where possible, our articles are medically reviewed or contain expert advice. Our writers are all kept up to date on the latest safety advice for all the products we recommend and follow strict reporting guidelines to ensure our content comes from credible sources. Remember to always consult a medical professional if you have any worries. Our articles are not intended to replace professional advice from your GP or midwife.