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A Complete Guide to Dubai in January

Dubai in January - Monthly Guides

Usually, January isn’t a very popular month to be going on holiday. A lot of places in the world aren’t quite warm enough and there is that post-Christmas lull hanging around.

However, Dubai in January blows all other cities out of the water. Today we’ve listed all of the reasons why visiting Dubai during January is a great idea.

Typically every month in Dubai offers something different but Dubai in January is one of our favourites.

Reasons to Visit Dubai in January

By now, you must be curious to know why January is one of our favourite months to travel to Dubai…so here it goes

1. Pleasant Weather

If you take a look at all the weather parameters of Dubai in January, you will instantly know why we consider this month the most travel-friendly one.

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Pleasant January Sun in Dubai | The Vacation Builder

Dubai in January is just perfect with gentle winter sunshine and a pleasant temperature. The clear sky and bright sunlight bring the best out of everything that you can spot around the city and beaches. What’s more, adventure activities like desert safari, skydiving, water skiing and outdoor sightseeing can be best enjoyed when it’s not too hot.

Daytime highs generally reach around 24°C with lows in the evening around 14°C. Perfect weather to flaunt a T-Shirt / Dress in the daytime, but bring a jumper for the evenings to keep the slight chill in the air away.

In our opinion, the weather in Dubai in January is perfect for exploring the city, going on excursions and partaking in outdoor activities.

2. Events in Dubai in January

January in Dubai is nothing less than a festive time in Dubai. The whole city decks up in light and sparkle. The most favourite attraction in the city in January is the great Dubai Shopping Festival.

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Events in Dubai in January | Dubai Shopping Festival | The Vacation Builder

Tourist attractions all over the city keep adding new elements to draw more and more spectators. Dubai in January is simply a brand-new experience every year.

3. Moderate Crowds

After a long winter vacation, most schools around the world reopen in January. This means many families can’t afford to plan a family trip to Dubai in January.

Many offices bounce back to normal business days after Christmas and New Year celebrations. That’s why, in spite of having too many attractive elements, Dubai doesn’t experience too many tourist crowds in January.

Is it Warm in Dubai in January?

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Weather in Dubai January | The Vacation Builder

Although January is the coolest month in Dubai for the local people, it feels like a warm summer day to most European and North American travellers. The average daytime temperatures in January are around 24°C. The evenings cool off to around 14°C though. So, make sure to pack a jumper.

Rain is very rare in the month of January. Though occasional rainfall may happen towards the end of the month. However, this is never usually any more than a slight drizzle, with an average of 10mm for the month. Sunshine hours in January stand at 11 hours, so don’t leave behind your stylish sun-glasses.

For a full month-by-month guide to the weather in Dubai, you can visit our Dubai Weather page here.

Things to Do in Dubai in January

January is the month when Dubai wakes up to enchant the world and shine brighter while the rest of the world is coming to normalcy after a hectic festive season. Dubai days in January are simply overloaded with lots of outdoor activities and special events.

Here is our list below of the best things to do in Dubai in January.

1. Behold the Grandeur of Burj Khalifa

Watching the city skyline from the top of the world’s tallest building is truly extraordinary. Burj Khalifa has redefined the way people relish the panoramic views of the city. Late sunrise and clear sky in January allow you to have the best time at Burj Khalifa’s observation deck. Try to reach the deck between 8.30 AM to 11.00 AM to get the best views.

There is a lot more to explore at Burj Khalifa. For more details about those things, you can go through our What Awaits You Inside Burj Khalifa post.

2. Praise the Beauty of Dubai Frame

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Things to do in Dubai in January | Dubai Frame | The Vacation Builder

Dubai doesn’t just erect tall buildings; it is also the proud owner of the tallest photo frame in the world – the Dubai Frame. This 150-metre-high structure gives an incredible glimpse of the city through its dazzling golden frame.

Dubai Frame is the best place to capture the morning hues in the sky along with the mesmerizing skyline of the city in January. It remains open from 9.00 AM to 9.00 PM.

For more information on visiting Dubai Frame, you can check out our full guide to Safa Park here. Safa Park is one of the largest green spaces in Dubai and is home to the Dubai Frame.

3. Skydiving

Dubai is one of the best cities in the world with fabulous panoramic views. Skydiving is one of the most exciting ways to behold those breathtaking views.

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Things To Do In Dubai In January | Sky Dining | The Vacation Builder

You will be taken up at a height of about 13,000 feet. Once you take the plunge, you are going to have a once in a lifetime experience. Due to clear sky and low humidity, January days ensure better visibility and an all-day-long dive window starting from 10.00 AM and lasting until 9.00 PM.

For more information on SkyDive Dubai check out their official website here.

4. Go on a Desert Safari

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Things To Do In Dubai In January | Desert Safaris in Dubai in January  | The Vacation Builder
Desert Safari's in Dubai in January | The Vacation Builder
Photo by Walid Ahmad on Pexels.com

No Dubai vacation is complete without a sufficient dose of sand and desert. Going on a desert safari is the most traditional way of celebrating the core spirit of Dubai. If you are afraid of suffering from intolerable heat and excessive sweating, then you can go for an evening desert safari in January.

The month of January offers relatively cooler temperatures for this activity. Desert safaris are paired with dune adventure sports, open-air camps and feasts. A Dubai desert safari gives you the opportunity to live the life of a Bedouin.

5. Fly Away in a Hot Air Balloon

When you’re having a vacation in Dubai in January, don’t forget to enjoy a hot air balloon ride. These balloons take you to a height of 4,000 feet over the desert. Watching the sunrise and imposing sand dunes over the horizon is indeed a surreal experience. Hot air balloon rides in Dubai also offer fascinating views of the region’s wildlife.

6. Set Sail in a Dhow

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Things To Do In Dubai In January | Dhow Cruises in Dubai | The Vacation Builder

Dhows are a traditional boat that people in the United Arab Emirates have used since the ages. A Dhow is an integral part of Dubai’s culture and heritage.

Sailing through the marina and enjoying sumptuous meals over the glamour of Dubai’s skyline is truly a memorable experience. January offers the most pleasant Dhow Cruise rides of the year.

7. Dubai Garden Glow

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Things To Do In Dubai In January | Dubai Garden Glow | The Vacation Builder

They say “everyone is a child at heart” and that child in you must be very excited to explore the sparkles and vibrancy at the Garden Glow in Dubai. This event is an extraordinary amalgamation of visual treats, apt music and bright lights.

The enchanting experience at Dubai Garden Glow is bought to life with wisely crafted installations. The Garden Glow exhibition is one of the major attractions in Dubai in January. January timing is from 4.00 PM to 11.00 PM on weekdays and 5.00 PM – 12.00 AM on Sundays and national holidays.

We already have crafted a Dubai Garden Glow Guide article for those who are willing to visit this magnificent place.

8. Get Spellbound at Dubai Miracle Garden

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Things To Do In Dubai In January | Dubai Miracle Garden | The Vacation Builder

Dubai Miracle Garden is an incredible experience created with millions of flowers, creepers, plants and trees. Spreading across an area of 72,000 square metres, this is the largest natural flower garden in the world and one of its kind.

More than 50 million flowers and 250 million plants have been put together to develop vibrant patterns and shapes to captivate your senses. Winter is the best time to take a stroll in this magnificent garden.

You will surely love to have more info on this park before your visit and we have a whole article to guide you.

9. Global Village

Global Village can add a strong element to your Dubai tour in January. This place is the beating heart of the city and it remains like this all through the year.

Dubai’s Global Village is claimed to be the largest cultural tourism project in the world. It showcases the cultural heritage of as many as 90 different countries. This spot is ideal for spending a fun-filled day with food, live performances and loads of shopping.

Check out our Why You Should Visit Dubai Global Village post to know more and more interesting things.

10. Be a Part of Dubai Walking Tours

January in Dubai is blessed with moderate temperatures, very little humidity and warming sun rays. This is the best time to explore the city on your foot.

Thanks to the pleasant weather, you can walk for hours and discover interesting facts about the history, culture and the local people of this city. The City Walking Tour is the cheapest but most exciting way to get up close and personal with Dubai’s true spirit.

Take a look at our following post to have tons of walking tours ideas and tips.

Events to Look Forward to in January in Dubai

Dubai knows best how to entertain people with grand events. Warm and pleasant January makes it easier for tourists and travellers to enjoy indoor as well as outdoor events with the same zeal and zest. Take a look at a few of the major events that Dubai hosts in January.

New Year’s Eve

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Events to Look Forward to in January in Dubai | New Years Eve in Dubai | The Vacation Builder

January 1st is New Year’s Day in Dubai and the whole country enjoys a national holiday. While government organizations and services will remain closed on January 1st, all parks, shops and restaurants will be open.

When it comes to celebrating New Year Eve, Dubai starts with its lavish brunch scenes. Skyscrapers of the city become the canvas to portray the celebration vibe. Furthermore, fantastic fireworks shows are held throughout the city on NYE in Dubai.

For more information on Where to Spend New Year’s Eve in Dubai check out our blog post here.

Dubai Shopping Festival

Dubai Shopping Festival is the ultimate shopping experience for every shopaholic. This retail festival is celebrated over the shopping malls and outlets all across the city.

During the festival, you will be showered with attractive offers, deals and discounts on every purchase. This is the right time to invest in designer clothes, gold jewellery, branded watches and perfumes.

Cirque De Soleil

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Events to Look Forward to in January in Dubai | Cirque De Soleil | The Vacation Builder

Globally acclaimed Cirque De Soleil has recently made its appearance in Dubai. Heavily inspired by the Hollywood Blockbuster, Avatar, this show takes audience to a whole new futuristic world of Pandora. This world is made up of gravity-defying acts, stunning visuals and pulsating music. Cirque De Soleil comes to life in January only.

Quoz Arts Fest

The Quoz Arts Fest is another magnificent event taking place in January. You don’t need to be a person with an artistic inclination to enjoy the vibe and colours of this arts festival. Gathering a hoard of artists and art admirers under one roof, Quoz Arts Fest arranges for many workshops, tour galleries and live performances to stir your thoughts. Delicious local food is the added benefit of attending this festival.

Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge Build-Up Ride 3 of 4

Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge Build Up Ride 3 of 4 | The Vacation Builder

Dubai is undoubtedly one of the best cycling destinations in the world. Cycling enthusiasts dominate Dubai’s fitness scene. What’s more, winter months are the best to go cycling in and around the city. Cycling enthusiasts can plan their trip accordingly if they want to attend the Spinneys Dubai 92 Cycle Challenge in January.

For more information check our full guide to Cycling in Dubai.

Dubai Marathon

Now I bet not many people fancy running a marathon, let alone in a hot country. However, if you are one of those mental enthusiasts for running and want to do it in Dubai, make sure you run in January!

The Dubai Marathon is a major sporting event held in January. The event attracts participants from every nook and corner of the world. The Dubai Marathon allows participants to take part in a full marathon, a 10 km run or a 3 km ‘fun run’. This marathon is known for its super-flat course that makes running incredibly faster.

Is January a Good Time to Visit Dubai?

Winter months are the best time to plan a Dubai trip. Winter in Dubai sets foot in the month of November and lasts till April. January is not the only month that lures tourists to visit Dubai but it is undoubtedly the most favourite one as the Dubai Shopping Festival is scheduled in January.

January and February are the months when the whole city comes alive with plenty of dazzling events like Dubai Garden Glow and Dubai Miracle Garden.

If you fancy visiting Dubai in January, flights are usually cheap when booked last minute as many travel companies hold flight sales after Christmas to bring in revenue.

If you’re the kind of person who loves to see major sights and attractions rather than laze around on a beach, January is the perfect time to do this in Dubai. The summer months are far too hot to be walking too far. Plan your trip to Dubai in January to save your feet and please your eye.

What to pack for a January Trip to Dubai?

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | What To PAck For January Trip To Dubai | The Vacation Builder

Although January is the coolest month of the year in Dubai, your packing list doesn’t require many changes. Summer clothing will be just perfect for flaunting your best side and going out in style. Still, we have listed here the essentials that you wouldn’t usually pack for a trip to Dubai in any other month:

  • Trainers, for seeing the sights. In the summer months, this would be too sweaty!
  • Light, flowy and summery outfits
  • Linen trousers. Something warmer for the evenings but not too heavy.
  • A light-weight rain jacket (Just in case)
  • Cardigan, light jacket or pashminas for cooler evenings
  • Swimsuit cover-ups (as you won’t dry off quickly in the sun)
  • Long skirt or midi skirt

Is Dubai Expensive in January?

January is still a particularly expensive time to visit Dubai. Due to the major events such as the Dubai Shopping festival and the fact that it is cooler and therefore a great time for sightseeing.

Is it possible to grab a cheap deal to Dubai in January if you leave it to book until late. Many travel agents have January sales to bring in revenue after the busy festive period and the holiday booking lull.

To learn about When is The Cheapest Time to go to Dubai you can check our guide here.

Can you Swim in the Sea in Dubai in January?

One of the most exciting parts of Dubai vacation is swimming in the open sea. If you are visiting Dubai in January, then the possibility of swimming in the sea depends on where you are coming from.

If you are from UK, USA, Europe or Russia, then swimming in the sea in January will be just about tolerable. However, if you are from the warmer sides of the world like Australia, India and South-East Asia, you may not find the sea warm enough to swim. The average sea temperature in January is 22C.

Most hotels in Dubai come with heated swimming pool. So, it is not at all a hardship to swim in the pool throughout the year.

Is the Weather in Dubai Good Enough to Sunbathe in January?

A Complete Guide to Dubai in January | Sunbathing in January in Dubai | The Vacation Builder

Although January is the coolest month of the year in Dubai it is warm enough to sunbathe. The best time to soak up the rays would be between 11am and 2pm where average highs hit 24C. Dubai doesn’t experience too much wind during January and so some days can be quite pleasant for sunbathing.

Some Need-to-Knows For Your Dubai January Trip

Before you land in Dubai to kick-start a blissful vacation, here are a few things good to know –

  • In January, Dubai can be a little cold early in the morning. Sun rises here around 7.00 AM.
  • If you are planning for a swim in the sea, schedule it for noon or afternoon.
  • Sunset photograph shoots in Dubai in January come out spectacular due to the clear sky and better visibility.
  • There is no need to take too much of winter essentials for your Dubai tour in January. Taking a light jacket and a pashmina will be more than enough.
  • Several racing competitions are held in Dubai in the month of January. If you are a speed maniac, don’t forget to check out the event dates before booking your flight tickets.
  • Sunbathing is the best way to enjoy a laid-back holiday in Dubai. But don’t forget to put on a cover-up or wrap around a sarong as soon as you leave the beach or poolside.
  • You will surely experience a sudden hike in prices in Dubai in January as it is the peak tourist season here. Make sure you plan accordingly.
  • Last but not least, always be respectful to local people and their customs whatever the month! The local people in Dubai are extremely polite and helpful so please respect their culture.


Dubai is fabulous in January and we will insist everyone to schedule their Dubai holiday right in this month. But if that’s not at all possible for you, then pick at least one winter month. Because winter is the best time to execute all your outdoor plans without making it hectic.

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