One of Dubai’s most stunning and unmissable modern attractions is watching the Dubai Fountain Show on the Burj Khalifa Lake, Downtown Dubai.
In yet another Dubai world-record-breaking build, it is the largest dancing fountain show in the world.
In this Dubai Fountain Show guide we will take you through:
Watching the Dubai Fountains is one of the best free things to do in Dubai at night – check out all of Dubai’s free attractions here.
Dubai Fountain Show Timings
- Daily Evening Shows 6:00 PM – 11:00 PM every 30 minutes
- Seasonally, lunchtime performances may be added at 1:00 PM and 1:30 PM (1:30 PM & 2:00 PM weekends)
Over Eid & Public Holidays the Dubai Mall fountain show times may change schedule and extra shows may be scheduled to run all afternoon through to midnight. The lunchtime performances have historically not run over Ramadan and start after Iftar – first show this year we expect will be 7:30 PM.
The Dubai Mall dancing fountain show itself runs for about 5 minutes at a time.
Burj Khalifa Light Show Timings
It’s nice to catch the first Dubai Fountain show at dusk and then return for a later nighttime show when you can also capture LED lighting displays on the Burj Khalifa from 7.45 PM. The Burj Khalifa light show runs every 30 minutes on Friday, Saturday and Sunday until 10.45 PM.
On weekdays, every hour from 7.45 PM (Program subject to change annually; not confirmed for 2024).
This is a great stop-gap entertainer while you’re waiting for the fountains. Often, there are special themed lightings on the Burj Khalifa for national and international celebrations, awareness campaigns and special occasions – you can’t get a much bigger announcement than printing it on the Burj Khalifa!
Where Can I Watch the Fountain Show in Dubai?
The Dubai Fountain is built on a 30-acre lake, called Burj Khalifa Lake, or simply Burj Lake which sits between the Dubai Mall, Souk Al Bahar and Burj Khalifa. The fountains are choreographed to music to make it look like they are dancing, hence they are often called “the Dancing Fountains of Dubai”.
The waterfront promenade in front of Dubai Mall is the most popular and easy to access location to see the Dubai Fountains – for free. It’s also one of the busiest. Most people tend to exit Dubai Mall from the central exit (underneath the mega Apple store – which also has an outdoor viewing balcony!)
This can be exceptionally crowded at peak times of the evening, 10 to 15 minutes before every show. Unless you are looking to cut across the bridge to Souk al Bahar, we DO NOT recommend you take this exit. If you are travelling with strollers, young children, the disabled or the elderly, be really conscious of this.
Instead, if you head to the Lower Ground Floor exit near “At the Top”, at the Fashion Avenue end of the Dubai Mall, the exit here is far less crowded, and you will be in a better position to see the fountains and the Burj Khalifa.
There are plenty of other ways to ensure a good view of the Dubai Fountains, including:
- Taking a fountain lake ride on a traditional abra around Burj Lake (see more below!)
- Walk on to the Dubai Fountain Boardwalk (see more below!)
- Dining at one of the nearby restaurants with outdoor seating over the lake (see more below!)
- From the walkway around Souk Al Bahar
- From up above in one of the city’s towering skyscrapers, including At The Top Burj Khalifa
Do note, it’s best to plan to be in position around 15 minutes before the show. The water will start to twinkle around 10 minutes before then the promenade lights will be dimmed in preparation.
Fountain Lake Ride – Seeing the Dubai Fountains From the Water
You can get up close to the performance on a wooden abra that circles Burj Khalifa Lake. The boats depart in timed slots 15 minutes before each show (so, at quarter past and at quarter to the hour), and last for 30 minutes.
Note that these tickets are collected from At the Top (the Burj Khalifa ticketing counter) on the lower ground floor of Dubai Mall). You must be organised well in advance as it takes several minutes to get from the ticketing counter back to the “Lake Ride” entrance point on the promenade – and this is a super busy tourist area.
You can quickly check the availability of the Dubai Fountain Lake Ride here:
You can enhance your water experience by taking a Dubai Canal Cruise. This is on a much larger dhow boat and will include a 5-star dinner buffet, seeing the Dubai Canal highlights lit up at night, including IMAGINE at Dubai Festival City, and the new waterfall under Sheikh Zayed Road
(NB the dinner cruise departs from Dubai Festival City Mall, not Dubai Mall, at 7:00 PM nightly; the fountains are a passing stop on a much longer itinerary, a superb way to capture many of the city’s best night shows on water)
See the Fountains on a Night Tour of Dubai
Another touring option is to see the Dubai Fountains as part of a combined nighttime tour of the city’s highlights. This 4-hour private tour (available in English, Spanish, Italian, French, Portuguese or German) includes a stop at the Dubai Fountains.
Dubai Fountain Boardwalk
The Dubai Fountain Boardwalk (also known as the Dubai Fountain Walk Bridge) is a floating platform from Burj Park, Downtown Dubai, which provides one of the most up-close experiences for viewing the fountains; at its closest point, you are only 9 metres away!
There is an entry charge to the Dubai Fountain Boardwalk of 20 AED, but you can stay on the 272m long boardwalk as long as you like. Open 5:00 PM to 11:00 PM daily, children must be over 4-years old.
The Dubai Fountain Boardwalk is included in the “Dubai Pass” Select, Flexi Attraction and Unlimited packages
Water Experiences at Dubai Fountains
A new set of experiences has been added to the waterfront lineup by Emaar Entertainment. Kids and families can enjoy motorised and self-pedal boats and kayaks on an extension to the Burj Lake.
Pop over to our complete guide here of Dubai Fountain Water experiences for pricing and to learn more.
Restaurants Overlooking Dubai Fountain
Both the Dubai Mall and Souk Al Bahar have many restaurants overlooking Burj Khalifa Lake. There are also nearby hotel restaurants (licenced) where you can catch a glimpse. This is the best way to experience the Dubai Mall fountains.
Our favourite Dubai Mall restaurants with fountains views
- On lower ground level try; Social House – casual international dining, Carluccios – Italian, Wafi Gourmet – Lebanese. For some quick bites, look out for Nandos, Pizza Hut, and KFC.
- Level 1 – OFK (Open Flame Kitchen) – upscale international
- Level 2 – TGI Fridays – American dining; Tribes – casual African dining with a great vibe
NB restaurants within Dubai Mall are all dry – i.e. they do not serve alcohol while hotels and those within Souk Al Bahar are licensed.
Our favourite Souk Al Bahar restaurants with fountain views
- Bice Mare – Italian Seafood
- Serafina – Italian
- Karma Kafe – Pan Asian
- Smaller bites you can grab from Deluca Café and Baker & Spice
Our favourite nearby restaurants with fountain views
Dubai Fountains – How to Get There
If you are not taking a taxi or self-parking, the most convenient way to access Dubai Mall is via Metro.
The most convenient stops are both on the red line:
- The Burj Khalifa / Dubai Mall Metro Station is the closest, albeit it can be incredibly busy in peak times (around a 10-minute walk even with travellators).
- Business Bay Metro is a further away walk (around 15 minutes) but can be less busy in the evenings if you want to avoid walking through the mall.
You could easily combine in one evening a trip to At the Top Burj Khalifa and seeing the fountains at ground level. It’s spectacular to see Downtown lit up from above, but more atmospheric, and to hear the music, you need to be nearby.
Nearby Attractions to Dubai Fountains
The Dubai Fountains really are at the tourist epicentre of the city. If you only have one night to spend exploring Dubai, this is probably where your night will start or end.
Where to Stay Near the Dubai Fountains
Those looking to stay close to Downtown and the fountains there are plentiful accommodation options – it all depends on the size of your group and budget.
- Best Views – Palace Downtown – sensational contemporary Middle Eastern luxury and views you will never want to leave.
- Value pick – Rove Downtown – a 1- minute walk away and a crossing over Financial Centre Road but prices as low as $86 USD a night make this an excellent central option.
- Family Pick – Roda Al Murooj Residences – this is our top pick for families as it includes apartment options with the luxury and facilities of a resort, about 8 minutes to Dubai Mall using the sky bridge attached to Address Boulevard.
- Most luxurious – Armani Hotel Dubai within Burj Khalifa – you may even get a room with fountain views.
See all your nearby Downtown Dubai hotel and apartment options here:
Dubai Fountain Facts
First operational in May 2009, the Dubai Fountains pre-date even the opening of the Burj Khalifa! Here are just a few fun facts to know about the Dubai Fountains:
- The fountains cover over 900 feet in length
- High-pressure shooters are what make the fountains “dance”
- Super shooters can fire 240 feet into the air
- Water from the extreme shooters can shoot as high as 500 feet (a 50 story building!!)
- Up to 22,000 gallons of water can shoot into the air at any one point
- There are 6,600 Superlights and 25 colour projectors.
- The songs played vary between classical Arabic and contemporary hits
- The fountains were designed by WET Design, who also designed the Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas
Pop over here if you want more Fun Facts About the Burj Khalifa!
More Frequently Asked Questions on the Downtown Dubai Fountains & Burj Light Show
Yes, it’s free to stand on the promenade and watch the fountain show at night.
If you wish to have a closer view from a traditional dhow boat, or from the boardwalk then additional fees apply.
Every 30 minutes from 6:00 PM until 11:00 PM is the usual schedule, though this can vary by season and for public holidays.
We’ve done our best to provide up-to-date information on the current Dubai Fountain show times and Burj Khalifa light showtimes, but these are subject to change. In Ramadan, for instance, the program is varied to fit in with fasting hours so may commence later than 6pm.
The lunchtime show is also varied for holidays and weekends, so you may find the fountains are not going off as expected.
These changes to programming are rarely advertised, so its impossible for us to give you accurate Dubai Mall Fountain timings for every day of the year.
This newer fountain display surprisingly closed fairly abruptly in 2023, so we believe the Dubai Mall fountain show once more holds the record as the world’s largest fountain show, currently operating.
There are several vantage points around the Dubai Mall and Burj Lake, but the best viewing point for the Burj Khalifa light show is from the restaurants at Souk Al Bahar.
The Burj Khalifa light show is completely free to watch. If you want a closer view by boat, this is a paid activity,
You’re seeing the name everywhere around Downtown Dubai, right? Emaar Properties is an Emirati multinational real estate development company responsible for building the entire area. It is a publicly listed company in the UAE. We guess when it’s yours, you can put your name wherever you want. We decode more Dubai lingo for you over here!
Before you go… More important things you should know when planning a trip to Dubai
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