Ten things to do in Dubai for parents and the elderly
Living in one of the premier tourist destinations in the world with a host of exciting attractions leads to friends and family often heading over for a visit/vacation and some fun in the sun. But whilst there’s no shortage of glitzy and glamorous attractions in Dubai to completely bowl over any sceptical visitors, older folks might be interested in something a little more understated. And that’s exactly why we’ve put together this list of places to visit in Dubai for senior citizens and parents. Let’s take a look.
PLACES TO VISIT IN DUBAI FOR SENIOR CITIZENS AND PARENTS
If a night of dancing at Club Cavalli or dune bashing at a desert safari does not seem like their cup of tea, try out one of these things to do in Dubai with parents, grandparents or other elders visiting.
WATCH THE UNDULATING WATERS OF THE CREEK AT AL SEEF
With a lot of emphasis on the modern and swanky avatar of Dubai, it’s easy to see how some visitors only scratch the surface when it comes to UAE culture. The creek is one of the most iconic landmarks of Dubai and the most popular attraction for elderly people. If your elderly friends, relatives or parents are visiting the city, a trip to take in the beauty of the glittering waters of the creek is an absolute must!
Take in the azure blue waters at Al Seef
While a walk around the nearly 5km stretch of the Creek Park may seem a little excessive for older visitors in Dubai, a stroll through the beautifully designed Meraas lifestyle destination, Al Seef, overlooking the majestic Dubai Creek may just be one of the interesting things to do in Dubai for parents of older visitors. To make things more memorable, take a ride on the traditional abra and go across to Deira for a spot of old-fashioned souk shopping at the world-renowned Gold and Spice Souk.
SOAK UP SOME CULTURE IN OLD DUBAI
When we are on the subject of old-fashioned things, one of the best things to do in Dubai for parents is to visit the many heritage sites in Dubai and experience the glorious culture of the emirate. Take time to visit the famous landmarks of Dubai, including the Dubai Museum, Heritage House, and the famed Arabian Tea House, and get a spot for breakfast at the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for cultural understanding. Senior citizens will surely be impressed by the cultural journey they can experience in these meticulously maintained places in the city.
The Heritage House, Dubai Museum and other historical locations are sure to please senior citizens visiting Dubai
GET A TASTE OF SOME FINE THEATRE AT THE DUBAI OPERA
One of the best things about Dubai is that there is always something for everyone. A trip to the opulent Dubai Opera is one of the things for senior citizens to do. With a selection of world-renowned plays and musicals and the excitement of getting dressed up for a spectacular evening of revelry, this can be an experience unlike any other. If you go a little early, you can also enjoy the choreographed dance of the Dubai Fountains.
ENJOY A SUNNY DAY AT LA MER BEACH
When in Dubai, it’s hard to pass up on a trip to the beach, even if the weather is sweltering. One of the best places to visit in Dubai for senior citizens is the gorgeous La Mer Beach. This is amongst the popular Dubai attractions for elderly people where they can enjoy a long walk along the sandy stretches and relax with a refreshing meal in one of the many restaurants at La Mer, should they need a break.
One of the best beaches for parents visiting Dubai to experience is La Mer
SEE THE BEAUTIFUL JUXTAPOSITION OF OLD AND NEW DUBAI
The Dubai Frame is an ideal place to take parents or the elderly visiting Dubai as it’s the perfect vantage point to take in the sight of old and new Dubai. You can spot the towering Burj Khalifa, the spectacular Burj Al Arab and other quintessential attractions from this spot.
TAKE THEM TO THE MIRACLE GARDEN
Next on our list of places to visit in Dubai for senior citizens is Miracle Garden. This place promises a full bloom of fun for people of all ages. It features 2D and 3D floral designs which attract millions of visitors every year. You can take your parents to the floral tunnels where they can relax and enjoy a meal.
- Ticket Price: AED 75
- Timings: Monday to Friday 09:00 am – 09:00 pm | Saturday and Sunday 09:00 am – 11:00 pm
- Location: Al Barsha South 3, Dubailand
- Contact: +971-4-422-8902
EXPERIENCE THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DESERT AT HATTA VILLAGE
While dune bashing at a desert safari may not seem one of the things to do in Dubai for parents, experiencing the desert is something they will definitely cherish. The ride to Hatta Village is mesmerising, to say the least, with the landscape of white sand transitioning to beautiful red sand with the magnificent Hajar Mountain range in the background.
The mountainous terrains of the desert will be a unique discovery when you travel to Hatta
It’s the desert, unlike anything you could have imagined, with gorgeous mountains and dams. Even though it is in Dubai, we recommend carrying your passports as it is fairly close to the Oman border.
- Timings: Saturday to Thursday 07:30 am – 08:30 pm | Friday 02:30 pm – 08:30 pm
- Location: Along the Hajar Mountains Area
- Contact: +971-4-852-1374
THINGS TO DO IN DUBAI FOR PARENTS AND ELDERLY
Apart from all these places to visit, there are many fun things to do in Dubai for parents and senior citizens. Here’s a look at some of the activities they will enjoy while visiting the golden city.
AFTERNOON TEA AT THE QUEEN’S GRILL
Take your folks for quintessential afternoon tea at The Queen’s Grill in QE2 Dubai. The venue was once reserved for the first class passengers and now it serves as an opulent venue for people who want to dine like royals. Enjoy an exquisite assortment of savoury bites, pastries and freshly baked scones. You can choose between Cunard (featuring cold bites and pastries) or Britannia afternoon tea (serving cold and hot canapes and pastries). You can also ask for gluten free and vegan options.
- Price: AED 155 (Cunard Afternoon Tea) | AED 199 (Britannia Afternoon Tea)
- Timings: Friday to Sunday 03:00 pm – 05:00 pm
- Location: Queen’s Grill, QE2
- Contact: +971-60-050-0400
SAVOUR A SUMPTUOUS BRUNCH AT BURJ KHALIFA
While most visitors to Dubai don’t miss ‘At the top’ experience in Burj Khalifa, we recommend a lavish Saturday brunch at The Burj Club, Rooftop as one of the things to do in Dubai for parents or older visitors. This way they can experience the awe-inspiring views from the world’s tallest building, without having to deal with any queues or unpleasant vertigo symptoms. Looking for more options? You can take them to Asia Asia, Besh or Prime68 for delish brunches in Dubai.
- Price: From AED 249 (soft beverages) | AED 349 (in-house beverages)
- Timings: 04:00 pm – 07:00 pm (Saturday)
- Location: Burj Khalifa
- Contact: +971-4-888-3900
TEE OFF AT A VERDANT GOLF COURSE IN DUBAI
There are several award-winning golf courses in Dubai designed by leading architects from around the world. Senior citizens interested in sports would be spoilt for choices when it comes to finding a great spot to tee off in the Emirate. Even if they don’t want to actively play the game, they will definitely enjoy a ride around the golf courses which also have a selection of fine-dining restaurants and cosy cafes.
Dubai has some amazing golf clubs that visitors will surely be impressed by.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
ARE THERE ANY FREE THINGS TO DO IN DUBAI?
Yes, tons! For people on a budget, there are plenty of fun things to do in Dubai for free such as exploring the streets of Al Seef, enjoying street art at Al Karma and taking a tour of Bur Dubai Grand Mosque.
WHICH LANDMARKS IN DUBAI ARE A MUST-VISIT FOR TOURISTS?
The tourists should add Dubai Fountain, Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Mall to the list of must-visits in the city.
I AM NEW IN DUBAI, WHICH PLACES SHOULD I VISIT?
Top places to visit as a new resident in Dubai include JBR Beach, Dubai Hills Mall and the Museum of Future.
And that’s all, folks! There certainly is no shortage of fun things to do with elderly people in Dubai. Make the most of your time with them and expose them to all the fun things that the emirate is known for. If time permits, we also recommend checking out the top tourist attractions in Abu Dhabi, which has an array of activities that senior citizens would enjoy.
4 Fun And Exciting Vacations For Elderly Parents In The United States
Vacations with the whole family can be rewarding. and challenging. Here are some family vacations for elderly parents to tag along that are fun and exciting for everyone.
The two biggest attractions in Florida are the year-round warm weather and the 8,436 miles of coastline. Combine these and you’ve got yourself one of the best vacation destinations no matter the time of year.
Millions of tourists visit Florida each year and a lot of those visitors are seniors. Florida has become one of the most popular destinations in the country for seniors due to its warm summers and mild winters.
Local businesses and hotels are aware of this fact as well. Many of the buildings are handicap-accessible and the businesses operate with seniors in mind. Frugal shoppers are also going to find plenty of discounts at the local shops.
The best part is that Sarasota is a great destination no matter how old are you are. Seniors aren’t the only people who will enjoy it. In addition to the beautiful beach, there are nearby nightclubs, events, concerts, and amusement parks for the younger members on the trip interested in a little more excitement.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas is an entire city that might as well exist indoors. It’s one of the best vacation destinations you could bring your aging parents because there’s no worrying about the temperature or the humidity. You’ll spend the majority of the trip indoors where the air conditioner is always running and the temperature is always comfortable.
Vegas has is all – from shows, to games, to concerts. There is always something happening in Las Vegas.
But unlike many other destinations, you don’t need to physically exert yourself to enjoy yourself. There’s no hiking through the woods, swimming in the ocean, or navigating a rocky slope. All of those can be fun activities, but they aren’t ideal for seniors. In Las Vegas, you can stay entertained from sunup to sundown without ever breaking a sweat.
When are you too old to win money at BlackJack? Ummm… never! Gambling is the main attraction in Vegas and it’s a great activity for anyone over the legal age. It doesn’t matter if you’re 24 or 67, your chances at the slot machine aren’t going to change. The oldest person in the group might win more than the cost of the vacation. No matter what, it’s a vacation that people of all ages can enjoy and that nobody will ever forget.
Family vacations that involve live sports always seem to go well. A great way to do this is by visiting Denver during the fall and catching a football game at the legendary Mile High Stadium. The modern stadium has plenty of handicap-accessible options so it’s not a problem if you’re traveling with elderly parents who have limited mobility.
An unforgettable football game is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what Denver has to offer the family. Denver is known for its natural beauty. There are hundreds of miles of trails that cut through some of the most impressive scenery in the country.
Hiking may be a bit much for some seniors. But if your parents still enjoy a little workout, then this is a great place to visit. Some of the parks have trails that were designed with seniors in mind. These are very mild trails that feature plenty of rest points along the way. Those same parks even offer significant discounts to seniors over a certain age.
Finally, Denver has an impressive selection of award-winning restaurants. You’re guaranteed to be able to find a great meal even if you or your elderly family member have serious dietary restrictions.
New York City
What city is more well-known or beloved than New York City?
People live their entire lives there and still never experience all that it has to offer. The sheer volume of buildings, attractions, and events is guaranteed to keep everyone in the family busy as long as you’ve planned your trip ahead of time. You can also research individual events or buildings to make sure they are easily accessible for senior citizens with limited mobility.
There’s a reason NYC is considered the culinary capital of the world. NYC also happens to be one of the few cities with more food choices than Denver. You’ll find more diverse and delicious restaurants here than anywhere else in the world. Even seniors with the strictest of diets can find high-class restaurants with plenty of viable options.
As with the other destinations on this list, NYC has something to offer the older and the younger. There are dozens of clubs, parties, and other nighttime events taking place if you manage to find the time.
And if you brought kids along there are tons of family-friendly attractions in the area. Whether you spend the day visiting museums, art shows, or watching Broadway; there’s never going to be a boring moment.
Tips for Traveling With Your Elderly Parents
- Pack the Essentials in a Carry On – If your parents have any medical conditions, make sure that you take some of their medication in their senior friendly carry on bag. Include any other essentials so that if your luggage gets lost you aren’t caught without those supplies.
- Plan for Plenty Downtime – You may be used to keeping a blistering pace on holiday but your parents may want to take things slow. So build some extra break-time into the schedule. If things are going well you can add more activities later in the day.
- Use Wearable ID – It’s a good idea for anyone with a medical condition to have a wearable ID bracelet that will alert medics to the condition, especially when traveling abroad. The bracelet should highlight conditions, medication, allergy and anything else that it might be important for a medic to know in an emergency.
- Take Basic Phones With Good Battery Life – Make sure that there’s an easy way for the whole family to stay in touch. If your family aren’t big on using smartphones, basic ‘call and text’ feature phones will get the job done. Many still have built-in features for location sharing in case you get separated from each other while you are away.
- Stick to a Good Routine – Try to maintain some semblance of a routine when you’re away. Get up and have breakfast at the hotel at the same time every day, agree to stop for lunch at a specific time, and keep to a normal bedtime as well, at least for the parents. You can go out again later if you’re still full of energy. Keeping to a routine will help to keep your elderly parents feeling happy and energized, and will make the rest of the holiday far less stressful for the whole party.
How Should You Get to Your Destination?
The travel to your destination is probably going to be the hardest part on your elderly parents. Think about their limitations and plan accordingly. Here are a few ideas:
- Driving in the family car is a typical way to travel. But, you’ll have to stop often for rest breaks and leg stretching.
- If driving is your preferred method, you could rent a van or RV to offer more room to your senior loved ones.
- Take the train! Riding the rails on Amtrak gives you opportunities to move around while traveling. You’ll also get to see some sights along the way.
- Take a plane and fly. Flying is hard on many elderly people because of the tight spaces. Getting in and out of the airport is usually the hardest part.
Fun Vacations For Elderly Parents
Planning fun and exciting vacations for elderly parents can be difficult, but it’s definitely possible. It’s particularly easy if you stick to the destinations listed above.
Each of the above destinations has a lot to offer young adults as well as elderly parents. Pick a destination, plan your itinerary, and let the fun begin.
Do you have any other destinations you would like to suggest? Please tell me about in the comments below! Also, if you found this guide helpful, please share on your favorite social media!
12 Best Places to Travel with Grandparents
Our No. 1 tip for vacay success: Take along an extra set of hands (or two). These trips offer tons of stuff for everyone to do, plus roomy accommodations to keep the peace.
Whether you’ve got something to celebrate or the grandparents are paying (wink, wink), these vacation destinations around the country have something for travelers both young and old.
- RELATED: 45 Secrets for Fabulous Family Vacations
Cocoa Beach, Florida
If there’s one thing that can wow all generations, it’s space travel. Your mission: Spend a day at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, where kids can touch a real piece of the moon, hold rocket-building materials, and crawl through a replica space station. The grandparents will also want to take a #humblebrag pic of everyone next to the Atlantis Space Shuttle, ride the launchpad bus tour, and even treat your whole crew to a meal with an astronaut. And, yes, rockets still blast off from here about once a month. (Check the launch schedule at kennedyspacecenter.com to see if your travel dates match up.)
Once you’ve had your space journey, your fam can move on to beach walks and lunch at the Westgate Cocoa Beach Pier, or take a guided kayak tour at the Brevard Zoo (you can paddle right through the water exhibits!). Stay at a local Airbnb or book a four-bedroom suite at the just-renovated Westgate Cocoa Beach Resort, which will wow your swimmers with an on-site water park.
St. Augustine, Florida
Drop your bags in a condo rental (they’re plentiful), then head out to explore the oldest city in the U.S. The area pleases both history-loving grandparents and fun-obsessed kiddos with a focus on pirates. Explore the Castillo de San Marcos fort that was constructed to ward off foes, and check out the old city gates built to protect local residents from invasion.
There’s also the St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum, where guides will entertain the grandparents with area trivia while kids get to fire a cannon, steer a replica ship on the main deck, and grab a treasure map to help them find hidden artifacts throughout the exhibits.
Sanibel Island, Florida
Head out to the water’s edge at low tide with your buckets in hand to search for this area’s biggest draw: shells! Hundreds of species of ocean treasures wash up daily on the island’s curving stretch of beaches along the Gulf. (Learn more about where they come from and how to find the most-coveted ones with an all-ages Discover Shelling tour at the Sanibel Sea School.)
If you have a bird-watcher in your group (shout-out to Gramps), the 6,400-acre J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge should be your next stop. Hike the easy Indigo Trail and go to the Wildlife Education Boardwalk, where kids can mix and match animal markings or help the adults spot wading fowl and shorebirds from the observation deck. Stay beachside in one of the Island Inn’s just-renovated cottages, which sleep six to 12 guests.
“We love the cottages because there’s plenty of room for downtime and family gatherings,” says Courtney Whitt, of Bellbrook, Ohio, who visits every year with a big crew of kids, siblings, and grandparents. “We enjoy spending loads of time cooking out, swimming, kayaking, shelling, and having nightly competitive Uno tournaments.” (Yup, those cottages are stocked with everything you need for all that.)
New Smyrna Beach, Florida
This laid-back, classic beach town just south of Daytona is great for a family that wants to hang out together on the sand. But it’s also cool and different: You can rent fat-tire bikes and go riding by the breakers or visit JB’s Fish Camp Seafood Restaurant for blue crab and fry baskets while you spot dolphins and manatees right from your table.
Grandparents can also get a little of their own R&R with a visit to the Atlantic Center of the Arts or a stroll around downtown galleries. Book two connecting suites (one for you, one for the grandparents) at the new Springhill Suites by Marriott. Your extended fam will score super-affordable oceanfront digs and free buffet breakfast.
- RELATED: 4 Low-Key Florida Vacation Spots for Families
There is just something about pretending you’re in another era while you stroll past cobblestone streets, horsedrawn carriages, and costumed interpreters at Colonial Williamsburg that’s enthralling for kids, parents, and grandparents alike.
“This was one of the best trips we’ve done,” raves mom Lyla Gleason, of New York City, who recently visited there with her daughter, husband, and mother-in-law. “History is a great way for kids to bond with adults. There were so many fun activities, like visiting with the blacksmith and watching the Fife and Drum march.”
Just as important as the history (at least if you ask the kids) is visiting Busch Gardens theme park. “Grandma took a day to explore Colonial Williamsburg on her own when we went there,” adds Gleason. After long days on your feet, head back to Kingsmill Resort, which offers affordable three-bedroom suites with a full kitchen.
Port Aransas, Texas
Drive over the causeway or take a ferry to Mustang Island and head to a pastel-hued rental home in the oceanfront Cinnamon Shore enclave.
“The community has everything you need right there,” says Melissa Navarro, of Belton, Texas, who visits with extended family every summer. “There are restaurants, live music, and s’mores making. Plus, you can rent golf carts or beach-cruiser bikes and be on the beach in minutes.”
But don’t expect to lounge around by the waves: Sand-castle building isn’t just for the kids. The area hosts Texas SandFest, the largest native-sand sculpture competition in the country, each April. No matter when you visit, book a private castle-making lesson from the Sandcastle Guy (sandrum.com), who will put your whole family’s building skills to the test.
This city is catching up with Nashville as Tennessee’s “It” destination, and offers multigenerational fun in spades. Have the grands cue up their favorite Elvis tunes on your way to Graceland, where your kids can climb onboard the star’s custom jet after you all tour the inside of the mansion. The Memphis Zoo is one of only four in the U.S. that has giant pandas, so you know you’re going to spend a while there.
Another good stop is the Children’s Museum of Memphis, which features indoor rock climbing and a little-kid water table. If you’re up for something really memorable, stay at the pyramid-shaped Big Cypress Lodge inside the iconic Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid. Its 103-room hotel boasts alligator ponds (a glass wall protects visitors), an ocean-themed bowling alley, and observation decks with spectacular views.
Isle of Palms, South Carolina
About 30 minutes from downtown Charleston, families can relax at the sprawling beachfront oasis that is Wild Dunes Resort. “
We originally wanted to go to Charleston, but Wild Dunes was the best of both worlds,” says Kristen McElhaney, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, who visited with her son, husband, and parents. “It’s close enough to the city but gave us so much more space to stay as a family.”
The lodging options include hotel rooms, condos, and rental homes. There’s even a golf program; kids can tee off for free alongside grandparents.
- RELATED: A Family Vacation Guide to Charleston, South Carolina
Whales, dolphins, sea lions, oh, my! This area’s pretty scenery gives way to some epic animal encounters that will excite everyone. Head to the Monterey Bay Aquarium bright and early and spring for the before-opening Feeding Frenzy tour, where you’ll get a private sea-otter viewing and kids can even help give the animals breakfast. After the aquarium, try a whale-watching boat tour or rent a six-seater surrey bike and pedal down the coast as you look for birds and dolphins.
Stay at the InterContinental The Clement Monterey, which is right on Cannery Row, so grandparents can easily stroll to a coffee shop or gallery if they need some quiet time. And don’t forget a winery visit in nearby Carmel Valley. You have built-in babysitters, after all!
Hawaii is a bucket-list locale for every generation, and the two-story, ocean-view villas at Ho’olei at Grand Wailea Resort that sleep eight are the ultimate home base. The villas have their own pool with a waterfall rock feature (expect your little mermaid to do her best Ariel impression) as well as access to the Grand Wailea’s six pools (including one with a rope swing and another just for grown-ups).
The whole fam can take hula lessons, make leis, or rent a kayak. The grands might especially appreciate the golf or the botanical and cultural tours. Ask them to babysit at naptime so you can book one of the unique spa services, like a Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage. Everyone can meet up for dinner at the villa, which has its own grill on the lanai (order groceries from Instacart).
One night, eat dinner at the oceanfront luau. You’ll be talking about its lawn games, photo ops, and hula show for years to come.
- RELATED: 9 Reasons Aulani Hawaii Disney Resort is Totally Worth the Trip
Mackinac Island, Michigan
The moment you hop off the boat (no four-wheelers allowed on Mackinac!), you’ll know you’re somewhere special: All along Main Street, there are horse-drawn carriages, mom-and-pop ice-cream parlors, and fudge shops. Head over to the just-renovated Mission Point Resort.
“We adore Mission Point because there is something for everyone at any age to do,” says Adrianne Rotfeld, of Chicago, who vacations there with her daughter and grandchildren each summer. “The kids love renting bikes and hiking. I love to go to the spa, and then we all meet up for our meals.” You’ll have lots of space with connecting suites.
And for families who love to cruise?
The mind-blowing nature you’ll see takes this trip from family fun to family legend. Most cruises will last about seven days and take one of two routes: the Inside Passage or the Gulf of Alaska.
Inside Passage tours are usually roundtrip from Seattle or Vancouver and typically stop at southeastern must-sees like Juneau, Skagway, Sitka, and Ketchikan. On a one-way Gulf of Alaska trip, you’ll generally see most of the Inside Passage route but also make it far enough north to check out Anchorage. Consider your options:
For engaging kids’ activities: Princess Cruises has a partnership with the Discovery channel, which translates to great programs for children, such as spending time with sled-dog puppies onboard or stargazing from the top deck of the ship.
For land-sea combo vacations: Holland America Line offers amazing Land + Sea Journeys (think: glass-topped train rides through the wilderness to Denali and the Yukon) that grandparents might want to book.
For smaller budgets: Despite its lower price, Carnival Cruise Line includes extras, like craftspeople who teach kids about Alaskan culture and adults-only spaces with hot tubs.
For great nightly shows : Norwegian Cruise Line provides all the bells and whistles you might be used to seeing on more entertainment-focused Caribbean cruises.
For their favorite characters: Disney Cruise Line combines excellent service (you have the same waitstaff every night, for instance) with brand tie-ins like a Frozen-themed deck party (naturally).
For a more intimate feel: Lindblad Expeditions sails Alaska on small ships (the newest has only 100 guests) and has a stellar, science-based National Geographic program for kids.