Traveling anywhere with your baby or toddler can be nerve-wracking. Children in that age group have several entertainment and safety needs. If you visit the United Arab Emirates (UAE), you want to understand how bringing your baby or toddler will impact your trip.

Read on to learn about baby and toddler-friendly activities in the UAE, transportation tips, accommodation ideas, dining options, and more. These tips will help you have a smooth visit to the UAE with your baby or toddler.

General Things You Need to Know

Here are some general tips for visiting the UAE with your baby or toddler:

Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding in public is not illegal. However, modesty is strongly encouraged in local culture, so it’s better to find private places like mother and baby rooms, which are available in most malls and tourist areas.

If you have no other choice but to breastfeed in public, the advice from locals is to cover up so remember to pack a large swaddle blanket or nursing cover.

Bottle Feeding

Baby formula is available throughout the UAE. However, if you want your baby to stick to a specific brand, you may want to bring your own. Tap water is safe to use after boiling it. However, you can also use bottled water if you are concerned. Your hotel may be able to provide you with the water you need.

Changing Tables

While you can theoretically find changing tables throughout the UAE, most of these are only in women’s restrooms. You may be able to find family restrooms, which should also have changing tables.

Car Seats

The UAE requires car seats for all children under four years of age. You will especially want a car seat if you visit large cities since driving in those areas can move fast. There are a few different ways to access car seats in the UAE besides bringing your own.

If you rent a car, you can add a car seat. If you intend to travel by taxi, there are children-friendly car services that offer car seats. There are also companies, such as Skytots and Stroller Spa, which rent out car seats and strollers.

Strollers

When traveling with children, many parents want to know if they can easily navigate the country with a stroller. The more developed areas of the country are fairly stroller friendly. Most of Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah work well with strollers. However, Old Dubai’s streets are less stroller-friendly than other parts of the city.

Many people choose to bring a compact stroller with them on their travels. As mentioned above, if you need a stroller but do not want to bring one with you, there are stroller rental companies.

Sun Safety

If you are from a similar region to the UAE, you likely understand the importance of sun safety in the Arabian Gulf. However, those unfamiliar with the region may not know just how hot and sunny the area is. While the cooler months from November through March are comfortable for those unfamiliar with the heat, April through October can be very hot.

There are a few easy ways to ensure that both adults and temperature-sensitive children are safe in the heat and sun.

  • Stay hydrated with bottled water, cooled boiled water, or a reusable water bottle with a filter.
  • Children under six months of age should stay in the shade at all times. Children older than six months can wear sunscreen with at least 50 SPF. Light but protective clothing can also protect children and you from the sun.

Fasting

If you visit the UAE during the month of Ramadan, it is a good idea for you to understand how the fasting rules may affect you and your family. Breastfeeding and pregnant women are exempt from fasting during Ramadan. Travelers and small children also do not have to fast.

Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. During the 29-30 day period, Muslims pray, reflect, and fast. The exact dates of Ramadan vary since the month depends on the Islamic lunar calendar. Ramadan differs by about ten days each year. By the early 2020s, Ramadan started in March. By the early 2030s, Ramadan will begin in late winter.

Accommodation

Most hotels and resorts in the UAE allow children and have rooms with enough space for a baby cot. While you can bring your bed for your baby, most hotels will supply you with one. It is always a good idea to check ahead to know what to expect before you arrive.

Transportation

Transportation is an important part of any trip to the UAE, especially when you have babies and toddlers in the mix. Here are some pointers:

Taxis

Taxis are an easy way to get around in the UAE’s more developed areas, especially with children. However, you will likely need to bring a car seat. As described previously, you can bring your own, rent, or schedule a child-friendly car service.

Metro

Since the early 2000s, the UAE transport system has developed significantly. The Dubai Metro is a great way to get around the city. Rush hour can be busy. However, if you avoid peak times, the experience can be fairly calm. There is also a dedicated car for women and children.

Desert Safari

Going on a desert safari is a popular activity in the UAE. However, you need to plan if you want a child-friendly safari. Some safari companies only allow children over four since dune bashing can be dangerous for smaller children and pregnant women. Always look very carefully at the safari offerings.

Dining

Restaurants are usually fairly baby-friendly, as well as the high-end spots. These dining experiences usually have high chairs and options for children to eat.

Activities

Once you have your baby comfortable, fed, and transportable, you naturally need a way to entertain them. There are plenty of baby and toddler-friendly activities and entertainment opportunities throughout the UAE. Most of these options are also fun for adults.

 

These activities in areas such as Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah include Jebel Jais, beaches, Malls, Dubai Mall fountains, Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, Burj Khalifa, Khuzam Family Park, Dubai Miracle Garden, Jasim’s Wildlife Park, and Qalat Dhaya.

Final Thoughts

Traveling to the UAE with your baby or toddler can be stress-free as long as you come prepared. Now that you know about the available activities, transportation opportunities, and other quirks of traveling with a little one in the UAE, you are ready to book your trip.

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