Your essential guide to what's happening in the Emirates
Top 10: Visit the Winter Wonderland on Al Maryah Island, find festive activities including an ice skating rink at The Beach in Dubai, and more
The annual Winter Wonderland on Al Maryah Island features storytelling, a Santa’s grotto at The Galleria, festive foods, arts and crafts and carnival games. Visit cottages brimming with children’s activities, a sliding park and a snow zone. Stage shows this weekend include Snow Swan, Fantasia, Santa’s Workshop Show and Frozen.
Daily until next Tuesday, various timings, The Galleria and the waterfront promenade on Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi, www.almaryahisland.ae
Kais Salman presents Cities, in which he draws upon folktales, epics and myths, creating alternate realities in which his characters make up the basis of worlds or cities. He then explores the roles the characters play in the making of a social fabric within alleys, streets and entire communities. Pictured: An untitled image by Kais Salman
Daily until January 6, 10am to 6pm, Sundays to Thursdays; noon to 6pm on Saturdays (closed Fridays); Ayyam Gallery, 12 Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz, Dubai, 04 323 6242, www.ayyamgallery.com
Make plans to attend a carnival event at Masdar Park this weekend, featuring a marching band, live music, caricaturist, face-painting, balloon-modelling and more. The park has reopened with several sustainability-themed family attractions including food and beverage outlets, a playground, music wall and sports facilities, including a 2.5-kilometre trail for running and biking, with exercise equipment.
Friday and Saturday, 4pm to 10pm, free entry, Masdar Park, Masdar City, Abu Dhabi, www.facebook.com/masdar.ae
The Dubai Mall presents a winter celebration with a Nutcracker theme, including a festive photo booth, a digital graffiti wall where you can create your own nutcracker soldier, and live Nutcracker ballet shows. Visitors who buy an Emaar gift card before midnight on December 25 can enter a prize draw for Dh500,000, to be spent across five retail categories within 12 hours, and includes assistance from a personal shopping advisor and stylist.
Daily until January 10, 10am to midnight, The Dubai Mall, Downtown Dubai, www.thedubaimall.com
N2N Gallery presents Art Shaped By the Heart, featuring works by Crimean painter Ramazan Useinov. The title of the exhibition emphasises the heart as the source of all emotions and what makes humans capable of feelings. The artist found inspiration for his works from the idea of making decisions based on feelings rather than reason.
Daily until January 8, 10am to 10pm, Sundays to Thursdays; 2pm to 10pm on Saturdays (closed Fridays), N2N Gallery, Al Ain Tower, Khalidiya, Abu Dhabi, www.n2nartgallery.com
Register now to take part in the Terry Fox Run, a non-competitive community fitness event that celebrates the memory of one of Canada’s most revered athletes, and raises money for cancer research in the UAE. The event is open to all ages and abilities, as well as modes of participation, including walkers, runners, in-line skaters and wheelchair users. There is no registration fee, but donations are welcome.
January 19, 7am for registration; 9am start, Abu Dhabi Corniche, Abu Dhabi, www.terryfox.org/international-runs/abudhabi
Register children ages 7-15 for the Kartdrome Camp from Gulf Star, where they can enjoy a winter camp featuring adrenaline-fuelled activities such as go-karting, laser tag, simulators, billiards, video games and fun team activities.
Daily until Thursday; then December 26 to 28; January 2 to 4, 9am to 1pm, with early drop-off from 8am, from Dh1,150 for a full week; from Dh650 for a three-day week, sibling discounts available, Dubai Autodrome, Dubai, 050 429 4860, email@example.com
Register your children ages 7-10 and 11-18 for the spring term of the Young Artist Programme at thejamjar. The workshops will focus on themes such as society in art, and will teach techniques such as poster-making, screen-printing, acrylic-painting, sculpture, illustration, stencil-art and photography, in a friendly, relaxed and fun environment that will shape kids’ views on art through conversations, analysis and practical experiments.
January 17 to February 24, 10am to noon and 12.30pm to 2.30pm on Saturdays; 4.30pm to 6.30pm on Wednesdays, from Dh1,600 including all materials, thejamjar, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz, Dubai, 04 341 7303, firstname.lastname@example.org
ZSC Kids Holiday Camp offers a full programme for the winter break. Each day starts with free play from 8am and then activities from 9am. These include football, tennis, basketball, painting, bowling, an obstacle course and group games. The weekly camp is also open on New Year’s Day.
Runs until January 11, 8am to 5.30pm, Dh1,000 per child per week; Dh3,400 for all four weeks, Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi, 02 403 4222, www.zsc.ae
Enjoy festive activities for the whole family at The Beach, opposite JBR, where you can find a skating rink and a children’s play area featuring holiday games, crafty card-making and gingerbread art. A themed parade and winter-wonderland characters will present street entertainment, and the skating rink offers fun for all ages.
Daily until December 25, 3pm to 11pm, free entry; skating rink is Dh15 for 20 minutes, The Beach, opposite JBR, Dubai, www.facebook.com/thebeachdubai