It’s a whole new year! Which means you should be making the most of it with brunches, markets and more. Your New Year’s resolutions can be postponed for another week, right? There’s too much good food to be had.

So here are our top picks for what to do this weekend across the country…

The World Has Really Fallen Under The Spell Of This Dubai-Based Chef
Our 16 Favourite Red Carpet Moments From Middle Eastern Designers
A Proud Sheikh Mohammed Gives A Shout Out To His Daughter’s Volunteer Work

Thursday 12

Go to the new Etihad Museum

etihad museum

This new cultural and educational hotspot opened up on January 7, and if you haven’t yet checked it out, you should. Inside you’ll be able to learn about the the founding of the UAE – from the country’s key historical events to the formation of the union.

1 Jumeirah Road, Dubai. Daily 10am to 8pm. Dhs25 for adults, Dhs10 for students age five to 24. Tel: (04) 5155771.

Head for a night-time brunch

dubai weekend

We know. Brunch stands for breakfast and lunch – it shouldn’t be at night time. That’s not to say it isn’t a good idea, though. The Hilton Abu Dhabi by the Corniche will be hosting their first ever after-dark brunch at their Escape restaurant. Food-wise there’ll be a BBQ, with a live DJ to keep things moving.

Corniche Road W, Al Khubeirah, Abu Dhabi. Dhs120 with soft beverages, Dhs220 with house beverages. 8pm to 1am. Tel: (02) 6811900. 

Friday 13

Not full yet? Try this beach club brunch

dubai weekend

Everyone loves a beach club. Everyone loves lunch. Why not have both? It’s the first month of the New Year, you deserve to kick back. Nikki Beach’s menu offers up all kinds of fancy-fresh seafood and healthy options, from lobster rolls to caviar.

Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai, Pearl Jumeirah, Dubai. Lunch from 11am to 4pm. Tel: (04) 3766000. 

Check out the Cairo Sound Music Festival

dubai weekend

Love a bit of traditional Egyptian music? Or if you don’t know if you do, this is the perfect time to find out. This festival will see the country’s heritage tunes fused with the sounds of world music – featuring popular Egyptian performers playing everything from jazz and reggae to rock and house music. Expect performances from artists including Cairokee, Sharmoofers, Massar Egbari, Khaled Hussein and Moustafa Ghazal.

Dubai Media City Amphitheatre, Media City, Dubai. Tickets from Dhs95. Doors open at 4pm. 

Saturday 14

Hit the horse races

dubai weekend

Everybody enjoys an excuse to get dressed up, and the Meydan horse races this weekend give you a reason to do just that. General admission is free, but there are plenty of VIP packages available if you wish to do the races in style.

Meydan Racecourse, Al Meydan Road, Nad Al Sheba, Dubai.

Check out some handmade goods

dubai weekend

If you’re anti chain fashion stores, then perhaps the Handmade Dubai market at Reform Social & Grill is up your alley. Artists and pop-ups will be there with a number of eclectic, unique items ranging from art to jewellery, clothes, crafts and more, so you’re bound to find something out of the ordinary. There’ll also be food and drink on offer from Reform if you get peckish.

Reform Social & Grill, The Lakes, Emirates Hills, Dubai. 12pm to 6pm. Free entry. Tel: (04) 4542638. 

Grab a gluten-free meal

ronda locatelli

If you’re sticking to your health-conscious New Year’s resolutions, then Ronda Locatelli’s new gluten-free menu could be for you. There’s pizza and pasta, as well as Italian desserts, so what it’s lacking in gluten, it makes up for in taste. Plus, a visit to the world’s most Instagrammed hotel, Atlantis The Palm, is always a good idea.

Atlantis The Palm, Dubai. Daily 12pm to 5pm, 6pm to 10.30pm. Tel: (04) 4262626. 

– For more about Dubai’s lifestyle, news and fashion scene straight to your newsfeed, follow us on Facebook