Can I wear a bikini in Dubai?

If this is your first time planning a holiday in Dubai, you are probably asking a question that most women, including me, were asking: “Can I wear a bikini in Dubai?” The answer is simple. Yes, you can wear a bikini or a one-piece swimsuit in Dubai. However, there are certain places where you can wear a bikini and some rules that should be followed. So let me explain where you can and can’t wear bikinis in Dubai and some other information concerning clothes to wear in Dubai.

Dubai is the most liberal and tolerant Emirate of all seven Emirates. About 88% of expats live in the UAE, most of whom are in Dubai. Dubai also attracts millions of tourists every year. If the bikini is not allowed, I think not many tourists would be interested to come here. With this said, the rules in other Emirates are different than in Dubai. In this article, I will talk only about Dubai.

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Women in bikini on the beach

At the beach, pool, and waterparks

It is perfectly fine to wear your bikini at the beach, hotel pool, or waterparks. There are so many types and styles of bikinis and one-piece swimsuits you can choose from. I would avoid the micro bikini and thong bikini if you don’t want to get unwanted attention from locals or migrants at public beaches. Other than that, any style of bikinis is allowed at the beaches and hotel pools.

In the waterparks also bikini is allowed, but don’t forget that the slides can give you high speed and a strong jump into the water, so choose swimwear that will stay in place.

When you are staying at the hotel pool, don’t forget to put your clothes on when going back to your room, restaurant, bar, or reception. It is not allowed to wear swimwear inside the hotels.

This same applies when you are going to the beach or leaving the beach. You are used to going shopping from the beach in your bikini top and shorts back home, however, it is not allowed in Dubai. In any public place, like streets, shopping malls, restaurants, or bars, you need to respect the culture and dress appropriately. You will even see signs on the doors of shopping malls that bikinis, short shorts, and skirts are not allowed.

You can also wear a bikini at pool parties. There are several hotels that organize pool parties with music and drinks as they have a license to sell alcohol. During these parties, you are allowed to wear a bikini and have fun in the pool.

Sunbathing topless is strictly prohibited in Dubai. Please don’t try it as you may be either getting a fine or even being taken to prison.

 

Cavalli Club, Dubai

In the nightclubs

Are you wondering what to wear in nightclubs? I also wanted to know the information before visiting, therefore I believe you will find this information handy. There are dress codes in Dubai’s nightclubs, meaning you should dress smart casual. No trainers, jeans and beach wear. If you wear jeans, they should not be torn, and you should combine them with a smart top and high heels.

Women usually wear very sexy dresses or skirts with tops and high heels. When I first time entered the club in Dubai, I was wearing a smart dress, but longer under my knees and I felt I was the only woman wearing a long dress. Most of the women wear the shortest and sexiest dresses possible. So don’t be afraid here. For your imagination, you can see some pictures from the Armani club here.

 

In the streets, malls, or souks

In the streets and malls, you can wear your ordinary clothes, however, in the malls, there are signs not to wear very short shorts or skirts. And honestly, I would not wear them for one reason. It is freezing cold inside any buildings in Dubai. Therefore anytime I visit any building in Dubai, I take a long skirt or trousers and even pack a sweater or jumper with me in the bag.

When you visit any of the souks, it is better to dress a little bit more conservatively as they are in the old part of Dubai out of the touristic beachy area. Even though Dubai is very open, it is still a Muslim country and it is good to respect it in certain places. So wear something that covers your knees and shoulders. The dress code is similar to what you would wear in the streets and souks in Egypt for example. For more details, you can check my article on what to wear in Egypt here.

 

Desert Safari, Dubai

On desert safari

On desert safari, you should dress according to the weather. If the weather is too hot, wear light, and not tight clothing. Chose materials like cotton or linen. Don’t wear very short shorts or skirts, but shorts close to your knees are fine, and also longer skirts or dresses. During the winter months in the evening, you will need a jumper. When it comes to shoes you can wear flip-flops or trainers if you are going to do sandboarding or quad biking.

 

Visiting Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi

Visiting Mosques

Mosques in Dubai and UAE are usually not open for non-muslim, however, you can visit Jumeirah Mosque or the most beautiful Mosque I have ever seen, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. And I highly recommend it. If you are staying in Dubai, you can book this tour with GetYourGuide company which will take you from Dubai to Abu Dhabi and back. When visiting a mosque, you need to wear a long skirt or dress up to your ankles and long sleeves top. Also, you have to cover your head with a scarf.

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is lending an abaya and scarf to every woman who is visiting the mosque. Also, men should wear long trousers and a top covering their shoulders.

 

Conclusion

As you can see, Dubai is a very open and tolerant place for tourists. Even though it is a Muslim country, most of the people living there are international who can dress freely what they like. Certain rules, however, need to be followed. When it comes to the holy month of Ramadan, you should dress more reservedly in the streets, malls, and other public places. If you are not happy with that, then it is better not to come during Ramadan. Other than that, feel free to wear a bikini at the beach, pool, waterparks, or pool parties. Have fun and enjoy your holiday. In case of any questions, do not hesitate to contact me.

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