Want to feel the sand between your toes? If you’re not staying at one of the city's beach resorts, or simply fancy a change of scenery, there are plenty of places to head to. The emirate's newest stretch of beach, La Mer in Jumeirah 1, features more than 130 shops, cafés and restaurants flanked by 2.5 kilometres of sandy coastline. Paddle by the shore before grabbing a bite at one of the numerous licensed eateries.
Kite Beach at the Umm Suqeim end of Jumeirah Beach Road is a firm favourite among the kite-surfing fraternity (lessons available), with a community vibe centred around a clutch of on-trend cafés and family-friendly facilities, such as XDubai Skatepark and XPark Jr. adventure park.
For a dash of glamour, The Beach at JBR (+971 4 317 3999) is sure to appeal, with its meandering walkway bisecting a profusion of cafés, restaurants and shops and a stretch of sand with a premium view of the under-construction Ain Dubai observation wheel, located on the Bluewaters Island development.
If you're more of a beach club devotee, there are plenty of exclusive spots to chill at, including Cove Beach on Bluewaters Island (+971 4 379 1194). Laze on an oversized daybed by the shore or the pool, grab a bite at the restaurant or order a sharing dish from the Sea Lounge for the perfect beach day. From Dhs100 to Dhs700, depending on bed type and the day of the week. Pool and beach open daily from 10am-sunset.
Unwind by the outsized infinity pool and lap up the lush view of Dubai Marina's skyscraper studded skyline at DRIFT Beach Dubai (+971 4 315 2200), One&Only Royal Mirage, Dubai. Take your pick from the drinks menu curated by award-winning mixologist Eric Ballard and indulge in classic Provençal cuisine at the restaurant. The pool and beach are open daily from 10.30am-8pm – plenty of time to squeeze in some sundowners.
In the shadow of Burj al Arab at Jumeirah Al Naseem, Summersalt (+971 4 432 3232) is a prime, sophisticated and stylish spot to pull up a sunbed. The music here is kept on the quiet side in aid of the pervading chilled out vibe - and it's all the better for it. The beach club is open from 9am-9pm.