From the tallest skyscraper in the world to old, historical neighborhoods – Dubai is a colorful mix of tradition and modernity.
Usually, Dubai is associated with wealthy people, luxury boutiques, extremely expensive cars and everything else that’s important in the world of the super-rich.
However, as soon as you leave downtown Dubai and the imposing skyscrapers behind, you will discover other facets of the city. You will quickly notice, there are numerous neighborhoods that are completely different from downtown.
One of them is the hip beachfront neighborhood of La Mer. Of all the places my boyfriend and I visited during our stay, La Mer Dubai was my absolute favorite.
For me, the entire area seemed like a huge open-air amusement park. Seriously, I felt like there was a surprise around every corner, waiting for me to be discovered.
But I don’t want to spoil too much at the beginning already.
Why don’t you find out for yourself what cool stuff there is?
Are you ready? Then come and join me in exploring La Mer Dubai!
(This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a certain percentage of a sale if you purchase after clicking.)
Where to Find La Mer Dubai
First of all, let me tell you where to find this neighborhood and the best way to come here.
Basically, La Mer is nestled right between Jumeirah Bay and Pearl Jumeirah in a district called “Jumeirah 1”.
Even though the distance is only about six kilometers from downtown Dubai, the journey to La Mer can take between 15 to 45 minutes depending on the type of transportation and the traffic situation.
If you decide to travel by public transport, you can first take the “Red Line” metro to Business Bay or Dubai Internet City Metro Station and then hop on bus number 9 or 88 which both directly go to La Mer.
However, the most convenient and also most flexible way to travel is by car or taxi. Taxis in Dubai are really cheap compared to many places in Europe and the US.
We almost only traveled by taxi in the UAE, even from Abu Dhabi to Dubai we took a taxi!
So no matter what transportation you choose, La Mer is easily accessible by both car and public transport.
Background Information About La Mer Dubai
Since La Mer Dubai looks so different than the rest of the city, it’s interesting to get a bit of background information about this beachfront neighborhood.
La Mer was first opened in 2017 as a project by Meraas, a Dubai-based real estate developer.
The idea behind the project was to create an inspiring environment and set a new benchmark for beachfront developments.
The main inspiration for its unusual architecture and public places was to implement the idea of how the sea embraces various materials such as driftwood, barrels, rusted metal and others and eventually washes them ashore.
Therefore, many of these items were used to create this special place.
What to See & Do at La Mer Dubai
There’s definitely a lot to see and do at La Mer Dubai, keeping you entertained for hours. So plan enough time, even an entire day if you want, to fully enjoy this awesome neighborhood!
J1 Beach – Former La Mer Beach
INFO: La Mer Beach is currently closed due to redevelopment into J1 Beach, an upmarket beachfront location with restaurants and beach clubs. J1Beach will be opened by the end of this year.
Further information will follow.
Laguna Water Park
INFO: During the redevelopment project, Laguna Water Park is closed but will be opened again at the end of this year as well.
Something that guarantees a lot of fun and should therefore not be missed is Laguna Water Park.
The water park is basically divided into four zones: one zone for sliding with five slides, a zone for surfing, a zone for splashing and a relaxing zone.
In the sliding zone, you’ll find five different slides, each of them guaranteeing incredible fun!
For example, try the “The Manta” water slide where you experience zero gravity for a few seconds or “The Free Fall” for a heart-stopping free fall journey.
The surf zone features a surf wave machine offering a 180-degree ride experience, perfect for all adventure seekers.
Whereas the splash zone with its splash pools and other interactive elements serves enough fun for toddlers and younger children.
Last but not least, head over to the relax zone to chill in the infinity edge pool or float down on “Laguna’s Lazy River”.
The park also comes with a couple of restaurants and shops.
Lovely Restaurants & Cafés
Something you find in abundance in La Mer Dubai is cafés and restaurants.
Whether you explore La Mer North, La Mer Central or La Mer South (the part which is currently closed) – there are plenty of spots to choose from.
Especially in La Mer Central, almost every building contains either a small restaurant, a bakery, an ice cream shop, a café or something similar where you can eat or drink.
From restaurants offering typical Middle Eastern cuisine to American fast-food chains, science-lab dessert bars or cafés serving premium coffee and healthy juices – there’s something for every taste!
If you’re curious about what culinary delights await you, you can have a look at the list featuring all restaurants and coffee shops.
So make sure you visit La Mer with an empty stomach so that you can indulge in all the delicious goods you find here!
Fancy Street Art
Probably my favorite activity to do in La Mer was discovering all the fancy street art that can be found everywhere in the central district.
Colorful and creative murals are not only on the building’s walls but along sidewalks, across buildings and even on pavements.
Completely abstract drawings, different patterns, detailed portraits or colorful angel wings are just a few of the many awesome art pieces to admire.
If you are a lover of street art such as I am and want to click some cool photos for Instagram, La Mer is definitely the right place for you!
Coolest Toilet Ever!
Last but not least – and this might sound a bit weird – make sure to plan a short stop at the public toilet.
Yes, you heard right! Even if you don’t feel the need to use it, the design of the washrooms and the toilet cabins are pretty unique and worth seeing!
Right after entering the ladies’ toilet, for example, there’s a big painting of the Mona Lisa looking straight at you with her iconic subtle smile.
Instead of washbasins, they use old metal barrels and the taps are made of thin tubes. Basically, the same materials added to the outside of the buildings, you find inside as well!
Another special feature of the “wash barrels” is a painted arrow on each of them that points right at the foot pedal that activates the water tap.
I had completely missed this at the beginning and wondered how the hell I could get water out of the tap. Well, it took me quite some minutes until I found the solution… 😀
But you see, even the toilets at La Mer Dubai aren’t boring at all!
Best Time to Visit La Mer Dubai
If you don’t want to melt away while strolling around La Mer, make sure to go there in winter. Even then it’s still hot, but nothing compared to summer when the temperatures often climb to over 40 degrees Celsius!
No matter which season, the shops are open from Sunday to Thursday 10:00 am to 10:00 pm and Friday to Saturday 10:00 am to 11:00 pm.
Restaurants and cafés are open from Sunday to Thursday 10:00 am to 11:00 pm and Friday to Saturday 10:00 am to 12:00 midnight.
Have fun exploring Dubai’s hippest neighborhood!
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Do you want to travel like me?
Here are some of my favorite travel tips and resources:
Flights: I prefer using CheapOair or Skyscanner to book flights. The destination everywhere feature is perfect for finding some cheap deals!
Accommodation: Booking.com is my favorite site to find some great hotel deals. I do love staying at a local place as well, thus I book an Airbnb every now and then.
Travel Insurance: There are many reasons why travel insurance is important and I never travel without having one. I use the simple and flexible one from World Nomads to be protected against unforeseen events.
Tours: I love taking tours to explore destinations like a local. My favorite website to book them in advance is GetYourGuide.
Camera Gear: I use a Nikon D5300 camera with an 18-105 mm and a 10-20 mm wide-angle lens to take my photos.