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Do-able Dubai—where to stay, eat, and what to do

Fred Maahs, Jr traveled to Dubai as a guest of Dubai Tourism in 2021, to review accessibility at various facilities for people with disabilities, known in Dubai as people of determination. He shared some recommendations with us.


The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina had a spacious room, making it easy to navigate my wheelchair through. The bed height was good at 23-24”so I had no issues transferring to it from my wheelchair. The bathroom was large, with a roll-in shower and huge soaking tub. Sink and vanity were accessible and there were grab bars in the shower and around the toilet. Sliding doors led to a 20-foot square veranda which was covered and ramped to the grass leading to a sidewalk. The beach was easy to get to. The Westin’s grounds are beautiful and accessible.  The property is massive and located right on an expansive beach, with lots of water sports. The many pools and shade trees helped us stay cool.  

The Jumeirah Hotel Complex sits directly on the Arabian Gulf. The complex is part of a group of luxury hotels owned by Dubai Holding, with its majority shares owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Ruler of the Emirate of Dubai, and the primary founder of Dubai Inc. These resorts are all luxurious yet each with its own style and vibe. For the most part, each resort included properly adapted and accessible rooms. Its famous five-star Burj Al Arab hotel is the place to go for ultimate luxury. The Jumeirah complex features a man-made waterway running through its properties and boats to take you between resorts. The boats might be difficult to navigate if you use a wheelchair or have mobility issues, however all walkways are wide and accessible.


The Fish Beach Taverna restaurant is on the beach beside the Westin, specializing in Greek and Turkish food from the Aegean, Black, and Marmara Seas. It’s beautiful open-air setting, shaded by palm trees, feels like an escape to a Greek isle. The main seating area is accessible, but it could be tricky to be seated at a table on the grassy area. Select fresh seafood from a display of prawns, lobster, fish, squid, and octopus. A must try Dubai restaurant.

The French Riviera restaurant is on the beach at The Jumeirah Al Qasar hotel, with incredible views of a large pool on one side and the beautiful Arabian Sea on the other. Spectacular.


Visit the gold and spice souk market in old Dubai. We navigated through the market easily although some shops had a single step, so if you use a wheelchair or have a mobility impairment you will need help. This place is full of artisans and others selling their produce, spices, and wares, but also has a high-end market that sells gold and jewelry. 

Al Shindagha Museum is in Old Dubai, next to Dubai Creek, and is very accessible. While not large, it is very modern in design and gives a thorough history of Dubai.  

The Dubai Frame is a unique building which looks like a giant picture frame—the largest one in the world at 493’ high and 305’ wide. It only takes 75 seconds to reach the top of the 48 story structure. The Frame is totally accessible, and its glass walls and glass floor offer great views. One side offers a peek into Dubai’s past—old buildings and the original seaport. The other side shows modern Dubai with its magnificent skyscrapers and glass buildings.

Dubai Miracle Garden is in the Dubailand district. The garden boasts the world’s largest display of more than 50 million flowers which grow, and are displayed, on figures such as an Emirates plane, Disney characters, hearts, and various other statuary. The Garden is ramped and accessible and there are spots to buy snacks or drinks.

Of note is that, in Dubai, people of determination don’t have to buy a ticket for museums or public structures and can two guests free of charge. It’s one of many efforts proving Dubai’s commitment to facilitate accessible tourism and build innovative solutions to enable all global citizens to travel without barriers.