This year’s edition of the Global village will showcase offerings from 78 countries, officials say. Image Credit: Arshad Ali/Gulf News

Dubai: The 23rd season of Global Village is set to open its doors to the public on October 30 under the theme ‘Explore, Experience, Enjoy. This Way!’

One of the most anticipated festivals of the year, it returns this season with 27 new pavilions representing 78 countries; it will feature exteriors reflecting landmarks from the world over.

The multicultural festival park and the region’s first family destination for culture, shopping and entertainment will feature a newly-expanded Carnaval funfair area during the 159-day season, which will run until April 6, 2019.

“This season we enhanced the entire park for greater thrills and a refreshed experience,” said Bader Anwahi, Global Village CEO. “We enter a world of exploration, filled with adventures and fun for the whole family as we host even more exciting events and huge international shows to entertain our guests.”

The festival promises a lively atmosphere enhanced by music, markets, street food and local handicrafts as well as vendors dressed in authentic costumes. Each pavilion showcases its country’s or region’s most beautiful monuments and landmarks with popular markets, authentic products, heritage corners and cultural performances.

Pavilions include UAE, KSA, India, Jordan, Pakistan, Europe, Americas, Bosnia & Balkans, Thailand, Bahrain, Lebanon, Palestine, Afghanistan, Syria, Russia, Japan, Far East, China, Africa, Egypt, Morocco, Turkey Iran, Yemen, and Kuwait.

Celebrating Emirati culture is always a priority at Global Village and this year it is done through the largest Emirati Cultural zone in the history of the park, which will include the UAE Pavilion, the Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation Pavilion and AlSanaa Pavilion, operated by the Ministry of Community Development. The new pavilion is estimated to be visited by millions to learn about local culture and folklore.

The “Live our Heritage” festival will also feature the best of Emirati culture and craftsmanship, and will be hosted by Dubai Culture at Global Village in the heart of the Cultural Square.

New experiences for youngsters

Kids and young guests will find plenty of new, fun-filled attractions and activities on offer this season, with a dedicated interactive theatre with a variety of events and workshops.

“Since the day we wrapped up Season 22, we have been working tirelessly to bring a higher level of fun and excitement to the park this year, applying the best international practices and aiming towards the highest levels of safety and comfort to our guests,” said Ali Alsuwaidi, Chief Operating Officer at Global Village.

The ‘Carnaval’

Global Village’s popular funfair, Carnaval, is back with six new rides, 100 video games and an enlarged gaming area that includes new interactive games. More than 31 rides for children and families and more than 30 games of skill will be available at the fair for a fun-filled evening for all the family. This year, “Wheel of the World” has been redesigned and now features an enormous 50-metre LED screen on the 58-metre frame to showcase displays including live scenes, shows and views of Dubai.

Games and rides inside Carnaval are named after the world’s most famous cities. They are divided into three categories based on experiences: children’s rides, family rides and thrill riders for the adrenalin seekers.

International cuisines

This season hosts more than 150 food and beverage outlets. Flavors from all corners of the globe can be sampled at the 23 restaurants and cafes. Cuisines from Mexico, the Gulf and Cuba are just some of the things you can sample here. New offerings this season include food from Uzbekistan, Kuwait, Italy, Afghanistan and China as well as Emirati cuisine. Guests can also sample the world’s best street food with kiosks that offer a wide range of authentic snacks, sweets and beverages. [In Dubai, this may be the only place to try some of these treats.] One of biggest surprises for diners this season is the floating market on the lake, the first multi-cultural floating market in the world, bringing popular cuisines from more than 38 outlets on boats, bank-side kiosks, and Tuk-Tuks which are decorated to reflect their country of origin.

Entertainment, live shows and fun

The shows will feature more than 100 professional performers — who passed a screening process that saw 3,000 people audition from around the world, including the UAE, London, Ukraine, Colombia, India and China.

Guests can watch concerts on the main stage every Friday night at 9pm, free of charge. Leading performers from around the world and the international entertainment industry will be taking to the stage throughout the season with a series of 23 concerts scheduled including live gigs for Jason Derulo, Elissa, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Neha Kakkar, Mohammed Munir, Rabeh Saqer and more.

The Superloop Stunt Show, produced by the expert team at Global Village, is one of the most sought-after highlights of the season. it is the first full-scale vehicle stunt show featuring breathtaking performances by more than 30 professional stunt men and women. The team is led by Terry Grant, who holds more than 25 records in the Guinness Book of Records. They are supported by a group of technicians and safety officials who use world-class technology to enhance especially formulated special-effects.

The popular circus show with daring performers is back after a few years with shows to thrill audiences with acrobatics and circus tricks.

Improvements

Global Village achieved an impressive 9/10 score on the Happiness Index last season and has responded to guest reviews by making improvements that reflect its cultural and family-orientated ethos. The multi-purpose walkway has been enhanced with new attractive green spaces and beautiful fountains with additional seating areas that allow families to enjoy the panoramic views. The corridors around the park have also been widened and several service buildings, headed by prayer rooms, have been developed and equipped to accommodate millions of guests.

New bridges have been built over the lakes that make it easier for people of determination to cross. They also bear distinctive designs that reflect the most famous bridges from around the world. The lake has dancing fountains with shows that display fire and water together and has the largest underwater screen to be featured at Global Village.

The details

What: 23 season of Global Village

When: October 30 to April 6, 2019

Timings: 4pm-midnight Saturday to Wednesday; 4pm-1am on Thursday, Friday and public holidays.

Cost: Dh15

Location: Shaikh Mohamad Bin Zayed Road

How to get there: Four RTA bus routes in Dubai to Global Village in cooperation with the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) that will come from Al Rashidiya Metro Station, Al Ittihad Station, Al Ghubaiba Station and Mall of the Emirates Metro Station.

Global Village is dedicated to families and women only on Mondays.