White lions from South Africa at Dubai Safari Park, which opened its doors to the media and guests in a soft launch. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai: The UAE’s most awaited wildlife project, Dubai Safari Park, has opened its doors to the media and invited guests in a soft launch on Tuesday morning. 

Dubai Safari is one of Dubai's premier Eco-friendly projects to be a landmark entertainment destination in the region.

Keeping its tradition of opening mega projects on special dates, Dubai chose to open the doors of its latest tourist destination on 12/12/17. 

Information you need to know:


Dubai Safari Park is located in Al Warqa 5 on Aweer Road in an area of 119. hectares 

Ticket Costs:

Dubai Safari Park entrance fee 
[Asian, African and Arabian Villages]
Dh20 for children and Dh50 for adults
Safari Village entrance fee
Dh20 for children and Dh50 for adults
All access entrance fees
Dh30 for children and Dh85 for adults

Free entrance 
For children below three, adults above 60 and people of determination


Dubai Safari holds many distinctions:

  • UAE’s only drive-through hippo and tiger exhibit 
  • World’s first drive-through crocodile exhibit
  • UAE’s largest walkthrough aviary 
  • First zoo or safari park in the UAE to offer a zoo-keeping course


The first phase of the Dh1 billion project sprawling over 119 hectares in Al Warqa-5 is now complete. It includes Asian, African, and Arabian villages and an open Safari Village that offers a guided safari drive. A Wadi Area and Kids Farm in addition to two theaters are also part of the project.

Paw prints of big cats form the logo of the project that is home to the nation’s first open Safari, where visitors will travel in environmentally-friendly electric vehicles to see animals roaming around in the wild.

Who attended?

Hussain Nasser Lootah, director general and other officials of Dubai Municipality and Dubai Safari joined the media team with his grandchildren for a preview of the facility.


Instagram star Maj, ( Mohammed bin Ahmed Jaber Al Harbi), the young best friend of Crown Prince Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and the grand daughter of Lootah became the star attractions at the opening ceremony. Maj gave literally a roaring welcome to the invitees.

The grand opening for the public will be in January, said Hussain Nasser Lootah, director general of Dubai Municipality. He said an announcement on the exact opening date for the public will be announced at the end of the month.

Let the tour begin:

Watch as we take our first steps into the Dubai Safari:

The main entrance of the park is home to a magnificent glass roof.

The main building also houses a souvenir shop with animal memorabilia. 

Check out the full gallery of the Dubai Safari here:

Electric vehicles will transport visitors inside Dubai Safari. Watch this video to find out the ticket prices for each category.

As the media tour began in a toy train, guide  Ronica Bope from Zimbabwe explained the details of the animals and their enclosures to members of the media.

With more than 2,500 animals representing 250 exciting species, Dubai Safari is home to the most diverse array and the largest number of wildlife species in the UAE.

If you're worried about the animals in the hot summer months, she said that the water bodies are kept chilled, in order to keep animals cool all the time. There are also air conditioned artificial rocks, misting fans and chilled water. Pools, muddy ponds and other waterbodies will also provide a cool natural habitat for animals.

Here is a breakdown of the Dubai Safari:

The Safari Village

This area of the park is where you will set off in an air conditioned minibus. It is a huge 22ha space, where animals are distributed based on the geographical land form in the Arabian region with 3 different environments, starting with  desert land, followed by rocky mountains, moving onto meadows land.

In this village, visitors can also experience an open theatre, which offers special birds and reptile’s shows, besides feeding the giraffes and elephants, and watching hippos from under water.

Watch a Pygmy hippo swim underwater at the Dubai Safari Park. gulfnews.com/1.2139194

A hippo submerged in water is the first animal we saw in the Safari drive

The open plaza of the Safari Village offers restaurants and cafes and a Safari Theatre, where guests can learn about the animals.

You will always be accompanied by a professional guide, as you drive through the UAE’s space of the largest and most diverse collection of animals.

We then saw a beautiful herd of giraffes 

The Dubai Safari is home to around 70 baboons.

It is also the new home of four Siberian tigers. There are three orange ones and one white Siberian tiger, which the guide says are very shy.

Watch them roam around here:

See lions, ostriches and Nile crocodiles at the Dubai Safari Park

Check this out!

Compare your weight to that of an elephant's at the Dubai Safari.

Anna Mupindura, Safari guide explains:

The African Village

This is the next stop on the Dubai Safari tour is Africa! The African village is spread over an area of 12 Ha, featuring African patterns on all buildings.

Here you can see us going through the African Village at the Dubai Safari Park.

The village split up into two main areas; the African Savannah, and African Rainforest, where animals and plants are divided by regions.

The village will also be home to different African performances that would reflect the African culture, increasing entertainment level for visitors.

Watch the white lions running around at Dubai Safari Park!

This zone will be home to large and small animals including bull elephants and meercats. There is also a walk-in aviary and reptile house. Don t miss the restaurant with views of the antelopes.

Here we are watching the sweet tiny Pygmy Hippo. The water enclosure allows visitors to see the hippo swimming under water. But right now he is busy eating some fruit.

In this village, 20 different animals are being exhibited, along with huge Reptiles and Amphibians building that hosts a huge number of reptiles that live in the African continent

The Waadi Area

This is a one kilometre stretch of waterside parkland, that’s perfect for relaxing on the grass, while enjoying a picnic. This is a dedicated play area for families. 

However, the biggest attraction expected to be at the safari—a group of elephants –has not yet arrived. 

The Arabian Safari Village

This is the 8 ha large Arabian Village. We were treated to beautiful views of ostriches, nilgais and Arabian Oryx. Right opposite to the Arabian Oryx were Arabian wolves but kept far away with separate barriers to prevent their entry to the other side. Underneath the winter clouds, a few Springboks fluttered around. 

Kids Farm 

An additional attraction at the Safari Village is the Kids farm area, which is one of the main educational and entertaining attractions in the park. It includes sheds and stables for different farm animals such as horses, sheep, goats, chickens, cows and many more. This is the area, where families can enjoy special activities with their children of all ages, such as feeding the animals, pony riding, milking cows, collecting eggs.

The park replaced the 50-year-old Dubai Zoo in Jumeirah which housed around 1000 animals, birds and reptiles. They were shifted to Dubai Safari last month. 

Rising from a disused landfill for construction waste, Dubai Safari will change not only the landscape of Dubai, but also the perceptions about animal welfare and care in the country.

Officials said utmost care is being given to the animals, right from their selection itself. Tests are done to ensure their fitness and experienced trainers and keepers from different parts of the world have been hired to take care of them. 


A post shared by Dubai Safari (@dubaisafariofficial) on

A veterinary hospital, which will be extended with a research centre having a state-of-the art lab, is part of the project to offer treatment and care for the animals.

9 lions, 4 bears move in at Dubai Safari Park
Work on Open Safari Village in Dubai Safari Park complete
It's more than twice the size of Vatican City
You can visit Dubai Safari after summer

Officials said Dubai Safari will host a breeding programme at the conservation centre that aims to release animals into the wild each year.

The park is committed to contributing to global efforts to protect endangered species and aspires to deepen awareness of wildlife behaviour.

Featuring many entertainment programmes, games and educative activities, it is set to be a landmark tourist destination in the emirate.

Depending on solar power for its energy needs, it is one of the outstanding eco-friendly projects implemented by Dubai Municipality.

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