Close this search box.
Close this search box.

UAE National Day – December 2

Every year on December 2 there is a big party in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates. The date of December 2 is not just a chosen date, on December 2, 1972 the United Arab Emirates officially became independent from the United Kingdom. To this day, December 2 is a national holiday and the people of the emirate celebrate their country’s birthday in a grand way. Almost everyone get the day off on this national holiday so that they can enjoy the many events that are organized on this day.

UAE National Day festivities

Many festivities are held during National Day and the days before National Day, including a large fireworks show, various parades in Downtown Dubai, concerts and promotions in the large shopping malls. The exact dates on which the festivities take place may vary from year to year. Some of the festivities, such as the fireworks show, often do not take place on December 2, but one day or a few days before the national holiday.
For the most current events around UAE National Day, you can check Time Out Dubai and a href=”” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow noreferrer noopener”>What’s On Dubai.

Many buildings and houses in the city are decorated with flags and the national colours, children are painted in red, green and white. You also see a striking number of decorated cars driving around in the colours of the national flag. The city’s famous attractions, including the Burj Khalifa and the Burj al Arab, can also be admired in the national colours on this special day thanks to many lasers and lamps.

Firework Burj al Arab in Dubai

Fireworks show National Day

A few major firework shows take place in Dubai around the UAE National Day. Below we have listed all the fireworks shows this year for you. Please note, the locations may have changed, so check Dubai on Google for the most current dates and times.

The Beach / JBR
The firework show will take place at The Beach in Dubai Marina / JBR The Walk. Admission is free and the shows start around 9 am. Due to the crowds, it is advisable to travel to The Beach well in advance so that you have a good spot on the beach or the boulevard.

Al Seef
This year there will also be a firework show in Al Seef, one of Dubai’s shopping areas on the Dubai Creek. Al Seef is in the old part of Dubai, right next to the Dubai Creek.

Global Village
Traditionally, there will also be a firework show in Global Village this year. More information about Global Village can be found on our Global Village page.

Public holiday in Dubai

Since UAE National Day is an official holiday, almost institutions, government buildings and businesses are closed. The shopping centers, cafes and restaurants are usually open extra long on National Day. In the large shopping centers such as the Dubai Mall and the Mall of the Emirates there are extra activities and promotions around December 2. You can often win great prizes and see concerts and shows.

In the public sector, extra holidays are often added before or after UAE National Day so that the population can take a short holiday. For example, if UAE National Day falls on a Tuesday, Sunday and Monday are added as days off to the national holiday so that a long weekend can be celebrated.

Free parking & adjusted public transport times

Trough the celebration of UAE National Day, you can park for free anywhere in Dubai, often starting the day before the national holiday. So you don’t have to throw money into the meters at places where there is normally paid parking. Pay close attention to the dates on which you can park for free, because the next day the normal rules apply again and you must take the payment meters into account.

There are also adjusted times for public transport on December 2. For example, the Dubai Tram will run from 6:30 am to 1:30 am on that day and the metro lines will start on the national holiday at 6:30 am (green line) and 5:50 am (red line). On December 1, the metros run until 12 a.m. and on National Day itself they run until 1 a.m. Check the information boards in the metro stations for the most up-to-date travel information


Book your Dubai excursions and tickets online

Looking for a hotel in Dubai?

Powered by

It is not possible to copy the text on this page