What's on in Dubai this October - Diwali Festival, Toni Braxton and a bit of Halloween action

As October signals the midst of the fall season, temperatures in Dubai are simmering down to the mid-thirties to allow for plenty of outdoor events, festivals and performances, especially those in the evening when temperatures are even cooler. This is why this October you’ll find plenty of open-air activities to check out, from delicious street food, to music festivals on the park and rocking concerts on stadiums. Read on to see my top picks on all that awaits you in Dubai this month.

What's on in Dubai this October - Diwali Festival, Toni Braxton and a bit of Halloween action

Dubai is looking more desirable by the day as in Europe the autumn turns leaves brown and in the emirate, it brings temperatures down. With the balmiest weather yet to come, Dubai is gearing up to the cool (never cold) winter season by launching outdoor music and food festivals as well as street parties like Diwali, to mark the brightest month in the India calendar. There’s also top concerts, top comedy acts, top musicals, top food and top children’s entertainment to round it all off. Want to see what you could be enjoying in Dubai this October? Scroll down and prepare to get inspired.

Top picks

Jumeirah Restaurant Week (5th to 13th October)

Celebrating food for the sixth consecutive year, the Jumeirah district in Dubai is offering diners with eight days of amazing food experiences across some of its top dining venues. With over 40 restaurants taking part this year, no one will be short of options when those hunger pangs strike. Names include the sumptuous Al Mahara, Tortuga, Pierchic and Nathan Outlaw with three-course set menus oscillating between 95 AED to 350 AED per person (£20 to £72 approximately). Sample gourmet dishes in style and at a fraction of the cost, and, if you don’t fancy a sit-down meal there will also be pop-up food venues such as the Madinat Jumeirah’s Big Bite Out, giving you the chance to sample dishes from a variety of Jumeirah’s restaurants in one single place. Yum!

Jersey Boys at the Dubai Opera (11th to 14th October)

An internationally-acclaimed musical that has toured the world (and won 57 awards in the process) arrives in Dubai this month to treat audiences to this 60s inspired story where four friends from New Jersey shot to fame when they formed a music band, creating hits now loved the world over, such as "December 1963", "Can´t take my eyes off you", "Sherry", "Big girls don´t cry", "Bye, bye baby" and "Walk like a man". Tickets start from 250 AED and can be bought directly from the Dubai Opera website. Available time slots for show are 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.

The Ripe Market returns to Al Barsha Pond (14th October – 14th April 2018)

Continuing on the topic of food, glorious bites arrive in Dubai in the form of The Ripe Market, which returns to the Al Barsha Pond for yet another edition of gourmet delights, street food style. The cooler autumnal season official kicks off outdoor events of this kind and as such this delicious food market will open every Saturday in October and the following months until mid-Spring in April when temperatures start rising again. It’s a great day out tasting local flavours, shopping organic produce and supporting local artisans with the purchase of handmade handicrafts. There’ll also be live music, petting zoos and a more entertainment options to create a family weekend winddown session. After sunset it transforms into The Night Market, with kids’ activities under the stars and movie screenings.

Diwali Festival in Dubai (18th to 22nd October)

The colourful and vibrant Hindu Festival of Lights makes it to Dubai in full flair with a five-day calendar of events packed full to the brim. India´s biggest festival will be celebrated with a big bang in Dubai with gorgeous Indian street food, candles and amazing fireworks displays. As part of the celebrations, events are wide-ranging and include everything from public concerts and music performances from the most international Indian singers and musicians to fashion catwalks where models strut the latest Indian tendencies. There´ll also be photography tours to capture the festivities (Diwali Unseen Trails Tour) as well as an MTV Unplugged performance from Ayushman Khurana and Ali Zafar at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium on 27th October at 8 p.m.

If all that wasn´t enough there´ll be an amazing Diwali party at Dubai Parks and Resorts and a Diwali Shopping Fiesta. Oh, and one of Bollywood´s brightest shining stars, Malik, will perform at the Desi Fiesta on 27th October in the Media City Amphitheatre from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. A bigger line-up of Indian star performers will be announced soon, so keep checking the official website at

Toni Braxton Live in Dubai (19th October)

The U.S. queen of 90s ballad hits and chart toppers will stop at Dubai this October as part of her “The Hits Tour”. Taking the audience back in time, she will perform some of her most well-remembered and loved songs, like "Unbreak My Heart", "Breathe Again" and "Another Sad Love Song". It´s a one-of-a-kind chance to delight in her powerful vocals and spend a romantic night full of soulful tunes.

The five Billboard Music Awards winner, seven American Music Awards winner and seven Grammys winner will offer a one-night-only performance on 19th October at the Dubai Duty Free Stadium with tickets ranging between 255 AED (around £53) and 365 AED (around £75). Concert starts at 9 p.m. and doors open at 7 p.m.

Music Festivals

Jazz Gardens – The Series (20th October)

One of the most amazing and completely FREE acts to attend in Dubai will launch this October with the first in a series of monthly performances that will end in April. Founded in 2008 as part of the Dubai Jazz Festival, the Jazz Garden festival unites blues and jazz artists from the world over to put on a soulful show. It´s now back in Dubai for a memorable night of jamming sessions at the Habtoor Grand Resort with a line-up of jazz artists that is still to be announced. Entry is free but interested jazz lovers need to register online at the event´s website ( for tickets. They can also pre-book picnic tables via their online platform for an added fee.
Live on the Lake (20th and 26th October)

The biggest retro concert to ever land in Dubai will be taking over The Irish Village and Jumeirah Creekside Hotel to host the first ever edition of Live on The Lake with chart-topping 80s and 90s artists performing life. The lake at The Irish Village will be transformed into a huge dance floor for the event, which guests will be able to enjoy from the lawn and terrace of the Jumeirah Creekside Hotel.

The line-up on 20th October “Remix 92 event” includes the following acts: Five (Everybody Get Up), Sonique (It feels so Good), Boyzlife (No Matter What), Dr. Alban (It’s My Life), Snap! (Rhythm is a Dancer), Rozalla (Everybody’s Free), Robin S (Show Me Love), C+C Music Factory (Gonna Make You Sweat) and N-Trance (Set You Free). To top it all off DJs like Tim Cheddar will be spinning strictly 90s hits only.

The second event on 26th October, will be all about the 80s with a bit of punk-rock, a pinch of dance-pop and an added dose of reggae with The Pretenders, Heather Small & Aswad. Prices for both events start at 195 AED (around £40) for early birds and 225 AED (£47 approx.) for regular tickets, which can be obtained through Doors for both events open at 5 p.m.


A night of laughter with Kevin Bridges (19th October)

A young comedian and one of Scotland’s top humour acts, Kevin Bridges will be stopping in Dubai this month for an outstanding evening of non-stop laughter for one night only. With plenty of audience interaction and a lot of improvisation, 30-year-old Kevin is a true natural that can turn practically any topic into a funny, laughter-fit-inducing feast. His relatable persona will have everyone in the room chuckling and giggling to their heart’s delight. After. Catch him on 19th October at the Zabeel Hall 3 at the Dubai World Trade Centre. Regular tickets are priced at 295 AED while premium seats go for 495 AED.

Fiesta de los Muertos – feat. Gorillaz, Stormzy and more (27th October)

Get ready to be spooked with the biggest live music festival in the eerie world. This Mexican and Halloween-inspired "Fiesta de lo Muertos" (Party of the Dead) will definitely be something to remember as an amazing line-up of artists set the scary mood at Dubai’s Autism Rocks Arena. Gorillaz, one of the most successful virtual bands ever, will be headlining to get you jumping and tumbling to the sounds of favourites like “Feel Good Inc” and “Clint Eastwood”.

Other distinguished guests performing on the night include British grime rapper Stormzy and singer Carly Rae Jepsen, best-known for her smashing, catchy tunes like “Call Me Maybe”, “The Kiss” and “I Really Like You". Also performing will be Lebanese-Canadian singer Massari to infuse a touch of Middle-Eastern fusion tracks while the Matriarchs add Latin flavour to the mix. If you want to attend this coveted party, time is of the essence to get your hands on tickets as they typically sell out fast (according to previous year editions). Prices start at 350 AED (£73) for regular standing tickets and go all the way up to 995 AED (£207)for Fan Pit standing tickets and VIP platform tickets. You can get them through the event’s official website Oh, and don’t forget to turn up in your scariest Halloween custome!

Get your scare on – FREE Halloween mega feast (31st October)

Celebrate the spookiest night of the year in full scary swing with The Irish Village’s annual Halloween party, absolutely free for everyone to attend. Converted into a gruesome underworld for the occasion, The Irish Village extends an open invitation for everyone to join in the fun and dress up in their scariest costumes - there will be prizes for the best in female, male and children categories. Activities will be kept family-friendly until 9:30 p.m. and until said time there’ll be spooky games for adults and kids alike, with candy galore and fun competitions. And you don’t have to wait until evening to make an appearance either, the devilish fun starts at 11 a.m. on All Hallows Eve and the party continues until midnight with DJ Marky Mark spinning some scare-tastic tunes, all-time hits and festive tracks. If you’re lucky enough to be spending this year’s Halloween celebration in Dubai, it will certainly be an unforgettable one!

For Kids

Tales of Childhood (27th October)

Families in Dubai this late October are in for a special treat as the Madinat Theatre presents its latest production: “Tales of Childhood”. A movable story that features a baby hare, bear cub and wolf cub, this Russian-themed adventure is about how the adorable characters become best friends along the way. A magnificent puppet show that’s both engaging and fun to watch, there’ll be plenty of sing-a-long songs, fun giveaways and interactive games. Show starts at 2 p.m. and tickets range between 100 AED and 450 AED (from £21 to £94 roughly). They can be bought from

Susana Corona

Susana Corona

Adventure-seeking globetrotter

Read up on all the latest and finest Dubai attractions with this series of blog posts showcasing the...

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