Bollywood in the heart of Dubai
One is never tired of visiting Dubai, one of the favourite tourist destinations across the world, where the East and the West culminate in search of...
One is never tired of visiting Dubai, one of the favourite tourist destinations across the world, where the East and the West culminate in search of fun, entertainment, and endless shopping. The main reason for this is that Dubai tourism ensures there is something new every time you visit this vibrant city. Tailored destinations for families, lone travellers looking for a leisurely time or friends out for adventure – Dubai is constantly emerging with newer destinations and additional facilities to the already existing options - there is something for everyone, and something more when they revisit.
So, if you have been on the desert safari and done that; try going to the Dubai Parks and Resorts that has opened its gates to the public in 2016. The largest integrated theme park in the Middle East has three main options – Motiongate, Bollywood Parks and Legoland designed thematically in association with Hollywood and Bollywood film studios with popular characters, theme-based rides for all ages and play zones; plus, a waterpark. The entrance area – Riverland – is all about retail and dining; before you choose to go to Motiongate, which features the Columbia Pictures area that has entertainment zones created around the popular movie series like ‘Green Hornet’, ‘Ghostbusters’, ‘Hotel Transylvania’ and ‘Underworld’.
There is a Smurf village extremely endearing for the fans. Here too, in addition to the Smurfs and their huts are games designed to entice the kids. There is the DreamWorks arena that is my personal favourite with ‘Kung Fu Panda’, ‘How to Train Your Dragon’, ‘Madagascar’ and ‘Shrek Lands’ created indoors – extremely colourful with rides, interactive games and rollercoasters for the kids and the child in you. Then there is the Lionsgate for the ‘Hunger Games’ fanatics.
One of the recent addition to the Dubai Parks and Resorts is the Bollywood Parks that opened with much fanfare towards the end of 2016. It’s as colourful as the world famous Hindi film industry with streets designed on the lines of Mumbai, local train, buildings, et al. There are arenas built around cult movies like ‘Sholay’ (with the hills, the Ramgarh railway station, Basanti’s tonga and the Bullet bike replete with the sidecar that visitors can pose with) and Salman Khan’s ‘Dabbang’. The interactive rides are innovatively designed for ultimate fun, especially if you are a Hindi movie buff - Aamir Khan’s ‘Lagaan’; Shah Rukh’s ‘Don’; Hrithik’s ‘Krrish’, etc. As you chase Don on the Sheikh Zayed Road in Dubai, fly with Hrithik chasing the villains, go on a virtual ‘Lagaan’ rollercoaster or go on a killing spree of the dacoits of ‘Sholay’ with your friends – it is entertainment unlimited.
Between all the play is the shopping and eating outlets, plus a Bollywood dance that happens at the Cinema Circle, theatre, nautanki and drama. One must also check out the resplendently recreated Rajmahal Theatre, the venue for the region’s first Broadway-style Bollywood Musical – ‘Jaan-e-Jigar’. Dubai Parks and Resorts is already very famous with tourists; so expect good crowd.
To completely enjoy this man-made marvel, start early (Motiongate opens at 10am and The Bollywood Parks opens at 4pm and closes at 11pm), and plan your tour well. Towards the weekend and in the evening the heavy rush lends itself to long waiting at the game zones. Built on 30.6 million square feet of land with over 100 rides and attractions, and adding more – a visit to Dubai Parks and Resorts entails a great deal of walking and patience with loads of fun guaranteed.