A look at what residents and visitors can expect in the city during the Festival of Lights
Dubai is set for a huge, glittering celebration as the city celebrates Diwali – the Indian Festival of Lights. On the cards are a wide range of festivities which will take place across the emirate. From authentic festival cuisine to spectacular live entertainment to incredible fireworks and tempting promotions, and retail offers, residents and visitors can take part in the city-wide celebrations until October 28.
Organised by Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), the annual key event is spread over five days, beginning on October 22.
Here’s what to expect during the festivities:
Day 1: Dhanteras, October 22
The first day is called Dhanteras. It is considered auspicious to buy gold, silver objects or kitchen utensils on the day
Offers and promotions:
- Shoppers have a chance to win gold – or shopping vouchers to pick up some goods – with multiple Diwali raffles and competitions across Dubai
- Dubai Festival City Mall is offering a 50gm gold bar
- City Centre Deira is giving one lucky shopper a gold coin worth more than Dh1,000, daily until October 30
- Oasis Mall has Dh20,000 in shopping vouchers to give away
- City Centre Al Shindagha is giving customers a chance drive home a brand new Suzuki Baleno
- BurJuman Mall os offering a one year rent-free living in a 1-bedroom apartment in Dubai Creek
Day 2: Chhoti Diwali, October 23
The second day is called Chhoti Diwali or small Diwali. On this day, family members wake up early in morning and bathe using oils to relieve the body of tiredness. They also put lights in the house.
Catch Imagine, the longest-running water and lights show, at Dubai Festival City Mall along with a breathtaking fireworks spectacle. The show starts at 8:30pm.
Experience an authentic Festival of Lights display at the Waterfront Market at Deira Corniche, watch cultural performances at Festival Plaza Jebel Ali, or visit the iconic Global Village.
Day 3: Diwali, October 24
The third day of Diwali is the main day of the festival. Worshippers cleanse themselves and join their families. Households are abuzz with activity as they prepare to seek blessings of wealth and prosperity. Brightly illuminated houses, parks and public places make up the landscape on Diwali night, while colourful fireworks dot the sky.
There will an illuminating Diwali-inspired projection at Al Wasl Plaza, Expo City Dubai, as well as various children’s workshops at the venue. A dazzling performance will take place at the world’s largest dancing fountain, The Palm Fountain at the Pointe. There will be traditional dance shows and themed entertainment at Diwali in JLT. For an entertaining gastronomical experience, visit the Bombay Dreams show at Namaste India, Bollywood Parks.
Day 4: Govardhan Puja, October 25
On the fourth day, sweets are exchanged among family and friends while many celebrate this as annakut, a word that includes anna meaning grain. Varieties of dishes are prepared at home.
Lulu Hypermarket offers décorations, sweets, gifts and accessories needed for the celebration. Also relish some authentic festive dishes at various eateries around town, including The Crossing at the H Hotel Dubai, Kaleidoscope Buffet Restaurant at Atlantis, The Palm and Kinara by Vikas Khanna at the JA Lake View Hotel.
The fourth day also indicates the start of a new financial year with businesses opening new books of accounts. Any new business ventures typically start on this day.
Day 5: Bhai Dooj, October 26
The fifth day is a day dedicated to rejoicing the bond between brothers and sisters. Residents can buy gifts for their loved ones at reduced prices at Jumbo or Emax stores where they have a chance to win great prizes. Several other stores around the city are also offering special Diwali discounts on a variety of goods.
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