Things to do in the UAE this week, from comic con to Chinese New Year celebrations

Catch Dubai Police in action at UAE Swat Challenge or laugh along to comedian Nemr

Jaleo by Jose Andres has launched a new weekend brunch, La Feria. Photo: Jaleo by Jose Andres
Powered by automated translation

The UAE events calendar is fired up this week, featuring activities from Dubai Police demonstrations to Chinese New Year celebrations.

Foodies can explore new dishes from some of Dubai's top-tier dining spots, while comic enthusiasts can attend a star-studded pop culture event in the capital.

Here, The National rounds up seven things to do around the Emirates from Monday to Sunday.


The 2024 UAE Swat Challenge continues at the Dubai Police training city in Al Ruwayyah.

Open to the public, the show includes exhilarating displays of military grandeur performed by various units of the city's force – from K9 unit shows to horse-mounted police demonstrations. Swat challenges prove to be the main event, where eligible teams engage in high-powered contests to test their tactical skills, precision and teamwork.

Drills and competitions aside, visitors can take a look into the past at the Dubai Police Museum. The Dubai Police esports tournament, being held at the same time, is set to entertain gamers. Food trucks are also scattered around the venue.

Until Wednesday; 8am onwards; free of charge; Al Ruwayyah;


If you're craving jellyfish on Tuesday, head to award-winning Japanese-inspired restaurant 3 Fils to try some of the new items on the menu, including, yes, a jellyfish ceviche (Dh58).

The dish comprises cured moon jellyfish from China, marinated in a Peruvian dressing. It is topped with thin slices of rausu kombu, a seaweed from Hokkaido, as well as crispy sweet potato strings, drizzled with tomato and coriander oil.

Meat lovers can go for the foie-gyu (Dh99), a bowl of sushi rice topped with two skewers of chargrilled Wagyu kebab and slices of torched foie gras, finished with tare and sudachi zest.

There's also duck noodle soup (Dh54), charcoal oysters (Dh38) and salmon nori tempura (Dh47).

Open daily, noon-11.30pm; Jumeirah Fishing Harbour, Dubai; 04 333 4003


Lebanese-American comedian Nemr Abou Nassar, popularly known as Nemr, is performing on Wednesday at Festival Bay.

Known as one of the pioneers of stand-up comedy in the Middle East, the comic has travelled the world to share his wit and humour. Performing his material in English, Nemr has made eight full feature shows. He is known for his observational comedy, often making relatable jokes about his Arab heritage.

Wednesday; 7.30pm; from Dh200; Festival Bay;


Celebrate Chinese New Year early at Dragon Mart on Thursday, as activities are lined up to welcome the Year of the Dragon in the lunar calendar.

Visitors can join a dragon head lantern-making workshop that blends traditional crafting techniques with contemporary methods or be mesmerised by a 42-metre dragon dance – an important symbolic performance in Chinese culture. There will be a Peking Opera Show, which is a historic form of Chinese theatrical art, and skilled acrobats and Kung Fu professionals will also be showcasing their moves.

Until Sunday; 3pm-8pm; free of charge; Dubai International City;


Head to the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre on Friday as the star-studded Middle East Film and Comic Con begins.

An exciting line-up of celebrities are set to appear, including Oscar Isaac and Inaki Godoy, who plays Monkey D Luffy in the live action Netflix production of One Piece. Godoy's co-star Taz Skylar, who plays Sanjim will also be there, as well as James and Oliver Phelps, the popular Weasley twins from Harry Potter.

Aside from on-screen stars, the event will also be attended by prominent voice actors, illustrators and more from the who's who of today's pop culture.

More than the meet-and-greets, visitors can also buy merchandise, cosplay as their favourite characters or visit the Japanese Village dedicated to fans of anime and manga.

Until Sunday; Friday, 3pm-11pm; Saturday to Sunday, noon-11pm; from Dh145 for a single day pass; Adnec;


Flavours of modern Spanish cuisine await diners at Jaleo by Jose Andres for their new weekend brunch, La Feria.

Guests receive a welcome beverage before indulging in small tapas plates of semi-cured aged Spanish beef, avocado salad with goat's cheese and charcoal-grilled octopus with potato and confit tomato, as well as croquetas de pollo or chicken fritters.

Three dishes are available for the mains, including the restaurant's signature paella that also comes with a vegetarian version. Diners can end the meal with churros dipped in chocolate, Galetta Maria chocolate with salted hazelnuts or tarta de queso basque cheesecake.

There is a live band, as well as flamenco performances throughout the brunch.

Every Saturday; 1pm-4pm; from Dh295 per person; Atlantis The Royal, Palm Jumeirah; 04 426 26 26


The Abu Dhabi Flea Market is popping up at Fotouh Al Khair Mall on Sunday.

The regular second-hand community event is the best place to browse through preloved bits and bobs, including books, toys, clothes, accessories, household items and sports equipment. The one-day affair is free to attend, but those who want to declutter their own homes by selling old or unused items can book a table for Dh266.50.

Sunday; 10am-5pm; free of charge; Fotouh Al Khair Mall, Airport Road, Abu Dhabi;

Updated: February 05, 2024, 6:04 AM