The countdown to the summer recess bell has begun. And if you’re home for the holidays we’ve collected some of the best summer camps to make sure the little ones are entertained all summer long.
For those decided on taking advantage of these facilities, it can be a struggle deciding where to send the young ‘uns. The camps cater for different interests and age groups, and because your children are the most precious components of your life as a parent (and the most noisy/expensive/adorable), you want to ensure they will be well looked after.
Our guide aims to take a little pain out of the research, by compiling and condensing some of our stand out favourites. Not that we have a favourite of course. We love them all the same. We’ll keep adding more, so be sure to check back!
For maths lovers
Your brood will be steaming ahead at school after a summer of Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics with education experts Babilou and Blossom Nurseries. Taking them from a Wild West farm yard to a regal ball, kids aged one to six will have a party while they’re learning. There are 10 locations around Dubai, so there’s bound to be one near you. Choose from half or full days too and food is included, so there’s no need to make a packed lunch.
Until 28th August. From AED 180 a day/AED 840 a week. Check locations at www.theblossomnursery.com or call 04 381 0650.
For the sporty
Elite Sports Academy
Qualified trainers head up camps that cover all your kids’ favourite sports, including football, dodgeball, hockey and more. Camps take place at six locations around Dubai, so there’s bound to be one near you. Here kids aged four to 14 play up to six sports a day and learn teamwork while keeping fit and having fun. If swimming’s their thing, Elite also holds swim camps for all levels, from beginners to advanced.
Until 30th August, 8.30am-3.30pm. Starting from AED 672 a week for sports camps and from AED 450 a week for swim camps (AED 262.50 if booked with sports). Half and full day options are available. Horizon International School, Umm Al Sheif; Horizon English School, Safa; Ranches Primary School, Arabian Ranches 2; Victory Heights Primary School, Sports City; Regent International School, The Greens; Sunmarke School, Jumeriah Village Triangle. www.elitesports.ae
IFA (International Football Academy)
Have you got a mini Mo Salah or diddy Drogba in the house? If the answer is yes, then enrol your kid in the IFA Football Camp this summer and give them the opportunity to cut short corners to A1 soccer moves. IFA boasts some of Dubai’s best indoor venues and UEFA-qualified coaches that could have your kid dribble like a World Cup contenderi! Kids from four to 16 are welcome to join.
Dubai Sports World, DWTC & All Stars Sports, Umm Suqeim. Until 6th September; Sunday-Thursday, 9am-1pm. AED 100 a day; AED 400 a week. Ifasport.com. 04 454 1683.
Jump on board
Hop down to Flip Out’s summer camp to learn the acrobatic arts of trampolining, parkour and 3D wall running, in addition to dope activities Bubble Soccer and Archery Tag. There are three themes to choose from – Parkour Camp, Ninja Camp and Flip Camp, with the option of half day sessions as well. Parents, for every friend you recommend that books for five sessions of Flip Camp, you will receive two free general admission passes for the trampoline park in Al Quoz.
AED 140 a session. Age five plus. 9am-1pm and 2pm-6pm, Sunday to Thursday. Until 30th August. 600 567568.
Nothing but net
NBA star Mason Plume has returned to Dubai to host another basketball summer camp, to fulfill the hoop dreams of Dubai kids and teens. The Denver Nuggets forward, in collaboration with DUPLAYS and coaching staff from such talent pools as the Kobe Bryant Academy, is running the Mason Plumlee Academy at Aflec School.
Places are expected to fill up fast, so all swish crazy youngsters, between the ages of eight and 18 are urged to register as soon as possible. The big man himself will be there to help guide youthful enthusiasts through skills, drills and one-on-one break aways. Attendees will not only get the chance to get a selfie with a genuine NBA hero, there will also be an exclusive Nike T-Shirt for all the academy’s young talent.
AED 900. Ages 8-18. 10am-2pm. 28th-31st August. Aflec School, Oud Metha. To sign up visit www.duplays.com
Feel the vibes
Zumba and hip hop dance coach Jed Latebe and professional dancer Hannah Badge pass on their best moves to the next generation, giving them not just dance floor credentials, but the all important skills of plyometric movement and rhythm.
Classes from AED 90. NRG Fitness, Marina Walk. From 4.30pm, Sunday to Thursday, until 10th September. Age groups three-plus and five-plus. Kids Zumba – every Monday and Wednesday; Kids hip hop – every Tuesday. www.nrgfitness.me
For the little chefs
If you see summer camps as a kind of investment, then sending your squad to Fairmont The Palm’s cooking and fitness adventure series could prove a sound one.
Days begin with a session of intense disco HIIT workout Prama to work up some energy, before kids join Chef Romain Van Durmen, who has trained in a Michelin-starred kitchen. He’ll school then in the art of creating wholesome and tasty food, which they can take home for the family to enjoy. The day ends with a dip in the hotel pool and everyone gets their own chef’s hat and apron.
Fairmont The Palm. 26th-30th August, from 9.30am-4pm. AED 250 per child per day or AED 1,000 per child per week. 04 457 3501.
Mix it up
Got a budding Heinz Beck or Nobu Matsuhisa on your hands? If so, get them booked into Top Chef’s summer camp. Kids aged six to 12 will learn how to whip up tasty treats under the watchful eye of the talented gourmet maestros at this Jumeirah cooking studio. Good news for parents; the importance of clean kitchen is also on the curriculum, along with energy burning Zumba and drum classes.
Daily class are AED 300. Siblings discounts of 10 per cent apply.
9am-2pm, Sunday to Thursday, until the end of August. Top Chef Cooking Studio, Villa 196, Jumeirah Beach Road. www.topchefdubai.com or call 04 385 5781.
For the creative
Every wanted to become an artist? Get to thejamjar’s summer camp in Alserkal Avenue and unleash your kids’ creativity in an idea-generating, fun environment. They’ll spend mornings exploring new artists and techniques while making new friends, with is surely the most beautiful masterpiece of all. To aid the creative and friendship-making process, camps are split into age groups five to nine and 10 to 14.
10am-12pm, until 7th September. Register at firstname.lastname@example.org. One day from AED 180 and six days from AED 972.
For the fun-seekers
Rides of passage
Your bambinos are in for a treat this summer with the return of the annual summer camp organised by Dubai Parks and Resorts. They will get the opportunity to explore the four theme parks – MOTIONGATE Dubai, LEGOLAND Dubai, LEGOLAND Water Park, BOLLYWOOD PARKS Dubai – and the chance to meet stars from animated movies such as Master Po from the Kung Fu Panda. From splashes at the waterpark to dancing to Bollywood beats, it’s hard to imagine a more entertaining break
AED 950 for a week. Free access to all rides. Ages five-14. 9am-5pm, until 6th September. Pickup at designated GEMS schools. www.dubaiparksandresorts.com
How ABBA that?
Have you got a little Dancing Queen on your hands after watching the new MAMMA MIA movie? Or do they have a talent that belongs on the stage? Why not channel it in to a helping head start with Hayley’s Comet Theatre Company.
Lead by Hayley Doyle, the special MAMMA MIA! Summer camp will take children behind the scenes of musical theatre. Doyle will be centre stage, a position she’s used to after performing over 500 times in the hit show at London’s the West End, in instructing young stars on what it takes to make it in the limelight. Kids 6-14 will also get to take part in their own MAMMA MIA story, created specifically for the camp.
AED 750. Ages 6-14. 9am-3pm, 26th-30th August. James & Alex Dance Studios, Media City. 04 447 0773.