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Best Markets in Al Ain

What are the best markets in Al Ain? In this article we highlight the best markets in Al Ain.

Al Ain, a city in the United Arab Emirates known for its lush greenery and cultural landmarks, is also home to a variety of markets that cater to the needs and tastes of expats and digital nomads. From traditional souks to modern shopping centers, Al Ain offers a unique shopping experience that combines the charm of the old with the convenience of the new. Whether you’re looking for fresh produce, handcrafted goods, or a taste of local culture, the markets in Al Ain are sure to provide an enriching experience. Here are some of the best markets to explore in Al Ain.

Al Ain Souk (Central Market)

Location: Zayed Bin Sultan Street
Type of Market: Traditional Souk
Open: Daily, 8 AM – 10 PM

The Al Ain Souk, also known as the Central Market, is a bustling hub of activity where locals and expats alike come to shop for a variety of goods. This traditional market offers everything from fresh fruits and vegetables to spices, textiles, and household items. The souk’s vibrant atmosphere and the friendly banter of vendors make it a must-visit for anyone wanting to experience authentic Emirati culture.

We Recommend: Exploring the spice stalls for a sensory experience and picking up some saffron or dried fruits that are popular in the region.

Al Ain Camel Market

Location: Al Ain, near Bawadi Mall
Type of Market: Livestock Market
Open: Daily, 6 AM – 7 PM

As one of the last remaining camel markets in the UAE, the Al Ain Camel Market offers a unique glimpse into the traditional way of life in the Emirates. Visitors can observe traders from across the region buying and selling camels for racing, breeding, or meat. It’s an experience that’s both educational and unforgettable, providing insight into the importance of camels in Emirati culture.

We Recommend: Taking a guided tour to learn more about the camels and the market’s role in the local economy.

Al Jimi Mall

Location: Hamdan Bin Mohammed Street
Type of Market: Indoor Shopping Mall
Open: Daily, 10 AM – 10 PM; until 11 PM on weekends

Al Jimi Mall is Al Ain’s first shopping and entertainment destination. It combines a traditional souk atmosphere with modern retail. With over 100 stores, a food court, and a cinema, this mall is perfect for those looking for a one-stop-shop for fashion, electronics, and entertainment. The mall’s architecture, with its wind towers and arabesque designs, pays homage to the region’s heritage.

We Recommend: Checking out the traditional clothing and perfume stores for authentic Emirati gifts.

Mubazzarah Park Market

Location: Jebel Hafeet
Type of Market: Outdoor Market
Open: Weekends, usually in the cooler months from October to March

Set at the foot of Jebel Hafeet, Mubazzarah Park Market is a seasonal weekend market that offers a family-friendly atmosphere. Here, you can find a variety of stalls selling handcrafted items, clothing, and local snacks. The market is part of a larger park area, which includes hot springs, green spaces, and play areas for children, making it a perfect weekend getaway.

We Recommend: Trying the local honey or homemade traditional sweets that vendors often sell at the market.

Al Ain Mall

Location: Kuwaitat Area, Al Ain
Type of Market: Indoor Shopping Mall
Open: Daily, 10 AM – 11 PM

Al Ain Mall is a premier shopping and leisure destination in the heart of the city. With a wide range of international and local brands, this mall caters to the diverse community of Al Ain. It also features a variety of dining options, a cinema, and regular events and promotions, making it a popular spot for both shopping and entertainment.

We Recommend: Visiting the traditional souk section within the mall for a variety of Arabic handicrafts and souvenirs.

Al Foah Mall

Location: Al Foah District, Al Ain
Type of Market: Indoor Shopping Mall
Open: Daily, 10 AM – 10 PM; until midnight on weekends

Al Foah Mall is a community mall that offers a more relaxed shopping experience. It’s home to a selection of retail stores, a supermarket, and dining options. The mall’s layout and design provide a comfortable environment for families and individuals to shop at their own pace.

We Recommend: Sampling dates at the date market within the mall, where you can find a variety of locally grown dates.

Al Qattara Souk

Location: Al Qattara, Al Ain
Type of Market: Art and Craft Market
Open: Seasonal, usually during cultural festivals and events

Al Qattara Souk is part of the Al Qattara Arts Centre and is known for its focus on local art and crafts. This market is typically active during cultural events and festivals, offering a platform for local artisans to showcase their work. It’s a great place to find unique handmade items and to support the local art scene.

We Recommend: Purchasing traditional pottery or artwork as a unique memento of your time in Al Ain.

Joshua WoodJoshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

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