Coronavirus: 5 things to do in Dubai while the city shuts down

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As the deadly coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19, continues to spread, Dubai authorities have closed an increasing number of public places, prompting residents to ask what they can do with their free time out of the home.

Dubai closed all hotel bars, pubs and lounges on Monday, in addition to previous suspensions of all theme parks, entertainment and wedding destinations, including night clubs, cinemas and concerts and all gyms, gaming centers, and spring camps. On Tuesday, restaurants were directed to close all open buffets and screen diners for flu-like symptoms.

“In order to alleviate boredom and get some exercise, it is okay for people to engage in these outdoor activities… as long as people are mindful of keeping social distance,” said Dr Maher Balkis, infectious diseases specialist at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi.

Here are five things to do in Dubai while the coronavirus shutdown is ongoing:

Whether it is around the renowned Al Qudra cycle track or elsewhere, going for a bicycle ride is a good way to get out of the house and get some fresh air into the lungs.

There are many different hikes for all abilities throughout the northern emirate of Ras al-Khaimah and it can provide an excellent opportunity to get fit while witnessing some fantastic views.

Camels in Ras al Khaimah desert. (AFP)
Camels in Ras al Khaimah desert. (AFP)

A staple for many, there are many activities to do in the desert, from dune bashing to camping under the stars.

With gyms closed, try running and take to one of the numerous running trails in Dubai.

Trying to get some sun while still maintaining adequate social distancing may prove difficult but there are beaches across the UAE that receive few visitors and allow those that do to enjoy the sun safely.

For reasons of personal safety, Balkis noted that there were exceptions to this rule, including if the person is:

• Aged over 60.
• Has any conditions that place them at a higher risk from the coronavirus, such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases or chronic respiratory disease.
• Living in an area where a community wide containment notice has been declared.

If any of these factors are met then Balkis said that “these activities can’t be done.”

Read more:

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What are the chances of surviving coronavirus? It depends on your age and gender

What history teaches us about the coronavirus pandemic

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