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Al Barsha Area Guide for Expats and Families

Al Barsha has a metropolitan vibe that is in sync with the lifestyle in Dubai. The area comprises premium accommodation quality, accessible transportation, and a sizable variety of health and entertainment amenities—all of these qualify Al Barsha as a good living area for all, especially expats.

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Situated in a convenient location, Al Barsha is a popular residential district in Dubai for expat singles, couples, and families. The area is especially favored by expat communities for its diverse and vibrant cultures, and young professionals for its high accessibility to other locations.

This Pacific Prime Dubai article aims to help you make a better decision on whether Al Barsha is the place for you. We will walk you through what you can expect to live in Al Barsha, from multi-faceted aspects relevant to expats such as accommodation, transportation, amenities, and things to do.

There are also many other magnificent locations in Dubai that you might be interested in as an expat or a family. After considering all possible areas, you can narrow down your options to a few for further consideration.

An Overview of Al Barsha

There are a lot of reasons that account for the popularity of Al Barsha among expats and families. One of the significant reasons is the affordable prices to rent or purchase. The cost-effectiveness of money spent is higher than in most other neighborhoods in Dubai.

Al Barsha is a self-contained commercial and residential area, separated into five sub-communities:

  • Al Barsha 1
  • Al Barsha 2
  • Al Barsha 3
  • Al Barsha South
  • Al Barsha Height

Variations among sub-communities can cater to individual standards and requirements, hence favored by a wide demographic.

To further understand why Al Barsha is an excellent place to live, let’s explore this neighborhood deeper in terms of:

  • Location and accessibility
  • Housing options
  • Amenities and activities
  • Entertainment options
  • Dining selections
  • Education
  • Cost of living
  • Healthcare services

Location and Accessibility

Location view of Al Barsha.

Al Barsha is located in west Dubai, south of Al Sufouh. The area is bounded by major highways in the country: Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Road (E311) and Al Khail Road (E44), which granted residents in the area direct access to commodious highway services.

The commute times to other major locations are short – a 23-minute car drive to Dubai International Airport, 14 minutes to Dubai Marina, and 12 minutes to Dubai Internet City. Al Barsha is thus an ideal living location for frequent travelers, and people who value work-life balance.

Al Barsha 1, the main district in the area, is accessible by two major metro stations in Dubai: the Mall of the Emirates and the Mashreq Metro Station. The nearby sub-communities also enjoy the benefits of a short walk/drive to the metro stations, or try going on the highway network!

Housing Options

Expats have a range of housing options in Al Barsha for different standards and preferences. Singles or couples can look for apartments or studios which are usually located in Al Barsha 1 and Heights, whereas families can search for villas prevalent around Al Barsha 2,3 and South.

The apartment and studio districts are busier with noises at all times. What residents there get is convenience and modernity with urban vibes in return. On the contrary, the villa districts are relatively quieter and more peaceful with suburban vibes, with a bit of convenience as the trade-off.

Whether you are looking for a spacious villa or a conveniently located apartment or studio, Al Barsha offers a variety of options for you to choose from. You can always rent a place and experiment with it, to determine whether the urban or suburban lifestyle suits you better.

Amenities and Activities

In Al Barsha, you always have options for daily activities. For your daily grocery shopping, there are hypermarkets that have all the necessities you need. If you are feeling lazy after working, you can also look for convenient stores scattered around the area for a quick shop.

Residents in Al Barsha enjoy doing activities or unwinding themselves in Pond Park, situated in the center of Al Barsha 1,2,3. The area provides open-to-all running tracks, basketball and tennis courts, playgrounds, and fitness machines, bringing a balanced lifestyle to residents.

If you’re religious, then you definitely are in the right place. There are multiple mosques and churches located in each sub-communities for different religions. Notable places include Bilal bin Rabah Mosque, Emirates Baptist Church International, etc. You won’t have to go far for worship!

Entertainment Options

Al Barsha is home to the Mall of the Emirates (MoE), an award-winning shopping mall. The mall entails hundreds of luxury stores, outlets, restaurants, and cafes. You can also watch a movie in Vox Cinemas, or spend time in the amusement park Magic Planet for a dynamic but joyous, comfortable day.

For individuals and families who love keeping themselves active and healthy, there is Ski Dubai in MoE which offers snowboarding and ski lessons. Bounce Dubai in Al Quoz, right next to Al Barsha also has a trampoline park to offer if you feel like a short getaway from your home district.

If you were to take spectacular photos of landmarks to update on social media, Dubai Miracle Garden and Butterfly Garden are both in Al Barsha South. You can also opt for Palm Jumeirah, which is 30 minutes away. All these stunning sceneries are sure to blow your mind and impress your friends.

Dining Selections

Dining selections in Al Barsha.

With a diverse community, Al Barsha has a wide range of dining options catering to all residents. You can choose from local, Chinese, British, American, etc., depending on your appetite that day. You are never going to get bored with your dining selections!

For people with budgetary concerns, restaurants in Al Barsha come with a range of prices, you can always search for restaurants that suit different occasions. (You might want to spend less on daily meals and save up for special occasions like your birthday!)


If you have kids and want them to receive quality education, Al Barsha is one of the top choices in Dubai. Reputable schools and institutions not only offer unmatched education standards but also provide you with diverse curriculum options.

From nursery to high school education, prestigious schools are all over the place. Check out the list of some most reputable schools below:

  • GEMS Dubai American Academy (American, IB)
  • King’s School Al Barsha (UK)
  • Nord Anglia International School (UK, IB, IGCSE)
  • GEMS World Academy (IB)
  • Cherry Town Nursery (EYFS British)

Cost of Living

Al Barsha has a relatively lower cost of living compared to places like Dubai Marina or Downtown Dubai. But how much you spend ultimately depends on your lifestyle. Therefore the area is suitable for those with lower budgets or who want to save up.

One good thing about Al Barsha is the cost-effectiveness of your money. You can enjoy amenities and activity options similar to Central Dubai but at a lower cost. That’s why it is also a viable choice for expats with a bigger budget to enjoy a higher quality of life.

Healthcare Services

Hospitals and clinics are scattered around the Al Barsha area, such as Aster Clinic and IMC Medical Centers for non-emergencies and Al Zahra Hospital Dubai for emergencies. It is not difficult to find one near you. They offer a broad selection of medical services and specialized care.


Offering the perfect balance between city and suburb, Al Barsha is an outstanding location for expats. Its affordable housing options, convenient location, substantial leisure activity options, and top education quality, make it more appealing over Dubai Marina and other places for some.

Whether or not you choose Al Barsha as your next destination, make sure you have your safety and well-being covered with a comprehensive expat or family health insurance plan. Pacific Prime Dubai is here to guide you through your insurance journey with 20+ years of professionalism.

If you think this is useful in easing up your decision-making process for relocation, you can read more articles on our blog. We have compiled a list of information to help expats like you stay up-to-date on the latest information.

Contact us today for impartial advice, or get an obligation-free quote and plan comparison!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Al Barsha famous for?

Al Barsha is famous for being home to the Mall of the Emirates, a top 5 shopping mall in Dubai. It offers a wide range of shop options, food options, and entertainment options. What’s more, the area has convenient access to major transportation in Dubai, making it very popular among people.

Is Al Barsha a good place?

Al Barsha is good for its perfect blend of urban and suburban areas. Residents enjoy the benefits of convenient transportation, plenty of amenities and activity choices, etc. While some can live an urban life, one can also enjoy short walks in parks in the neighborhood, for a balanced lifestyle.

Is Al Barsha 1 a good place to live?

It depends on your lifestyle. Al Barsha 1 gives out a city vibe with easy access to commercial areas. You can get almost everything you want in the area without having to travel around. It is also culturally diversified, making it the most popular district in Al Barsha for expats.

Content Creator at Pacific Prime Dubai
Eric is an experienced content writer specializing in writing creative copies of marketing materials including social media posts, advertisements, landing pages, and video scripts.

Since joining Pacific Prime, Eric was exposed to a new world of insurance. Having learned about insurance products extensively, he has taken joy and satisfaction in helping individuals and businesses manage risks and protect themselves against financial loss through the power of words.

Although born and raised in Hong Kong, he spent a quarter of his life living and studying in the UK. He believes his multicultural experience is a great asset in understanding the needs and wants of expats and globe-trotters.

Eric’s strengths lie in his strong research, analytical, and communication skills, obtained through his BA in Linguistics from the University of York and MSc in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from the University of Bristol.

Outside of work, he enjoys some me-time gaming and reading on his own, occasionally going absolutely mental on a night out with friends.
Eric Chung