The Burj Khalifa skyscraper is the centrepiece of Downtown Dubai, a mixed-use development that includes the Dubai Mall, the Dubai Fountain, Souk al Bahar, numerous residential apartments and villas, and several hotels such as The Address Dubai Mall, The Address Downtown Dubai, and The Palace – The Old Town.
With a height of over 828 metres and with 163 habitable floors the skyscraper is currently the tallest building in Dubai and the world. It also holds world records for the tallest structure, highest occupied floor, highest outdoor observation deck, and longest elevator
Floors 1 to 39 are home to the Armani Hotel and Residences. Most of the other floors of the Burj Khalifa is taken up by private apartments and offices and off-limits to the general public. Visitors can however take a trip to At The Top observation deck on the 124th floor or dine at the At.mosphere restaurant on the 122nd floor.
At The Top
The trip to the observation deck begins at the reception area on the lower ground floor of the Dubai Mall (near the food court and the Bloomingdale’s Home store). While waiting, visitors can learn more about the Burj Khalifa using the interactive displays here. One display allows visitors to choose a city from around the world and then view how the Burj Khalifa would look in comparison to the cityscape and buildings found there (e.g. Paris and the Eiffel Tower, Kuala Lumpur and the Petronas Towers).
When the departure time comes visitors are transported to the base of the tower on a 65 metre moving walkway. Projected computer animations on the wall depict the history of Dubai.
The elevator is one of the fastest in the world and travels at a speed of 10 metres per second. It reaches the observation deck, 452 metres above the ground, in less than a minute. On the deck itself floor-to-ceiling windows offer spectacular views of the Dubai, the ocean and the desert. Landmarks such as The World, Burj Al Arab, and the skyscrapers on Sheikh Zayed Road can clearly be seen.
Special hi-tech telescopes offer close-up views of the sights. They can also be switched to a mode where recorded views are shown (both day and night time). This is useful if visibility is low or for evening visitors wishing to see how the views would look in the daytime.
To The Top also boasts an outdoor terrace which allows views of spire. There’s also a shop selling branded souvenirs such as bottled water, baseball caps, t-shirts, mugs, statues of the tower, clocks, key chains, and stationery.
The cheapest way to take the trip is to purchase a ticket in advance. Reserved General Admission tickets can be purchased online at the official To The Top website or in advance at the ticket counter. Tickets currently cost 100 AED for adults (13+), 75 AED for children (4 – 12). Infants enjoy free admission. General Admission tickets purchased are valid for a specific date and time. Visitors are advised to arrive around 15 minutes prior to their scheduled time.
Immediate Entry Admission tickets allow the purchaser to proceed directly to the observation deck without waiting. These tickets cost considerably more than General Admission tickets and are only available at the ticket office on the Lower Ground Floor of the Dubai Mall. Prices are 400 AED for both adults and children. Children under 4 are admitted free of charge.
To The Top is open 7 days a week. Opening times are Sunday to Wednesday 10 am until 10 pm, and Thursday to Saturday 10 am until midnight. Last admission is 45 minutes before closing.
Handbags and purses are permitted on the observation deck. Shopping and larger bags must be left in the secure baggage area. Cameras and video cameras are permitted.
Another way to get to experience the inside of the Burj Khalifa is to dine at the At.mosphere restaurant. Situated on the 122nd floor at a height of 442 metres above ground, it is the highest restaurant in the world (with prices to match). Advanced booking is essential and window seats cannot be guaranteed.
Location & Directions
The Burj Khalifa is situated in Downtown Dubai, next to the Dubai Mall. Visitors to the At The Top experience begin their trip on the lower ground floor of the mall.
Visitors arriving by car should leave Sheikh Zayed Road at Interchange 1 and take Financial Centre Road (previously Doha Street) to the Dubai Mall.
There are several car parks at the Dubai Mall. The best place to park for the Burj Khalifa trip is Fashion Parking Level LG.
Visitors travelling on the Metro should take the Red Line and alight at the Burj Khalifa Metro Station. F13 and F16 depart from the station and go to the Dubai Mall. It’s also possible to walk to the mall from the Metro station in about 10 minutes.