IMG Worlds of Adventure Theme Park Review

When IMG Worlds of Adventure opened a couple of years ago, it was one of the first in the line of the amusement park boom in Dubai. Until 2016, the United Arab Emirates could boast only of one amusement park - Ferrari World, which till date remains one of the most popular. Apart from that, a few waterparks were what came the closest to family entertainment destinations.

IMG Worlds of Adventure was at that time the largest indoor theme park in the world (a coveted title that is now disputed by the newly opened Warner Bros Abu Dhabi). Dubai Parks and Resort's Motiongate Themepark and Legoland followed suit but these are not completely indoor and air-conditioned, like IMG Worlds of Adventure, a feature that works in their favour and against them at the same time.

Being a completely indoor, air-conditioned themepark, IMG Worlds of Adventure gets limited when it comes to the thrilling and adventurous rides. However, it makes up for it in virtual 3D experiences and theatrical entertainment. Having said that, there are several rides that can be classified as only for the daring, and definitely not for those afflicted by motion sickness!

Located a little far (but still not as much as Dubai Parks and Resorts) from Dubai's city centre and bustling locales, IMG Worlds of Adventure spread across 1.5 million square feet. 2 years after its opening, it looks like the owners have lost interest in making it look exciting, the logo outside seems to have caught dust and the feeling of entering a ghost building creeps up on you when you look at it from the outside. A spiralling, entwining roller coaster juts out from one end, with loud screams that can be heard, and you can be sure that this is the best and most thrilling ride you'll get to experience in this theme park.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

A tired looking exterior is contrasted with a beautifully lit interior, with alleys and lanes making you feel like you're walking through a magical, artificial cartoon world. You'll probably not find the place too crowded (I visited on a weekend and there were almost no queues) and this is a great thing because unlike many other theme parks, you won't need a lot of time to do all the rides here. IMG Worlds of Adventure offers 4 main zones: Marvel Comics, Cartoon Network, Lost Valley Dinosaur Adventure and IMG Boulevard.

If you're here with little kids, Cartoon Network is without a doubt the place to begin, with rides themed around Powerpuff Girls, Ben10 and Gumball. Marvel Zone is where you'll find your favourite superheroes - The Avengers. Lost Valley focuses on dinosaur themed rides and IMG Boulevard has the most overrated and under-performing experience in my opinion - The Haunted Hotel.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

Click to read 10 things you must know before you travel to the UAE.

Cartoon Network

In comparison to Cartoon Junction at Warner Bros, the Cartoon Network zone in IMG Worlds of Adventure had newer generation cartoons such as Powerpuff Girls and Ben 10 vs the older generation, all-time favourites such as Tom & Jerry, Daffy Duck and Bug Bunny. For the younger kids these days, this might be more attractive but for the older generation (read: me), it might a little hard to relate to these cartoon characters.

Cartoon Network at IMG Worlds of Adventure

Nevertheless, this zone features on more relaxed and lazy rides such as The Ride of OOO with Finn & Jake, a slow-moving cart that soars high above the Cartoon Network zone and takes you through various kingdoms. If you're looking for a little excitement, Mojo Jojo’s Robot Rampage is an unpredictable ride that looks like it would be a simple carousel until it starts spinning 180 degrees, not for the faint-hearted! 3D animation and virtual experience lovers should head to Ben 10 5D Hero Time while those looking for a competitive ride should try The Amazing Ride of Gumball, where they can shoot (rather, zap) with lasers the 'dangerous' objects.

If you're not with little kids, you might as well skip this zone altogether. Apart from Mojo Jojo’s Robot Rampage, none of the rides is worth spending your time on!

IMG Worlds of Adventure
Powerpuff Girls Ride at IMG Worlds of Adventure

Click to read 10 day trips from Dubai worth taking.

Marvel Zone

Two exciting rides are available in this zone, which is also a favourite of superhero lovers. Some 360-degree immersive 3D experiences such as Avengers Battle of Ultron fail to impress (the effects just didn't live up to the state-of-the-art experiences that are available these days) and the story seemed never-ending. To make things worse, the ride stopped functioning due to a technical glitch in the middle and we were strapped in our seats for what seemed like eternity.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

However, Spider-Man Doc Ock’s Revenge is an average thrill, in-the-dark roller coaster which lasts for a really short period of time but nevertheless, provides a few tingles as does Thor Thunder Spin, one of the few dizzying rides in the themepark that is bound to give you tickles in the tummy but only if you don't have motion sickness and a strong stomach!

Click to read 7 seriously cool places to hang out in Dubai.

Lost Valley

IMG Worlds of Adventure has two very cool rollercoasters - one that is a long, winding, twisting one and the only ride that is outdoor and the other smaller one, which has a drop that almost seems like a 90-degree angle! Both these roller coasters are in the Lost Valley.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

The Velociraptor was undoubtedly my favourite ride in all of IMG Worlds of Adventure - I am a thrill lover and roller coasters make me weak in my knees. This one starts from indoors and then, with a whoosh, takes you outside and the next 2 minutes are bound to be full of screams, twists and turns, and a lot of tickles!

Predator was the second-best ride in IMG Worlds of Adventure. An indoor roller coaster, this one features a heart-stopping vertical drop, and although it lasts barely a minute with the drop being the only moment of exhilaration, it definitely was worth the wait.

IMG Worlds of Adventure
The Lost Valley at IMG Worlds of Adventure

For the younger ones, The Adventure Fortress is a good place to spend some time being active - with rope bridges, tunnels, ladders, and slides.

Click to read 15 amazing things you can do for FREE in Dubai.

IMG Boulevard

With mostly restaurants and retail outlets, the only attraction in this area is the controversially popular The Haunted Hotel.

I had heard such great reviews about this ride - especially from people who said that they were so scared, they were literally peeing in their pants - that I was super excited to go there! Unlike most other rides, this one had a long queue but it seemed like it'd be totally worth the wait. A spooky walk-through experience that promises (but fails to deliver) a nerve-racking 15 minutes of terror, although the interiors were done really nicely (wrapped dead carcasses hanging from the ceiling, bloody objects and characters), there was not a single moment of spine-chilling, hair-raising spookiness in the entire walk-through! It couldn't even garner a scream from anyone.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

Final Verdict

IMG Worlds of Adventure theme park might be one of the options if you're a Marvel or Cartoon Network fan, visiting Dubai with little kids or teenagers, during the hot summer months when you would rather be in an air-conditioned space than outdoors in the sweltering heat. Even for theme park enthusiasts, this place doesn't really cut it. They seem to have focussed on their Food & Beverage offerings more than the quality of the rides, maintaining the excitement through character meets & greets or even engaging experiences. The place looks tired and lacks the vibrancy one expects from an entertainment destination or amusement park.

Top picks for an adrenaline rush: Thor Thunder Spin, The Velociraptor, The Predator & Spider-Man Dock Ock's Revenge.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

You can book your accommodation in Dubai here.


54 thoughts on “IMG Worlds of Adventure Theme Park Review”

  1. This looks like a fun theme park where you could spend hours losing yourself in the attractions. The Lost Valley looks intriguing and so does the haunted hotel.

  2. I love themed parks because it brings out the kid in me. I have never been to IMG but after reading your post, it is definitely a must-visit. I love roller coasters because it’s scary but fun.

  3. Loved reading the post but i feel it’s better to experience the theme park! I have been to Dubai for a brief project so, i couldn’t manage to visit IMG theme park. However, now i know where to go in Dubai. Cartoon Network theme looks interesting and i’m sure my 6 year old niece would love it! Thank you for a new addition to my bucket list.

  4. I spent a week in Dubai, but had no idea this existed! It’s like Dubai is one giant theme park, so I would have the highest expectations for IMG. Dubai does so much over-the-top stuff, I’m sure I wouldn’t be disappointed.

  5. How interesting, I never considered an indoor theme park but in Dubai it makes sense! The IMG worlds of adventure theme park seems like a good way to spend a day in Dubai, especially if you have kids!

    1. It isn’t as much fun as the outdoor ones but considering how HOT it gets in Dubai, it is very practical!

  6. I have to ask, this all looks like it is indoors, so is the air con on all the time? It has got me thinking. ALso loving the look of those rollercoasters. 🙂

  7. Amusement parks do make me happy and I like to check them out. During my last visit to Dubai, this one was still not operational. Ferari World is fun. I might go here for some of the rides and Cartoon Network. Yes, for the summers, this can be a good way to be indoors and enjoy the day. This doesn’t look very impressive and your final verdict says the same. Thanks for the honest review.

  8. The IMG Worlds of Adventure looks like a fab place to take the family when visiting Dubai. My niece and nephew would love the Avengers themed areas – they are obsessed! Me, get me to the knee-shaking rollercoasters like The Velociraptor now!

    1. I actually did review it already! I linked to it in this blog as well, Warner Bros Abu Dhabi, check it out 😉

  9. Dubai is simply fascinating, they really do a great job entertaining tourists and locals alike. I just wish i wouldnt be so hot there, otherwise I would surely visit more often…. I’m amazed you love roller coasters, i’m getting nervous just by looking at them 🙂

  10. Dubai never fails to amaze us when it comes to this type of innovation and futuristic technology. Anything that sounds like it couldn’t possibly be real or happen challenges them to want to build it. We would love to be able to try out the velociraptor ride to just go from that cold refreshing air out into the desert heat and then back in again, sounds amazing!

  11. Love your honest review. I’m not a huge theme park fan but the Lost Valley sounds quite fun, like you I do love a good rollercoaster! I’m not sure I’d visit though unless I had kids with me!

  12. I wasn’t expecting such honesty! Rare and appreciated for sure. I love theme parks, but I am highly suspicious of any places that start showing wear and tear and basic lack of owner love (my father was a private investigator who had quite a few cases involving theme park ride accidents). I guess the bonus would be the air-condition and probably a great place for little kids to see cartoony things. I would go for the haunted house though. Cheesy or not, I love em.

    1. I agree – I hate it when places seem run-down. It just seems like no one cares to maintain them properly, takes away the excitement of exploring them.

  13. I love the img theme park. The adventure fort is so amazing. It will surely bring out the child in everyone. The boulevard and lost valley are also particularly appealing to me.

  14. I am sorry that we missed the IMG Worlds Of Adventure in Dubai. I am sure I would appreciate an indoor theme park when it is really hot. My husband would definitely want to explore the Marvel Zone.

  15. I’m not usually a fan of theme/amusement parks unless they have a personal appeal. Being that this theme park is located in Dubai, I expected more of the attractions to not resonate with me, but I was surprised! I would especially love to visit the Cartoon Network section of this park. That definitely would be a blast from the past

  16. IMG being an air conditioned indoor theme park is what appeals the most. I am glad I came across your review and could relate to it because my mom got bored there. When I was in Dubai during last summers, I was intrigued to visit the IMG indoor theme park and so I did. My young brother, he was the one who enjoyed the most. Though I enjoyed few rides and getting pictures clicked with the characters 😉 I also wish I knew that The Haunted Hotel was not that scary then I would have gone for it.

    1. I heard a lot of people say that The Haunted Hotel is really scary. I guess I went with high expectations – I was disappointed!

  17. I’ve never been to an indoor theme park, so this really caught my attention. It makes a lot of sense to build indoors, with the hot weather in Dubai! I appreciate your honest review. As someone who loves to visit theme parks for the rides, it sounds like this wouldn’t be my favorite theme park either. But it sounds great for the right people who are looking for good food and characters!

  18. This looks like so much fun, and all under one roof! I’m part of the older stock lol so wouldn’t be able to relate the new cartoon characters either! I wish I was as much a fan of rollercoasters and haunted walk-throughs as you Medha, but I’m the biggest baby to go with to a theme park! Still, this looks like a great choice for families, and as you say, to escape the Dubai sun. Will remember it when I do go to Dubai!

  19. Thank you for sharing your honest review. I think I will be too disappointed as well for getting an expensive ticket and turns out a huge disappointment. That’s a ripped-off.

  20. Oh, wow! I would love to visit this! I mean, first of all, it’s very warm there, and snowing in Romania, that’s reason enough :)) But then, I want to get on the roller-coasters and on Mojo Jojo’s Robot Rampage, I’m a big Powerpuff Girls fan <3

  21. I am glad I got to read a very honest post on an amusement park. It is quite disappointing when an amusement park does not live up to our expectations after buying the very expensive tickets. I was literally smiling when reading about your experience at the Haunted hotel. We too had the same feeling as yours during one of our trips to a haunted house in India.I am not into these rides so may actually skip those. But then, as you rightly pointed out an enclosed air-conditioned environment is a boon in a hot place like Dubai but may not be suitable for all rides! Overall a great informative post 🙂

  22. I am not a real thrill-seeker, but I think it’s pretty incredible that IMG Worlds of Adventure is just about completely contained within an enormous air-conditioned building. For that reason alone, I might stroll its boulevards on a hot summer day in Dubai. I am a big Looney Tunes fan, so a little Bugs and Daffy time would be right up my alley. That’s all, Folks!

    1. It’s pretty cool for people who like theme parks and movie/cartoon characters. I am more into rides but that’s just me!

  23. Thanks for your honest review. It is tempting to head to something so unique as a massive indoor amusement park, but if the rides aren’t great, or they are really just focused on 3D rides or rides for little kids, then it might be a waste of time going. Still, if it wasn’t expensive, it would be kind of cool to just walk around this place. Very unique!

    1. Unique it sure is 🙂 They sometimes have discounts on the tickets – that’s a good time to get one and go!

  24. I love theme parks but hates rides! This looks really amazing though <3 and haha, I don't think I can survive the spooky walkthrough experience even though you said it failed to deliver…I'm such a scaredy cat 🙁

  25. I am never into theme parks but yes, during summers, when the temperature is soaring outside, it’s not a bad idea to have some fun indoors even in a place like IMG Worlds of Adventure when in Dubai.

  26. We have been to Dubai a couple of times but we never did any of the amusement parks earlier. But now that we have a 6-year-old, we were actually planning for these parks in our itinerary. He really enjoyed the roller coasters at the Disneyland, Orlando. So, the ones here may just be right for him. We are not big theme park enthusiasts. So, we may not actually do it if we are in Dubai anytime other than summer – as you rightly pointed out.

    1. Personally, I liked Dubai Parks and Resorts better, you have 3 different parks to choose from and they’re in the open, which adds to the experience of visiting a theme park in my opinion. Having said that, the weather here can be really harsh and air conditioning helps when it is particularly hot outside!

  27. Love your honesty in this review. It’s been so long since I’ve been to Dubai, I’d doubt I’d recognise the place now. From your review and my thoughts on amusement parks, if I end up ther with my nieces and nephews, I would probably visit. By myself probably not, although air conditioning on a really hot day is nice 🙂

    1. I’d say it makes for a good place to spend some family time in the summer, when it is 50 degrees outside and there aren’t too many options apart from malls and theme parks 🙂

  28. We are visiting Dubai for the first time in the new year so great to read more about IMG Worlds of Adventure, one of the first in what seems like a rush of other amusement parks since then. I’m guessing the airconditioning makes it particularly popular when the outside temperature is high! We will have our toddler nephews with us so I imagine Cartoon Network is going to be the most popular section to visit.

  29. Thank you for this honest review of IMG World of Adventure. It’s probably worth going to experience the sheer size of it. I’m visiting Dubai next year but don’t have children so it may not be one of the top places to visit for me but I can definitely see the appeal for families to enjoy a day together. I was pleasantly surprised to hear that queues aren’t too long, which is typically the case with other theme parks.

    1. That’s true. I guess that was the good part for me, it was easy to explore. But a pity for the park; seems like they haven’t been able to market themselves well enough. They also face tough competition from hoards of other theme parks that have sprung in the country in the last couple of years.

  30. I have never heard about IMG Worlds of Adventure before but it sure seems like a fun place to visit. I also had no idea it’s the largest indoor theme park in the world, that’s fascinating! I would definitely want to check it out someday.

  31. Wow, an indoor theme park! Sounds very awesome!!! I really like the Cartoon Network theme – the Mojo Jojo’s Robot Rampage ride looks really fun. Also used to be a huge fan of the powerpuff girls

    1. In the UAE, it gets really hot in the summer. We need indoor theme parks so that they can run all the year through 🙂

  32. This is SO COOL! I’ve been hearing things about IMG Worlds of Adventure, but had no idea what it entailed. I also didn’t know it was indoor, let alone the largest one! I think my favorite part would be the Lost Valley with the two rollercoasters and dinosaurs!

Comments are closed.