Top 11 Things to do in Abu DhabiUAE
Visit Abu Dhabi
Things to do in Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi is the cradle of Arabian culture, the city of oases, and the scion of incredible architecture. Abu Dhabi has something to fulfill the longing in every traveller’s heart, whether it’s entertainment, beauty, luxury, shopping, views and landscapes, beach-life or art and architecture.
As capital of the United Arab Emirates and the largest of the Emirates, Abu Dhabi boasts of unique things such as a falconry hospital, the Empty Quarter Desert with the largest dune in the world, and much more. Get ready to be wowed by Abu Dhabi and its incredibly impressive attractions for travellers.
Visit The Liwa Oasis
Liwa is a lovely oasis located at the Northern edge of the Rub al Khali desert, bordered by a collection of Bedouin villages. Liwa is the birth place of the Nahyan tribe, the present leaders of the UAE.
A variety of date palms are cultivated here, and various kinds of dates are sold at the Liwa Date Festival in June along with Bedouin handicrafts. The desert dunes are enormous at Liwa, the tallest being the Tal Mireb.
The Empty Quarter desert contains the largest sand dunes in the world, and the dunes of both areas are a fantastic playground for anyone who wants to ride dune buggies, try sandboarding, go camel trekking, or simply soak up the vast star-strewn desert sky after dark at a desert camp.
Exploring Liwa is one of the best things to do in Abu Dhabi.
Tour Al Ain City
Al Ain is a lush, verdant paradise, which comes as a surprise as it is close to the desert. The Hili Archaeological site is strewn with ancient tombs and artifacts from the Bronze Age and beyond. These are housed in Al Ain’s National Museum, such as a reconstructed Grand Hili tomb and gold pendants from the II BC.
Enjoy the colorful Camel Market with its decorated camels. Al Ain’s Zoo has beautiful gardens and the world’s last remaining white lions and tigers.
Go on a Kayaking Tour of the Mangroves
By visiting this amazing National Park you not only gain knowledge but see some of the most beautiful nature on the earth. To Kayak at sunset is a must experience as you will be mesmerized the beauty of the natural colors of sunset while listening to some natural birdlife music found no where else.. for those that do not like to Kayak you can always walk close to the mangroves and experience the beauty of the park while strolling with family and friends.
If you feel bored and are looking for something interesting to do, this would be it! Going in a group or just solo, this is a fun activity and costs only AED 150 per kayak, they provide you with all the equipment you will need, life jackets and a guide as well. They also teach you how to paddle before you get into the water so don’t be afraid to try it out even if you haven’t done before.
After 15 mins of kayaking you will arrive at the mangroves and won’t be able to see the city which changes the whole environment. When a lot of things in the UAE seem new and fake, its great to see a nature area in the middle of the city!
You can also rent solar powered donut boats – which are great for families, are fairly slow & steady and easy to steer.
Keep an eye out for beautiful birds to see like herons and sometimes flamingos.
Enjoy a Day of Thrills at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi
Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is a mostly indoors amusement park on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. It is the first Ferrari-branded theme park and has the record for the largest space frame structure ever built. Formula Rossa, the world’s fastest roller coaster, is also located here. Wikipedia
Once there, give in to your inner child and enjoy rides designed to thrill. Let your kids learn to drive on Junior GT track, while you enjoy the world’s tallest 52-meter loop Flying Aces rollercoaster, which rushes at 120 kilometers per hour. Enjoy the Formula Rossa ride; watch Ferrari-inspired acrobat shows, optical illusions, and gravity-defying stunts.
Visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is made of white Macedonian marble carved in floral designs that are embedded precious and semi-precious stones. Everywhere you look, you’ll see lapis lazuli, red agate, amethyst, abalone, jasper and mother-of-pearl pieces glittering in the sun.
Crowned by 80 marble domes held aloft by over 1000 white marble pillars, the mosque is an international architectural marvel. Four beautifully-carved 107m-high white marble minarets say hello to the sky, while on the inside, the world’s largest carpet and the world’s largest crystal glass chandelier await you.
Stroll Along The Corniche
The Abu Dhabi Corniche is a four-mile long coastal promenade, which passes by several prominent landmarks such as the 18-degree lean-inbuilt Capital Gate building, the Etihad Towers and Qasr Al Hosn. You won’t miss the ginormous Emirate flag, set atop a 360ft pole.
The Corniche is bordered by lush picnic areas; barbeque facilities and kids play areas. Several beaches lead off from the Corniche for quick and private access.
Cruise around the Waterways
There are several boat rides/cruises to choose from. Here are a couple of recommended ones for your perusal.
Take a Boat Ride to Emirates Palace, Royal Palaces And Grand Mosque
Your boat cruise departs from the Emirates Palace Marina and cruises around to the Presidential Palace, Royal Palaces, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, Al Maqtaa Bridge, Al Maqtaa Fort and the magnificent Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.
Enjoy watching the sights up close as chosen-language headset commentary delivers a fascinating array of information on some not-to-miss destinations in Abu Dhabi.
Take a Boat Ride to Emirates Palace, Corniche & Lulu Island
Your boat departs from Emirates Palace Marina, fronted by the Emirates Palace Hotel, the most luxurious hotel in the city. You’ll stop next at the Heritage Village site, for a glimpse of authentic Arabic culture.
You’ll cruise along the beautiful and vibrant Corniche next, checking out the Capital Gate Building, Emirates Flag and other landmarks.
Finally, the cruise passes through the manmade Lulu islands with their lush beaches, before visiting the Fisherman’s Village, where fishermen still plying Abu Dhabi’s ancient trade using age-old methods.
Go On An Abu Dhabi Desert Safari Adventure
The cool thing is that you can go on Abu Dhabi Desert Safari in the magnificent Rub al Khali, where the huge dunes dominate the sky. Go dune bashing, sand boarding, quad-biking and camel riding on the huge dunes.
Relax in a genuine Bedouin tent with soft drinks, local entertainment and a henna painting if you’re on an evening or overnight safari. Sleeping under the stars on the enormous Rub al Khali is an experience you simply don’t want to miss.
Visit the Qasr Al-Hosn Fort
The Qasr al-Hosn is a historical landmark and the oldest stone building in the city of Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. It was designed by Mohammed Al Bastaki and built in 1761. Wikipedia
The recently restored Al-Hosn Fort, also known as the Old Fort or the White Fort, is the oldest building in Abu Dhabi and one of its major historical points of interest.
The palace was built in 1793 as the residence of the ruling family and the seat of government.
The interior of the Al Hosn Fort has been modernized and is now used as a museum that traces the history and culture of Abu Dhabi, with oral histories and plenty of historical photographs on show.
The courtyard and the magnificent tile work over the main northern gate are notable features. The Qasr al Hosn is a restored fortification in the middle of the city, a remanent of the historic establishment of the city of Abu Dhabi. It retells the story of the various Sheikhs and how they developed the Emirate. Relatively uncrowded, it makes for a simple quiet view of life in the desert in the old times. There is arts centre attached to the fort, but it was shut for an event so couldn’t visit it. But I had a chance to experience the coffee ceremony – Bait al Gahwa.
Address: Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum St(2nd St), Al HisnW3, Abu Dhabi
Get Top Views At The Observation Deck At 300
Climb up to the Observation Deck on the Etihad Tower’s 74th floor for fantastic views of the entire city. The best way to do this is to eat something at the Jumeirah Hotel and enjoy the views for free. Or, you can pay the entry fee and redeem it for refreshments later, at the observation deck’s restaurant.
Enjoy some high tea while enjoying Abu Dhabi’s glittering skylines, bordered by red dunes on one side and the sea on the other. Observation Deck at 300 is Abu Dhabi’s answer to Dubai’s Burj Khalifa.
Tour the Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital
The Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital is a working veterinary hospital for ill and injured falcons, but it also provides educational guided tours of its facilities for interested visitors.
The Falcon Hospital is the world’s first and largest hospital dedicated to health care services for the falcons, the UAE’s national bird.
Opened in 2007 for visitors to experience the fascinating world of falcons and falconry, it provides visitors a deep insight into the world of falcons, the history of falconry as well as the life of falcons in modern times.
Visitors also have the chance to get closer to the falcons, hold one and take photo with them.
The tours allow you to get up close and personal with these birds of prey in the wards, while an on-site museum explains the history of falconry.
Guided tours of the hospital (which must be pre-booked) are held twice daily Sunday to Thursday and are one of the few opportunities a visitor has in Abu Dhabi to connect with traditional Emirati heritage.
Address: Near the Abu Dhabi International Airport – Sweihan Road – Abu Dhabi – United Arab Emirates
To Sum Up
Don’t limit your exploration of Abu Dhabi’s delights just to the delights we’ve listed. Be sure to check out Yas Water World (one of the premium water amusement parks in the UAE) and explore Abu Dhabi’s beaches as well. Squeeze some shopping in and while you’re at it, a lovely massage after a day in the sun at one of Abu Dhabi’s beach resorts is just the ticket.
Where to Stay in Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi city is a big city, and hotels are spread out across the area. For first time visitors, the Downtown area, near the Corniche, is a good base and has a wide variety of hotels.
If you’re after a resort-style stay, check out Jumeirah at Saadiyat Island Resort and the area near the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, along the shores that separate Abu Dhabi Island from the mainland.
- Near the Corniche. Even more ostentatious than the name suggests, the Emirates Palace Hotel on the waterfront is truly mindboggling in its size and scope. Embodying all that is shiny and excessive about the UAE’s take on luxury. Each guest is attributed a personal butler, and food on-site is naturally the best of everything from all reaches of the globe.
- Nearby, the modern Conrad Abu Dhabi Etihad Towers offers spectacular views of the Arabian Gulf from its Observation Deck at 300, as well as apartment-style accommodation for families.
- Situated in Abu Dhabi Corniche, Southern Sun Abu Dhabi Hotel is the perfect place to experience Abu Dhabi and its surroundings. The excitement of the city center is only 7.4 km away.
- Jannah Burj Al Sarab is home to 324 bedrooms. The hotel is not too far from the city center: just 0.5 km away, and it normally takes about 30 minutes to reach the airport.
- Budget accommodation is difficult to find in Abu Dhabi, but many mid-range hotels offer steep discounts – especially during low season. If you’re watching your wallet, the Centro Yas Island Hotel, located in Yas Island of Abu Dhabi, is a popular choice for travelers.
- Golden Tulip Downtown Abu Dhabi is a great place to stay in many ways. Well-placed in the beaches, business, and shopping area of Abu Dhabi city
- Nestled in the heart of Abu Dhabi Corniche, Oryx Hotel is an ideal spot from which to discover Abu Dhabi. The hotel is just 2.0 km away from the city center.
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