If you’re looking for impressive shopping outlets, desert drives and golden beaches, the cultural haven of Abu Dhabi is a must-visit.
The capital of the United Arab Emirates is just waiting to be explored and we’ve come up with some of the best places to visit during your stay.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
The extravagant yet elegant beauty of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is something to behold. Founded on the concept that our most gracious achievements start from the heart, the mosque sits on the entrance to the Abu Dhabi City Island and can be seen from the three main bridges in Abu Dhabi; a symbol of the connection of the people of the UAE and the Sheikh.
Make your way through the mosque and experience the breath-taking beauty of 82 domes of differing sizes, each crowned with a gold wreath. Take in the amazing pure white colour of the mosque, probably it’s most famous and impressive feature and something that the Sheikh associated with purity; witness amazingly extravagant chandeliers and the world’s largest hand-knotted carpet.
Take a free guided tour of the mosque or explore by yourself; either way you’ll be able to immerse yourself in culture and gain a new depth of knowledge of the Muslim faith.
This adventure-packed island found close to the airport is one of Abu Dhabi’s most popular attractions. Visit the world’s largest water park and go sliding and rafting down ravines, or jump into the water and beat the waves with one of the park’s many wave machines.
Yas Island is also home to Ferrari World, a theme park home to the world’s fastest rollercoaster ‘Formula Rossa’. Formula Rossa certainly isn’t for the faint hearted… reaching speeds of 150mph!
Visit the Formula 1 track or see if there are any concerts on at the amazing Du Arena.
If you’re looking for adventure, a short journey from the city centre takes you to the desert and with that you’ll get to see sand dunes that rise 100 feet up from the ground. Choose a 4x4 tour to venture through the pristine golden sands or take a trip to Al Ain, ‘the Garden City’, an oasis in the middle of the desert; the stunning greenery of this desert haven is simply breath-taking.
One of Abu Dhabi’s most impressive and interesting (to say the least) attractions is Masdar City. In this zero-carbon development, no cars are allowed. Enter the area in a driverless pod that runs along guided rails to explore this city that is powered entirely by the sun and winds that blow off the desert sands. Though Masdar City is currently no larger than a village, the project is expected to expand substantially in coming years and is home to technology that is likely to be seen in towns and cities across the world in the future.
If Abu Dhabi isn’t on your list of places to visit in 2017, it’s time to consider it! Adventure or relaxation, Abu Dhabi has something to offer for everyone and with beautiful weather pretty much all year round, there’s no reason not to go!
And why not explore Abu Dhabi on your way to Australia with Etihad? With over 600 hours of entertainment, outstanding catering that’s been voted the best in the business, incredible service and outstanding provision for families (including an onboard nanny), what's not to love?