Experience the Thrills and Culture of the UAE’s Capital City with These Top Things to Do
Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates, is a vibrant and exciting destination that offers visitors many experiences–from stunning architectural wonders and luxurious hotels to thrilling theme parks and cultural attractions, Abu Dhabi has something to offer everyone.
Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an adventure seeker, there is no shortage of things to do and see in this dynamic city.
Here are some fantastic Abu Dhabi things to do:
- Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque: This mosque is one of the most stunning architectural marvels in the world, with its white marble domes and intricate Islamic designs. It is the largest mosque in the UAE and can hold up to 41,000 worshippers at a time.
- Ferrari World Abu Dhabi: This indoor amusement park is a must-visit for thrill-seekers and car enthusiasts. It boasts the world’s fastest roller coaster, Formula Rossa, which reaches speeds of up to 240 km/h, as well as other adrenaline-pumping rides and attractions.
- Yas Island: This man-made island is home to several popular attractions, including Yas Waterworld, Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi, and the Yas Marina Circuit, which hosts the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
- Emirates Palace: This luxurious hotel is a sight to behold, with its gold-plated interior and opulent decor. Visitors can enjoy a tour of the hotel’s public areas, which include a private beach, landscaped pools, and a marina.
- Qasr Al Watan: This palace is a testament to the rich cultural heritage of the UAE, featuring exhibitions and interactive displays on the country’s history, heritage, and achievements.
- Louvre Abu Dhabi: This museum is a cultural masterpiece, showcasing art and artifacts from around the world in a stunning building designed by architect Jean Nouvel. It offers visitors a unique perspective on the history and diversity of human creativity.
- Saadiyat Island: This island is a cultural hub featuring museums, art galleries, and performance spaces, including the Manarat Al Saadiyat and the upcoming Guggenheim Abu Dhabi.
TIP: The best time to visit Abu Dhabi depends on your preferences and what activities you plan to do. Generally, the peak tourist season in Abu Dhabi is from November to March, when the weather is cooler and more comfortable for outdoor activities. During this time, temperatures average around 25°C (77°F) during the day and 15°C (59°F) at night.
If you prefer warmer weather and enjoy outdoor activities such as swimming, sunbathing, and water sports, the best time to visit is from April to October, when the weather is hot and dry. During this time, temperatures can soar up to 40°C (104°F) during the day and around 30°C (86°F) at night.
If you plan to visit Abu Dhabi during Ramadan, which typically falls during different months each year based on the Islamic calendar, keep in mind that many restaurants and cafes may be closed during the day, and public displays of eating and drinking are prohibited in many areas during daylight hours.
Did you know?
Abu Dhabi is home to the world’s largest hand-loomed carpet. The carpet is inside the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, measuring around 60,570 square feet. It took a team of 1,200 artisans from Iran over a year to create the carpet, which features a floral design in various shades of green, blue, and red.
The carpet was unveiled in 2007 and is considered a masterpiece of Islamic art and craftsmanship.
A little history:
Abu Dhabi’s history spans more than 5,000 years. The area that is now Abu Dhabi was once a tiny fishing village known for its pearl diving industry. In the 18th century, the Al Nahyan family, one of the ruling families of the UAE, established a settlement in the area, which would later become the capital city.
In the late 1800s, Abu Dhabi was brought under the British Empire’s influence, which helped expand its economy and trade. However, it was only with the discovery of oil in the 1950s that the city’s fortunes changed dramatically.
The oil boom led to rapid development and modernization, including new infrastructure, buildings, and facilities.
In 1971, Abu Dhabi became one of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and was named the capital city. Since then, Abu Dhabi has continued to grow and evolve, becoming a significant player in the global economy and a hub for culture, tourism, and innovation.
These days, Abu Dhabi is a thriving metropolis home to over 1.5 million people and attracts millions of visitors annually.