The Emirates boasts some of the best experiences you will cherish for life. Thrill seekers can scream on the Formula Rossa, the fastest rollercoaster in the world, or visit CLYMB, the world’s tallest indoor climbing wall.
Its diverse offerings also include heritage sites, historic landmarks, theme parks and nature activities which make Abu Dhabi an attractive tourist destination.
Feet Do Travel help you plan your stay and share the 7 best places to visit in Abu Dhabi.
Yas Island, Abu Dhabi is a one-stop destination for all your travel needs. It offers thrilling and record-breaking attractions, including extremely fast rollercoasters and cars. It is also home to high-quality shopping facilities and dining establishments. If you’re lucky, you can even be a part of some of the Emirate’s major events on this isle.
Here’s an overview of the best attractions Yas Island Abu Dhabi offers:
- Ferrari World Abu Dhabi – One of the most visited theme parks in Abu Dhabi. It is home to numerous record-breaking thrills. Test your bravery on the world’s fastest roller coaster called ‘Formula Rossa,’ take a spin on the Flying Aces, and ride the island’s 400-metre long zip-line.
- Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi – An action-packed theme park that splits fun and adventure into six different zones – Warner Bros. Plaza, Bedrock, Gotham City, Dynamite Gulch, Metropolis and Cartoon Junction. Be awed by the facility’s blockbuster rides and stunning theatres. If you’re travelling with your kids, they will surely be amazed by Fred Flintstone, Bugs Bunny and Batman.
- Yas Waterworld – The exhilarating rides and superb water slide make this impressive water park one of the island’s famous attractions. Its theme is based on ‘The Legend of the Lost Pearl,’ offering four thrill levels to excite all family members, including the little ones.
- CLYMB – Home to the world’s tallest indoor climbing wall and the biggest indoor skydiving flight chamber to provide your adrenaline fix.
- Yas Links – Set along the ocean, this attraction caters to golf enthusiasts. It also boasts the nine-hole par-three academy course, which is among the best places to learn golf. Once you’re tired and hungry after playing or learning golf, there’s a sports bar for pub grub and drinks.
- Yas Marina – Besides being full of boats, this area is also famous for its collection of superb bars and restaurants. There is a venue for watching casual sports with great views out over the water.
- Yas Marina Circuit – This is a year-round destination offering numerous activities for people of all ages. If watching the best drivers showing off their skills on the circuit inspires you, consider booking yourself a driving experience. You can get into a car and have a professional driver take you for a spin or jump in and race an Aston Martin GT4. There’s no better way of experiencing how stunning the race track is than speeding around in a car. On some days of the week, the circuit is also open to cyclists, runners and walkers for free, but you must register on their website before visiting.
- Yas Beach – This stylish beach club is another must-visit place on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi. Besides the beach, there are also swimming pools, fitness classes, restaurants and bars. You can also book some of the watersports activities such as snorkelling, sailing and kayaking.
- Yas Gateway Park – If you like green spaces, this well-maintained park is a lesser-known gem on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, with wide lawns that are big enough for football, kite-flying, or just stretching out. There are also play areas for your little ones and picnic areas for the entire family.
- Yas Mall – The island’s giant shopping centre offers high-street shops like Zara, Mango, and H&M and department stores like Marks & Spencer, Debenhams and House of Fraser. While you’re shopping, you can leave your child at KidZania Abu Dhabi. But if you are not in the mood for shopping, you can check out the 20-screen cinema for a variety of movies.
As the hub of theme parks in Abu Dhabi, Yas Island is a great place to start your adventures in the capital city of the UAE.
Covered in white marble, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque combines Ottoman, Mameluke, and Fatimid design elements of Islamic architecture. The massive house of worship makes for an impressive edifice from afar and is even more beautiful up close.
Good thing even non-Muslims are allowed to tour the mosque, including the library. Best of all, it also runs free guided tours and provides modest garb to wear temporarily and respectfully while visiting.
The Louvre Abu Dhabi is one of the Middle East’s excellent museums with a wealth of different art on display, including Picasso paintings, ancient Egyptian statuary and a permanent collection housed in more than 12 galleries. It also stages exhibitions every year.
Louvre Abu Dhabi traces the artistic achievements of human history, from the Neolithic age to the contemporary era. It is one of the three planned huge museums on Saadiyat Island – the other two are the Zayed National Museum and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi.
Experience a different side of Abu Dhabi by heading to the mangrove forests. There are kayaking tours that cater to all ages and levels of experience, ranging from 90 minutes to three hours.
Sign up for an eco tour to better understand the ecology of mangroves and discover the forest’s last beautiful remnants. Alternatively, book a night tour and explore the mangroves as you glide through the waters in the dark.
Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital is a vet infirmary for injured and ill falcons. It also offers guided tours that allow you to get up close and personal with these birds in the ward and learn their history and significance in Arabic culture.
You may also be the opportunity to hold a falcon or feed one, depending on the activities the vets are conducting during your visit.
Dubai has the Burj Khalifa, Abu Dhabi has the Observation Deck at 300. It is located on the 74th floor of the Conrad Abu Dhabi Etihad Towers Hotel, offering magnificent skyline views of the city.
Though there is an entry fee for non-hotel guests, the ticket is redeemable for food and beverages at the deck restaurant. Don’t miss the enjoyment of having tea as you take in the sweeping views across the city and coast to the desert plains beyond.
The Heritage Village is an exact replica of a typical Bedouin village that offers visitors insights into Emirati life, before oil was discovered. It also features pretty beach areas, making it a great place for a stroll during your visit.
Exhibits feature the usual daily objects as well as displays that introduce guests to the pearl diving trade and local agriculture. You can even take advantage of workshops where you can learn traditional Emirati metalwork and weaving skills.
With a diverse collage of brilliant architecture, cultural monuments, stunning beaches, ultramodern shopping destinations and adventure-sport areas, Abu Dhabi is indeed a tourist paradise.
To experience the best of Abu Dhabi, be sure to include the above-mentioned places in your travel itinerary.