Abu Dhabi is a city where the weather is fine all year round. This argument alone should motivate most to visit the capital of the emirate of the same name, the third-largest city in the UAE federation, and one of the hot spots in the Persian Gulf. If however, you needed more reasons to go, here are some things to see or do during your visit.
Between culture and architecture
The city is divided between modern, impressively designed buildings and some sumptuous buildings, especially religious ones, which are absolutely worth seeing. First stop: the great mosque! Named in honor of Sheikh Zayed, the country’s founding father, it is one of the largest and most beautiful mosques in the world. It can accommodate up to 40,000 faithful and is entirely covered with Carrara marble, known to be one of the whitest in the world, which gives it its immaculate appearance. It also contains the largest handmade rug and the largest rug in the world! Not to be missed under any circumstances, especially since it is the only mosque in the emirate that is open to non-Muslim visitors.
Then, off to Qasr al Watan, the presidential palace also called “Palace of the Nation”. Open to the public since March 2019, it is accessible every day of the week. On site, in addition to its magnificent architecture, you can admire all kinds of presidential gifts from all over the world: here a Samurai armor offered by Japan, there some falcon masks offered by Germany, or even Phoenician or Korean vases… In the evening, the palace comes alive for a sound and light show projected on its façade, a must!
A strong place of art in the Middle East
Another highlight of your visit will be the Louvre Abu Dhabi. This branch of the famous Parisian museum impresses with its extraordinary architecture, designed by Jean Nouvel. It is part of the construction of an entire cultural district on the island of Saadiyat, the other elements of which are still under construction. Its permanent collection includes works dating back to 3 millennia BC as well as contemporary works. From Da Vinci to Magritte, Picasso to Gauguin, there is something for everyone.
The last important cultural event: the Heritage Village. This real open-air museum offers visitors the opportunity to discover the way the inhabitants of the region lived before the discovery of oil. On the menu: reconstructed craftsmen’s workshops, a few museum rooms, craft shops, and even an old camel in a sandbox.
For those who love the coastline, opt for a walk on the Corniche, which runs along the Abu Dhabi coast. Luxury lovers, visit Emirates Palace Hotel, preferably between 12 pm and 4 pm if you do not have a reservation for one of its restaurants. Fans of thrills, head for Ferrari World, the only amusement park of the Italian manufacturer in the world, where the fastest roller coaster in the world is located, which reaches 240 km/h in 4.5 seconds. We agree, 48 hours seems like a short time to do all this!