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Abu Dhabi

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  • Interesting Places to see around New Zealand

    A majestic structure nestled amid skilfully manicured gardens; Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque serves as an impressive landmark to the beautiful city of Abu Dhabi.

    Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the world. This marvel of modern Islamic architecture was built by Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan in the remembrance of his father. A key feature worth noticing is the world’s largest loomed carpet in one of the prayer halls, which was completed in two years by a total of 1200 artisans. One can best enjoy the beauty of this structure with 45 to 60 minutes of guided tours (available in English and Arabic) available for Muslims and non-Muslims. Photography of mausoleum is strictly prohibited but all other parts of the mosque can be photographed.

    The Louvre is the first art and civilisation museum of its kind in the United Arab Emirates. Located on the Saadiyat Island in the capital of the United Arab Emirates, this cultural landmark is a part of the Saadiyat Cultural District. With its strong emphasis of preservation and appreciation of culture, the emirate of Abu Dhabi is the ideal location for the Louvre. 

    Ferrari World is the world’s first Ferrari ‘themed’ park offering adrenaline-pumping experiences to its visitors with its unique concepts in its rides. Apart from the thrilling rides, explore the state of the art simulators, live performances, electric go-karts and purchase some authentic Ferrari racing memorabilia.

    Located on Yas Island, Ferrari World is also the world’s largest indoor theme park comprising of various Ferrari themed rides and attractions. It also has the biggest Ferrari store along with an array of authentic Italian restaurants at your disposal. Nestled under the bright red roof are some of the most thrilling rides including two of the world-famous ones, Flying Aces, the world’s highest ride and Formula Rossa, the world’s fastest roller coaster.

    The Yas Water world has since been rated as one of the top 12 water parks in the world. It boasts of 40 exciting and unique rides and slides, and five other attractions that are guaranteed to keep you entertained throughout your day here. There are multiple restaurants, cafes, lockers, children’s play area and all other essential facilities to make your visit a smooth one.

    The Observation Deck at 300 provides a 360-degree panoramic view of the city of Abu Dhabi. With the use of binoculars for a closer view, one can enjoy a unique bird’s eye view of the skyline, the Corniche and the Arabian Gulf. As the name suggests, the Observation Deck is located 300 metres above ground, which makes it the highest vantage point in the city.

    The Observation Deck at 300 boasts of a seafront location and can be found on the 74th floor of Tower Two of the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers complex. The dress code is smart casual or business casual. It is wheelchair-friendly and also offers valet parking to visitors. Photography is allowed, so be prepared and carry along a camera to capture the phenomenal views.

    Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi is a fully air-conditioned indoor amusement park. This USD 1 billion worth project houses 29 rides, 7-star restaurants, shops, and thrilling shows all including iconic Warner Bros entertainment characters.

    It is located on Yas Island near Ferrari World and Yas Waterpark and is the third Warner Bros. amusement park to be built after the ones at Oxenford and Bottrop. The theme park is divided into 6 immersive theme areas which are Gotham City and Metropolis (mimics fictional sets of DC characters like Spiderman and Batman), Cartoon Junction and Dynamite Gulch (full of cartoon libraries of Looney tunes and Hanna Barbera), Bedrock (themed around Flintstones) and Warner Bros. Plaza (designed to showcase Hollywood of olden days).

    Located on Abu Dhabi’s waterfront, the Emirates Palace is one of the most expensive hotels in Abu Dhabi, as well as, a cultural hub. Visitors have access to only the certain areas of the hotel like the lobby, exhibitions and outdoor areas.

    The grand building of the Emirates Palace is an iconic structure of Abu Dhabi in the same way as Burj Khalifa is to Dubai. The place is adorned with dauntless domed gatehouses along with flying ramps to the vestibule, 114 domes and a private beach with 1.3km coastline. The lofty structure of the palace was built at the cost of AED 11 billion, epitomizing magnificence with 1002 crystal chandeliers and 400 luxury rooms and suites. Serving as a cultural centre for the city, one need not check in to the hotel to explore its lavishness.

    The Abu Dhabi Corniche is an 8 kilometre-long stretch of a well-maintained waterfront that nestles cafes, restaurants, children’s play zone and separate pathways for pedestrians and cycles.

    The white sandy shore and generous esplanade of the waterfront, Corniche is a perfect place to spend one’s evening. With a perfect view of the high-rise skyscrapers along the seafront, the place also serves as a recreational area for locals and visitors. Separate pathways are also dedicated for walking and cycling around the picturesque gardens of the Corniche.

    A one-of-its-kind revolutionary wonder of Abu Dhabi, Masdar City is entirely powered by renewable energy. This planned city is soon to pave the way for sustainable-energy-run cities in the near future.

    Nestled in close proximity to Abu Dhabi Airport, Masdar City is a project initiated by the Abu Dhabi in the year 2008 with a goal of engineering a city of the future. With the aim of becoming one of the most eco-friendly cities amid rapid urbanization, today it is the world’s first and only carbon-neutral city driven by renewable energy and zero-waste.

    The Qasr al-Hosn is an exhibition centre displaying the historic events in the past of the city of Abu Dhabi. It is alo the oldest exhibition in Abu Dhabi and is the narration of the story of Abu Dhabi and its people.

    This iconic structure, featured on the back of the AED 1000 note, was built in 1760 as a watchtower in order to safeguard the freshwater well. Later on, after expansion in 1793, it served as an ancestral home of the ruling Al Nahyan family and remained in the hands of the royal family until 1966. However, currently an intriguing oration of its testimony and exhibit of photographs brings back the past to life. The Emirati voices contemplate on the city’s past and its transformation over the years along with the key role of Qasr al-Hosn in Emirati tradition and culture.

    One of the historic structures of UAE, Al Jahili Fort presents a picture perfect view nestled amid nature’s beauty.

    Established in year 1891, Al Jahili Fort if one of the most remarkable buildings in UAE, which was erected in order to protect the city and its prized palm groves. The fort snuggles amid the gorgeous manicured gardens offering sight that will leave you awed. The place was once the headquarters of the force that was created to protect the mountain pass and keep inter tribal peace, the Oman Trucial Scout’s as well as, residence of the local governor. Now carefully renovated and restored back in its full glory, the fort is adorned with a museum exhibiting the work of British adventurer Sir Wilfred Thesiger.

    Heritage Village is a fantastic reconstructed Arab village which depicts the life of the Emiratis before oil was discovered in the nation. 

    Heritage Village is an ideal place to experience and learn the ways of traditional Gulf life and their other techniques. The place features the Bedouin lifestyle with a dash of campfire, traditional tents made of goat’s hair, coffee and display of the Falaj irrigation system. There are also the demonstrations of customary skills shown by artisans such as weaving and spinning by women, metalwork and pottery. If you ask for it, the craftsmen may also oblige you with a chance to try them. There is also a small shop selling various products including handmade soaps, dried herbs, silver jewellery, clothes and much more.

    Al Ain National Museum is the oldest museum in the UAE and was formerly the residence of Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the late founder of UAE. It houses many artefacts like weaponry and more that was discovered from many archaeological sites that date back to sixth millennium BCE. Established in the year 1937, the Al Ain Museum also referred to as Al Ain Palace Museum. Also serving as a political and social center, the palace was refurbished in 1998 and was finally opened as a museum.

    A beautiful structure sitting 45 kilometers south of Abu Dhabi is the Emirates National Auto Museum displaying a rich collection of cars. From the biggest, longest, oldest to the most expensive collection, this is Sheikh Hamad bin Hamdan Al Nahyan’s private collection of cars.

    The Al Ain Zoo is a humongous 400-hectare park near the base of Jebel Hafeet is where visitors can see many beautiful species of animals in enclosures that closely resemble their natural habitats. Over 4,000 animals reside in the zoo out of which around 130 species are considered endangered. There are plenty of green public spaces for picnics alongside several playgrounds, a cafeteria and a train tour of the wildlife area. There’s also a bird show featuring predatory and night birds which occurs in the evening. 

    Wadi Adventure, located in the city’s oasis Al Ain, is the region’s first and only human-made facility which exclusively features Whitewater Rafting, Kayaking, Surfing, and Wakeboarding. Wadi Adventure lets you enjoy all your favourite high-intensity thrill sports at one place. It provides unparalleled adventure experience in a safe and comfortable environment.

    It is perfect for a challenging day out with your family/friends, with a variety of things to do there. For people with no experience, private or semi-private classes can be arranged. However, for this prior online-booking is recommended.

    Women’s Handicrafts Center exhibits the well-preserved local arts and crafts of the region and the techniques involved. Situated near the museum are round buildings conducting workshops where the female artists showcase simple henna designs, handmade souvenirs, silver thread work, textile weaving, basket-making, embroidery and much more.

    A small museum managed by Abu Dhabi Women’s Association is a place where one can understand and enjoy the handicrafts of the region. It is a creative scheme to bring popularity to the handiwork of local artisans.  A shop present in the complex has various products for sale along with temporary souvenirs that may last for a week. Make sure to remove your footwear before entering the huts and seek permission before photography.

    The World Trade Centre Mall in Abu Dhabi is located in the busy World Trade Centre complex in Al Hisn district. The mall has over 160 outlets spread across more than 60,000 square metres of retail area. It has both local and international brands, multiple cafes and restaurants, an 8-screen cinema hall, and over 5,000 square metres of rooftop gardens.

    Also called ‘The Souk’, this mall’s architecture is a contemporary reimagining of traditional Arabian souks made with wooden interiors. It has high ceilings, two atriums with retractable roofs, Arabian décor, and plenty of landscapes gardens. It has stores for a variety of requirements like accessories, shoes, clothing, perfumes, and even artefacts. The World Trade Centre (WTC) Mall is the ultimate shopping, entertainment, and dining destination in the city.