The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque:
The third largest mosque in the world, was named after Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, founder and first President of the United Arab Emirates, who was buried there. The whitewashed mosque covers a large area between Mussafah bridge and Maqta bridge. After its full renovation it can accommodate up to 40,000 people. It has 80 domes, 1,000 columns, chandeliers gilded with 24 carat gold and the largest woven carpet in the world. Unlike other mosques in Abu Dhabi, the Grand Mosque can be visited by non-Muslims too.
Address: 2nd Shaikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum Street, www.szgmc.ae
Al Maqtaa Fort:
200 years old, the fort stands alone at the city entrance. It was built to keep off bandits and raiders in the past and today it plays key role to the amazing architectural contrast against the ultra-modern bridge standing next to it. A special attraction, as it is part of Abu Dhabi’s history, it has a small museum with hand-crafted objects in its interior.
Traditional Heritage Village:
A “live museum” offering a glimpse to the past of the country. It is located in Abu Dhabi’s centre and presents a replica of a traditional village on an oasis, with houses build of mud, tents for camping in the desert, irrigation systems, traditional crafts workshops, traditional mosque and roofed market. In the workshops, craftsmen will give you information on traditional skills by the craftsmen, such as skills for the art of metal and pottery or the art of textiles. There are shops where you can buy folk art objects and spices, dried herbs and handmade soap.
Information: Nr Marina Mall, Breakwater, tel. +971 2681 4455
A very interesting place where you will learn how local craftsmen create the traditional dhow vessels, that have been used in trading and transportation in the Middle East for ages.
Khalifa Park Museum:
With many artefacts and information on the history and civilisation of Abu Dhabi, the museum attempts a historical overview from prehistory to this day. Do not miss the Time Tunnel, the most important sight of the museum: a train travels you in living history, with all sights, sounds and smells of the past.
The most picturesque area of the city is famous for its fountains and the seaside boulevard that is surrounded by parks. It frames the city against a backdrop of modern buildings overlooking the sea. See the blooming gardens, enjoy a ride on a traditional wooden dhow, indulging the view of the various aspects of the horizon. Corniche Park is located on the east side of Abu Dhabi island and is ideal for fishing and bird watching.
Qasr al-Hosn Fort:
Also known as the White Fort or Old Fort, this palace is the oldest historical building in Abu Dhabi, dating back to 1793. Up to 1966 it was the royal palace and headquarters of the government. Within its grounds it houses the Cultural Foundation, a popular venue for art, music and cinema events.
also known as Ferrari Island. This artificial island on the east coast of Abu Dhabi, is home to hotels, villas, golf courts and marinas, a cinema theme park by Warner Bros. and the famous Ferrari World. Do visit the extravagant hotel Emirates Palace, the most expensive hotel in the United Arab Emirates and one of the 7-starred hotels in the world.
It translates as “the island of happiness” and investors hope that this happiness will be achieved upon completion of the projects, approximately in 2018. It is located 500 metres from Abu Dhabi’s coast. The investment plan of 27 billion dollars, which is in full progress at the moment, will allow the island to become the top cultural centre for the Emirates. The island will be home to the largest Guggenheim museum, covering 30,000 sq.m. as well as the Louvre Museum, which will be inaugurated in 2015.
Al Ain Town:
Also known as the “Town of Gardens” this unexpected verdant oasis is only 90 minutes away from Abu Dhabi. The name of the town, which means “spring”, shows that it has the blessing of significant underground water springs supply. Al Αin, the second largest city of the Emirate, is a fertile area, with many fields, public parks and important archaeological sites. While there, you can visit the Al Ain zoo, the Al Ain museum and the Hili public parks. Al Ain is 90 minutes away from Abu Dhabi, by car.
The city of wealth and luxury, with futuristic buildings, one of the highest income per capita in the world, a centre with high commercial and tourist traffic, Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates. Built on a strip of land on the Persian Gulf with a multitude of small islands surrounding it, Abu Dhabi was inhabited thousand of years ago by nomadic tribes. Up to the finding of the first oil deposits in 1958, the economy of the area was based on camel farming, fishing and pearl hunting. Since then the economy of the Emirate boomed and today ranks 3rd in oil producing countries of the Arab world. In the last decade, Abu Dhabi features in the lists of hot destinations, thanks to the high standard tourism infrastructures it has developed. With luxurious hotels, gourmet restaurants, huge shopping centres and a vibrant artistic action, Abu Dhabi attracts thousands of visitors every year. Book you tickets to Abu Dhabi with e-ticketshop.com and explore the cosmopolitan face of the Middle East.