Are you thinking about visiting Abu Dhabi? Do it.
Abu Dhabi, which is overshadowed by its bigger sibling Dubai, is the capital of the seven emirates and a hidden treasure brimming with ancient custom and soaring buildings.
We just spent 24 hours in the current marvel, and we’re already itching to return. So, if you find yourself in the affluent Emirate for a brief visit, we’ve put up this guide to help you make the most of your time there.
Do you want to know how to get to Abu Dhabi? We took the bus from Dubai, but there are a variety of options. Here’s where you can learn more about how to get to Abu Dhabi from Dubai.
Things to Know Before You Go
Abu Dhabi, nicknamed the conservative cosmopolitan, is not nearly as strict as you may imagine. It’s critical to recognize a nation’s culture and traditions wherever you go, much like it is everywhere else.
If you’re going to Abu Dhabi, keep the following points in mind.
- The national currency of the UAE is the Emirati dirham, although most hotels and restaurants accept credit and debit cards.
- It’s not necessary for tourists to dress formally, but it is advisable to be aware of dress codes in specific settings such as shops and places of worship. It is suggested, but not required, to dress modestly, and you can’t go wrong with long and loose clothing (this will also help you stay cool.) It’s fine to wear swimming costumes or beachwear by the pool or on the beach.
- Abu Dhabi is bathed in sunshine all year, but the summer months are scorching and humid. It’s not as bad between October and May, when temperatures average to about 80 degrees Fahrenheit, although this time of year does attract the majority of visitors. When the holy month of Ramadan begins and finishes, keep in mind that tourists are prohibited from eating or drinking in public during daytime hours to show respect for those who are fasting. Many restaurants and attractions modify their opening hours during Ramadan.
- It’s unlawful to get intoxicated outside of hotels, and couples should keep their interactions to a bare minimum when out in public to avoid unwanted attention.
What To Do
Here’s what you shouldn’t miss out on during your stay in Abu Dhabi for 24 hours.
SHEIKH ZAYED GRAND MOSQUE
When in Abu Dhabi, visiting the country’s biggest mosque is a must. The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is a architectural marvel that will have you gaping open-mouthed as you walk around this magnificent place of prayer.
The mosque is mostly white in color and was constructed using mostly marble as well as valuable stones like gold and other precious commodities. It can accommodate 40,000 people and contains the world’s largest hand-woven carpet as well as gold-plated chandeliers.
The mosque is open for tourists on Fridays during prayer time, which is from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (closed for tourists on Friday mornings during prayer time.) Visitors must dress modestly; men are not allowed to wear shorts, and women may only show their hands, feet, and face outside the mosque. You will be supplied with Islamic clothing before you enter the mosque.
AFTERNOON TEA AT EMIRATES PALACE
Don’t miss out on the chance to visit Emirates Palace, one of the world’s most luxurious and extravagant hotels.
We partook in the Royal Afternoon Tea Affair at Le Cafe’s beautiful tea lounge, the Cafe. We were given a variety of sandwiches, freshly made scones, cakes, and tartlets, as well as chocolate fondant warmed to perfection.
We’ve tried afternoon tea all across the world, but we’ve never had 23K gold flakes on our cappuccino – we really did feel like royalty. From the moment you walk into the palace, you’ll be astonished by its incredible interior—the hotel is completely overlaid with gold leaf and “glows.”
If afternoon tea isn’t your thing, you may take a guided tour of the Palace and learn about its history as well as see some of the hotel’s most costly rooms.
The Etihad Towers are a modern reflection of how far Abu Dhabi has progressed in recent years, with their contemporary, sophisticated, and luxurious appearance. You’ve undoubtedly seen the famous scene from Fast and Furious 7 when a vehicle is “crashed” through three of the buildings.
After marveling at the architecture from afar, you may climb to the UAE’s highest vantage point at Observation Deck on 300 for breathtaking views of Abu Dhabi and its surrounding islands. We were delighted a few floors lower, so we went to Ray’s Bar on Level 62 to enjoy a drink and take in the spectacular view with a cocktail.
ABU DHABI MALL
The UAE is a shopper’s heaven, and you can’t leave Abu Dhabi without treating yourself to something nice.
We couldn’t resist taking a peek into the labyrinth of shops at the Abu Dhabi Mall, which is connected to our hotel, Beach Rotana. You’ll like strolling around this plush mall full of well-known brands if you’re a shopaholic like me.
The area around Masdar City features several attractions, including a wildlife park and the Abu Dhabi mall, which is one of the nation’s oldest shopping malls. We appreciated the more local feel to this mall, with nuts, traditional sweets, and ouds available as well as major brands.
Where To Stay
You won’t be disappointed with Beach Rotana if you’re seeking for a slice of luxury and a fantastic base while in Abu Dhabi. This 5-star city resort is conveniently located in the center of Abu Dhabi, and location is critical when time is limited.
Check-in was a breeze, and we immediately fell in love with the enormous ceilings and opulent décor of the lobby. We stayed in a premium room with a private balcony with breath-taking views of Abu Dhabi’s skyline.
The beach, complete with a pool and spa, is just one of the five-star features at the Beach Rotana. The swim-up bar’s incredible cocktail menu was difficult to resist.
The ideal location of the hotel allows you to not only explore the city, but also to unwind away from the heat. The personnel were incredibly nice and really did everything possible to ensure that we had a great stay.
Last updated: 21/10/2021