Best things to see and do in Abu Dhabi and how to visit on a budget

Abu Dhabi is renowned for offering up city breaks packed with heaps of glamour, culture, breathtaking landmarks and some pretty diverse activities

However when there’s so much on offer, trying to narrow it down for your holiday can feel like a somewhat overwhelming task.

To give you a helping hand, we’ve done the leg work and picked out some of the top attractions you won’t want to miss from the spectacular Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque to the newly-opened Louvre Abu Dhabi museum.

We’ve also searched out some of the best places where you can find cheap Abu Dhabi city breaks, whether you’re after a package or just looking for budget-friendly accommodation.

Check out our guide below…

Best things to see and do in Abu Dhabi

1. Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

The largest mosque in the UAE, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque has long been wowing visitors thanks to its intricate architecture, breathtaking domes, reflective pools and the iconic prayer hall which is home to the world’s biggest chandelier and carpet.

Open to the public, entrance is free and there are guided tours if you want to make sure you see all the highlights.

 

2. Ferrari World

Ferrari World Abu Dhabi

The ultimate playground for thrill-seekers, this theme park boasts everything from Ferrari driving experiences to Formula Rossa, the world’s fastest rollercoaster (it reaches a a speed of 0 to 240 km/h in 4.9 seconds).

Located on the city’s Yas Island, where you’ll find plenty more water parks and entertainment, the park is a must-visit for those who want a burst of action in the itinerary. Travelling with kids? Don’t worry, there are some more gentle attractions for little ones.

Tickets start from AED295 (approx £61) for single day tickets.

3. Liwa Oasis and desert

Liwa Oasis

If you’ve got some extra time to play around with during your trip, it’s well worth looking into a guided tour or safari of this incredible desert which sits approximately 93 miles southwest of the city.

There are various trips whether you’re after sand-bashing on the shifting dunes, sand boarding, or want to enjoy traditional evening shows and an Arabic buffet beneath the stars.

4. The Louvre Abu Dhabi Museum

The Louvre Abu Dhabi Museum

The museum opened in November 2017 and is already proving a firm hit with visitors thanks to the incredible collections of artefacts in its 9,200sqm of galleries.

There’s plenty on loan from notable French museums including Musee du Louvre, Musee d’Orsay, and Centre Pompidou.

5. Saadiyat beach

Saadiyat Island

If you’re after a day on golden sandy shores, then Saadiyat’s public beach is a must-visit. For those who don’t like to laze by the water, there’s plenty on from beach yoga classes to water sports including sailing.

You’ll also find some hotels and resorts with their own private stretches of beach, for those who want to escape the crowds.

Want to stay on the island? Booking.com has a handy round-up of the best hotels to suit a wide array of budgets.

6. Warner Bros World

Man wearing a Superman costume poses for a picture at Warner Bros World

If you grew up obsessed with the likes of Batman, Superman and Bugs Bunny, then get ready for a serious dose of nostalgia at this new indoor theme park.

Divided into six separate lands from Gotham City to Cartoon Junction, there’s fun to be had for everyone from superhero thrill-seekers to kids who just want to see Jerry give Tom his comeuppance.

We went exploring the new theme park to find out just what visitors can expect – including the best rides you won’t want to miss while you’re there.

How to visit on a budget

Abu Dhabi isn’t the cheapest of city breaks, but that doesn’t mean you need to blow all of your budget. We take a look at some of the places where you could find tempting deals for your holiday…

Flight and hotel packages: Expedia and TravelSupermarket can be good sources if you’re flexible on your dates of travel, while Thomas Cook offers a host of Abu Dhabi holidays.

Budget-friendly hotels: Lastminute.com has Abu Dhabi hotels from £41 per night, while TripAdvisor has a handy round-up of the top 10 cheap hotels based on travellers’ reviews.

Cheap flights: British Airways can be a good source for cheap flights with prices from £297pp, not to mention it often hosts sales where you could snap up a bargain. If you’re not fussed about flying direct, it’s worth comparing prices on Skyscanner where you could bag fares from £257pp.

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Best museums to visit

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