Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates. The grandeur of its towering skyscrapers and the extravagance of its shops and restaurants makes it a popular tourist destination in the Middle East. Much like its northern neighbor, Dubai, this city can feel like a futuristic metropolis from another world. This winter, you won't regret grabbing some cheap tickets to Abu Dhabi and exploring the wonders this city has to offer.
If you need more convincing, check out these six must-see Abu Dhabi attractions:
1. Marina Mall
If you're looking to do some shopping while in the UAE, you must visit the Marina Mall, located directly on the waterfront. The mall is five stories tall and is roughly the size of 44 soccer fields combined. Rising from the mall is a 30-story tower which contains a rotating restaurant, so you can view the ocean and the city while enjoying a delicious meal. Even if you're not interested in shopping, the mall contains a cinema, a bowling alley, a videogame arcade, a trampoline park and a relaxing spa. You could easily spend an entire day at the Marina Mall.
2. Etihad Towers
These five towers have become a symbol of the city since their completion in 2011. Rising from the beachside in one of the most lavish districts of the city, these towers are considered the jewel in the crown of the UAE. The tallest of the towers is 76 stories tall, or 984 feet. The podium level, from which the towers rise, contains a luxury shopping mall with the latest fashions. The towers also contain 12 fine dining establishments featuring dishes from across the globe. Anyone wishing to stay in style should consider booking a room at the Jumeirah, an amazing hotel with all the amenities you've ever dreamed about.
3. Ferrari World Abu Dhabi
Fast cars, roller coasters and fun for the whole family await you at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. At this sports car-themed amusement park, you can check out a gallery of classic Ferraris, soar through the sky on exciting roller coasters and even see an acrobatic show featuring cars, BMX bikes and more! At Ferrari World, you can also learn about how these amazing cars are designed and built. And while mom and dad are checking out the cars, the kids can head off to enjoy the rides. When you get hungry, you even grab some authentic Italian food from one of the five on-site restaurants.
4. Yas Island
Yas island contains so many fun things to do that it could very well be its own vacation destination. The island itself is a manmade wonder that is reachable by plane, car or boat. It contains an amusement park, golf course, restaurants, a mall, a water park, beaches, hotels, a race track, a concert stadium, a forum for Vegas-style magic shows and the UAE's largest nightclub.
When thinking about staying on Yas Island, it can be difficult to decide where to start and what to do first. Visitors could easily spend a week on this island of fun without ever feeling the need to leave. After all, when there's that much to do, why would you need to go anywhere else?
5. Qasr al-Hosn
If you want to take in some history while you're in Abu Dhabi, you must see the Qasr al-Hosn, the oldest stone structure in the city. This brilliantly white fort and tower was constructed in the late 18th century to defend the old fresh-water well on Abu Dhabu island. It is now the site of the Qasr al-Hosn Festival, which features cultural exhibitions, animal shows, music and street food. The festival takes usually takes place the first week of February.
6. Abu Dhabi Cultural Foundation
To learn more about the culture of the UAE, stop by the Abu Dhabi Cultural Foundation, located near the Qasr al-Hosn. Here you'll find exhibits about the local culture, art workshops, lectures and concerts of traditional music. It's a great place to visit to learn about what the area was like before it became ultra-modern city it is today.