Historically, pearling was the major industry for Abu Dhabi. However it was the discovery of oil in the late 1950s that spearheaded the evolution of the city into a great world capital. In 1971, when Britain formerly left the region, Abu Dhabi and six other emirates formed the United Arab Emirates. Today Abu Dhabi is the centre of political power of the country and wields important financial persuasion over the region.
Abu Dhabi is a year round destination with hot summers and mild winters. August is the hottest month with an average temperature of 39 degrees, while in winter the mercury rises to an average of 23 degrees.
Abu Dhabi hosts many festivals throughout the year including the country’s largest classical arts event, the Abu Dhabi Festival. Other events include the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the Marine Sports Festival and the Sounds of Arabia Festival, a six night event that celebrates traditional Arabic dance and theatre.
Etihad Airways and Hahn Airlines fly direct from Australia to Abu Dhabi in 14 hours and 30 minutes.
The United Arab Emirates has border crossings with Saudi Arabia and Oman.
Abu Dhabi boasts many luxury accommodation options including the Emirates Palace Hotel, Shangri-La, InterContinental and the Hilton.
To find out more about the range of holiday accommodation available with Travel Associates call 1800 017 849 or enquire online.
Sights to See
The largest mosque in the country, the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, was opened in 2007 and is almost fully completed. Located in the east in the city, the Mosque can accommodate over 40,000 worshippers and features 82 domes decorated with white marble. There are over 1000 columns throughout the structure and serene reflective pools surrounding the exterior.
Enjoy strolling along the beautiful waterfront, from Marian Village in the south to Port Zayed in the north. There’s a variety of attractions along the promenade to keep you amused. Also check out Mushrif Khalifa Garden, which has an aquarium, museum and a children’s play area.
Desert safari day trips are popular with visitors, where a four wheel drive will take you over the surrounding sand dunes. Usually included are camel rides, lunch and if the group is large enough, a belly dancer.
Don't leave home without...
Sunscreen and insect repellent are available through the country, however they may be more expensive than bringing them from Australia. Items left behind in Australia can generally be replaced if needed in Abu Dhabi.
The United Arab Emirates is a Muslim nation that follows Islamic traditions. Be considerate during Ramadan and don’t eat in front of locals observing the fast during daylight hours. Dress modestly when visiting religious buildings and remove your shoes when entering a mosque.
Things to be careful of…
Possession of trace amounts of illicit drugs can lead to lengthy jail sentences.
Prescription and Over-the-Counter Drugs
Bringing prescription or over-the-counter drugs readily available in Australia into the country can lead to jail or deportation. Check in advance to avoid prosecution and inconvenience.