Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates, and its second largest city. It rests on an island off the Persian Gulf, and has a population of approximately 2 million people. Abu Dhabi hosts federal government offices, and is the seat of the UAE Government. It accounts for roughly two-thirds of the UAE economy, thanks to its rapid development and high average income of its population.
The wealthiest and largest part of the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi exudes a cosmopolitan air, and has a lot to offer its visitors. Despite its modern flavor, however, Abu Dhabi stands out from its neighbours by retaining its local charm and traditions. From high end shopping on the four-mile long promenade, The Corniche, to enjoying a Middle Easter cafe, there is something to do in Abu Dhabi for all budgets. International and traditional cuisines are there ready to seduce, markets and high streets ready to amaze, and the incredibly fast-growing skyline ready to impress.
If you are looking for activities to enrich your Formula 1 experience, we have put together a few suggestions for you, which you can read below in Things To Do.
Abu Dhabi International Airport is located just 13km from Yas Island. Direct flights to Abu Dhabi operate from Manchester Airport and London Heathrow.
Dubai Airport is located 126km from Yas Island, and direct flights operate from London Heathrow and London Gatwick.
There are plenty of things to keep you busy during your stay at Abu Dhabi.
For those interested in savouring the local traditions take a seat in one of Abu Dhabi's cafés and enjoy the Middle Eastern cafe culture. Coffee has been an important part of Arabic life for centuries, so it is only logical that the café culture is as rich as the coffee. New trends in coffee-drinking are sure to be found and worth exploring in Abu Dhabi, well worth a visit.
Shopping & Window Shopping
For a cosmopolitan day out, try walking along the Corniche promenade, or heading to The Avenue, a high-end fashion mall located at Etihad Towers. The best place for a mix of boutique stores and fashion houses is the Avenue at Etihad, located in the Etihad Towers. Also featured among the ten best shopping areas in Abu Dhabi, you can find the Marina Mall - a short distance from the circuit itself - which mixes extravagant architecture with extravagant luxury brands. Abu Dhabi is known for its beautifully-designed shopping centers, and The Galleria really packs a punch. The restaurants here serve up international cuisine in style, and the shops stay open long into the evening, so you can take your time.
For something a bit more traditional, try visiting the Souk Central Market. It is built on the same spot as the first souk - a traditional Arabic open-air market - in Abu Dhabi, and boasts a variety of shops offering antiques, artisan crafts and perfumes. A beautiful modern building which attracts the eye (and the camera!), the Souk still conserves the most authentic art: haggling.
Museums & Architecture
From Etihad Towers, turn in a few blocks to visit the Qasr al Hosn fort, the oldest stone building in the city. Also known as the White Fort, it was built as a conical watchtower, to defend the only freshwater well in Abu Dhabi.
If you're looking for museums, Abu Dhabi has a lot to offer: the Louvre Abu Dhabi, established in 2017, showcasing artworks from around the world, attempts to bridge the gap between Eastern and Western art. The National Exhibition Centre is also a great spot, with its impressive Capital Gate building, which has an astonishing 18-degree lean.
You can also visit the camel market in Al Ain, or the Sheikh Zayed - the Grand Mosque - the largest mosque in the country, with a capacity for more than 41 thousand people.
Plan a Fun Weekend
Closer to the circuit, you might consider a visit to Ferrari World or the YAS Marina Waterworld. If you're looking to spend some time at the beach, Corniche beach is a good place to start, although the city has plenty more to offer.
During the month of November the average temperature for Abu Dhabi reaches 31 degrees Celsius, with little chance of rainfall expected, be sure to take your sun-cream and remember to stay hydrated!