With Etihad Airways offering direct flights from the UK, Abu Dhabi is a hassle-free winter sun destination with plenty on offer.
Abu Dhabi is the UAE’s capital city, it’s home to Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the country’s president, making it one of the most important cultural and political hotspots in the Middle East.
Here’s a look at what’s on offer…
In response to Abu Dhabi’s increasing popularity, new luxury hotels are opening constantly, offering their many executive guests a full package of pampering and relaxation.
One of the most renowned hotels is the Emirates Palace. It’s the most luxurious in the UAE, costing more than $3bn to construct, and comprises its own marina and beach. The dining is exquisite and every opportunity to provide a luxury experience has been taken, blending the quality of a leading global hotel with stylistic flairs from closer to home. If you want to fully embrace the luxury, try a ‘Golden Cappuccino’, dusted with real flakes of gold!
Abu Dhabi has entered the world gastronomic stage, with a huge range of high end restaurants representing cuisine from around the planet – the standards and execution are exquisite, marking the region as a true player on the foodie scene.
If you feel like sampling traditional Middle Eastern delicacies, choose an Emirati restaurant. The traditional style of UAE cooking is a fusion of South Asian and Persian tastes and uses a lot of meat, seafood and rice. You’ll notice a lot of aromatic spices, like saffron and cumin, that add a sprinkle of Middle Eastern magic to each dish.
Winter sun wouldn’t be complete without a beach, and in Abu Dhabi you’re spoiled for choice. From private beaches to small islands and hotel beach clubs, the white sands and turquoise waters won’t disappoint.
A must-see are the white sands of Saadiyat beach, where you might even spot turtles and dolphins. Or, if you prefer something a little more secluded, you can visit one of Abu Dhabi’s archipelago of natural islands. Sir Bani Yas Island is just 170km off the coast and offers guests a chance to experience luxury totally surrounded by natural beauty.
Abu Dhabi is developing into a cultural hotspot in the Middle East, with an impressive range of public and private art galleries on offer. Perhaps most impressive is the recent addition of the Louvre Abu Dhabi – the sister site to the gem in Paris’ art scene. Newly built, the architecture alone is an aesthetic extravaganza, and the collections are easily on par with the leading galleries around the world. Thoughtfully curated exhibitions brim with antiquities from both East and West, with a somewhat anthropological outlook, representing a journey through humanity.