Whenever people talk about how modern the UAE is, they usually think about Dubai, but Abu Dhabi is also a modern city of luxury and technology. You will find a lot of amazing and entertaining things to do in Abu Dhabi that you can’t find anywhere else in the world. Here are some interesting and fun facts about Abu Dhabi that will give you a glimpse into the greatness of the UAE’s capital.
Historical Facts About Abu Dhabi
There are several old buildings, ancient oases, and archeological sites in Abu Dhabi. These things show that Abu Dhabi was a significant region even in the old days. Here are some more historical facts about Abu Dhabi.
A Japanese Architect Designed Abu Dhabi
You might be surprised to know that the city was not designed by local talent but by one of the best in Asia. Certainly an interesting fact about Abu Dhabi that not many are aware of.
A well-established Japanese architect by the name of Katsuhiko Takahashi was responsible for designing and planning the city. The design of the city was made in the 1960s. Sheikh Zayed also had a big say in what could be included and what had to be removed from the design.
Takahashi passed away in 2017, but one of the sons of Sheikh Zayed met his family in Tokyo and gave them a letter of thanks for the contribution of their father to the design of the Abu Dhabi.
The First President Of The UAE Was From Abu Dhabi
One of the important facts about the UAE is that the founder of the UAE, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, was born in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. He ruled over Abu Dhabi even before the emirates joined hands to form the UAE. After the unification, he became the first president of the country.
Abu Dhabi Is Home To The World’s Largest Uninterrupted Desert Region
Abu Dhabi encompasses part of Rub Al Khali, also known as the Empty Quarter. It stretches from Abu Dhabi into other parts of the Arabian Peninsula. This vast expanse of sandy terrain sets the stage for incredible desert adventures.
In the desert landscape, you can indulge in thrilling activities through a desert safari, where you embark on off-road journeys through the dunes, experiencing the nomadic roots of the region. You can also explore the Liwa Desert, which boasts tall sand dunes reaching heights of almost 800 meters, creating a beautiful and mystical backdrop for your escapades.
Pope Francis Visited Abu Dhabi
In 2019, Pope Francis became the first pope in history to visit the Arabian peninsula. His plane landed in Abu Dhabi, and he was greeted by the then crown prince of the UAE, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al Nahyan.
The Pope was invited to an interfaith conference. The Pope also held a mass for over 100,000 people at the Zayed Sports City Stadium, which is also located in Abu Dhabi.
Cultural Facts About Abu Dhabi
As the country’s capital, Abu Dhabi has an exceptionally lively culture. It even holds one of the largest and most successful festivals in the world. Here are some interesting facts about Abu Dhabi’s arts and culture scene.
Falconry Culture Is Big In Abu Dhabi
To tell you how important falcons are in Arab culture, there is a hospital in the city that is only for falcons. While this fun fact about Abu Dhabi might sound peculiar to foreigners, it is very much tied to the local’s daily life.
Just as it is common in other parts of the world to keep cats and dogs as pets, in Abu Dhabi it is common for people to have falcons as pets.
Abu Dhabi Has Its Own Louvre
Everyone knows about the Louvre in France, but did you know there is a Louvre in Abu Dhabi as well? The Louvre Abu Dhabi is the largest art museum in the region. The museum has signed an agreement with the Louvre in France to use its name till the year 2037.
There are around four big exhibitions that happen in Louvre Abu Dhabi every year. You may not find the Mona Lisa here, but there are around 700 other amazing works of art that you can enjoy.
The Abrahamic Family House
The UAE is known for working hard to promote interfaith harmony, especially among the Abrahamic religions, and the Abrahamic Family House is a testament to that.
The Abrahamic Family House is a large complex where you will find prayer sites of all three major Abrahamic religions. There is also a mosque, a church, and a synagogue in the complex.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Holds The World’s Largest Hand-knotted Carpet
The was crafted by approximately 1,200 skilled artisans and is a testament to their incredible craftsmanship. Covering the main prayer hall, this magnificent carpet spans an impressive area of around 5,700 square meters. What makes it even more awe-inspiring is its intricate design and attention to detail.
The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque stands out not only for its interior and exterior grandeur, but also for its unique blend of Mughal, Ottoman, and Persian architectural styles.
In addition, Abu Dhabi also hosts other impressive landmarks like the Founder’s Memorial and Emirates Palace.
Dates Production In Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi is one of the largest producers of dates in the world. It is estimated that there are around 22 million trees in Abu Dhabi that produce over 594,000 tons of dates. There are also state-of-the-art date production factories in the city that produce and package the dates, which are then sold in both local and international markets.
It is one of the impressive facts about Abu Dhabi, and you should definitely grab some dates as souvenirs when visiting.
Abu Dhabi Festival Is An Annual Event In The Emirate
Abu Dhabi is famous for its luxurious parties. Several festivals take place in UAE every year, but the Annual Abu Dhabi Festival is one of the top cultural events in the country.
The festival has been celebrated since 2004. It is focused on building international networks to promote arts and culture in the country. The Annual Abu Dhabi festival has a strong international presence, and celebrities & dignitaries from all over the world attend the festival every year.
Simple Facts About Abu Dhabi For Kids
With all its advanced developments, the city also offers many fun activities for kids. Here are some interesting Abu Dhabi facts that your kids may enjoy.
Warner Bros World Is The Largest Indoor Theme Park In The World
If you are ever in Abu Dhabi with your kids, then don’t forget to take them to Warner Bros World, which is the largest indoor theme park in the world. There are around 29 exciting rides that will make your trip quite memorable. The theme park covers a whopping 1.65 million square feet, so you can spend a full day here.
Dolphins In Abu Dhabi Coastal Waters
An interesting fact about Abu Dhabi is that its coastal waters are home to two different species of dolphins: the bottlenose dolphins and the Indian Ocean humpback dolphins.
The total population of dolphins in this region is around 2500. Out of these 2500, around 1800 are bottlenose dolphins, while the remaining 700 are Indian Ocean humpback dolphins. No other place in the world has as many humpback dolphins as Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi And Hollywood
Abu Dhabi is famous for being one of the favorite locations of Hollywood producers. Many filmmakers make their way there to take advantage of the impressive city and nature scape for their movies. The Fast and Furious franchise and the Mission Impossible franchise are two examples of the many major movies that were filmed in Abu Dhabi.
Second Largest Man Made Island In The World
With an area of 25 kilometers, Yas Island in Abu Dhabi is the second-largest artificial island in the world. The design of Yas Island is not as innovative as other man-made islands in the UAE, but it has a lot of fun and interesting activities for both kids and adults.
Useful Abu Dhabi Facts For Travelers
If you are someone who wants to visit the Ferrari World or the Louvre Abu Dhabi, or any of the other amazing attractions in Abu Dhabi, then this information about Abu Dhabi can be helpful.
Yas Mall Is The Largest Mall In The Emirate
Yas Mall holds the distinction of being the largest mall in Abu Dhabi. It has a total area of around 2.5 million square feet, offering a vast and immersive shopping experience.
Located on the famous Yas Island of Abu Dhabi, this mall has many stores that sell clothes, electronics, and much more. You will find many international brand outlets in the Yas Mall. There are also restaurants that offer both local and international cuisine from different parts of the world.
Many international events, including fashion shows, are also held at the Yas Mall.
The Fastest Roller Coaster In The World
One of the best facts about Abu Dhabi is that it is home to the fastest roller coaster in the world, known as Formula Rossa. Located at the iconic Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, this thrilling coaster offers an adrenaline rush like no other. It has a top speed of 240 km/hr, which it reaches in under 10 seconds.
This ride is not for the faint of heart, but if you are an adventurer, you should definitely check it out.
The World’s First Zero Carbon City
Masdar City, located in Abu Dhabi, is the world’s first zero-carbon city in the world. It is just one of the many steps the UAE has taken to counter environmental issues. The project is being completed in phases, and even though it is not fully developed, there are already over 1000 people living in Masdar City.
Other countries can take lessons from Abu Dhabi on how to innovate and revolutionize a cleaner and greener urban living environment.
Abu Dhabi Hosts A F1 Grand Prix
For fans of fast cars, this has to be one of the most exciting facts about Abu Dhabi. The first grand prix held here was actually Formula One’s first-ever day-night race.
The Yas Marina Circuit is where the race takes place. The track has all the state-of-the-art facilities that you would expect for a Formula One grand prix. Many big names have taken part in Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, including Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen, and Lando Norris.
To really see and experience this impressive facility, you can take a guided tour of the Yas Marina Circuit and peek behind the curtains. It’s certainly a must-do activity for fans.
You can even take a ride around the circuit with a professional driver on a sleek YAS Radical SST for the ultimate adrenaline rush. Now, if you are up for it… you can even get behind the wheel yourself on one packed with a 3000cc V6 engine.
Common Facts About Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi is famous for a range of wonderful things, including restaurants that offer delicious UAE food to several famous landmarks in UAE that capture the true essence of the country. Here are some common facts about Abu Dhabi that have become part of the emirate’s identity.
Luxury Hotels In Abu Dhabi
There are many luxury hotels in Abu Dhabi, but one that stands out is the Emirates Palace Mandarin Oriental. With a construction cost of around $3 billion, it is one of the most expensive hotels ever built. The interiors of the hotel are adorned with exquisite chandeliers, marble floors, and gold.
The Emirates Palace is not only a hotel but also a cultural landmark, representing the rich heritage and modern vision of Abu Dhabi.
The Capital Of The UAE
Due to its popularity, many people think that Dubai is the capital city of the UAE. But Abu Dhabi is in fact the capital, as well as the largest of the seven emirates that join to form the UAE.
The Meaning Of The Name
It is a little-known fact about Abu Dhabi that the city was named for the large population of gazelles in the emirate. Abu means father in Arabic, and Dhabi means gazelle.
Other Interesting Facts About Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi is a fascinating place with a lot of intriguing attractions that interest people from all over the world. Here are some more amazing facts about Abu Dhabi.
First-Ever Autonomous Racing League
Abu Dhabi will be the first place in the world to host an autonomous racing league event. The event is to take place on the same track as the Abu Dhabi grand prix, which is the Yas Marina Circuit.
The UAE has been working on different types of autonomous vehicles, and this project is just an extension of its vision to promote and boost autonomous vehicle technology.
Etihad Airlines Is Headquartered In Abu Dhabi
The UAE has two national airlines, Emirates Airlines and Etihad Airlines. Etihad Airline’s headquarter is located in Abu Dhabi, and it is one of the largest airlines in the world. It operates around 1000 flights every week.
LEARN MORE ABOUT ASIA
Discovering More Fun Facts About Abu Dhabi
These impressive facts about Abu Dhabi are just the tip of the iceberg. If you want to experience the magic of Abu Dhabi while creating beautiful memories, then this city should definitely be on your bucket list. While you are there, don’t forget to try tasty local food while you explore the beautiful attractions in the emirate.