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12:07 Wednesday

Destination of Distinction

Legend has it that sometime in the 1761 Bedouin hunters followed a deer all the way from Liwa to the shores of what was to become Abu Dhabi, which, in translation, means the “father of the deer”. When they got here, a couple of kilometers inland from the coast, they discovered something more precious than gold, something that allowed them to settle down: water! To start with, there were only 20 barasti settlements, but news of water travelled fast and the barren coast was soon to become a small fishing village.

Today Abu Dhabi boasts as a destination of distinction. Abu Dhabi, the Capital City of United Arab Emirates, is known for its magnificence in culture & heritage and its modernity. Abu Dhabi is the largest of the seven Emirates making up the UAE Federation. It possesses 94 per cent of the country’s oil reserves, covers around 87 per cent of the UAE’s total land area and is home to 38 per cent of the population. It is both the seat of the Federal Government and a bustling business center.

Located on the Northeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula, Abu Dhabi offers a strikingly contrasting landscape, from sandy beaches to green oases, and from skyscrapers to rolling desert dunes. Its coastline is home to nearly 200 islands offering fascinating 

This architectural work of art is one the world’s largest mosques, with a capacity for an astonishing 40,000 worshippers. It features 82 domes, over a 1,000 columns, 24-carat gold gilded chandeliers and the world's largest hand knotted carpet. The main prayer hall is dominated by one of the world’s largest chandeliers –10 metres in diameter, 15 metres in height and weighing twelve tonnes. Reflective pools surround the mosque, amplifying its beauty. The striking white and gold colours shining in the sun are transformed at night by a unique lightning system, which reflects the phases of the moon.

The Corniche Road spreads across an impressive eight kilometres of manicured waterfront that includes children’s play areas, separate cycle and pedestrian pathways, cafés and restaurants, and the Corniche Beach - a lifeguarded beach park. Abu Dhabi’s pristine Corniche beachfront has been awarded coveted Blue Flag status - the internationally renowned eco-label for beaches and marinas that guarantees clean and safe bathing water.

It is a reconstruction of a traditional oasis village provides an interesting glimpse into the emirate’s past, traditional aspects of the desert way of life, including a campfire with coffee pots, a goats’ hair tent, and a falaj irrigation system, are attractively displayed in the open museum.
There are workshops where craftsmen demonstrate traditional skills, such as metal work and pottery, while women sit weaving and spinning. The craftsmen are happy to share their skills, and may occasionally give you the chance to try them out.
The little spice shop is a treat – you can get a range of dried herbs, handmade soap and plenty of chatter.

Close to Abu Dhabi International Airport, the Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital is the world’s largest, and most advanced, falcon hospital. Its highlight is a falcon display museum as well as a facility with free-flying falcons.

Guided tours of this award-winning specialist hospital are available. You can visit the luxurious wards where the birds are kept, explore the museum, which gives an insight into the noble desert sport of falconry, or try your hand at the pursuit in the lush gardens.

It’s fast and furious fun for all ages at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi - the world’s first Ferrari theme park and the largest attraction of its kind. The park tells the Ferrari story with passion and excitement through more than 20 exhilarating and educational rides and attractions, interactive shopping and authentic Italian dining experiences.

Beneath its huge, iconic red roof, attractions include: Formula Rossa, the world’s fastest roller coaster, reaching speeds of 240 kmph; Galleria Ferrari, the world’s largest Ferrari gallery outside Maranello with an interactive display of cars from 1947 through to the present; Speed of Magic, a fantastic 4-D adventure through deep green jungles, icy caves and ravines and to the mouth of a fiery volcano.

The experience of Yas Marina Circuit louder, faster and you have to witness it in person. Yas Racing offers a variety of options, to suit all tastes. If you are a motorsport fan, booking a track experience is a unique opportunity. A series of track day packages are available, including ‘Driver Experiences’, ‘Passenger Experiences’, ‘Private Driving Tuition’ programs and ‘Racing License Courses’. The closest you'll get to personally driving a Formula 1 -style vehicle, featuring a 3000cc V6 created by renowned engine-builder Cosworth, is while booking a seat behind the wheel of the Formula Yas 3000. On-board cameras will capture all the action and preserve this incredible memory for you.

A real iconic Abu Dhabi landmark, this luxurious hotel blends Arabian splendor with the latest technology to create a magical and memorable experience. During daytime, the hotel’s golden-sandy colour contrasts with its fresh green gardens, silvery water fountains and the blue sky. At night, the hotel’s lighting changes subtly, featuring a majestic rainbow-changing effect over the main dome.

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