Whilst we can’t answer this question because we haven’t yet visited Dubai, we can tell you all about our trip to Abu Dhabi and allow you to make up your own mind.
Whilst Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates, it is known to have a more quiet and relaxed atmosphere than Dubai.
Abu Dhabi is an amazing city with something to do for everyone! We visited in September 2019 for 8 nights and we stayed in an all inclusive hotel called Beach Rotana which was a lovely hotel with amazing facilities. The hotel has a prime waterside location with a private beach and also provides direct access to Abu Dhabi Mall.
It also has 12 options for dining, so if you stay all inclusive like we did, you’re spoilt for choice!
The best things to do in Abu Dhabi
When we visited Abu Dhabi, we were looking for a really relaxing and chilled break, and our holiday to Abu Dhabi was a lot different to some of the others that we have been on. We usually like a jam-packed itinerary for our holidays and we plan every day down to a tee, but we didn’t do this so much on this trip. We spent a lot more time chilling around the hotel pool drinking mojitos than we usually do, probably down to how hot it was!
Saying this, we did go out and do some great activities.
- Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center – The largest mosque in the country, and one of the largest in the world, it is the key place of worship for daily, Friday and Eid prayers. The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center is absolutely the most stunning Mosque. The mosque’s architects were British, Italian and Emirati, with design ideas borrowed from parts of Turkey, Morocco, Pakistan and Egypt, among other Islamic countries. We were going to visit in the morning but somebody suggested to us that it was better to go at sunset as the Mosque looks amazing at sunset and it is also cooler, so we would definitely recommend visiting at sunset! Men are expected to wear respectable clothing i.e. full length trousers and a t-shirt or shirt and the same for women, or women can borrow an abaya to wear for free. We pre-booked our tickets for this.
- Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi – Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi is an indoor amusement park in Abu Dhabi. The park features characters from Warner Bros.’s franchises, such as Looney Tunes, DC Comics and others. The park is located on Yas Island near Ferrari World and Yas Waterpark. We had a really fun day here and would definitely recommend, especially if you are visiting with children. We pre-booked our tickets for this.
- Yas Mall & Ferrari World Abu Dhabi – We visited Yas Mall after we had finished at Warner Bros. World as it is right next door. The mall is huge with lots and lots of fab shops and restaurants. Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is also part of the mall, and although we didn’t actually go inside Ferrari world, you can walk right up to it and visit the gift shop and see some of it. If you do go to Yas Mall, we highly recommend a restaurant called Black Tap, they do the BEST craft burgers and shakes!
What is the weather like in Abu Dhabi?
In September when we visited, the average daily temperature is 39 degrees, so it is very hot! I remember we arrived late at night and we stepped out of the airport and our glasses literally steamed up! It was so hot and humid, we couldn’t believe it. Abu Dhabi is definitely the hottest place we have both ever been to, with a desert climate. You will certainly need to make sure that you take a high factor sun cream, spend time in the shade and dip in and out of the pool often to cool down if you are able!
December – March is winter time in Abu Dhabi and has much more manageable temperatures if you don’t like it too hot.
Is Abu Dhabi the richest city in the world?
At the time of writing this post in July 2021, Abu Dhabi is not considered to currently be the richest city in the world. According to the Forbes list of top 10 richest cities in the world, New York is considered to be number 1!
Is it expensive in Abu Dhabi?
We stayed in an all inclusive hotel when we visited Abu Dhabi so our spend when we were actually there was quite minimal other than when we left the hotel to go and do activities. We found the prices to not be too expensive and quite similar to what would be paid in the UK.
Can you drink alcohol in Abu Dhabi?
It is possible to buy and drink alcohol in licensed venues, such as hotels, restaurants and clubs. Alcohol consumption in the public is generally prohibited