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Five tourist attractions of Abudhabi in United Arab Emirates
Bygone are the days when the word Abudhabi cast a spell of those endless sandy deserts and camels in our minds. Today, this capital city of UAE, the T-shaped Island in the Persian Gulf, looks like an emerald when seen from the bay. It is because of the relentless efforts of the President Sir Sheikh Zaid, this desert land underwent rapid transformation into a lush green, luxuriously skyscraping metropolis. The rich oil reserves in the marine areas opened wide opportunities of employment and people from all parts of the world migrated to this city making it multicultural.
Though Abudhabi is versatile with a huge collection of beach clubs, zones and other seaside interactions, here I’m discussing just five attractions that a tourist should not miss during his visit.
1. Sir Bani Yas Island
Decades ago, this island was a barren desert. Today it anchors Arabia’s largest wildlife park amidst greenery nicknamed as Noah’s Ark of modern day. The endangered Arabian species white oryx is raised here providing favorite environment. A large herd of antelopes, gazelles and deer can be spotted here roaming around. Carnivores such as cheetah and hyena also form a part of this lush Sir Bani Yas Island.
The bird sanctuary set up in this island is home to several exotic birds that gives ample scope for bird watchers here. Several adventurous activities are also carried out in this island that attracts several tourists.
The marine areas of Abdhabi have a sizable deposits of oil from which petroleum is produced. It has contributed a lot in the raising of funds for transforming this desert into a paradise.
Popular for its large hydrocarbon wealth, UAE is one of the highest GDP per capita in the world with a majority of the resources owned by Abudhabi; 95% of the oil and 6% of gas.
2. Sheikh Zyed Grand Mosque
This Grand Mosque enjoys the honor of largest mosque in Abudhabi and 8th largest in the world. The late President Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan was behind the lift off of this grandeur of architecture. As it is built with the artisans and materials from several countries belonging to Europe, Asia, America, it is said that Sheikh Zyed Grand Mosque unites the world.
The period 1996-2007 witnessed the ascending of this grand mosque. It is the key of worship in Abudhabi and thousands of pilgrims reach here on special occasions such as Eid.
The mosque’s design and architecture is highly inspired from Persian, Mughal and Moorish styles. Built from natural materials such as marble stones, semi precious stones, crystals and many others, the floral courtyard of Sheikh Zyed Grand Mosque is an epitome of best marble mosaic in the world. Carpet, chandeliers, calligraphy art and the unique lightning system that decorate this mosque are commendable craftsmanship imported from abroad.
3.The Corniche Road
This beach side road is the most attractive and gorgeous part of Abudhabi. The towers reaching the sky and the turquoise bay sketch design and color to The Corniche. Boulevards laced with date palms and luxurious parks attract visitors and families to spend sometime there. Parks are landscaped exorbitantly with pools having fountains in the intersections. There are suitable tracks and pathways laid down for athletes, cyclists and joggers.
Among the skyscrapers, hotels and resorts overlooking the Gulf capture the sight of the tourist travelers. The waterfront arcades of Sheraton Hotels & Resorts in The Corniche are a marvel of construction in the Arabian lands.
4. Emirates Palace
This seven star luxury hotel is the crown of Abudhabi that enjoys the honor of second most expensive hotel ever built. Run by Kempinski Group, this gorgeous hotel has its own marina and a helipad that attracts several celebrities to enjoy their holidays. The hotel floor has an area of 8,50,000 m2 with an underground parking accommodation for 2500 vehicles.
With 302 rooms and 92 suites, Emirates Palace welcomes its guests. If gold and marbles are used in furnishing the suites, a big golden dome decorates the lobby. The hotel is landscaped lush green in 100 hectares and a private beach of 1.3 km laces it. Two swimming pools and a spa meant for relaxation and separate tennis courts and a rugby pitch are also set in this marvel of construction, Emirates Palace of UAE.
The cultural heritage of Arabian countries is best exhibited here through displays and demonstrations. History students can learn many by visiting this village consisting of traditional tents and huts beside the bay. The skyline of Abudhabi really mesmerizes the tourist traveler when viewed from the shores of Heritage Village.
Run and managed by the Emirates Heritage Club, this oasis village throws light into UAE’s past. A museum inside it has a vivid collection of statues of Arabian personalities, swords, yachts, mud pots and several other things that existed years ago. The open village display the traditional ways of life; warming up in front of a campfire, goat hair tents and Falaj, Arabian system of irrigation.
The art of pottery, threadwork and metal works are demonstrated here. They give you a chance to try them out if you’re interested. Handmade bags, pots and other antiques are displayed here for shopping.
Arabian weapons, desert well, a faux fort plastered with mud, Arabian camels all contribute to this rich cultural Heritage Village of Abudhabi, UAE.
Have you visited Abudhabi? If yes, do you like it?
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© 2014 Radhika Sreekanth