Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in the Middle East along the Persian Gulf, not far from Dubai. Modern skyscrapers, a stunning grand mosque and more reflect off the surrounding aqua water. Below you’ll find family-friendly itinerary suggestions for a trip to Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Before you dive into the guide, you may want to first read Understanding a Quick Itinerary Guide. This will provide you with details on our trip planning philosophy, why it’s a quick guide, and what resources we use to plan. It also details what we mean by family-friendly, and further explains each of the sections included in a Quick Itinerary Guide.
Our trip details
- Length of stay: 6 hours
- Accommodation: N/A
- Type of trip: day trip, family trip with baby/toddler (15 months old)
- Month visited: May
- How we got in/out: drive in/out (private tour via car)
- How we got around: car (via private tour)
- Additional places visited on the same trip: Dubai, Oman
Family-Friendly Itinerary Ideas for Abu Dhabi, UAE
- Sheikh Zayed Mosque – crown-jewel of Abu Dhabi, stunningly beautiful inside and out, check hours, conservative dress code (they’ll provide abaya/clocks if necessary)
- Presidential Palace (Qasr Al Watan) – now you can visit part of the palace and it looks amazing, we were only able to drive by the complex
- Abu Dhabi Corniche – walk along the beautiful waterfront
- Corniche Beach – clean and calm beach, great for families
- Emirates Palace – opulent hotel dripping in gold and marble, coffee served with 24k gold flakes, used to house an ATM that dispensed gold bars
- Etihad Towers – a group of 5 modern mixed-use towers, spot them across from the Emirates Palaces entrance
- Louvre Abu Dhabi – a joint project with France, the museum focuses on bridging the gap between Eastern and Western art
- UAE Heritage Village (نادي تراث الإمارات – القرية التراثية) – replica oasis village showcasing traditional architecture, culture, and crafts
- Mina Zayed Dates Market – shops and stands selling a variety of dates and other foods
- Yas Marina Circuit – Formula 1 race track, view the track or check out their experiences and events for more excitement
- Ferrari World – Ferrari themed amusement park for the whole family
- Yas Waterworld – Emirati-themed water park
- Emirates Park Zoo – a zoo with various animal encounter experiences
Food Ideas for Abu Dhabi, UAE
- Al Fanar Restaurant – casual authentic Emirati cuisine
- Meylas – female-owned, food truck serving and honoring authentic Emirati cuisine and culture
- Observation Deck at 300 – enjoy tea and light dining while you check out Abu Dhabi from above in the Etihad Towers observation deck
- Al Maqam in Arabian Nights Village – about 1.5-hour drive outside central Abu Dhabi, but worth it if you’re looking for an authentic Arabian dining experience in a desert setting, including live music, belly dancers, henna, picturesque desert dunes and more
- You easily find a variety of Middle Eastern and other international options, but Emirati cuisine isn’t as abundantly available as you might expect.
- Most every place offers delivery, keep this in mind if you would prefer to eat in your hotel but not at their restaurant.
- Alcohol is only allowed to be served inside hotel restaurants and bars.
Top Tips for Abu Dhabi, UAE
- Consider the timing of your Abu Dhabi visit, whether the weather will be bearable and if it will be Ramadan.
- Abu Dhabi was built for cars, not pedestrians, taxis are the easiest way to get around.
- Abu Dhabi is slightly more conservative than Dubai, but nothing extreme. Try to dress moderately.
- Most everywhere is family-friendly and kid-friendly in Abu Dhabi, even fancier establishments.
- They are constantly working on new attractions and developments in Abu Dhabi, check out anything new that might open before your trip.
- Day trip to Abu Dhabi from Dubai with a baby
- Quick Itinerary Guide: Dubai, UAE
- Quick Itinerary Guide: Muscat, Oman
- 2 Days in Oman with a baby
- Understanding a Quick Itinerary Guide
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