The best thing to do is have fun…
Eid Al Adha is just around the corner and in Abu Dhabi there are countless things for you and your loved ones to enjoy for the long and restful week ahead. Eid Al Adha this year means that we will be getting a 6-day break, however, if you’re clever you can get 9 days off by just taking one day of leave.
So with that in mind here are 21 of the best things to do in Abu Dhabi this Eid Al Adha.
Monday, June 26
Visit your favourite superheroes
Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi was your top pick for ‘Favourite Attraction’ in the What’s On Abu Dhabi Awards 2021. And we felt that. All of our favourite DCU superheroes (and villains), Tom, Jerry, Buggs, Daffy, Tweetie, The Flintstones, and backed up by some spectacularly wild rides – plus all those expertly choreographed shows. And if all that wasn’t enough, there’s the additional incentive that kids go free to Yas Theme Parks all summer long (now extended until September).
Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi Dhs310 for adult and child. Tel: (600) 511 115. @wbworldad
Nothing but net
Abu Dhabi Summer Sports traditionally embarks on a mission to keep the capital’s residents active over the summer, providing a gargantuan 27,000 square metre indoor AC-cooled space to get gains in, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC). We don’t have final confirmation on the dates, or even sign-off that it’s actually happening, but the evidence we have for a 2023 return puts things, for us, beyond reasonable doubt. First, it’s an annual fixture (there was even a special Ramadan version earlier this year), and then there’s the fact the website currently displays banners for 2023. Last year Abu Dhabi Summer Sports ran through July and August, offering 25 courts, a running track, a huge indoor inflatable assault course, kids’ zone, spaces to play football, basketball, padel, volleyball, badminton, cross fit and special food and beverage outlets.
ADNEC. 2022 prices for court rental were staggered for peak, off peak, and weekend useage. Basketball court costs (per hour) for example are Dhs90 off peak, Dhs125 at peak times (weekdays 4pm to 11pm) and Dhs155 over the weekend. Access to Inflatafest is Dhs80 for two hours, or Dhs150 for a full day. @adsummersports
Set off for a staycation
The picturesque island of Sir Bani Yas has it all: beautiful nature, fantastic wildlife, sugary beaches… plus three Anantara Resorts all of which offer all-inclusive packages. There’s the family-friendly Desert Islands Resort, then a duo of all-villa resorts called Al Yamm and Al Sahel. You can book all-inclusive which includes your breakfast, lunch and dinner, or ultra all-inclusive which comes with unlimited house beverages, too. Prices start from Dhs3,945 at Al Sahel, Dsh3795 at Al Yamm, and Dhs1,499 at Desert Islands.
Anantara Sir Bani Yas, Sir Bani Yas Island, Abu Dhabi. anantara.com
Tuesday, June 27
Some fun for everyone
After swinging open its doors this Eid Al Fitr — Adrenark Adventure is now in full, adrenal gland sapping, operation. The chief deliverables are entertaining kids, heart rate spiking thrill experiences, and a wild three-level eKarting track. All with packages starting from Dhs99. There are activities such as potholing (that’s cave exploration for those that weren’t in the Girl Guides or Cub Scouts) and it is definitely not for the claustrophobic; a rooftop zipline that twists and turns, and allows you to control your own speed (and is maybe not one for the acrophobic) — Roll Glider; cheek-puffing thrill rides; bravery-testing stunt bag jumps; an elevated rope course; Through The Roof — a theme park style drop ride that gives your insides the John Cena treatment; softplay; a series of slides; multiple climbing walls; and more.
Al Qana, Khor Al Maqta. The basic ‘Discovery Pass’ is Dhs135 and will get you on six different experiences. @adrenarkuae
A dip in the pool…
The daycation package at Shangri-La Qaryat Al Beri includes access to the hotel’s seductive ensemble of five-star facilities between 10am and 6pm, including the pool and beach. All this for just Dhs250 on weekdays, Dhs300 on weekends — and the amount is fully redeembable, kids under six are free and those aged between six and 11 gain access to amenities for half price.
Shangri-La Qaryat Al Beri, Abu Dhabi, Khor Al Makta, 10am to 6pm daily. Tel: (02) 509 8555, firstname.lastname@example.org
Take your break to new heights
Ever wondered what Abu Dhabi looks like from 50 metres above Yas Island? You can find out with a ticket to the Roof Walk experience along one of the most recognisable sights in Abu Dhabi, the bright red roof at Ferrari World. If you’re looking to take your night out to the next level, opt for the 7pm nighttime experience for unparalleled views of the twinkly Yas skyline. Prices start at Dhs195.
Wednesday, June 28
Beat the heat with some Central fun
Central is without a doubt one of the most exciting new additions to the Yas Bay waterfront. Why? It’s a triple threat — great American fast food, on-site bowling within striking distance of the licensed bar and there’s a collection of modern and retro arcade games — including a full-size air hockey table. You can check out our review here, but it’s a solid gold win for hot
Central, Yas Bay, Yas Island, 4pm to 12am Mon to Thurs, 12pm to 3am Fri to Sun. @central_uae
Gather the gals
Penelopes has made waves in Abu Dhabi ever since it swung open it’s doors. Ladies are in luck, with every Wednesday offering a complimentary bubbly tower and wine at the bar from 8pm to 11pm. Sip the night away on bubbles whilst basking in live jazz music by the legendary Isiako, or if you prefer to dine, enjoy four dishes and three signature cocktails or unlimited wine for only Dhs200. A total no-brainer.
Penelope’s, Yas Island, Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi, Wed Ladies’ night, 8pm to 11pm, complimentary bubbly and wine at bar, or four dishes and three cocktails for Dhs200. Tel: (0)50 204 2475, penelopes.ae
Try out a brand new cafe Somewhere
The popular destination-inspired culinary concept by Independent Food Company can be found at Marina Mall, Abu Dhabi offering the same delicious Mediterranean cuisine. And like its first branch in Dubai, diners will be able to capture the diversity of the region through its food creations. If you need another reason to dine here, HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum – a noted foodie was snapped at the venue when it first opened with Uncle Saeed.
Somewhere, Marina Mall, Al Kasir, Abu Dhabi, weekdays Sun to Thurs 12pm to 10pm, weekend Fri to Sat 12pm to 12am, now open. Tel: (0) 56 141 5517. @somewhere
Thursday, June 29
If you dare…
A horror movie, but make it interactive. Said almost nobody ever, but somehow it still exists — and it does so right here in Abu Dhabi. Teams of two to 10 players can try their (disembodied) hand at a pair of spooky narrative-driven escape room experiences — with live actors. House of Evil and The Morgue — both take about 60 minutes to complete, and are priced at around Dhs180 (based on four players) per person.
Al Sikik Street, Al Danah. Tel: (050) 321 0541, @hauntedactivityuae
Find a new swanky bar
Dragon’s Tooth is a riddle wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma. Or more accurately, it’s outrageously trendy cocktail lounge, hidden in Chinese eatery Dai Pai Dong, which is itself stashed inside Abu Dhabi’s Rosewood hotel. The bar, which was inspired by the 1920’s Shanghai Jazz scene, has a daily 6pm to 8pm blended beverage combo deal — with one signature drink and a serving of dim sum for Dhs77.
Dragon’s Tooth, Dai Pai Dong, Rosewood, Al Maryah Island, open 6pm-1am on weekdays, 6pm to 2am weekends. Tel: (02) 813 5550, @daipaidongad
Confessions of a shopaholic
Abu Dhabi Summer Shopping Season (ADSSS) is back we’re never going to save money. Go on now go, right out the door, because with savings at 25 malls it probably covers your favourite store, and weren’t you the one who said you’d never miss a good freebie? The masterclasses will once again find themselves as a core elemental ADSSS aspect – offering you the opportunity to sharpen your skills under the expert tuition of industry icons. Enwisening opportunities include beauty tutorials and styling workshops, possibly even cooking (unconfirmed).
June 23, to September 10. @abudhabiretail
Friday, June 30
Barry’s got you covered
Now open at The Galleria, Barry’s is on a mission to get you looking like hawt to trawt. Self-billed as the ‘The Best Workout in the World’ — there’s some muscle behind that claim. The HIIT classes that take place in their famous Red Room (sporting a low red-lit rave vibe, that makes everybody look good) can burn up to 1,000 calories in a session. Here your workout is split by intermittent switches between floor work and treadmill beasting, resulting in an all-round physical tune-up.
Barry’s, The Galleria Al Maryah Island. Tel: (02) 582 0755, @barrysuae
Bevvy on a budget
You can play Beat the Clock every weekday at The Souk Qaryat Al Beri’s own little chill palace, Atlon. It’s essentially an extended happy hour where between 5pm and 6pm select drinks are just Dhs10 (with 50 per cent off the menu), between 6pm and 7pm certain bevs are Dhs15 (with 30 per cent off food) and then for the 7pm to 9pm slot you can pick up a drink for Dhs20 (20 per cent off food).
Alton Bar and Bistro, Qaryat Al Beri, Mon to Fri 5pm to 8pm, Dhs299. Tel: (02) 886 8443, @atlonabudhabi
All started with a big bang
Following the epic display of pyrotechnical pageantry for Eid Al Fitr, one of Abu Dhabi’s foremost waterfront entertainment districts will be lighting up the skies once more for Eid Al Adha. There’s a full night of entertainment on the cards, and the Waterfront’s cafes, bars, and restaurants provide the perfect perch for all the sky-pyro stuff. You’ll be able to catch the massive 10-minute-long displays daily at 9pm from Wednesday June 28, to Friday, June 30.
Yas Bay, Wed June 28 to Fri June 30
Saturday, July 1
The great escape
Taking inspiration from iconic TV shows, The Crystal Maze and Fort Boyard, Prison Island – Beat the Bars is a new adventure experience now open at Abu Dhabi Mall. Set over a 1,000m² expanse, this is no escape room — it’s a network of 26 individual ‘cells’ featuring tasks each more fiendishly conundrous (shhh, that’s a word) than the last, and you’ll have to beat them all if you want to escape the island, with winner’s bragging rights.
Abu Dhabi Mall, Dhs125, @prisonisland.abudhabi.
Road trips for burgers are always worth it
Pickl, one of Dubai’s most loved burger joints has opened another branch in Abu Dhabi. This time, it’s in the drive-thru park in Al Ain. That’s right Al Ain residents, there’s now a Pickl near you. Located in the Al Zakher Drive-thru Park, Pickl is now available in Al Ain for pickup Open from midday to 2am daily, no matter the time of your hankering for a burger, you can head down and get a load of those buns.
Pickl, Al Zakher Drive-thru Park, Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, open 12pm to 2am daily. @pickl.ae
F for respect
Located in Al Qana, Pixoul is the largest gaming hub of its type in Abu Dhabi and includes the latest evolution of Location-Based Entertainment (LBE). In addition to futuristic VR tech, the venue will also operate the first certified eSports (that’s competitive gaming for any noobs out there) academy in the region. Strap on the headset and you can free roam individually or with teams a selection of strategy, racing and *finger guns* shoot-em-ups.
Al Qana, Sun to Thu midday to midnight, Fri to Sat midday to 2am, priced from Dhs35. pixoulgaming.com
Sunday, July 2
Unda da sea
When it’s all looking a bit scorched earthy outside, why not head to Abu Dhabi’s stunning underwater kingdom, The National Aquarium. In addition to the eight themed zones; an XXL reticulated python known only as ‘Super Snake’; back stage tours; and marine animal rehabilitation projects, there are also a range of marine life meet and greets. You can, for example, have an ‘Ocean Encounter’ feeding sharks measuring up to two metres in length for just Dhs180. And that price includes access to the ‘Aquarium Journey’. Want to take it to the next level? You can also now dive with the sharks, and experience their gentle shrapnel-toothed beauty up close.
The National Aquarium Abu Dhabi, Al Qana, Al Maqta, Abu Dhabi, general admission from Dhs105. Tel: (02) 418 6666. thenationalaquarium.ae
Cool for the Summer
Featured fun includes zip lining, sledging, carousels, and zorbing. With attractions named things like Flight of the Snowy Owl, Magic Carpet, Polar Express Train, Crystal Carousel and Ice and Floes Bumper Tubes, The Troll Bowl, Drifts Downhill Run, and Snow Hares Bunny Hill and The Enchanted Tree. There are two main categories of ticket available at Snow Abu Dhabi, the Snow Park Pass Dhs215 for adults (there are also categories for kids juniors and children but these are currently set at the same price as adults); and the Snow Premium Pass Dhs295.
Reem Mall, Sun to Thu 10am to 10pm, Fri to Sat 10am to midnight, from Dhs215. @snowauh
Exporing the NatGeo world
Found at The Galleria Al Maryah Island, NGUE is an edutainment complex offering seven exciting attractions aimed at captivating kiddliwinks and stealthily uploading STEAM learning in them, all whilst they’re having one ‘world’s largest mammal’ of a time. There are two VR/AR experiences, including Space Jump, where snack-sized astronauts will be put through a training programme to see if they’ve got the gusto to thrive in the cavernous vacuum of space. And Recon River, which puts little explorers on a raft — sending them downstream in search of rare and exotic animals to capture in their augmented viewfinders.
National Geographic Ultimate Explorer, The Galleria Al Maryah Island, Sat to Wed 10am to 10pm, Thu and Fri 10am to midnight, from Dhs80. Tel: (052) 403 7166, @natgeoultimateexplorerad
Images: Provided and social