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Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

The United Arab Emirates has always been a popular destination for European travellers and ex-pats. A country with enormous wealth and fascinating culture, the UAE has welcomed tourists with their warm hospitality and ample opportunities.

The United Arab Emirates was founded in December 1972 when it was decided that the seven vast desert Emirates of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah would join as one country, with Abu Dhabi positioned as the capital city.

The UAE initially created its wealth from pearl diving and later discovered the vast opportunity for oil mining in the location, which has kept the country extremely wealthy ever since.

For ex-pats, the opportunities here are plentiful as there is a relatively poor education history among the locals. So there is a high demand for educated, skilled workers, mainly from western regions.

Perhaps a better-known Emirate – Dubai, is often thought to be the capital of the UAE. Admittedly, Dubai is a more visited Emirate in comparison to Abu Dhabi.

Comparing Abu Dhabi and Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

This could be for a several reasons, such as the reputation of Dubai with the glitz and glam, also the big celebrity and influencer scene here.

Abu Dhabi is seen as a calmer, more relaxed destination, possibly considered more family-friendly in comparison to Dubai.

For anyone interested in visiting or living in the UAE, you may be wondering if Abu Dhabi or Dubai would be better suited. We have created a guide to Abu Dhabi versus Dubai with the intention to help travellers and ex-pats decide on their next destination.

Abu Dhabi vs Dubai

There are several considerations to explore before deciding on visiting or moving to Abu Dhabi versus Dubai. Some or all of the below may be relevant depending on your circumstances and preferences.

Dubai vs Abu Dhabi

1. Cost of Living

Interestingly, there is a mix of different categories concerning the cost of living in Abu Dhabi versus Dubai. In general, it states that Dubai is slightly higher. However, there are a number of things worth considering here.

In terms of rent, Abu Dhabi is anything from 30 – to 40 percent more expensive than rent in Dubai. The competition in Dubai is much higher with a lot more availability and therefore, prices have to be more competitive.

Difference's between Abu Dhabi and Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

To rent a one-bedroom apartment in Dubai, you could be looking at approx 3000 – 5000 AED per month, which is the equivalent of €760 – €1,270.

For the same apartment type in Abu Dhabi, the monthly cost could be from 5000 – 9000 AED or €760 – €2,300.

For grocery shopping, in general, Dubai can be anything from 0.4 – 10 percent higher than grocery products in Abu Dhabi. Generally, a grocery shop in both Emirates is much pricier than in the UK or Ireland!

Transportation in terms of taxis and buses is much higher in Dubai vs Abu Dhabi.

Alcohol is more expensive in Dubai; however, in terms of eating out and buying alcohol in bars and restaurants, Dubai is reducing in comparison to Abu Dhabi as a result of the increased competition, as referenced already.

Difference between Abu Dhabi and Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

As Dubai continues to thrive and more buildings, restaurants and other offerings continue to increase, the price will have to slightly decrease to remain appealing to consumers when compared to competitors.

While there are fewer offerings in almost all of these mentioned services in Abu Dhabi, the city continues to grow and expand yearly. So it is expected that the capital will also have to reduce prices to compete as the market grows.

Interestingly, for those looking to buy a home in the UAE instead of renting, Abu Dhabi is considerably cheaper than Dubai when it comes to buying property.

Abu Dhabi house prices
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

In terms of salary, Dubai is said to offer a higher salary on average, with some Dubai companies claiming to pay up to 40% more than their Abu Dhabi counterpart.

In terms of cost, anyone interested in visiting for a holiday would most probably get more for their money in Dubai as a result of the competition.

People interested in moving to the UAE have a slighter, more challenging choice. Rent will be a significant factor, as will the social aspect and the salaries.

Considering everything from a purely monetary perspective, those looking to move to the UAE may prefer to move to Dubai versus Abu Dhabi.

2. Lifestyle

Abu Dhabi and Dubai offer visitors and residents a unique lifestyle that any non-Middle Eastern country can not match.

The mixture of weather, culture, activities and opportunities make these cities very popular places to visit and live.

Abu Dhabi lifestyle
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

During a typical week in either city, residents go to work which tends to be a relatively short commute as due to the great layout of both cities.

Many people enjoy heading to the many cafes, restaurants and eateries on their lunch break, and can take advantage of the cooler evenings in the winter for a nice stroll.

After work, there are endless opportunities. Many people will hang out with friends or partners during the evening, there are also many food or drink outlets to be found, some with an excellent mid-week offer.

There are big clubs and organisations in both cities where many residents will also spend much of their mid-week evenings playing football, tennis, going for a run or to the gym.

Shopping malls stay open until usually around 11 pm midweek, meaning many go shopping or hang out with friends after work in the evening and at night.

Malls of the UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Other facilities like doctors, dentists, banks etc. also stay open late, making it very easy and convenient to have appointments, do admin life tasks after work and not wait until the weekend!

In Dubai, the lifestyle is much more fast-paced. Residents tend to socialise a lot mid-week and places like restaurants, bars and parks are bustling during the evenings.

In Abu Dhabi, there is a more relaxed lifestyle. While a lot of mid-week socialising still takes place, it would be easy to find very quiet restaurants and bars during the week.

Instead, there tends to be a lot of focus on visiting parks, exercising or visiting one of the many malls.

3. Jobs/Work life

When looking at the career/work aspect of Abu Dhabi versus Dubai, there can be some discrepancies between the two cities.

In terms of career opportunities, Dubai tends to offer more in comparison to Abu Dhabi. There are more companies in Dubai and a larger population to target.

Job opportunities in UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

In addition, Dubai is home to many more international companies than the capital. As a result, those employed in one of these global companies in Dubai will likely have a more preferable work-life balance than those in Abu Dhabi.

For international companies who care about work-life balance or companies who have been forced to implement measures to help employees live better lives so as not to lose them to competitors offering superior perks, the impact on employees lives is far more favourable to those working in other companies.

Finding employment in Abu Dhabi for many industries is quite tricky. There are fewer jobs compared to Dubai and tend to be of a lesser salary.

There are always exceptions, such as Teaching salaries. These tend to be slightly higher in Abu Dhabi versus Dubai and also in the healthcare sector.

Abu Dhabi versus Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

4. Culture

The United Arab Emirates is considered a rather religious place with a strong culture. Locals in the UAE are usually Muslim and practice this religion quite stringently.

This involves several lifestyle behaviours, including praying multiple times a day, dressing very conservatively and having certain beliefs around gender roles.

To be considered a ‘local’ in the UAE, you must have Emirati parents. This means that the country is full of residents that have been born in the UAE and lived here all their lives, but if one of their parents is not Emirati, then they are not considered a local or an Emirati national.

There is a high population of ‘locals’ in both Abu Dhabi and Dubai. When visiting or living here, it is essential to respect these individuals. They are considered the most important residents of the UAE.

While visiting or living in this region, you should familiarise yourself with the local dress.

Culture in UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Emirati clothing

Emirati men wear a dishdasha or kandura, which is a long, thin robe.

Most often, this robe is white as this is the best colour to wear in desert conditions.

Colours like brown, black, grey or blue robes are seen more in winter.

Being clean and well-groomed is very important to Emirati men and women.

It is said that Emirati men usually own over 50 kanduras which they will change throughout the day to remain fresh and clean.

These kanduras differ slightly from those worn in Saudi and Kuwait as they are collarless and their sleeves may boast subtle embroidery.

Traditional dress UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

As well as the robe, locals may be seen wearing a cotton head dress referred to as a ghutrah.

This is a square piece of cloth often secured to the head with a rope-like item, the agal.

Historically, these were worn to protect the head and face from the harsh desert heat and the sand.

Ghutrahs are white. However, you may see many locals sporting a similar red and white checked piece of cloth – a shemagh.

Shemaghs originated in other countries such as Saudi. However, many men in the UAE prefer this more colourful head dress.

Younger generations will often secure the ghutrah or shemagh by tieing it instead of wearing the agal.

The faneela is a white vest often worn by locals under their kandura.

During festivals and special occasions, the dress will differ slightly. Agals may be worn as well as more formal kanduras.

Finally, a bisht may be worn over the kandura on a special occasion.

This is a dark-coloured cloak decorated with gold, silver or copper.

Emirati women will wear an abaya over their everyday clothes. This is a black, long, flowing gown.

This gown covers the whole body except the hands, feet and face.

Traditional dress for women in the UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Abayas are traditionally plain; nowadays, however, they may be embroidered with patterns or jewels.

Kaftans may also be worn. These are a female version of a kandura.

There are many glamorous, highly decorated and colourful kaftans available in Abu Dhabi and you will often see non-muslims sporting this beautiful dress.

Traditionally, the kaftan would be worn instead of an abaya in the home or surrounded by relatives.

Nowadays, however, many women will wear a kaftan in public, such as in malls and restaurants.

Similar to men, most women will choose to cover their heads following religious customs.

Female head dresses are referred to as hijabs. There are several different types of hijabs available.

Many women will wear a shayla, this is a light scarf-like piece of clothing that will be draped loosely over the head to cover the hair.

Gishwas are a thin material worn as a veil. They cover the entire face but are thin enough for the wearer to see through.

Niqabs are similar to gishwas with the addition of an opening cut out for the eyes.

Rarely seen in the city but sometimes still worn by older generations or on special occasions are the burqa. This looks like a mask covering the eyebrows, nose and upper lip.

Locals will also often wear henna. Traditionally, brides were decorated with henna for good luck. Henna is most often seen on the hands and feet.

There are many places tourists and visitors can also get henna around the city.

While the culture is the same in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, generally, Dubai is seen as a less strict Emirate than Abu Dhabi.

The clothing of non-local residents tends to be slightly less conservative in Dubai and behaviours around drinking and socialising tend to be more relaxed compared to the capital.

That being said, it is essential always to be respectful of the locals and their traditions.

This is especially true during Ramadan. Ramadan is a significant time within the UAE. Ramadan runs for an entire month and dates will differ annually depending on the moon’s position.

Throughout the Holy Month, many of the Abu Dhabi population will fast from sunrise until sunset.

During this sacred time, a more conservative dress code should be adopted by everyone to show respect to the Muslim culture.

Locals may take offence to people wearing tight or revealing clothing, particularly during the holy period.

If you are unsure of what to wear in the UAE, check out our guide of what to wear in Abu Dhabi.

6. Beaches / Beach Clubs

Beaches of UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

If there is one thing both Dubai and Abu Dhabi offer in abundance, it is beach clubs.

Due to its prime location, situated along the Arabian Gulf, the UAE cities boast endless places to enjoy the sun, sea and sand.

The concept of beach clubs is not widely available in all parts of the world. However, they are a big part of UAE living.

Generally, beach clubs comprise a pool, beach (& sea) and at least one restaurant. Some beach clubs include a host of other facilities.

When looking at beaches and beach clubs in Abu Dhabi versus Dubai, there is a much larger offering in Dubai and for the most part, the deals are more favourable due to competitive pricing structures.

That being said, Abu Dhabi offers a good choice of beaches and beach clubs. People can find good deals if they are clever about their visits.

Some of our recommended beach clubs for Abu Dhabi include:

  • Saadiyat Beach Club

Saadiyat Island is one of the most beautiful locations in Abu Dhabi. Saadiyat Island hosts the only natural beach in Abu Dhabi.

For this reason, Saadiyat is home to one of the most pristine white-sand beaches and turquoise waters and is the only place to enjoy sea waves.

Saadiyat Beach Club
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Saadiyat Beach Club oozes luxury and exclusivity. This club is the perfect location for daytime relaxation and sunset vibes.

Visitors will appreciate the club’s facilities, views and top hospitality.

For anyone looking to enjoy a piece of heaven for the day, there are a few options for day passes. These can be found on their website.

Visitors should not overlook the additional spa access. The Spa facilities in this beach club are outstanding.

  • Zaya Nurai

Nurai Island is a piece of paradise like nowhere else. The island has been named ‘the Maldives of the UAE’ and for a good reason!

Boasting shimmering turquoise water and tropical flora, the boutique, private island is a 15-minute boat ride from Abu Dhabi.

While on the more expensive side, a visit to this paradise is once-in-a-lifetime. Day pass prices can be found on their website, but they are usually north of 600 AED. However, this amount is fully redeemable on food and drink.

The price includes pool and beach access as well as the boat transfer to and from the island.

As a side note, those who can afford to stay in the stunning accommodation should take full advantage!

Book a stay in Nurai Island here.

  • Al Maya Island

Another island requiring boat transfer, Al Maya Island, offers a sanctuary away from city life. The Island can be reached in 10 minutes by boat.

Any destination that requires access by boat deserves a visit if you spend 4 days in Abu Dhabi!

This island overlooks sea views and facilities include a soft sandy beach, horizon swimming pool, jacuzzi and kid’s pool.

Guests can enjoy wakeboarding, kitesurfing, banana boat rides and kayaking.

It has to be said the day passes are great value for such an adventure. These can be found on their website; usually, a good amount of the price is also redeemable on food and drink.

Discover a full list of the best beach clubs in Abu Dhabi here.

While some of our top picks for beach clubs in Dubai include:

  • Soulbeach Dubai

Soulbeach is one of the newer beach clubs in Dubai and is far removed from the usual beach hotspots, located on the grounds of Jebel Ali’s JA The Resort.

This beach club offers an infinity pool, outdoor and indoor restaurant and lounge area, an Aperol lounge, the Estrella beach bar and not to mention the enormous rooftop area.

There are some exciting options for sunbathing and lounging, from a 26-metre-long sun-bed to beanbags.

During the day, this hotspot is a gorgeous oasis, while at night it transforms into an Ibiza-like destination with live DJs.

If you fancy a stay in the JA The Resort Hotel at any stage, be sure to book your trip here.

  • Beach by FIVE

Located in Dubai’s FIVE Palm The Jumeirah Resort, Beach by FIVE is one of the most influencer-heavy locations in the world!

Guests can enjoy the extravagant glass-lined pool underneath a sparkling chandelier and the calm waters of the Dubai shoreline.

There are plenty of lounging options like the double-width longer, cabanas and dining deck. The lovely alfresco restaurant is situated perfectly between the pool and sea and serves up great European tapas!

If you’re ever looking for a hotel in Dubai, this one must be experienced! You can book a stay here.

  • Nammos

Located at the Four Seasons Jumeirah, Nammos is situated on a private stretch of pristine beach. This beach club introduces total Mykonos vibes to Dubai.

Guests can book loungers to soak up the exquisite surroundings and ambience of this magical beach club.

There are indoor tables and an outdoor terrace where guests can enjoy fresh Mediterranean seafood while basking in the chic surroundings.

The Four Seasons in Dubai is particularly impressive; why not book a stay here?

  • Bla Bla

If you know anyone who has spent time in Dubai, they will likely have visited this popular addition to the nightlife scene. Bla Bla is located on the JBR beachfront and is one of the most popular beach destinations in the UAE.

This is one of the livelier beach clubs with frequent happenings and events throughout the week. The Beach Club has stunning views of the Dubai waters, a designated bar, a golden beachfront and a pool.

Guests can enjoy four-poster cabanas or day beds dotted around the pool edge. For one of the most incredible spots in the city, a day pass is very reasonable and much of the cost is redeemable on food and drink!

  • Nikki Beach Dubai

Nikki Beach has grown into a well-known scene, with beach clubs and bars scattered around the world in places like Marbella, Miami, St. Tropez, Barbados, Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

The Dubai edition includes a hugely oversized pool with a catwalk running through and a bar surrounded by a raised DJ booth.

Day beds and cabanas are available for guests, as well as in-water loungers. Any guests looking to splash out can get the full VIP experience which gains you day access to the signature villas that come with a private jacuzzi’s overlooking the beach!

There is never a quiet night in Nikki Beach Dubai with happenings and deals on most days.

7. Food & drink

Generally speaking, there are plentiful food and drink options for people of all preferences in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Price-wise, great deals and cheaper options can be found in both cities. Dubai may have slightly more options when it comes to affordable dining due to the high competition once again.

That being said, the most expensive eateries will also be found in Dubai as opposed to Abu Dhabi, with some of the flashiest, instagrammable restaurants and bars being found here.

As we touched on already, Abu Dhabi eateries will tend to be less busy than Dubai. This makes it easier to go out for food without booking and enjoy a more relaxed setting as staff aren’t frantic or trying to hurry you through your meal to seat another patron.

On the other hand, it can be nice to have a bit going on, good energy and more of an atmosphere. Visiting certain restaurants or bars mid-week in Abu Dhabi can be slightly eerie!

Abu Dhabi versus Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Some of the restaurants worth visiting in Abu Dhabi include:

  • Alkalime
Alkalime-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

For a dose of good vibes and healthy food, head to Alkalime in Abu Dhabi. Located right on Soul Beach with stunning views of the beach and an excellent selection menu including vegetarian options like the cauli pizza or summerlicious salad, it is sure to delight everyone!

  • The Black Tap
Black-Tap-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

With a name like Black Tap, they certainly have some serious culinary talent behind them. The mega shakes and burgers make anyone’s jaw workout in delight as soon as they arrive at the table – but it doesn’t stop there!

With options for both vegan deliciousness or meat-eaters alike (depending on what preference), this hotspot is making waves with its stunning views out onto Saadiyat Island’s beachfront, where life goes full throttle during happy hour every day until sunset.

Find out more about their offering in our best burgers in Abu Dhabi post!

  • Graphos Social Kitchen
Graphos-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Hospitality is a way of life in Abu Dhabi, and Graphos Social Kitchen ranks as one more place for visitors and residents to try.

The à la carte menu at this restaurant in Abu Dhabi has something for everyone. From fresh local seafood to mouth-watering roasts, there are so many different dishes it would be difficult to narrow down choices based on what’s best suited to just one person!

In addition, they have a fantastic buffet where visitors can wander through live cooking stations or choose from individual courses if preferred.

  • Medi Terra
Medi-Tera-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

When considering romantic places in Abu Dhabi, the first thing to come to mind is most likely Al Bateen. Medi Terra gives the other restaurants in the area a run for their money with its intimate setting overlooking the water

It is the perfect place for a date, especially if guests want something different to Emirati food! With so many good dishes on offer, the difficulty would be deciding on which dish to eat!

  • Mykonos
Mykonos-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Come to Mykonos, an island that brings home warmth to Abu Dhabi. Here guests can enjoy a DJ playing uplifting music and incredible views from this beachside restaurant & bar at Le Méridien Village.

The menu has some delicious Mediterranean food and guests can enjoy sipping on cocktails made with fresh fruit juice while waiting for their food to arrive!

Moving on to Dubai, we would recommend:

  • Nobu
Nobu-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Named after legendary chef Nobu Matsuhisa, who partnered with Robert DeNiro to establish the first Nobu in New York!

This globally recognised restaurant is a must for everyone but particularly for Japanese food lovers. There is a fantastic mix of dishes on the menu and guests can enjoy the elegant interiors and great vibes!

  • Hakkasan
Hakkasan-Abu-Dhabi
Abu Dhabi vs Dubai

Another famous franchise, derived from London, Hakkasan, is arguably the best authentic Chinese cuisine in all of the UAE.

The variety of flavours cater to everyone’s tastes and this, paired with the stunning interiors and live music, make this restaurant a favourite of many Dubai residents.

  • Gaia
Best-emirate
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

This Mediterranean eatery offers authentic Green cuisine with a twist! Gaia presents diners with some of the most unique and delicious flavours around.

There is an excellent focus on food presentation in this restaurant, making it very popular on Instagram!

  • Boca
Best emirate between Abu Dhabi and Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Boca offers diners a combination of Spanish, Italian and French cuisine, all mixed into one menu. The mix of dishes includes several delicacies meaning all guests will be catered to.

This restaurant is also well known for its warm hospitality and contemporary interiors.

  • Coya
Best emirate to live
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Coya Dubai allows diners to experience an open, live kitchen layout which shows off the chefs’ skills and signatures nicely!

The incredible flavours, lively ambience and chic interiors make Coya a must-visit.

There is also a fantastic Coya located in Abu Dhabi, meaning this restaurant wins regardless of where you stand on Abu Dhabi versus Dubai.

8. Scenery and the outdoors

Outdoors-scenery-UAE
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

It will come as no shock to visitors that the UAE hosts some of the most breathtaking desert views and city skylines in the world. Given the UAE essentially consists of cities scattered around one enormous sand pit, the vast desert views this country offers are unmatched.

The desert landscape is particularly well matched with sunrises and sunsets. The skies fill with oranges, yellows and pinks, which look fabulous against the golden brown dunes.

In addition, the city skylines in both Abu Dhabi and Dubai are highly impressive. The UAE build some fascinating skyscrapers which are among the highest and most unique in the world.

Dubai, of course, is home to the tallest building in the world, The Burj Khalifa. Given how this doesn’t even appear to tower over many of the surrounding buildings goes to show how impressive the whole Dubai skyline is.

One thing that may be slightly more surprising to visitors is the scenery around the UAE outside of the desert and skyline.

Abu Dhabi and Dubai are home to some of the most excellent parks and beaches. Parks and beaches are maintained exceptionally well, with trees, shrubs and flowers being looked after, a large amount of gardeners and workers are employed here for the upkeep.

In general, Abu Dhabi is slightly more green in comparison to Dubai. Dubai is more industrial, with fewer green open spaces than the capital.

There are some geniuinely brilliant parks in Abu Dhabi, some we recommend checking out:

  • Umm Al Emarat Park

While Umm Al Emarat Park is technically not free entry and therefore cannot officially be one of the best places to visit in Abu Dhabi for free, the cost of entry is approximately 10 AED, that’s the equivalent of around €2.50 or £2. 

For that reason, this park was a must on our list of best places to go in Abu Dhabi for free (or almost free!).

For anyone looking for a park with a bit of extra ‘something’, Umm al Emarat Park is the one for you!

Umm al Emarat Park
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

The park is the largest green space in the heart of the city, this oasis was created to commemorate the late Sheikh Zayed’s legacy.

The park’s mission is to provide a community with a wholesome and well-maintained outdoor venue.

Umm al Emarat Park spreads across 179,000m², hosts more than 50 events annually and receives over 70,000 visitors yearly. 

The park offers a number of attractions for visitors, such as the amphitheatre, a large grass area with a water feature at the foot of steps with a large arch encircling the top of the steps. 

There will be people relaxing or playing games on this open grass daily as they enjoy the interactive water fountain. 

Also available within the park is an animal barn and a petting zoo. The area includes animals like goats, ponies, rabbits, tortoises, emus and camels. 

Visitors can have a pony or camel ride; however, this would be at a small charge. 

There are different animals within the barn during other times of the year as they are rotated throughout the year for the welfare of each animal. 

A botanical garden section can be found in Umm al Emarat Park. This garden boasts more than 200 species of plants.

Take a stroll through exotic plants such as various species of cacti. Walk over the cute bridge and admire the water ponds created using natural stone. 

Umm al Emarat Park
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Next, the children’s garden – filled with structures and open green space for children to explore and play as well as ice cream.

During the cooler months, various activities occur here, from pony rides to face painting and balloon making.

The children’s garden also includes a large screen and speakers where free movie nights are often held throughout the year. 

In addition to the children’s garden, there is also the evening garden, wisdom garden and the great lawn.

Umm-Al-Emarat-park
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

The evening garden is set in a quiet and relaxed part of the park, allowing visitors some peace and relaxation among a green oasis.

The wisdom garden honours the legacy and environmental conservation efforts of the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan with a lovely mix of inscribed walls and water.

The great lawn is the most largest green space in the park and is a fantastic place for games and activities with family and friends.

The main promenade is a delightful walk of palm trees, water features and changing lights. 

There are often market stalls along the promenade during different times of the year, selling handmade gifts and food. 

Finally, the shade house. This structure can be seen from far and is an iconic feature of the park.

This shade house is a must while visiting the park. Visitors can enter the shade house and become immersed in over forty species of thick green plants.

The house offers two viewing decks; visitors can get an elevator up to each floor or climb the stairs to reveal the great views above.

  • Reem Central Park

Located on Al Reem Island, Reem Central Park is one of the nicest parks the capital city has to offer. 

Free to enter and park, this gem is a must.

Spanning over 1300m², Reem Central Park is perfectly located along a gorgeous stretch of turquoise Arabian water. 

Reem-park
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

The park’s centre has a prominent water feature and several food or coffee choices. 

The water fountain is one of the best around. During the evening, a magical show of water, music and lights takes place.

The water floods from the feature while a projector shoots lights and scenes onto the waterfall and along with music and smoke, a mesmerising story is told. 

During non-showtimes, the water fountain is a play area for the children to enjoy and splash around. 

Reem-central-park
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

There are many options for water sports within the park, such as kayaking, wakeboarding, paddleboarding and more. 

If you want to keep your visit free, there are endless options within this park. 

Enjoy a walk along the water, watch the skaters do tricks in the skatepark, let the children enjoy the water fountain and one of the many playgrounds, and sunbathe on the beach or grass.

Play basketball, football or table tennis, use one of the many outdoor gym areas and why not go for a dip in the sea to finish off. 

There are many routes around the park for short or long walks. Each route offers something different, be that walking along the beach, walking beside the canal, or walking through creative walls and pillars painted with interesting patterns. 

Not to be forgotten is the Kobe Bryant mural. A beautifully painted piece created in memory of the famous basketball star who lost his life in a tragic helicopter accident. 

Reem central park has a great atmosphere every day of the week. There is always a nice buzz around the park, from runners, walkers or swimmers. 

The park is also a popular spot for fishing, another activity that can be enjoyed for free. 

One of the best park beaches in Dubai includes Kite Beach:

  • Kite Beach

Kite beach is one of the most popular family beaches in the UAE – and for a good reason. This park has everything you could think of for a great day out with kids!

Kite-Beach-Dubai
Abu Dhabi versus Dubai

Aqua Park Leisure: Here the kids can play in Dubai’s first freshwater swimming pool water park. Kids from 3 years up can join the water obstacle course with over 21 games and activities!

Dom Tak Entertainment: The kids can make the most of the trampoline park with trampolines, bungee-jumping, gyroscope and lots more! This is a top-rated park for children of all ages.

Just Padel: Both kids and adults can book a court here and enjoy a game of padel.

Kitesurf School: Fully certified by the UAE General Authority of Youth and Sport Welfare, this school is one of the best kitesurfing schools in the UAE.

My Jetski: Kite beach has a number of jet skis as well as a jet ski instructor, allowing visitors to rent their own jet ski and soar across the Dubai waves!

Esperia Volley: Considered the best beach volleyball scene in Dubai, all levels, including kids and beginners, are invited to play beach volleyball and get lessons from the best instructors around!

Sole Mio – Beach Club: This is a VIP section of the beach where visitors can get extra towels, better loungers etc., not so popular among families but good to keep in mind if the kids are otherwise occupied!

Splash N Party: This is a kids dream; Splash N Party is full of inflatable fun for children to enjoy. The inflatable waterpark includes loads of slides and obstacle courses.

Wire World Adventure Parks: The Wire World beach is a treat for kids of all ages. Full of sporty activities, kids can be attached to a harness as they explore the climbing and balancing tasks.

In conclusion, there are several aspects to consider when deciding between Abu Dhabi versus Dubai. Your preferences, personality and lifestyle, will be major factors while making the decision.

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Best Monthly Car Rentals in Abu Dhabi

Best Desert Driving Courses in Abu Dhabi

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10 Best Monthly Car Rental in Abu Dhabi | Car Leasing Abu Dhabi

Monday 5th of September 2022

[…] you are an expat working in the city or visiting for a while, driving is the easiest way to get around, especially if you’d like […]