Best Areas to Stay in Abu Dhabi, UAE

Abu Dhabi, Asia, United Arab Emirates  /   /  By bestdistricts

Where to stay in Abu Dabi- A guide to the UAE Capital

Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates and one of the financial metropolis of the Middle East.

It is the emirate located southeast of the Persian Gulf, near Saudi Arabia and Oman, formed by attractive islands and the urban area, where important multinationals and financial institutions are located.

The Emirati capital is the second most visited city in the Arab Emirates, after Dubai.

The center of the city mixes skyscrapers, mosques and large shopping centers such as the Etihad Towers, the Tower of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, which works as the headquarters of the National Abu Dhabi Bank and the Baynunah Tower (Hilton Hotel).

The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is the most important monument in Abu Dhabi, recognized as one of the largest religious attractions in the Middle East.

Other popular tourist spots are its large avenues: Hamdan Street (the commercial street), the Corniche (the port area) and Khalifa Street (the financial zone).

Abu Dhabi is a city famous for its islands, the most attractive being Saadiyat Island (a.k.a. island of happiness), Yas Island, Lulu Islands and Reem Island.

The months with the highest amount of visitors are June and September, when the beach season starts in Abu Dhabi and the temperature exceeds 40 °C. The coolest time is in January, although in effect, Abu Dhabi is a hot city throughout the year.

The International Airport connects Abu Dhabi with the rest of the world and its flagship airline is the Etihad Airways, the second largest in the UAE.

The land transport system in Abu Dhabi consists of buses and taxis that run throughout the city. The metro system is under construction.

When choosing where to stay in Abu Dhabi, Downtown, with its shopping streets and tourist attractions, is a great accommodation option (See hotels in Downtown Abu Dabi).

If the priority is to rest, the Island of Happiness is one of the best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi, thanks to its luxury resort hotels (See accommodation in Saadiyat Island).

Here’s a guide with the best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi.

The Best Areas to Stay in Abu Dhabi

1. Our favorite area: Downtown

The central district (Downtown) of Abu Dhabi is the largest in the city and consists of the Promenade, Hamdan Street and Khalifa Street.

South of downtown, you will find Corniche Street, the Abu Dhabi waterfront that runs along many of the city’s beaches.

Near the port is Hamdan Street, with large shopping centers such as Marina Shopping Mall, Hamdan Shopping Center and Madinat Zayed Shopping Center. Therefore, Downtown is the best area to stay in Abu Dhabi for shopping.

In Downtown, large skyscrapers and modern shopping centers predominate. However, the area is not designed to walk around, given the heat waves and the distance between each attraction.

The Downtown also has excellent transport links, including Hazaa Bin Zayed Road, Abu Dhabi’s central bus station.

Most Downtown hotels are accessible. On the other hand, Corniche, an exclusive area of resort hotels overlooking the beach, is also in this district and is one of the best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi.

Best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi - Downtown

Best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi – Downtown

Accommodation in Downtown Abu Dhabi - Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in Downtown Abu Dhabi – Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommeded area to stay in Abu Dhabi:

  • Central area
  • Luxury hotels
  • Best area for shopping
  • Marina Shopping Mall
  • Great transport connections
  • Corniche

Accommodation in this area

Recommended

Beach Rotana – Abu Dhabi

The luxurious Beach Rotana, located in the center of Abu Dhabi, offers direct access to a private beach and 11 restaurants.

from US$79
Budget

Al Maha Arjaan by Rotana

Al Maha Arjaan by Rotana is in the center of Abu Dhabi. It has panoramic views of the city and is within walking distance of the shopping centers.

from US$45
Luxurious

Le Royal Meridien Abu Dhabi

Le Royal Meridien offers panoramic views of the Arabian Gulf and a revolving rooftop restaurant.

from US$90

 

 

 

2. Saadiyat Island

Saadiyat Island or Happiness Island is 500 km southeast of Abu Dhabi, a 20 minutes drive from the seafront and 30 from the airport.

It is a mixed entertainment tourist complex that is still under renovation. One of its districts, called the Cultural District, houses some of the most renowned Middle Eastern museums such as the Zayed National Museum, Louvre Abu Dhabi and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi.

A few meters from Saadiyat Island there are art galleries such as the Manarat Al Saadiyat and the Pavilion.

However, the beach northeast of the island is one of the most visited attractions for being the most dynamic area of ​​Saadiyat Island.

Abu Dhabi authorities are currently working towards the construction of better roads for public transport in Saadiyat Island, since the only way to get from Downtown Abu Dhabi to the island is by taxi or driving.

Saadiyat Island is the best area to stay in Abu Dhabi for a relaxing vacation, as it has international resort hotels.

Stay in Saadiyat Island, Abu Dabi

Stay in Saadiyat Island, Abu Dabi

Accommodation in Saadiyat Island - Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in Saadiyat Island – Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommeded area to stay in Abu Dhabi:

  • Museum and galleries
  • Resort-style hotels
  • Beach area

Accommodation in this area

    • Recommended
      Saadiyat Rotana Resort and Villas

      The Saadiyat Rotana Resort and Villas, located on the stunning island of Saadiyat, is a unique 5 star establishment.

      from US$189
    •  

       

       
    • Luxurious
      The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi

      This 5-star resort is located on Saadiyat Island and offers direct access to its private beach, free Wi-Fi and rooms with a private balcony. It has a spa center, an indoor pool and private parking.

      from US$249
 

 

 
 

 

 

3. Yas Island (Isla Yas)

Yas Island is the closest tourist complex to Abu Dhabi International Airport, known as the best area to stay in Abu Dhabi to be close to amusement parks.

To the south, it has the Yas Marina circuit, a racing complex where automobile events such as the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix of Formula 1 take place.

In the central area of ​​Yas Island, you can find the Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, aan musement park of the famous car company.

Other attractions on the island include the Yas Waterworld, the Yas Gateway Park and the Warner Bros. theme park, called Movie World

The best way to get from Yas Island to the center of Abu Dhabi is by taxi, although there are also bus lines that make that route.

Staying at Yas Island allows you to enjoy its attractions, without having to deal with the long lines. The hotel industry on the island is new and modern.

Where to stay in Abu Dabi - Yas Island

Where to stay in Abu Dabi – Yas Island

Accommodation in Yas Island - Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in Yas Island – Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommeded area to stay in Abu Dhabi:

  • Luxurious hotels
  • Amusement parks
  • Ferrari World Abu Dhabi

Accommodation in this area

Recommended

Yas Island Rotana Abu Dhabi

Yas Island Rotana is located just a few minutes from Yas Marina Circuit, home of the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Free Wi-Fi is available.

from US$79
Budget

Centro Yas Island-by Rotana

This elegant and modern hotel is conveniently located near the Yas Marina circuit. It has a modern gym and an outdoor pool.

from US$54
Luxurious

Yas Hotel, Abu Dhabi

The Yas Hotel Abu Dhabi presents a unique design and is between the mainland and the water. The hotel offers 11 rooms and places to eat.

from US$99

 

 

 

4. Near the Abu Dhabi International Airport

The Abu Dhabi International Airport is located 32 km east, quite far from the city center.

This terminal is the second largest in the country and receives about 30 million passengers a year, from all around the world.

The airport is home to the main offices of the airline Etihad Airways, which operates a large number of international flights to Europe, Asia, Africa and America.

Most of the neighborhoods near the airport are residential, with a quiet and familiar atmosphere. On the other hand, is an area of ​​few hotels, at low costs.

Although the area is far from downtown Abu Dhabi, the A1 bus line of public transport connects you to Corniche, Hamdan Street and Khalifa Street.

The airport surroundings are among the best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi for a stopover or weekend getaways.

Accommodation near the Abu Dhabi International Airport - Best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi

Accommodation near the Abu Dhabi International Airport – Best areas to stay in Abu Dhabi

Accommodation near the Abu Dhabi International Airport - Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation near the Abu Dhabi International Airport – Click to see all available accommodation in this area

Why is this a recommeded area to stay in Abu Dhabi:

  • Best area for travelers in transit
  • Etihad Airways
  • Cheaper hotels

Accommodation in this area

  • Recommended
    Premier Inn Abu Dhabi International Airport

    The Premier Inn Abu Dhabi International Airport offers free Wi-Fi in all areas and a swimming pool with stunning views from the rooftop.

    from US$74

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