The 8 Best Day Trips From Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi | © NGSOFT/Pixabay
Abu Dhabi | © NGSOFT/Pixabay
Photo of Thais Kelly
21 December 2017

For those visiting Abu Dhabi, there’s no shortage of activities to do, such as visiting the Emirates Palace or the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. However, the UAE is quite a small country, which allows visitors to take day trips and enjoy a little getaway from the city during their stay. With so many amazing things on offer just a short ride away, it’s a great idea to plan a fun day trip for a change of scenery.

IMG Worlds of Adventure

Is there any better place to spend the day than a theme park? What about the largest indoor theme park in the world? IMG Worlds of Adventure is the perfect spot to spend the day with the whole family. Only a little over an hour away from Abu Dhabi, the park is a good destination all year round – as it is a fantastic place for people to escape the heat during the brutal summer in the UAE. There’s no shortage of rides for all ages, so visitors will definitely need a full day here.

IMG Worlds of Adventure, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road, Dubai, UAE, +971 600 500962

Zaya Nurai Island

A true paradisiac getaway. Only a short boat ride away from Yas Island in Abu Dhabi is Zaya Nurai Island. This incredible resort offers day passes for visitors to come and use their facilities, with spending in the island included in the pass. Visitors don’t need to stay overnight at the resort and can use its amazing beaches and pools for the day, as well as eat in its many delicious restaurants. This is the perfect day getaway for those looking to kick back and relax.

Zaya Nurai Island Welcome Center, Sheikh Khalifa Highway, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, UAE, +971 2 506 6222

Ski Dubai

When people think of traveling to the UAE, they immediately think of deserts and heat. However, a perfect place to spend the day is Ski Dubai. The indoor skiing park offers people the chance to ski, snowboard or even just play in the snow. This is a great venue to spend the day with the family. Whether you’re an expert in winter sports or just wanting to enjoy a hot chocolate in negative temperatures – this is the ideal spot.

Ski Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, UAE, +971 800 386

Ras Al Khaimah

This is a bit of a longer ride away, as it takes around three hours to get from the capital to the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. Nevertheless, this is a great place to spend the day for those who want to become better acquainted with the UAE. Ras Al Khaimah is best known for its active travel, as well as historic sights. This is a fantastic opportunity to visit unique places such as the rumored haunted village of Jazirat Al Hamra, better known as Ghost Town.

Ras Al Khaimah, UAE

Wild Wadi Waterpark

It’s not like Abu Dhabi doesn’t have its own waterpark, with Yas Waterworld literally making splashes with visitors. However, driving down to spend the day in Wild Wadi Waterpark allows visitors to not only enjoy an array of 30 rides, it also gives them an unique view of the Burj Al Arab, perhaps the most famous landmark in the entire UAE. Wild Wadi Waterpark has been around for over a decade, making it the most iconic waterpark in the country.

Wild Wadi Waterpark, Jumeira Beach Road, Umm Suqeim 3, Dubai, UAE, +971 4 348 4444


Abu Dhabi has a variety of beautiful beaches, one of its most popular ones being the Corniche Beach. However, a trip to the UAE would not be complete without visiting the iconic beaches of Fujairah. Only around a three-hour drive from Abu Dhabi, the beaches in this Emirate are the only ones located on the East Coast of the country, with crystalline waters and plenty of sea life. The ride may be long, but this is the best spot in the country to spend the day snorkeling, making it worth the drive.

Fujairah, UAE

Jebel Hafeet

Jebel Hafeet is located in Al Ain, within the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and on the border of the UAE and Oman. This is one of the tallest mountains in the UAE and makes for a fantastic day trip, only about an hour away from the center of the capital. Jebel Hafeet is an epic natural landmark and the perfect place to go on a picnic or for those who are looking for a unique place to cycle. The mountain will provide a scenic and unforgettable route.

Jebel Hafeet, Abu Dhabi, UAE

Dubai Mall

Let’s face it, most visitors who come to the UAE have shopping on their mind. Although Abu Dhabi has a series of awesome malls, nothing compares to the largest shopping mall in the world, Dubai Mall. With 1,200 retailers, a day doesn’t seem like enough to cover the whole mall and see every store. However, this is the perfect place to shop, get a glimpse of the Burj Khalifa and watch the world-famous Dubai Fountains during sunset. Extremely worth the short one-hour ride from Abu Dhabi.

Dubai Mall, Financial Centre Road, Downtown Dubai, UAE, +971 800 382246255

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