So I’ve been to Dubai at least once every year for the last 20 years and I haven’t been to Abu Dhabi since 2001 so I convinced the family that we should give it a go for the October school holidays, and It didn’t disappoint.
We flew directly with Etihad from Dublin to Abu Dhabi. It would be remiss of me to say that the entry requirements are simple – they are not but once you get your head around it, its fairly plain sailing. If this somewhere you would like to go and are not comfortable with booking, or finding it difficult to understand the travel requirements that’s where I come in as I look after all of that and make sure you have everything you need.
We did a ‘twin centre’ so that I could sample a couple of different hotels. The first hotel was Rotana Saadiyat Island. Outstanding hotel, we had a one bedroom suite with an interconnecting double room for the children. The hotel has exterior double doors that can either stay open and both rooms are sold separately or they can be closed and its becomes one large room. See photo attached to make more sense! The beach at Saadiyat could rival any location in the world. It’s a protected area as turtles hatch there and there are dolphins spotted quite often.
We then moved to the Rotana Beach hotel. Completely different property. City Centre location and attached to the Abu Dhabi Mall. Great location but the outstanding memory from the hotel is the food and beverage offering. We were on half board dine around which meant we could eat in all of the al a carte options including Teppanyaki. There is a great pool and a small beach. We stayed in a family room which was huge and they offer to put the sofa bed away every day but there really was no need.
There are loads of things to do in Abu Dhabi, we went to the Yas Island Water Park, big hit with the kids. We did Ferrari World which I’m reliably informed has the fastest roller coaster and highest loop in the world. My feet stayed firmly on the ground! Alistair and Alfie played golf in three different courses and loved it. We visited the Louvre, the Grand Mosque and Abu Dhabi Palace. The biggest hit with the family was cycling and walking the Yas Marina F1 track. It’s a big city and its spread out but the traffic is light and taxis are cheap and plentiful.
I also did site inspections of the following hotels Ritz Carlton Shangri La Emirates Palace St. Regis Fairmont
We packed a lot into 8 nights but we all loved it. If you’ve ‘done’ Dubai and fancy somewhere different, Abu Dhabi has lots to offer. Please get in touch and I can provide with further assistance.