Abu Dhabi, the capital city of United Arab Emirates is not a continuous piece of land but a collation of islands brought together to provide an administration center for the country. However, in today's world, it is difficult for any major metropolitan to remain just an administration center - it has to grow into a business hub and tourist destination. So has Abu Dhabi
grown over years and the development of city seems to occur one Island
at a time. While the primary island is abuzz with government offices and some business centers coming up, surrounding islands have developed with a specific theme in the backdrop.
|Yas Island - The Adrenaline Rush|
Yas Island is one such island. This island is being developed as a destination for enthusiasts and tourists who love everything associated with adventure. While it hosts the annual F1 race, it also offers theme parks which carry forward the passions associated with the race year-round. The island is well connected by public transportation and is about a good 40-minute drive from the city center. While one may think of combining a visit to all the attractions here, each deserves a day for its own given the energy that they demand and the experience that they offer.
|Sheikh Zayed Bridge - Connecting the Mainland to Abu Dhabi|
Ferrari World - The Only One Around World
|The City of Structures - Coin Shaped Aldar Headquarters|
We have all been to theme parks across the world and these have traditionally been associated with speed and thrill. However, is there a better synonym of speed than the word "Ferrari" - the brand that has for years tempted youth because of the thrill that it promises. Now, it isn't anyone's guess about what is on the plate when the same brand offers a complete theme part to fans for the first time. The promise of the brand is well-lived in this park housed under the gigantic iconic red roof visible from the air with the Ferrari logo. The coveted destination for any tourist offers numerous high-adrenaline rides within the set of rings away from the otherwise desert and barren lands that the region is.
|Iconic Ferrari World from the Sky - Aerial View from Etihad Flight|
|Rides High and Fast - Adventure Like None Other|
The list of attractive rides includes the highest roller coaster loop in the world and the fastest roller coaster in the world - Formula Rossa along with other family-friendly attractions, various simulators, go-karts and various live shows which cater to every audience who visits here. Go on a factory tour, drive a Ferrari around Yas Island and live the Ferrari experience. There is something for everyone - including tours of the facility, behind the scenes of a race and family-friendly attractions. Also, if you are hungry, refuel at any of the 5 restaurants located within the Park.
Tickets are available online and there are plenty of options to confuse you - so be cautious about the time you have and experience you want and choose your ticket accordingly. It is obviously recommended to book your tickets online to avoid hassles at the site. If nothing more, at least keep a one full day to spend out here as your visit would be exhausting and exciting at the same time.
Yas Waterworld - To Shake-away the Heat
|Ferraris Parked Outside the Park|
If you have enough time at hand, this is a destination worth running towards - an idyllic experience with relaxed thrill - this is on offer at this water park which spans an area of about 15 football fields. The water park has been designed around the heritage of the region and takes the theme of "The Lost Pearl"
. Visitors follow the story of a young Emirati girl on a quest to find a legendary pearl as they make their way around the attractions, which include a souk and pearl-diving exhibits.
|Yas Waterworld - Chill Out |
|Inside of Yas Waterworld|
There are over 43 rides across the park - each showcasing a futuristic design and offering something unique to its visitors. One of the rides which stand out is the first hydromagnetic-powered tornado ride which at 235 meters length is the largest one in the world. This is accompanied by large surface waves simulating ocean streams and a 550-meter coaster with water & laser effects. Riders can shoot jets of water at targets, drop water bombs and trigger special effects, while people below can spray them with water as they pass.Yas Marina Race Track - The Host to the Speed Carnival
One of the events that put Abu Dhabi on world tourism map is the annual Formula One
racing held here. Yas Island is the host of the event with its long Marina Circuit circling across the island. While the scene is abuzz with activity and visitors in November when the race happens, visitors have an option to have a glimpse of behind the scene activities during other times. The Yas Venue tour takes visitors to the processes and logistics that go into maintaining this facility.
|Yas Marina Track - The Hotspot of F1 Racing|
|Viceroy Hotel - Right on the Track|
While one may be tempted to buy a seat for the extravaganza during the race season, there are multiple options to enjoy the charm of racing cars. The easiest may be to book a room at the Yas Hotel which is right in the middle of the action - the hotel has its pillars in the middle of the race zone - providing the best and longest visuals of the cars zipping past each other. When you are at that height to observe the race, you get to actually witness much more than what you can from you ticketed seat - where the cars provide a microsecond glimpse. Of course, you need to book well in advance to get an accommodation there. The second option is to rent a berth at the jetty where you could take your boat and park out for the day. Boats are available for hire and provide a waving platform to enjoy the speeding adventure. The slots though get booked almost a year ahead of the race and during a race, one could see negotiations on for the next year. So in any case, plan ahead.Yas Mall - What's with the Shopping Fever
How can there be a piece of land in this city without a big shopping mall - so there is one grand mall on the Yas Island too! The Yas Mall is much more than a place to shop. With 400 of the world’s top fashion and food brands, a 20-screen cinema and the region’s largest family entertainment zone, it’s a marvelous indoor day out for the whole family. Located in the heart of Yas Island and sat along the Yas Express route, it’s the perfect point of connection for all the attractions on the island.
Things to Remember
|Yas Mall - More than a Shopping Experience|
- Annual F1 Racing Event - Yas Island is the center of the F1 racing in November every year and that is the perfect time to visit the island and also the city of Abu Dhabi. The weather is just right and there is quite a hustle around the city. However, do plan ahead and make bookings as the rush runs prices up.
- Ample Time is Required - All the attractions on Yas Island are ones which consume considerable time so a visit to the island cannot be a touch and go affair. You need to keep ample time on hand and at least a couple of days is an ideal duration to spend here.
- Take a Taxi or Bus - There are bus services available from around the city, however, I would say to take a taxi. The attractions themselves are time-consuming and exhausting and you do not want additional exertion of a bus travel.
- Great Hotels - A zone within the Island called Yas Plaza offers a number of international and local hotel chains which provide comfortable and luxurious accommodation. We would recommend spending a night here and distributing the visit to the island across two days rather than a single day rushed affair.
- Packages available - Various packages are available to explore the island and these could act as a convenient way to delve into the offerings here. Visit the Yas Island website to know more about the island - https://yasisland.ae/
|Yas Plaza - A Marketplace of Hotels|
For other areas of interest and to know the city of Abu Dhabi, visit
Abu Dhabi, UAE - Experience a blend of Culture and Modernity