When you realize that you can’t miss to stop in Abu Dhabi as start of your trip to South East Asia.
We actually tried all the possible flight combinations to stop there and visit this fabolous town at least for 24 hours…SO, we did it.
Living in Tuscany, the easiest solutions was to descend down the country to Rome and from there, catch an elegant Etihad Airways flight ( we are low cost traveller, don’t worry, the flight we choose was one of the cheapest of their range 😛 ) direct to Abu Dhabi.
If as in our case your destination is Thailand, will be amazing to know that from there, there is scheduled an other DIRECT flight to Bankok, so that you can chill there a day or whatever you need after the first flight to recover and enjoy the amazingly sunshine, thrilling activities and this extremely bright city.
But be aware of…you will going to feel you need to come back to Abu Dhabi soon 🙂
Here after starts the ADVENTURE.
We arrived very early in the morning, so heading to the hotel and leave our huuuge trolleys/Backpack was our first thought. From the Airport we queued a bit to change money (that of course it’s better everywhereelse except in airports, but we had to spare time for the Adventure), we get few minutes to realize where to catch the first bus to town and of course to get the ticket. They have extremely new ticket machine in which you can insert big amount of money, but we are not emirates yet 🙂 ahahha So one ticket each was enough for us..
What we can suggest for sure is, that on arrival maybe the easiest way is to get a taxi straightaway , cause the bus was amazing, huge with AC but being our first time there, it left us to a bus stop in a wide street with many people trying to make us rent their car and of course we ended to get a taxi to the hotel.
The Eclipse Boutique Suites, this is its name, it’s a very elegant and new building with its apartments extremely clean and spacious and not too expensive too 🙂 The staff helped us leaving our baggages there, cause was 9 am and of course not yet Check In time, so that we changed quickly and after getting the most information possible we headed to the beach, that, as was stated in the hotel description, it’s seriously a short walk away from the Hotel. 🙂
We don’t even have to tell that the sea was crystalclear and of a bright light blue color; one side of the street there was the beach and sea, the other side a bunch of shining skyscrapers that make an unusual but wonderful frame to this coastal landscape.
We took our time to just relax, drink a lot of water and juices cause there were about 40 °, and of course we took hundreds of pictures 🙂 We didn’t actually swam cause in that area there were panels with written dangerous jellyfish, and we should have moved a bit further on the beach, but we couldn’t cause…
At about 1 pm we had appointment with our Tourguide… for what?! To get to the dunes of course 🙂 🙂 🙂
We decided to rely on ‘Get Your Guide Abu Dhabi’ cause the program offered was extremely full of activities and we wanted not miss one, and moreover I took part to one of its Tours few years before in Granada Spain and it was really worthvalue.
First thing to do, after the Guide/Driver had collected all the participants to our unusual Tour, he said that we were going to start with some ‘Easy’ Dunes as warm up and then we would have enjoyed the Big ones.
Until you are there you can’t imagine how the Desert is, ok there are dunes, a lot of gold sunny dunes But you can’t feel how they are immense until you are sit in a car that is driven as part of your Tour, crazyingly sliding down each of the most deep dunes. Good choice we dind’t had lunch ahhah…It has been a thrilling and superexciting experience, we stopped also few times to take pictures and to actually walk as drunk on the dunes…ahahh no that was not that bad, you had just to follow the flow.
During the Tour we had the chance to meet the Camels, a very near Encounter with them. We jumped down of the 4×4 car and went among them to pet them and realize we were just few cm from these amazing animals.
It’s difficult to say which has been the most faboulus part of this day, the next stop it’s surely one of the candidates… The driver stopped next to other few jeeps on the very top of a high dune, there was already a sign of path on it and in few seconds we realize which were the next activity…ARE YOU READYYY?!?
Sliding down the dune with a Snowboard 🙂 I couldn’t imagine I was capable to do it, actually to ACCEPT to do it.
The first turn was to slide down sit on the board, with back to the direction. That was actually more scary to see sliding the other parcitipants than sliding itself. But after they told us, if we wanted we could slide up on our feet, I was too excited , not sure if was going to proceed. And then, I discovered it would have been a huge mistake not trying.
We went then to watch the sunset and it has been more than amazing 🙂 and the last stop was an Oasi in the middle of nowhere in the desert where actually first we ride on the camels for a bit, then we had a tasty barbeque sit on oriental cushions while watching dancers on a stage (where of course I danced too, what an emotion :P), we dressed up in arab costumes, we took a hawk on our arm, I had henne’ drawings on my hand and finally we smoked apple flavoured narghilé.
Do you think that Abu Dhabi for us was ‘Just’ this?!? Not at all 🙂 The following day comes the mystical breathtaking visit of the Grand Mosque.
Very early in the morning, let’s say about 8, cause how weird,until there we hadn’t felt any symptoms of jetlag but we had anyway to rest a bit…we started with, discovering the city going through covered markets, their Souqs, where you can find a bit of everything from typical dishes to typical dresses, but also supermarkets and of course plenty of Parfumes and Scents Stands..It comes natural that we tried many of these Oriental fragances and that was the first additions to our souvenir collection 🙂
We took a local bus and we arrived There in front of this magnificent building!!!I think that everyone standing in that exact point, even believing in different religions, everyone there can feel the place, breath the mystic and pratically stare at it for a while :).
That is defenitely difficult to describe, but for sure you will be impressed as we were, the brightness of the white, the shining gold and going around with bare feet make you just stare and walk around astonished.
FOR SURE we can suggest that being there at sunset it’s extremely breathtaking, because in addition to all that has been mentioned above, on a sunny day you will experience a wonderful warm light coming across the columns, with the melodic sound of the evening prayers echoing around.
[*Remember that being a religious site, there are some regulations at the entrance you have to keep on mind, so for istance taking pictures while kissing and shorts/short dresses are not permitted- for women they’ ll provide a long silkstyle dress 🙂 ]
In our case, we had on mind to stay just few hours… but we realized in corner that we were just on time to get the bus to the Apartment, get a taxi, to be few hours in advance to catch our next Ethiad Flight, this time DIRECTION—> Bangkok.