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Arabian Arts and Emirati Culture

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A tunnel mosaic, a desert artists' paradise, a gallery of local history… Here are the places where visitors may gain a deeper sense of Arabian culture. In this young nation where the boom of modernism grabs all the attention, it’s refreshing to glimpse oases where heritage is secured.
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Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Hwy - Saadiyat Cultural District، Saadiyat Island - أبو ظبي - United Arab Emirates
Manarat al-Saadiyat, Arabic for "place of enlightenment," is a unique gallery and visitor center dedicated to the future. As Saadiyat Island undergoes a massive transformation into a modern cultural hub, Manarat al-Saadiyat tells the story of its...
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Sweihan Road,Al Shamkha - Near the Abu Dhabi International Airport - أبو ظبي - United Arab Emirates
A visit to the Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital is worth every minute of the drive out of Dubai (about 45 minutes). This facility, the only one in the world, is devoted to the preservation and health of these amazing which play a central role in the...
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Al Bateen Area Villa 15, Al Huwelat Street (Behind Al Bateen Mall) - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
Located inside Etihad Modern Art Gallery, Art House Café is a perfect place to relax and reflect after a visit to the gallery. The café features work by emerging local artists and all the furniture is created from waste materials, including...
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I stumbled upon Oriental Leather Arts at an Abu Dhabi art market and was immediately enamoured by the designs. Framed and unframed leather creations pop out from what appears to be the wind at the artist's hand. Curious by the artist's process,...
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Whether or not you're into cars, you won't regret checking out the over-the-top automobile collection of Sheikh Hamad bin Hamdan al-Nahayan—a royal-family member fondly called the Rainbow Sheikh. True to his nickname, he has assembled...
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Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
With a dynamic group of artists from the UAE and overseas, the Art Hub provides artists with a residency program and also encourages Emirati artists to participate in similar programs overseas. Set amongst the sand dunes on the edge of the Empty...
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Sheikh Khalifa Street - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
It's a bit tricky to travel in the Islamic world during Ramadan. Most restaurants are closed during the day and people end up lethargic by the end of the day. Iftar, the fast-breaking meal served at the evening call to prayer makes the daytime...
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Corniche Street is a long and busy roadway that provides access to the end of Abu Dhabi Island. On the Arabian Gulf side of the road lies Corniche Beach, pedestrian and bicycle paths, and a green park space for people to enjoy. Since it can be...
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No matter where you are staying in the UAE, you can't leave without visiting the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. The mosque, the third-largest in the world, is the final resting place of Sheikh Zayed, the nation's founder. Even on the...
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Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
Delighted to walk through museums where one can touch and feel the displays, I explored the art, history, and culture of the United Arab Emirates and neighboring Arabian Peninsula. The ancient history of settlements in the UAE’s corner of the...
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1 Qasr Al Sarab Road - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
You will never feel more like a character in Lawrence of Arabia than by travelling to the Empty Quarter, the Rub'Al Khali desert. This desert area may represent what most visitors assume they will see when visiting Abu Dhabi, but it's surprisingly...
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Hessa Bint Mohamed St - Al Mutawaa, Al Ain - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
Not as glamorous as Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi or the new royal residence taking shape in the Capital, the Al Ain Palace, former home to Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan and his family, is equally as interesting. The palace grounds are quite...
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Abu Dhabi Theatre Rd, Corniche Brake water - Near Marina Mall - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
This reconstructed village is a glimpse into old oasis living. Heritage Village is a great place to see how the Emerati lived before skyscrapers. Scenes depict desert life in great detail and highlight their historic, nomadic lifestyle. Make sure...
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Al Marina - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates
After the evening call to prayer, several cafe trucks open up to people strolling along the stretch of Marina Island—across the water and parallel to the Abu Dhabi cityscape on the Corniche. From Arab coffee to karak (similar to chai tea), the...