Escape the city at Al Ain Oasis
Wander through pathways shaded by hundreds of thousands of date palms at this serene and shady escape an hour-and-a-half’s drive away.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site has a visitor’s centre housing cultural exhibits about the oasis, a collection of gardens perfect for picnicking, and the sun-dappled palms are infinitely Instagrammable, if that’s your thing.
Open daily 8am-5pm. Al Mutawaa, Al Ain (02 599 5438).
Bask in the sun at Al Bateen Beach
Though many of the city’s beaches charge entry fees or belong to lavish hotels (and are therefore off limits to non guests), this lovely little stretch of sand is totally free, and still comes with plenty of facilities such as toilets and changing rooms – as well as the still waters and clean sand that, we’re pleased to say, come as standard in Abu Dhabi.
Open daily 8am-sunset. Khalifa Al Mubarak Street, off Al Khaleej Al Arabi Street.