Abu Dhabi Guide
Our Abu Dhabi travel guide is designed for you to get the most out of your UAE experience with a selection of travel tips and recommendations collated to ensure you can immerse yourself in the city, the culture and the surroundings. Find out about what to wear in Abu Dhabi, how to get around the city, UAE alcohol rules, visa and entry requirements and more.
Dress Code and Behaviour in Abu Dhabi
Staying modest (both in dress and in behavior) is a good place to start when it comes to staying anywhere in the UAE. While it is not compulsory, you’ll avoid any risk of awkward looks or conversations if you keep your knees and your shoulders covered. Of course, when you’re in the hotel things are a little more relaxed, and beachwear by the pool or at the beach is not a problem.
If you’re travelling as a couple, it is also a good idea to limit displays of public affection.
If you are in Abu Dhabi during this holy month then the guidelines on dress and behavior are more strictly enforced. And while foreigners and non-Muslims are not expected to follow Ramadan practices, it is important to remember that during daylight hours Muslims won’t be drinking, eating or smoking so your dress and behavior outside of the hotel should take that into consideration.
Alcohol Rules For Tourists in Abu Dhabi
There are strict laws regarding alcohol in the UAE, and Abu Dhabi is no exception. As a visitor, providing you are of the legal age (over 21 in hotels), then drinking in licensed venues such as in the Southern Sun Abu Dhabi is not a problem. Just remember not to drink alcohol or be under the influence when you are out and about.
Buses, bikes and boats are all options for getting around the city, exploring the Corniche or getting to some of the Gulf’s islands. But for the simplest way of exploring the city without breaking the bank, taxis are the way to go. Government monitored prices and fare displaying meters help ensure you don’t get ripped off. Guests staying at Southern Sun Abu Dhabi are welcome to let the concierge or doorman call you a taxi to ensure that it is reputable.
Strict rules, a visible police presence and a no-tolerance attitude makes Abu Dhabi an exceptionally safe place to visit when it comes to crime. Of course, visitors should always be prudent and avoid walking alone after dark or being careless with displaying valuables. For extra peace of mind Southern Sun Abu Dhabi provides a safe in every guest room for you to store your valuable items.
12 months of sunshine is not an exaggeration in Abu Dhabi. However, there can be too much of a good thing, and visitors should be aware that May to September can get very hot. Temperatures average around 40°C in the day and only drop to mid-20°C at night. Choosing a hotel with great air-conditioning and pool like Southern Sun Abu Dhabi is a must. During October, November, March and April things are slightly cooler, and in December through to February the after dark temperatures can even get a little cold (averaging around 15°C). Wear thin layers made of natural fabrics, apply sunscreen, hydrate well, and you can enjoy the city any time of year.
Visas and Entry Requirements in Abu Dhabi
Aside from normal flight restrictions, bringing in products forbidden by Islamic law (pork, anti-Islam literature, pornography and even some prescription medicines) is not permitted. Visitors bringing in prescription medicine should always make sure they have appropriate documentation and that it is on the permitted list.
For most visitors (60 different nationalities) a free 30-day (including UK, USA, Australia and Japan) or 90-day visa (including many European and South American countries) will be granted on arrival. It is recommended you check here before travelling to see if your country falls under any visa restrictions. If not, arrival is usually easy and hassle free.