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Updated by Joanna James on Apr 24, 2021
Headline for The Most Thrilling Outdoor Activities You Can do in Abu Dhabi - Top Outdoor Adventures to Enjoy on a Trip to Abu Dhabi
Joanna James Joanna James
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The Most Thrilling Outdoor Activities You Can do in Abu Dhabi - Top Outdoor Adventures to Enjoy on a Trip to Abu Dhabi

Regarded as a desert playground for travellers of all ages, Abu Dhabi offers visitors a plethora of exciting activities to enjoy. From dune bashing and hitting the desert to more city centred excursions, here are the best things to do in the great outdoors of Abu Dhabi.


Historical Tour of Liwa Forts

No trip to Abu Dhabi would be complete without a tour of the iconic Liwa Forts. Spread out across an expanse of 60 miles, the Liwa Forts offer panoramic views of the countless date palm farms occupying the Liwa Oasis as well as the spectacular sand dunes just out of the periphery. The seven historic forts located at the site were made using mud-brick and served as excellent defence mechanisms although the idea that the forts were constructed to protect the area's resources of water should give travellers food for thought regarding the significance of this natural resource in the desert.


Horseback Riding

There's nothing quite like heading to the Empty Quarter to enjoy a horseback ride across an open expanse that occupies a whopping 250,000 square miles. As the globe's most expansive uninterrupted sand desert, the horseback tours are conducted by qualified guides who also inform tourists of the various flora and fauna found in the Empty Quarter as well as the secrets of the desert's impressive dunes.


Cycle Around

Cycling enthusiasts will be surprised to find that there are many biking tracks scattered across Abu Dhabi for their benefit. While there are a great many biking adventures visitors can sign up for, the best three options include a fat-tire bike ride into the Empty Quarter where one can ride down massive dunes, biking up to the 4608-foot high summit of the Jebel Hafit Mountain or tackling the 6-mile bike track on Al Hudayriat Island.


Explore the Al Ain Oasis

Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site back in 2011, the Al Ain Oasis remains one of Abu Dhabi's most verdant landscapes thanks to the awe-inspiring falaj irrigation system which has been funnelling spring water to the area for an impressive four thousand years. The town that the oasis and its lushness gave rise to is among Abu Dhabi's most colourful attractions as it is home to a host of illustrious museums including Qasr Al Muwaiji. Those based at Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort by Anantara and other well-situated rests should sign up for a tour of this area.


Go Kayaking

Desert adventures aside, there are plenty of natural habitats to explore during a vacation in Abu Dhabi and the Mangrove National Park reigns supreme among these options. Sign up for a kayaking tour of this extensive sanctuary which served as the home of flamingos, herons, dolphins and countless bird species.


Wildlife Safari on Sir Bani Yas Island

Home to Abu Dhabi's most famous wildlife park, Sir Bani Yas Island is the place to enjoy an off-road excursion to the Arabian Wildlife Park. With more than 16,000 creatures occupying the park, visitors have a chance of spotting cheetahs, Arabian oryxes, giraffes and gazelles among many other animals.