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Updated by Roger Gary on Feb 24, 2015
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Roger Gary Roger Gary
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Museums in Abu Dhabi - Uncover Abu Dhabi's Illustrious Museums

A desert vacation destination like no other Abu Dhabi is also home to some of the Middle East's most illustrious museums. From ancient palaces to heritage hubs here are Abu Dhabi's top museums.

1

Al Ain National Museum

Housed within an imposing structure that served as the home of the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan the Al Ain National Museum is no ordinary museum space in Abu Dhabi. Exploring the historic and cultural legacy of Al Ain and the key players in its story the Al Ain National Museum serves as Abu Dhabi's premier authority on the region and its history. Showcasing a vast number of artefacts and relics the oldest items on display at the venue date back to the 3rd millennium BC.

2

Heritage Village

Serving as living museum of sorts the Heritage Village is a one of kind cultural hotspots the delves in to the lives of Abu Dhabi residents prior to the discovery of oil that dramatically altered the city's fortunes. Offering visitors an in-depth look at Bedouin lifestyle and traditional village life during the era the tent laden landscape also includes several workshops showcasing traditional crafts such as looms, weaving workshops and glass blowing demonstrations. A traditional souk is also part of the landscape in this larger than life museum where exhibits come to life.

3

Al Hosn Palace

As one of Abu Dhabi's most ancient structures the Al Hosn Palace is an iconic cultural institution which now serves as the base of the Cultural Foundation. Having been the palatial residence of countless leaders and ruling families in centuries past the locale more commonly referred to as the 'White Fort' is a must-visit highlight for museum buffs touring Abu Dhabi. Showcasing ancient artefacts within its impressive confines the venue also allows free entrance to visitors.

4

Al Ain Palace Museum

Housed in an ancient structure constructed as early as 1910 the Al Ain Palace Museum served as the residence of the founder of the United Arab Emirates from its constriction to the late 1990's. converted in to a spacious museum in 1998 the venue which was the palatial abode of none other than Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan served as the setting for many a political and social intrigue in its heyday. Beautifully preserved the palace now houses an illustrious museum which documents the lives of its most prestigious inhabitants with vast collections of royal regalia and other items belonging to the royal family. The private chambers of the palace and its extensive gardens are also open to the public. Free entrance.

5

Al Maqta Fort

Having been built to serve as a defence mechanism against bandits and invasion the Al Maqta Fort near Al Maqta Bridge now serves as one of Abu Dhabi's cultural highlights. Dating back nearly 200 years the fort is one of the few surviving fortresses in Abu Dhabi. Visitors in search of an Abu Dhabi luxury hotel with easy access to the site and other prominent museums in the city should stay at the Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara.

6

Emirates National Auto Museum

Located a mere 45km from the heart of Abu Dhabi the Emirates National Auto Museum is one of the most popular museums in the city thanks to its vast collection of automobiles. Displaying over 200 luxury vehicles that are the pride and joy of His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Hamdan Al Nahyan the Emirates National Auto Museum is contained in a structure known as the "pyramid". Showcasing the sheik's famed rainbow of colourful Mercedes Benzes the venue is also home to the globe's biggest truck as well.