WANDERLUSTAbu Dhabi's best beaches

The Gulf's endless stretches of white sand and crystalline waters make Abu Dhabi a perfect beach destination

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Perched at the top of the Arabian Peninsula, Abu Dhabi’s mainland is fringed by a scattering of beautiful islands, giving the emirate miles of pristine beaches. Each one is distinctly unique, but all have immaculate powdery sands and the tranquil Arabian Gulf sprawling as far as the eye can see. With everything from buzzing party beaches, to serene sandy stretches, make sure you grab a good book and pitch up your parasol — these are the best beaches in Abu Dhabi.

Abu Dhabi beach

 

Corniche beach

Crowning Abu Dhabi’s main seafront in an 8km stretch of golden sand, Corniche beach is where all the action happens. Backdropped by a swathe of glass and steel skyscrapers, the spotless beach is a fabulous place to unfurl you towel, admire the skyline and people watch. Volleyball courts and football pitches make it ideal for activity-thirsty beachgoers, while cycle paths and pedestrian pathways are perfect routes for exploring the expanse of Corniche beach.

Corniche Skyline

 

Saadiyat beach

With sands as white as snow and sea as blue as the cobalt Arabian skies, Saadiyat public beach draws a discerning crowd of beachgoers, lured by its beach club’s chic cabanas. Decidedly more laid back than other Abu Dhabi beaches, rows of gleaming white sun loungers and umbrellas invite lazy days at the water’s edge. Surrounded by dunes, the beach’s ecosystem is fiercely protected (nesting hawksbill turtles make their home among the sands her), to the extent that only eco-friendly water sports activities like windsurfing and sailing are allowed. Experience your own exclusive slice of this paradisiacal sandy stretch on Jumeirah at Saadiyat Island Resort’s own private beach.

Yas beach

Home to Ferrari World, Warner Bros. World and a mighty waterpark, Yas Island is Abu Dhabi’s entertainment central. It’s little surprise then, that its beach positions itself as something of a sandy playground. With a lively beach club playing funky beats, shady cabanas to hire and tasty dining choices available, Yas beach is a fun place to pitch up and party at the water’s edge. Surrounded by a lush mangrove forest it is also remarkably scenic.

Yas beach Abu Dhabi

 

Sir Bani Yas Island

Almost the entirety of Sir Bani Yas Island (located off west coast of Abu Dhabi) is a wildlife reserve, where cheetahs prowl and gazelles leap across plains. Aside from heading out on safari and marvelling at the wonder of nature, you can lay your towel down upon some of Abu Dhabi’s best beaches. Unspoilt expanses of wind-kissed sand are framed by gently nodding palms and a verdant mangrove lagoon. Take out a kayak or paddleboard on the azure ocean and keep an eye out for nesting ospreys or flamingos. The best way to visit Sir Bani Yas Island is via a day cruise.

Abu Dhabi beach

 

Hudayriat Island

One of Abu Dhabi’s newest destinations is Hudayriat Island. Accessed by the mainland via a bridge, this manmade islet is home to a glorious 600-metre long beach that opened to the public in 2018. Still under the radar, Hudayriat Island’s beach is quieter than many others and offers unforgettable views of the Gulf. Thrill seekers will adore the Jet Ski, kayaking and kite surfing facilities.

Family beach Abu Dhabi

 

Al Bateen beach

Thanks to its sheltered location on Abu Dhabi’s western peninsula, Al Bateen Beach enjoys blissfully calm waters, which make it a family favourite with locals who love to swim and fish. Facing out onto Hudairiyat Island and with the cityscape in the distance, it’s a wonderfully scenic seaside spot that has been awarded Blue Flag status. A playground and ample watersports amenities also make Al Bateen one of Abu Dhabi’s most child-friendly beaches.

Whichever spot you choose, all Abu Dhabi's beaches are within easy reach from Jumeirah at Etihad Towers and Jumeirah at Saadiyat Island Resort