Abu Dhabi events guide - what's on when?
Throughout the year this exotic and stunning location plays host to various events. With people travelling the world over to attend and take part, here are a selection of things happening during Abu Dhabi’s fun filled entertainment calendar.
January - Abu Dhabi HSB Golf Championship
With 120 players competing at the Abu Dhabi Golf Club, there’s a $2.7 million prize fun and the Falcon Trophy up for grabs, in one of the early season’s trio of events during the European Tour.
February – Qasr Al Hosn Festival
Celebrate centuries of Abu Dhabi’s history and heritage with the annual Qasr Al Hosn Festival, held in and around the grounds of the historic Qasr Al Hosn Fort, the symbolic birthplace of the UAE that for generations housed the ruling Al Nahyan family. The festival comprises a wide range of historic and cultural themed exhibitions, workshops, performances and activities.
March –ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi (04 & 05 Mar 2016)
Now part of the ITU World Triathlon Series, the Abu Dhabi event will be the sport’s season opener until 2019, attracting athletes from more than 100 countries and tens of thousands of spectators to Abu Dhabi’s Corniche.
April - Al Gharbia Watersports Festival
Head to Al Mifra fishing village in Abu Dhabi’s Western Region for this annual water sports extravaganza, combining everything from swimming, kite surfing and stand-up paddle boarding, to dhow, kayak and rowing races.
Abu Dhabi Festival
One of the Middle East’s leading cultural festivals, the Abu Dhabi Festival combines music, theatre, dance and visual and traditional arts.
May - Abu Dhabi Classics
May sees the spectacular conclusion to Abu Dhabi Classics – an eight-month series of classical concerts and performances by some of the world’s leading musicians and orchestras.
June/July - Liwa Date Festival
A fascinating insight into many desert traditions, the festival includes a date beauty contest with total prize money of around AED 5 million, a date auction, and educational sessions on how to care for palm trees.
July - September - Abu Dhabi Summer Season
The Abu Dhabi Summer Season coincides nicely with UK school holidays and sees concerts, comedy acts and children’s shows popping up all across the emirate. It’s also when many of the top hotels offer their best deals, so is great time to find a bargain.
October - ISAF Sailing World Cup Final
Sailing’s annual World Cup Final, which will be held in Abu Dhabi until 2019, will see ten Olympic events contested in and around Lulu Island off Abu Dhabi’s Corniche during six days of fierce competition. The event will capture a television audience of millions in more than 100 countries and help to develop the emirate as an international winter sailing destination.
Abu Dhabi Art
Taking place each year on Saadiyat Island – the future home of Abu Dhabi’s Louvre and Guggenheim museums – Abu Dhabi Art showcases works from some of the leading contemporary art galleries around the world.
Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
The Formula 1 season comes to a spectacular conclusion at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi each November. Thousands of visitors flock to Abu Dhabi to watch the race and to soak up the atmosphere of Yasalam Festival, the largest city-wide entertainment programme run by any F1 host city.
December – Al Dhafra Festival
Camel racing, falconry tournaments and high-stakes camel beauty contests are among the highlights of the annual Al Dhafra Festival, a celebration of Bedouin culture that takes place in Abu Dhabi’s western region of Al Gharbia.