Another incredible place in Abu Dhabi I would love to share with you is the Mangrove National Park.
Abu Dhabi is home to over 100 square km of both natural and planted mangroves. The mangroves provide a rich habitat for a variety of fish, snakes, turtle and birds. The mangroves also prevent coastline erosion. In the past the mangroves wood was used as a source of food, fuel and used to build uses and ships.
After decades of conservation, the mangroves in the UAE have grown to become the largest in the Arabian Gulf coast. The Mangrove National Park was opened in 2014 and offers various ways to explore and experience the mangroves. Some of the activities offered include bird watching, kayaking and paddle boarding.
Getting There: The mangroves are a short distance from the city centre of Abu Dhabi. The Mangrove National Park is located near the Anantara Hotel, just outside central Abu Dhabi on Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Street.
It is very easy to access the mangroves by taxi. There is plenty of parking if you are driving there. There are a number of shops and restaurants along the promenade including Johnny Rockets and Carluccio’s so you can grab some food after exploring the area. There are also some beautiful and luxurious hotels around the mangroves where you can stay and look out onto the waterways below.
You can explore the promenade yourself by foot. If you are looking to into the dense and luscious mangroves then you will use to go through a official your operator. A select number of respected, well-established tour operators have set up a range of activities and adventures so you can explore and make the most of your trip around Mangrove National Park.
Price: Prices vary depending on how you decide to explore the park. Options include boats, yachts, kayaks, paddle boards and eco-donuts. The amount of operators and guides available depend on what time of year you are visiting. We actual visited in the middle of the hot summer and only found a few operators around. We managed to hire a small boat which was actually quite affordable.
The engine of the boat was switched off during part of our trip to preserve and protect the mangroves. We went for the tour just before sunset and had a stunning view of the sun setting over the city.
Even though it was really hot during our trip the views were totally worth it. If you are looking to avoid the heat then I would recommend visiting in the morning or during the cooler months.
Our trip was incredible and one of pure calmness and tranquillity. The water was shallow and clear and we could see crab and fish swimming past. The tour guide was saying that you can sometimes even see dolphin and sting ray.
The mangroves are protected by government order and a lot of effort is taken to preserve and protect the area 🙂
Final Thoughts: If you are looking for a fun outdoor activity in Abu Dhabi I would highly recommend the Mangroves National Park. It really is one of Abu Dhabi’s best kept secrets. It is such a serene, calm and beautiful location in Abu Dhabi and one I would say is definitely worth checking out if you are Abu Dhabi.