The 10 Places To Visit Al Ain

Al Ain Oasis has a dramatic setting overlooked by the rocky mountain range of Jebel Hafeet. It is a beautiful, organized city that is easy to get around and popular with families visiting the zoo and its many relaxing public parks.

Historically, Al Ain has been settled since at least 3000 BC, and the museum here does a good job of tracing this long history. It is this history that has made Al Ain the only site in the United Arab Emirates inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

It is also an excellent destination for tourists interested in local culture. Top things to do include trips to the camel market and regular camel racing events. Those who enjoy a series of adventures will enjoy a drive to the top of Jebel Hafeet or a day spent among the wave pools and white water rafting facilities at Wadi Adventure Water Park. Learn more about the best places to visit through our list of the top 10 places to visit Al Ain, UAE.

The 10 Places to Visit Al Ain : 

1.Mubazzarah Park

At the foot of Jebel Hafeet, you’ll find Mubazzarah park, a secluded green spot amidst the rocky and dry landscape. This natural oasis is a great place to relax and is especially beautiful during sunset. Its highlight is the natural mineral hot springs, which pass through the park area in a series of swimming pools. It’s a great place to get rid of the pain of travel. On weekends, the park gets busy with local family picnics.

2.Camel Racing Al Ain

Camel racing has been taking place in the UAE for centuries, and the large 10-kilometre track in Al Ain hosts regular races. Watching the race is a rare opportunity to witness a slice of traditional Emirati culture, which has not faded with the height of the tall buildings.

If you are in town while the race is starting, it is not to be missed. Certain breeds of camels are used for racing due to their small size, including the white or golden “Anafi” breed and the brown or black “Boushahri” breed.

3.Al Ain Paradise Garden

Nicknamed the “Gardens of the City,” Al Ain lives up to its reputation. Throughout the region, you’ll find lush greenery, which contrasts vibrantly with the dry and arid desert regions. Many parks and public parks provide welcome shade on long, hot summer days. Many are furnished with exotic (and slightly over-the-top) natural elements, gorgeous fountains with light shows at night, and children’s playground facilities. The central public park in the city center is one of the best places to stroll.

4.Hili Archaeological Park

At Hili Archaeological Park, archaeologists have excavated finds dating back to the Bronze and Iron Ages. Although many casual visitors will struggle to make sense of the site, archaeologists will enjoy a great sense of history here. This is mostly due to the important discoveries that have been listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

The park is located in the middle of a conservation area surrounded by a palm oasis. Most of the finds from the site are on display at the Al Ain National Museum, which does a great job of putting the site in context.

5.Al Ain Palace Museum

Al Ain Palace Museum is the former residence of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan and his family, who became the first ruler of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. The interior has been meticulously restored to reflect what the palace would have looked like when the sheikh named it the house. Unfortunately, information throughout the rooms is scarce for those who don’t speak Arabic. However, the interior decoration really gives you a good idea of the lifestyle that existed here.

6.Al Ain National Museum

The Al Ain National Museum, located in the Sultan Bin Zayed Fort, does a good job of reviving the heritage, culture and history of the United Arab Emirates. There is an interesting ethnographic section that reflects the daily life of the people of the area, with a reconstructed traditional majlis and exhibits of traditional clothing and Bedouin jewelry.

In the Archaeological Department there are displays of finds of local artifacts from the Bronze and Iron Ages, including pendants and an important coin collection. However, the main attraction of this section are the exhibits from the nearby Hili Archaeological Park, including the restored Grand Hili Tomb discovered at the site.

7.Al Ain Oasis

Al Ain Oasis is a quiet respite from the scorching sun and a refreshing natural diversion from the city streets, an extensive series of palm plantations linked by footpaths in the heart of the city. A small museum near the main entrance does a good job of explaining the importance of palm trees in traditional life, while the oasis itself contains nearly 150,000 palm trees. The palm groves are still fed by aqueducts using the traditional aflaj irrigation system, which has been in use in the UAE for 3,000 years.

This is a great option for anyone looking for some rest and a relaxing walk. Horseback riding and buggy tours of the oasis are available at the main entrance.

8.Al Jahili Fort

This much-restored fortress, surrounded by some quiet shaded gardens in the center of town, dates back to 1891 and was once an important defensive feature protecting the town from attack. Today, it is one of the main points of interest in Al Ain, and within its huge block of golden bricks, you will find a gallery dedicated to photographs depicting the life and works of the British adventurer, desert explorer, and writer Wilfred Thesiger. He focused on his travels in the Empty Quarter during the 1940s.

The castle’s ramparts and towers can be climbed for views, and a video explaining all about the castle’s restoration is at the information centre.

 

9.Al Ain Zoo

Opened in 1969, Al Ain Zoo is the largest zoo in the United Arab Emirates. Endemic mammals such as the Arabian antelope and the Arabian oryx can be seen, as well as African deer, giraffes and eland. Big cat enclosures feature lions, tigers, pumas, black panthers, spotted and jaguars. There is also a monkey complex, a bird section, and a reptile house.

The zoo is well known for its research facilities, particularly its native endangered animal breeding program, with more than 30 percent of the species that can be seen here currently on the endangered list. The zoo’s latest project is Al Ain Safari, a 217-hectare extension, where African and Gulf animals (including some endangered species) live in a more natural environment. Visiting this section of the zoo is by jeep or truck only.

There are plenty of family-friendly features, including a petting zoo; Giraffe feeding activities. Camel rides and a children’s park, which encourages learning about biodiversity. Inside the zoo, you’ll also find the Sheikh Zayed Desert Science Center, with exhibits focusing on the desert ecology of the Persian Gulf and the environment.

Official website: www.alainzoo.ae

10.Jebel Hafeet

A full day Al Ain tour offers a chance to see this and other Al Ain highlights in one day if you are staying in Dubai. The tour includes a drive to the top of Jebel Hafeet for its scenic views, as well as a visit to the city’s major historical landmarks such as Al Jahili Fort, Hili Archaeological Park, and cultural sites, including the camel market. There are also photo stations in Al Ain Oasis and hot springs in Mubazzarah Park. The price includes transportation from Dubai, as well as pickup and drop-off from your hotel.