The Abu Dhabi Ports Company in association with the Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture sector is working on a fresh development, an enormous new cruise terminal for the Zayed Port.
Although it will have a modern appearance, great care is being taken to reflect the region’s history and culture as well. In the architecture, traditional Arabic ornaments are being incorporated. The use of colours that emphasise the region and celebrate the long history of maritime of the United Arab Emirates is also part of the design.
One such element of cultural heritage being placed in the port is being placed upon the roof. This design resembles that of the ‘Ghaf’, the national tree of the UAE.
The terminal is scheduled to offer 8000 square meters and will have all the modern amenities, from souvenir shops to casual restaurants. The new building is also due to feature an improved border control system that pledges to make the customs process quicker and more efficient. The terminal is due to be completed in 2016 and the work for it has already begun.
This news comes together with the announcement that the UAE will be offering a multi entry visa that will make travelling to different countries in the area very easy, perfect for cruise holidaymakers.
What can you see when visiting Abu Dhabi during a port of call?
The Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is the world’s largest indoor theme park whose theme is based on the auto company of the same name. Thrilling high speed rides are the main attraction, including a car themed roller coaster that is said to be the world’s fastest rollercoaster, the Formula Rossa.
For those who are art inclined, architect Frank Gehry is creating yet another of his masterpiece’s to rival his in the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao. The Guggenheim Abu Dhabi will open soon, and his artworks will also be housed in The Louvre Abu Dhabi opening later.
Spend some time at the enormous Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Besides a house of religion, the building also serves as a cultural centre to help acquaint visitors with the traditions of UAE and how the religion of Islam ties into it.
There is also the Al Ain Oasis for those who want to cool down on hot days. This oasis is packed with thousands of palm trees and is flanked by huge plantations. The palm trees are watered from the 3,000-year-old falaj irrigation system that are located nearby the Al Ain National Museum.
The Al Ain National Museum is divided into three sections consisting of archaeology, ethnography and gifts and is housed in the same area as the Sultan Bin Zayed Fort. Many artefacts of ancient history will be housed within with items dating back to the first millennium BC.
With all these points of interest that will please all types of visitors in all age groups, Abu Dhabi is certainly looking towards the future. The cruise industry is anticipating the completion of the new and revamped port in two years time.
Written by Veronica Shine