city tours big bus

City Tours

Abu Dhabi

All about city tours
in Abu Dhabi

City tours in Abu Dhabi allow you to experience this glittering city from all angles.

Between the skyscrapers lie immaculate palace lawns, adventure islands and natural refuges, such as Mangrove National Park. A city tour of Abu Dhabi places all the highlights of this diverse city and the great outdoors within reach.

There are several travel and tours agency providers in Abu Dhabi – Big Bus Tours has two routes, which can be enjoyed from a refreshingly breezy open-air bus.

Other excursions combine cultural attractions such as Heritage Village with Yas Island theme parks, while boat tours glide between landmarks on the glittering Arabian Gulf. 

Abu Dhabi tour rides make seeing all the best parts of the city simple, so all you need to worry about is making unforgettable memories. 

people on a bus tour people on a bus tour

The best city tours in Abu Dhabi

See many of the most important landmarks on the Abu Dhabi city tour by bus – it’s a hop-on, hop-off experience which transports you between key attractions and neighbourhoods.

There are two routes. The red route focuses on urban attractions such as Corniche Beach, Marina Mall and Qasr al Hosn. The Presidential Palace and Emirates Palace can also be admired on this route.

The green route, meanwhile, begins at Abu Dhabi Mall and takes a wider tour of the Abu Dhabi region, with the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque taking star position.

The green route stops on Yas Island, where a range of exciting family attractions lie, including Yas Waterworld, Yas Marina Circuit and Ferrari World™ Abu Dhabi.

On this route, the Abu Dhabi tour bus also stops at Eastern Mangroves, on the cusp of the luscious natural landscapes of Mangrove National Park.

city tours big bus

An Abu Dhabi city tour is an enriching journey – there are several types, each presenting a unique itinerary and travel style. Here’s how to experience three of the best.

The red and green routes of Big Bus Tours intersect at Abu Dhabi Mall, so it’s a great place to hop on. You’ll find it just off Al Maiyani Street, a 12-minute drive from Corniche Beach.

The Abu Dhabi Yellow Boats tour takes off from Emirates Palace Marina. This is located near the UAE Presidential Palace and Qasr al Watan. 

Etihad’s Modern Abu Dhabi City Tour, which comes with access to Ferrari World™ Abu Dhabi, offers pickup from any location in central Abu Dhabi – airport or hotel pick-up can be requested when you book a tour.

Things to know before you go

Allow plenty of time for big attractions

If you’re using a hop-on city tour to acquaint yourself with big attractions such as the Louvre Museum Abu Dhabi, then be sure to plan enough time for each segment of your day.

Allow two hours each for both the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and Louvre Abu Dhabi, which are both full of things to do. The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is the UAE’s largest mosque, with a main prayer hall that can accommodate 7,000 worshippers and plenty of smaller rooms to marvel at, too.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi has 23 permanent galleries to discover. Leave yourself with plenty of time to get the most from the Arabian peninsula’s largest art museum. 

Prepare for warm weather

Abu Dhabi city tours are always warm, no matter what time of year you visit so it’s important to be well prepared. Pack plenty of water, sun cream and a hat for shelter from the sun, especially if your tour is via boat or open-top bus.

Long and lightweight clothing can help you to keep you cool – however, since many attractions are air-conditioned, it is also a good idea to carry a warmer layer, too.

City Tours: FAQs

A day of Abu Dhabi tour delights

lourve abu dhabi lourve abu dhabi

Start bright and early

Hop on the Big Bus tour at Abu Dhabi Mall. Watch the morning sun rise above the Corniche, then exit at Heritage Village for an introduction to Emirati culture.

Return to the mall to change onto the green line towards Louvre Abu Dhabi. Get there just before 10am for a great spot in line and explore until around midday.

Artistically enriched, board again to reach Yas Island for lunchtime. In Yas Mall and on the marina, you’ll find restaurants offering different international cuisines for a spot of lunch.

An exciting afternoon

Select one theme park and expect to stay until mid-afternoon – although some attractions, such as Yas Waterworld, could easily be enjoyed all day. It’s possible to purchase Yas Island tickets through Etihad for multiple parks and days.

Return to the bus to head towards the marvellous Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. Arrive at around 4pm for cooler temperatures and expect to stay for an hour or two. On the final leg of your tour, watch the sun set over Mangrove National Park.

yas waterworld yas waterworld

Where to next?

aerial view of abu dhabi

Sightseeing in Abu Dhabi

All great city tour journeys in Abu Dhabi lead to sightseeing. Find out more about the landmarks you shouldn’t miss, from the Louvre Abu Dhabi to Emirates Palace.

Discover more

ferrari world aerial view

Ferrari World™ Abu Dhabi

High-octane energy finds its place at Ferrari World™ Abu Dhabi. Ride the world’s fastest rollercoaster at the first ever Ferrari-themed park.

Discover more

woman kayaking in blue lake

Mangrove National Park

Abu Dhabi is a dream for nature lovers. From kayaking to exploring Mangrove Walk, discover the many ways to experience Abu Dhabi's most blissful corner. 

Discover more

Flights + Hotel