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Living in Abu Dhabi

Year-round sunshine, pristine beaches, spectacular sand dunes and a pulsating cosmopolitan lifestyle await every guest in Abu Dhabi. The Emirate of Abu Dhabi is known around the world for its massive oil reserves and majestic mosques with towering minarets. These, combined with the distinct Arabic hospitality and mystique - and world-class infrastructure - make Abu Dhabi an excellent destination both for the experienced and novice traveller.

The famous Liwa oasis in the south is home to some of the largest and most beautiful sand dunes in the world. It is also the frontier that leads to the legendary Rub Al-Khali (Empty Quarter), a vast expanse of desert that extends through Saudi Arabia and Oman, which has been the object of many explorers' conquests in the past.

Abu Dhabi city bursts with dazzling business-cum-leisure facilities ranging from state-of-the-art convention center, luxurious hotels, spas, designer golf courses, theatres and very soon, some of the world's most famous museums particularly the Guggenheim and Louvre. The palace-like shopping malls and indigenous souqs in Abu Dhabi make for a great shopping expedition, offering the best handicrafts from local Bedouins to the best of Paris' or Milan's high street fashion brands, sans the ubiquitous sales tax. Gastronomic treats further abound from cool and sophisticated cafes, clubs and restaurants. For the fitness conscious, jogging and cycling (or even roller blading) are a welcome treat especially during the cooler months in the city's charming corniche or beachfront, merely minutes away from the bustling city center.

Furthermore the garden city of Al Ain - lying near the Oman border - is home to one of the famous peaks of the majestic Hajar Mountains and the highest point in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi (Jebel Hafeet), which rises about 1,340 metres. A world-class hotel (Grand Mercure) is nestled close to the mountain's peak offering travellers a great relaxing stay and a panoramic view of the emirate.

Geography

Abu Dhabi's geographical coordinates are 24° 28' 0" North, 54° 22' 0" East. It is the largest of seven emirates comprising the UAE, occupying more than 80% of the country's total land mass and featuring a coastline that stretches over 700 kilometres.

Nearly 200 islands fall under the Abu Dhabi territory including Das, located 170 kilometres northwest of Abu Dhabi city, and Mumbraz and Bani Yas, which are located approximately 180 kilometres west of the capital.

Miles of desert dominate Abu Dhabi's terrain, covering as much as 70 percent of its land area. The city of Abu Dhabi, which is located on a low-lying island, features a Manhattan like skyline with tree-lined roads and landscaped parks and gardens. Sparkling waters of the Arabian Gulf, which surround the city, complete the scenic vista.

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