With history dating back to over 4000 years, Al Ain is an inland oasis city within the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, U.A.E. The city is celebrated for its greenery, natural springs, parks, tree-lined avenues and milder climate compared to other parts of the UAE. It is fondly reffered to as the ‘Garden City Of The Gulf’.
The Al Ain Oasis tops the list of attractions to visit in this city. This site, which has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2011 (also the UAE’s first), introduces visitors to the delicate oasis eco-system and the role played in the development of the Emirates.
Al Ain has a total of seven Oases – Al Ain, Qattara, Al-Mutaredh, Al-Jimi, Al-Muaiji, Hili and Al-Jahili, all at the foot of Jebel Hafeet, the tallest mountain in Abu Dhabi. The largest of these Oases is the one at Al Ain while Al-Jahili has the smallest.
Spread out over nearly 3,000 acres and containing more than 147,000 date palms of up to 100 different varieties, the Al Ain Oasis employs an underground irrigation system, also known as ‘Falaj’, which taps into underground wells to supply water to the farms and palm trees.
The site now has a purpose-built Eco-Centre, a complex with panels and video (with 3D effects) that describes how the oasis works. There is also a dedicated Al Ain Oasis mobile app and visitor map, for navigating around. Visitors can also enjoy the site’s food and beverage outlets, free parking and quick access to neighbouring visitor sites, including the Al Ain Palace and Al Ain National Museums.
Other popular attractions to explore in the rising tourist destination include the Al Ain Zoo, Al Jahili Fort, Camel Souq, Hili Archaeological Park site, ‘Hili Fun City’ amusement park, Wadi Adventure and a heritage village.