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Discover Hudayriyat Island in Abu Dhabi

Explore the UAE capital's fitness and nature-oriented district, which is fast becoming the emirate's leading hub for all things leisure

Once home to generations of Arabian pearl divers, Abu Dhabi's Hudayriyat Island has swiftly emerged as one of the most exhilarating sports destinations in the emirate. With an array of sporting facilities set against the backdrop of picturesque Arabian Gulf views, the district is a haven for thrill-seekers who flock to the island for its assortment of active venues, from cycling lanes, running tracks and mountain biking trails to sports courts, skate parks, obstacle courses and beaches.

As the island continues solidifying its position as a premier destination for adventure enthusiasts in the UAE, plans are underway to transform approximately 51 million square metres of the island into an all-encompassing leisure and entertainment hub. This ambitious project includes expanding the city's coastline by 53.5 kilometres, featuring 16 kilometres of pristine beaches, and the development of new amenities, such as Velodrome Abu Dhabi and Surf Abu Dhabi, alongside a diverse array of sports, commercial and leisure facilities, including the emirate's largest urban park and a 220-kilometre-long network of cycling tracks.

Meanwhile, there's plenty to discover at this 3000-hectare waterfront community.

Beach bliss

Take a dip in the serene waters of Hudayriyat Beach, with complimentary access available all day. Spanning over 24,000 square metres, a dedicated area of 600 metres ensures ample space for swimming, with the rest reserved for active adventures including watersports as well as expansive courtyards, a cycling track, a running path and courts for football, volleyball, basketball and tennis on the shore.

There's also the Marsana waterfront promenade, which offers a serene environment for sun-seekers eager to relax on the island's golden shores and admire the breathtaking vistas. Here, visitors can explore cycling paths, skate parks, volleyball courts and an outdoor gym. Junior guests can enjoy the dedicated splash park, swimming pool and play areas, while those craving adventure can engage in jet skiing or banana boating.

Adjacent to the beach is the marina, an ideal spot for yacht enthusiasts seeking a world-class docking facility.

Pedal pursuits

Exploring Hudayriyat Island by bike is also a chance to immerse in nature as the paths wind through parks and verdant spaces. With up to 10 kilometres of cycling tracks, catering to novice and seasoned riders, there's something for everyone.

At the Bike Park, the inner trail, ideal for beginners, offers a safe introduction to cycling. For a more diverse experience, cyclists can explore the intermediate trail, featuring varied terrain. Meanwhile, the outer dirt track caters to experienced off-road enthusiasts, featuring tunnels and rest areas.

Venture further to Trail X, Abu Dhabi's only mountain biking facility. Spanning 15 kilometres, this trail offers uninterrupted thrills on rough terrain resembling mountains, deserts and rocks. Colour-coded difficulty levels cater to riders of all expertise levels, making Trail X a must-visit destination for mountain biking enthusiasts.

Endurance challenges

Adding an exciting dimension to the island's recreational offerings is the range of adrenaline-pumping activities available within Hudayriyat. OCR Park boasts the UAE's largest permanent obstacle course. Featuring an adult track with eight diverse obstacles and eight fitness stations interspersed between them, as well as a children's track comprising six smaller obstacle challenges, the park ensures an engaging experience for all visitors.

Embrace adventure at Circuit X, a dynamic hub that encompasses four distinct venues. At Splash Park, children can explore the Pirate’s Playground; at Skate Park, skateboarding and scooter riding enthusiasts can navigate a series of obstacles. For those keen on BMX riding, BMX Park provides tracks tailored for both beginners and experienced riders, with the opportunity to showcase their skills at the BMX Pump Track. Additionally, thrill-seekers can embark on high-flying adventures at the High Ropes Park, tackling ziplines and obstacle courses at heights.

Finally, for those seeking a more leisurely pace, the Hudayriyat Mar Vista jogging track provides a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, where athletes can enjoy a serene walk or run amidst picturesque surroundings.

Peering into history

Offering an archaeological adventure with a unique twist, the Hudayriyat Heritage Trail winds through picturesque pathways and raised tidal boardwalks. Providing an immersive journey through local history, visitors can uncover intriguing facts about the region as the trail showcases artworks depicting the cultural, ecological and historical significance of oysters, pearls, pottery, shark and dugong bones, and fishing nets.

Educational nodes along the route offer insights into the traditional Bedouin lifestyle and their adaptations to the environment before modern technology.

Coming soon

Enhancing the island's multifaceted offering, Surf Abu Dhabi is poised to open its doors this year, becoming the world's largest and most technologically advanced artificial wave facility. With thrilling rides, barrel waves and expansive wave pools, it will cater to both seasoned surfers and beginners.

The emirate's largest urban park is also on the horizon, spanning over 225 hectares and encompassing diverse amenities such as an elevated cycling track, an eco-tourism platform, a tranquil mangrove walk and a farm.

Scheduled to debut in 2025, Velodrome Abu Dhabi will feature the region's first Union Cycliste Internationale category one indoor cycling track, primed for hosting global competitions. Noteworthy features include a rooftop track, accessible via a 600-metre cycling ramp spiralling around the exterior walls, offering panoramic vistas of Hudayriat Island and the Abu Dhabi skyline.


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