11 things to do in Abu Dhabi this weekend

Oh, hey weekend, we’ve been expecting you.


With a Guinness World Record-breaking attempt, watersports festival, affordable art sale, TedX talk and more, there’s a slew of things to do this weekend, but we thought we’d stop at 11. Here are our highlights of things to do over the next few days…

Thursday 11thApril

Al Dhafra Water Festival is back with ten days of competitions and activities. Cheer on competitors in a series of marine sports including sailing and dhow racing. You can also watch beach football and volleyball contests, take part in watersport and heritage activities, enjoy cultural activities and live theatre performances, browse a traditional souk and more. Until 20thApril. Free. Al Dhafra region, Abu Dhabi. Daily noon-10pm, beach games noon-6pm, souk 4pm-10pm. Visit: turathuna.ae

abdul qader al rais emirati artist affordable art sale galleries at mas

As part of Abu Dhabi Art’s year-round programme, Galleries at MAS has opened to the public. The small exhibition features affordable art work for sale from galleries that will be part of this year’s Abu Dhabi Art – taking place from 21st to 23rd November. It’s a great chance for art enthusiasts and first-time collectors to get their hands on some great quality pieces. Until 8th June. Free entry, artwork from AED 350 to AED 15,000. Manarat Al Saadiyat, Saadiyat Island. Daily 9am-8pm. Visit: abudhabiart.ae

Thursday night is barbecue night at The Pool Deck at Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa by Anantara. Feast on meat, chicken and seafood carefully cooked at the barbecue stations, and don’t forget to save room for dessert. It’s a great setting, too, with the waterside spot offering views of the mangroves and a cool evening breeze. AED 25 including soft drinks. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Street. 7.30pm-11pm. Contact: 02 656 1000, emdining@anantara.com

little birdie pop up market stand camel art

Looking for some funky gifts? The Little Birdie Pop-Up Market takes place today with local makers and creators selling a range of unique, organic and funky products. Head along to see if you can find something cool while supporting craftsmen and women in our community. Free entry. Eastern Mangroves Promenade, Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Street. Noon-10pm. Visit: facebook.com/littlebirdiepopupmarkets

Friday 12thApril

Saddle up for the returning Liwa Urban Cycle Race this Friday. The race will see riders cycle the classic 70km course over rolling dunes in the expansive Liwa region, or the new intermediate 25km course, great for those who are working to improve their distance and endurance. AED 55 for intermediate course, AED 75 for 70km course. Race starts and finishes at Liwa Hotel. 6am-3pm. Contact: events@gulfmultisport.com, gulfmultisport.com

Want to be part of a record-breaking attempt? Yas Waterworld is marking the Year of Tolerance with a special event to celebrating diversity in the community. Head to the waterpark on Friday where Amwaj Wave Pool will be packed with people holding the flag of their country in an attempt to set the Guinness World Record for Most Nationalities in a Pool. On the day, you can enjoy 10 percent off single day tickets with each accompanying friend of a different nationality, for a total of up to 50 percent off with five friends. AED 250. Yas Island. From 10am. Contact: 600 511 115, yaswaterworld.com

In support of the Make A Wish Foundation UAE, which grants the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses, Spanish pianist Pablo Amorós is coming to the capital for a charity gala. Enjoy a performance by the critically acclaimed musician while raising money for a good cause. From AED 175. Emirates Palace. 7.30pm-11pm. Visit: 800tickets.com

From the shores of the Mediterranean to the beaches of Abu Dhabi – Space Ibiza is making its way to Blue Marlin Ibiza UAE. The electronic music party will bring the sounds of Spain’s most infamous island to the UAE – with live performances from the likes of Kerri Chandler, Marco Loco and Frederick Stone – so you can sit back and soak up the atmosphere while enjoying a late breakfast or lazy lunch by the pool or ocean. Golden Tulip Al Jazira Resort, Ghantoot. 1pm-11pm. Contact: 056 113 3400, reservation@bluemarlineibiza-uae.com

Saturday 13thApril

Celebrating its launch in Abu Dhabi, ClassPass is here to motivate you to get fit and healthy by offering a free yoga session with instructor Steph Mullet this Saturday. Just sign up and head along to Beach Rotana, no app credits required. If you’re interested in trying the ClassPass app afterward, there’s a free one-month trial on offer for Abu Dhabi residents, too, with 75 introductory credits. Free but registration required at classpass.com. Beach Rotana, Al Zahiyah. 8.30am.

Let the Games begin! Team Battle Games, that is. Using soft, safe equipment, this fun competition welcomes teens aged 12 to 17 years old to take part in modern sword fighting battles in teams of three or five. Free for first-timers, AED 50 for members, AED 100 for non-members. Khalifa Park, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Street. 4.30pm. Visit: facebook.com/theswordsfencing

TEDxNYUAD is back under the theme, In Plain Sight. Ten speakers, including NYU Abu Dhabi students, faculty and members of the community, will share insight and ideas on everything from changing behaviours about climate change in the Himalayas to the death of rock and roll. Free, registration required here. Red Theater, The Arts Center at NYU Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Island. 4pm-7pm.

Have a great weekend and don’t forget to tag us in your photos at @adwuae on Twitter and Instagram and @abudhabiworld on Facebook – who knows, you might even be featured in the magazine!

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