It may seem a little daunting at first totry and find your way around Abu Dhabi, especially with the distances to outlying towns and islands, but don’t worry. It is easy and safe to travel around the Emirate and there are lots of transportation options, both public and private.
Transportation by car
There are vast distances between the various areas of Abu Dhabi, and not every part of the city can be easily reached or explored by foot. The best way to get around Abu Dhabi is by car, especially if you plan on spending time outside of the city center in places such as Al Ain, the islands and the desert. Fortunately, Abu Dhabi’s highways are easy to navigate, and all signage is available in English.
Most international car rental agencies are present in Abu Dhabi, and you can pick up your set of wheels upon arrival at the airport, in the city or at your hotel.
Taxi services in Abu Dhabi are regulated by TransAD – the Centre for Regulation of Transport by Hire Cars- and cabs are easily available in all areas. The city has a fleet of about 6,400 taxis which operate 24/7, all year round. Abu Dhabi taxis are metered, air-conditioned and affordable, making it an easy, safe and efficient way to get around the city. Smart Wi-Fi service is installed in all taxis as well as security surveillance cameras monitoring the inside of the vehicle in order to be able to return lost items to their owners. A pretty amazing service, don’t you think?
You also have the option of private hire drivers such as Uber, Careem, Onak and limousine services.
If you are going to spend the majority of your vacation in and around Abu Dhabi city, you’ll be absolutely fine with taxis and the public bus system. The Abu Dhabi Department of Transport operates an extensive bus network within the city of Abu Dhabi as well as to and around other parts of the Emirate. Public buses in the Emirate operate on a 24/7 schedule and are fully air-conditioned with access for passengers with disabilities. Senior citizens (aged 60 and above) and disabled passengers travel for free.
The journey planner DARBI is an interactive map that will provide you with all the transportation information needed to plot your itinerary, whether by air, land or sea, throughout Abu Dhabi.
A rising trend in urban areas around the world, electronic scooters have become a common sight in many cities, including Abu Dhabi. E-scooters are a quick, easy and convenient way to zip around the city, not to mention eco-friendly. Abu Dhabi has now allowed e-scooter rental and sharing services in certain areas of the city.
It is possible to explore Abu Dhabi on foot, but, honestly, it’s not ideal (and not airconditioned!). You would most likely need to supplement with taxis or buses to get from one place to another. Sure, a stroll on the Corniche is feasible, as is a walking tour of central Al Ain, just remember to carry some water and slap on some sunscreen.