The weather is still wonderful so there’s really no better time to enjoy some of the wonderful public parks in Abu Dhabi. The city has been cleverly designed to have these pockets of green spaces, each of them being family-friendly while still having plenty to keep adults entertained! Most of these parks are either free entry or charge a minimal fee, between AED 1 – 5 per person.
The 8 best parks in abu dhabi for the whole family
UmM Al Emarat Park
The Umm Al Emarat Park in Abu Dhabi is a wonderful, large, family-friendly place where both children and adults can have fun! Located close to Airport Road, this park has several distinct features that make it a perfect place to spend the day. Kids (and adults) are huge fans of the petting zoo, a ‘Shade House’ featuring a wide variety of trees and plants – and even a mini-botanical garden! In addition to uniquely designed children’s play areas, there’s also plenty of space for picnics, an amphitheatre that hosts events, a Wisdom Garden featuring quotes by the late Sheikh Zayed, fountains, water features and more little spots that you will love exploring! While outside food (apart from those for small children) are not allowed in the park, SALT has its home at the park gates, while there are several smaller vendors dotted around the park too.
Previously known as Mushrif Park, it’s a firm favourite amongst those who live in one of the nearby villas in Al Mushrif, although we definitely think this is one of the parks in Abu Dhabi worth visiting no matter where you live! Interested in living here? The rental villas in Al Mushrif start from AED 85k for a 3-bedroom villa.
- Al Mushrif
- Timings: 8am to 12am
- 02 666 9559
Zayed Sports City Park
Fitness and sports enthusiasts will love Zayed Sports City, where you’ll find facilities for everything from tennis, football, beach volleyball and basketball. There’s even an ice rink for those who want a chilly adventure, and a bowling alley open for visitors. But if you’re looking for lush greenery, hop over to the neighbouring park, Sports City Garden, formerly known as Old Airport Garden. The Abu Dhabi park has lovely lawns, shaded areas and plenty of dedicated play areas for kids to enjoy, including some pineapple-shaped slides that are a big hit with the little ones!
- Next to Zayed Sports City
- 02 403 4200
capital gardens park
Also known as Asima Gardens by locals, this park is a welcome respite from the bustling city around it. An oasis of calm amidst skyscrapers on all sides, Capital Gardens is part of Abu Dhabi’s urban plan to include more green spaces throughout the city. It’s a favourite on weekends and weeknights with picnicking families while you can head there during the week at lunchtime when the weather is to catch three-piece suits enjoying lunch away from a nearby office. Thanks to the pond right in the middle of the park (with its own fountain shows), lush greenery and cosy mini-gardens, this Abu Dhabi park is a wonderful place to get away from it all…without having to leave the confines of the city!
Find the park opposite the National Bank of Abu Dhabi in the Al Markaziyah business neighbourhood. Oh, and don’t forget to bring the kids, as the park has several slides, swings and climbing frames. And if you forget to pack some snacks, there’s an F&B area that’s kitted out with tables and vending machines. If you’d like to live near this gorgeous park, take a look at the apartments in Al Markaziyah, that start from AED 50k rent for a 1-bedroom apartment.
- Al Markaziyah
- 800 555
Yas Gateway Park
This is one of the parks in Abu Dhabi that truly feels like a hidden treasure. Straddling the Abu Dhabi-Falah Road, Yas Gateway is divided into two sections, North and South. The two spacious parks are connected by trails and pathways, and this green expanse is perfect for a day out with the family.
Beautifully landscaped, this Abu Dhabi park has ample shaded areas and tree-lined paths that are ideal for a relaxing evening. In North side of the park, you’ll find dedicated play areas for younger and older children! It’s perfect place to bring the kids when you’re looking for things to do in Abu Dhabi. At the South side, you’ll find tennis courts available, if you want to burn some energy. Make it a family outing, and bring you blankets, bikes, football, kites and more to enjoy this well-maintained yet massive Abu Dhabi park. And best of all, the gorgeous park features on Bayut’s list of BBQ spots in Abu Dhabi, too! Want to live near this gorgeous space? There are plenty of rental villas on Yas Island, with prices starting from AED 214k for a 4-bedroom villa.
- Yas Island
- 600 511115
If you’ve ever fancied watching a film or TV being shot (or perhaps feel like being on your very own set!) head to the Heritage Park. This stunning location is one of the Abu Dhabi Film Commission’s popular areas for filming everything from films to television shows. The park has picturesque fountains, grottoes, verdant green spaces and winding paths that are simply screaming to be filmed! You can also enjoy unique views of the harbour filled with traditional dhows in Al Mina – so bring along your camera and brush up on your photography skills! This park is also a great BBQ spot in Abu Dhabi, with designated barbecue areas and built-in grills. There’s also a children’s play area, making it a good venue for the entire family. Find the Heritage Park on the eastern end of the Corniche Park.
- Mina Street
The well-known Khalifa Park, off the Eastern Ring road, is one of the biggest family-friendly parks in Abu Dhabi. Its popularity is due to the fact that it is beautifully designed, drawing inspiration from some of the world’s most famous gardens with touches of classic Islamic architecture. Opened in 2007, the park is home to countless water features like fountains, canals, ponds and even waterfalls as well as an open-air auditorium and plenty of space for picnics. People also love that it’s one of the more beautiful BBQ spots in Abu Dhabi thanks to designated areas.
People of all ages are catered to at Khalifa Park, and not just because of the children’s play areas! Head to this public park in Abu Dhabi and you can also visit the Maritime Museum, a fantastic opportunity to learn about the animals in the waters surrounding the city, and even a Cultural Library. One of the best things to do in Abu Dhabi for kids is the Murjan Splash Park, filled with games and a Lazy River. It also features in Bayut’s guide to the best family-friendly activities in Abu Dhabi. And if you’re worried that you might miss out on something in this massive park, just hop on the miniature railway to take it all in! If you fancy living near this gorgeous recreational space, why not browse apartments in Khalifa Park? The rents here start from AED 75k for a 1-bedroom apartment.
- Al Salam Street, Abu Dhabi
Located close to Abu Dhabi-Al Ain Road, Al Wathba Park is away from the centre of the city, and near the famed Al Wathba Wetland Reserve. Visitors can enjoy a family picnic in the park’s lawns, and it’s also one of the BBQ spots in Abu Dhabi, so get the grills out! There’s plenty of space for the kids to run around here, and winding paths for you to explore the park. Keep an eye out for the Al Wathba Library tucked away into the corner of park, if you want to get a spot of reading done! With 35,000 books and a colourful children’s corner, Al Wathba Library featured on Bayut’s guide to the public libraries in Abu Dhabi.
- Al Wathba Area
- 800 555
Abu Dhabi Corniche park
The Abu Dhabi Corniche Parks have long been a place of leisure for residents in the capital, frequently featuring on lists of the best things to do in Abu Dhabi. In fact, easy access to these wonderful green spaces is part of the reason why apartments in the Corniche Area are so sought-after! The parks have also recently been awarded the prestigious Green Flag, indicating that the parks adhere to an international set of standards regarding safety and hygiene.
The parks are known for having their own unique and sometimes quirky characters and attractions. For example, head to the Formal Park to test your navigation skills in the maze, stare pensively into the distance from the wooden bridge found in the Lake Park or, if you’re a little more adventurous, head to Family Park to test your mettle on the BMX track (you can even hire a bike!). The actual parks themselves are dotted along 8kms of the corniche, with access to the free beach, and come with plenty of running and cycling tracks, not to mention space for picnics and play areas. Want to make the most of these attractions? Live next to these beautiful spaces by renting an apartment in Corniche Area, where rents start from AED 43k for a studio!
- Along Corniche Road, Abu Dhabi
With the weather still good, why don’t you take this opportunity to check out some of the beaches in Abu Dhabi? Or if you’ve realised that you really need to learn more about the capital, why not visit some of its heritage sites?