Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Exploring Abu Dhabi

Now that it's not 115 degrees and unbearable to be outside, I have finally had a chance to explore some of the great city where I live!

While Will was vising, we went to the Corniche, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, and the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Crazy!!

The Corniche is a road that runs along the water and the side of Abu Dhabi city. It has a boardwalk, some shops/restaurants, bike rentals, and the beaches! We decided to go on a Saturday (which is bascally our Sunday) and we had a great time! We took a taxi from my island and got dropped off at the main area on the Corniche. There were giant set-ups for the FIFA U-17 World Cup and the Formula 1 event. There were tents, games, activities, falcons (there are always falcons), and much more. We decided to head down to the beach first and check out the events later on once the sun started to go down. {Side note: there isn't any daylight savings here so the sun is setting around 5:30PM and rising around 6:45AM so daylight is very valuable!}We ended the day with some ice cream and a beautiful sunset!

We decided to visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque after I got done with school one day and got there just in time for the 5:00 tour. Our tour leader was great - funny, informative, and very knowledgable about the mosque and culture. We started outside just as the sun was going down and then went inside. You can't wear your shoes inside so there were tons of shelf things to put your shoes so you could enter the mosque. It is truly an amazing place to visit. The architecture was stunning and the inside of of the mosque was absolutely beautiful. 

We also had the opportunity to attend the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November! We decided to get the 3-day tickets so we could attend all of the practice races, qualifiers, and concerts. On the first day, we walked around the circuit grounds and saw the marina and the giant yachts. We had some lunch, had a few drinks, and then watched some of the practice races. The best part of the day was getting to see Jay-Z in concert! We were lucky enough to win some "golden circle" tickets for the concert, which meant we were front sections. We ended up being about 10 feet from the stage! It was an awesome show… probably one of the best concerts I have been to! Saturday at the race was basically the same, except for no Jay-Z concert afterwards. Sunday was an Islamic holiday so I didn't have school. I was able to attend all the race events and see the final race! It was much more entertaining seeing the cars actually race, rather than just practice driving around the track. Here are a few pictures from the race!

Next up: Pink Polo, desert safari, and national day! 


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