|About Al Ain||Al Ain Hotels|
The Desert Oasis of Abu Dhabi
Nested on the border with Oman, around 160 kilometers from Abu Dhabi City, is Al Ain, also known as the Garden City of the UAE. Its name literally means the spring and the existence of plentiful underground water explains both cite rise to prominence and the presence of the lush green oases that surround it.
Only a few decades ago, Al Ain and the Abu Dhabi city were connected by a sandy track, which took five days to traverse by camel. Today, a six lane highway has reduced the journey to less than two hours, making it a comfortable drive from the capital. Hafeet Mountain, which stands to over 1,300 meters and contributes to the city's less humid condition, especially in summer with its cool evening breezes. The ascent to the mountain summit can be made car on a newly build road, the landscape on the way up is dramatic and the view from the top spectacular. At the foot on the mountain lies the Green Mubazzarah, a landscaped park of the rolling grassy hills, hot spring and waterfalls that is as picturesque as it is unexpected.
On the opposite side of the city to the north, and also around ten kilometers from the centre the Hili Archaeological Park features excavation dating back over 5000 years. Nearby Hili Fun City provides a complete contrast, a large theme park with over 40 rides and a Olympic-sized ice rink. On the way back into town, you will come across numerous forts, which are well worth a detour and are testament to the many battles fought for control of this lush area.
In the city itself, the Al Ain Museum exhibits significant historic artifacts, including many from Hili, while a trip to the next-door sultan Fort, built by the grandfather of the city, the AlAin a century ago. To the south of the city, the Al Ain Zoo and Aquarium is a major attraction, housing the Middle East's largest animal collection including the extremely atmospheric during its evening opening, when the temperature is also a bit cooler.
The city also as a flourishing camel market, one of the few remaining examples in the country. It is well worth a visit and is a great chance to see close-up these amazing animals that, for centuries have been the backbone of Bedouin life.