Everything is grand and extravagant when it comes to the UAE but Qasr Al Watan takes the grandeur to a whole other level! Also renowned to be the Palace of the Nation, this palace should be a must while visiting the UAE. It is the presidential palace complex and comprises many significant government buildings. The Great Hall is where you will commence the journey and this is the same hall to one of the world’s largest domes. Since it is now also open to the public, one can get a deep understanding of the Emirati culture, royal Arabian architecture and opulence. Once you enter the premises, get ready to be baffled by the country’s largest central dome.
There are massive chandeliers that dot the skyline of the Qasr Al Watan with over 300,000 crystal pieces. Immersing yourselves in this palace’s architectural beauty and its history should be on top of your list. If you wish to witness the choicest and most exquisite items on display, a brief walk through the Room of Gifts is a must. Qasr Al Watan’s library deserves a special mention as well, as it boasts of a great collection of literature about the region’s history, culture and archaeology. Once you are done with devouring all the knowledge, indulge yourself in a brisk walk amidst the lush landscape that surrounds the palace.
If you wish to see one of the finest examples of Arabic architecture in all its grandeur, the basic Qasr Al Watan tickets will grant you admission at Qasr Al Watan. While you can always book the admission tickets in person, buying online tickets is the best way for a hassle-free way to do the same.If you wish to have an amazing experience, prefer booking Qasr AL Watan tickets online since you wouldn’t have to stand in a queue with the sun beating down on you. You can also get complimentary access to the Palace in Motion show if you buy tickets online. If you are lucky, you can get fantastic discounts to make your trip as cost-effective as possible.
The Great Hall forms the entry point inside the palace and is a true testament of traditional Arabian artistry and craftsmanship. While walking through the Great Hall, one can get a deep understanding of the region’s cultural and architectural heritage. The central dome which is said to be the largest dome in the UAE is the prime attraction here. There are mirrored cubes positioned at every corner of this hall and the mesmerising details of the same are bound to mesmerise you.
This banquet hall will let you know in detail about the Emirati hospitality as it is put to use while hosting the top dignitaries who come to visit the UAE. Even if you are a visitor of the Presidential Banquet, you can enjoy an in-depth introduction to the protocols, customs and cuisines. What will make this experience truly remarkable is that you can also witness the vast and unique collection of silver, crystal and china which is on display here. Emirati hospitality with so much grandeur is bound to blow your mind and will make every penny you spend on the Qasr Al Watan tickets.
The influence of Arabian scholarship at the House of Knowledge is truly monumental when it comes to the progress of human civilization. You can uncover the same in this enlightening exhibition as the visitors will get to witness a vast and rare collection of unique manuscripts and artefacts. They shed light on the Arab region’s contributions in the field of art, literature, science, astronomy and more. The curated pathways of the House of Knowledge will also lead you to an understanding of the origins of libraries found in the Arab region.
Qasr Al Watan’s Al Barza is yet another testimony to the palace’s grandeur as this large hall can accommodate up to 300 guests at one time. This place of gathering and council is decorated with golden finishing and impressive chandeliers, and moreover, this second-largest room in the palace is located adjacent to the Great Hall.It is basically a majlis, which is a part of UAE’s deep-rooted cultural heritage of hosting special meetings for the members of the community. This hall is still used to address foreign dignitaries and to host certain government-related functions. Booking Qasr Al Watan tickets will prove to be worth it the moment you step inside this hall!
This library hosts an incredible collection of timeless literature pieces so you can unlock a whole legacy within the premises. The primary aim of this library is to preserve and share centuries of Arabian culture, heritage and knowledge with the whole world. The Qasr Al Watan Palace library is home to over 50,000 immaculately preserved books sourced from various ages of Arabian scholarship. Apart from the huge collection of rare books, this library also hosts several panel discussions and musical performances. Specially organised tours enable visitors to learn even more about the library, its architecture and the rare books that are staffed inside its shelves. Collected over 35 years, this library has books on history, archaeology, memoirs, biographies, statistics, literature, arts, social sciences and many more subjects.
It was the year 2019 when it was declared the Year of Tolerance in the UAE, it was highlighted that UAE is a beacon of openness to different cultures and coexistence. During this same tenure, several religious heads including the Pope himself visited the UAE. The crown prince of Dubai and the Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces accompanied him and the other heads. This historic event marked the first time a Pope visited the Arab, and glimpses of it can be seen inside the palace.
It is basically a light and sound show which is projected on the walls of the spectacular Qasr Al Watan palace. It involved a dramatic and animated representation of the past, present and future of UAE. This largest permanent projection mapping show in the world sheds some light on Qasr Al Watan’s history and architectural marvel.This show first saw its debut run in 2019 and should be a must in your to-do list while visiting Qasr Al Watan. It comes complimentary with a Qasr Al Watan Abu Dhabi ticket.
Even if you land hungry at the palace, fret not! It has its own in-house restaurant which is as exquisite as the palace itself. Ranging from high-end dining to light snacks, there are a wide variety of cuisines available. You can complete the trip by grabbing some high-quality mementos from the shopping area nestled inside the premises.
Best Time to Visit: Since Qasr Al Watan is in Abu Dhabi, visiting here in peak summer is a big no. The best time to visit Qasr Al Watan is November to March when the sun isn’t beating down on you with that much intensity. December to January is considered to be the peak season in Abu Dhabi so it’s advisable that you grab your Qasr Al Watan Abu Dhabi ticket during this time only.
Location and Opening Hours: Qasr Al Watan is situated at Al Ras Al Akhdar in Abu Dhabi. During the month of May-June, the palace opens up at 11:00 AM and closes at around 08:00 PM. The timing varies from season to season so it’s best to keep a keen eye on their official website for the same.
Dress Code: ‘Smart Casual’ is how one can describe the dress code required to visit Qasr Al Watan. Women can wear long sleeved, long length dresses/skirts while men can wear long trousers and shirts.
Accessibilities: The authorities at Qasr Al Watan provide wheelchairs for people of determination, as well as for elderly visitors. Moreover, people of determination also receive complimentary access plus one acquaintance can also accompany them.
How to Reach: Qasr Al Watan is around 10km from the entrance of Abu Dhabi. One can take both, public or private mode of conveyance. From Dubai, the location is around 150kms and one can take a car/taxi via E11 and Al Shahama - Abu Dhabi Rd/Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan St/E10.