A stopover is the perfect way to turn a typical, possibly uninteresting, long layover into a more pleasant, enjoyable experience.


Stopovers are longer than layovers, usually lasting a day or longer. Since they last longer than several hours, you’ll likely get bored inside the airport. You’ll also end up wasting a lot of time doing nothing.

Whether your stopover is just a day or more, you can make the most out of your stay in a different country by going out of the airport and exploring the city.


Planning Your Stopover in Abu Dhabi

If your stopover is in Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH), you’ll be happy to know that there are plenty of things you can do here, even if you’re only staying for a day and need to be near the airport.


Below are some tips and ideas that can help you get the most out of your stopover in Abu Dhabi:


1. Stay at Yas Island.


Although there are plenty of hotels near the Abu Dhabi International Airport, staying at Yas Island, which is only 10 minutes away, is a smart decision.


Yas Island is a complete entertainment and leisure centre in Abu Dhabi. Its 2,500 hectares of land is home to numerous hotels, the Yas Marina Circuit, a beautiful beach, a golf course, a shopping mall, theme parks, and other must-visit attractions.


It is one of the best places you can visit when you don’t have a lot of time to spare during your stay in Abu Dhabi.


If you’re still creating your itinerary, look for one of the best Yas Island packages that suit your needs so that you can get more out of your stopover in Abu Dhabi.


With one of these packages, you can choose from various hotels for your accommodation and different activities that you would like to try while you’re in the UAE capital.


2. Add Ferrari World Abu Dhabi and Yas Marina Circuit to your itinerary.


If it’s your first time visiting Abu Dhabi, trying out unique activities is a must during your stopover.


As such, make sure you visit Ferrari World Abu Dhabi and Yas Marina in Yas Island during your short stay here.


As the only Ferrari-themed park in the world, you won’t go wrong with visiting Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. The theme park’s rides and attractions are inspired by the renowned Italian brand, its heritage, and its contributions to the automotive world.


The theme park is home to different rides that hold world records, including the Formula Rossa, Flying Aces, and Turbo Track.


The Fiorano GT Challenge, Flying Wings, Karting Academy, Scuderia Challenge, Turbo Towers, and Speedway Challenge are other rides and attractions worth trying out in Ferrari World Abu Dhabi.


Aside from being the official venue of the annual Formula One Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the Yas Marina Circuit also has various fun and exciting activities you have to try.


You can experience being an F1 driver by taking a Formula Yas 3000 or Caterham Seven for a spin around the track.


If you want to try driving other vehicles, you can choose from a Martin GT4, Ferrari 458 GT, or Chevrolet Drift Taxi.


You can also try karting at the Yas KARTZONE, a karting circuit with a three-track configuration suitable for racers of all ages.  


3. Play a round of golf.


If you’re an avid golfer, don’t miss the chance to play a round or two at one of the most modern and prestigious golf courses in the world: Yas Links Abu Dhabi.


Yas Links Abu Dhabi, which was designed by Kyle Phillips, is set on the west shores of Yas Island. It has a Par 72 championship course and a nine-hole Par 3 academy course.


This first-rate golf course also has a clubhouse, gym, swimming pool, spa, and floodlit practice facilities.  


You can also try using the Toptracer Range in Yas Links Abu Dhabi, a state-of-the-art technology designed to help players improve their game and give them a more dynamic and enjoyable experience on the golf course.


Yas Links Abu Dhabi currently ranks 48th in Golf Digest’s Top 100 courses in the world and the 60th on the list of Platinum Clubs of the World.


4. Go shopping.


Abu Dhabi also has plenty of shopping options if you want to engage in retail therapy during your stopover here.


Terminals 1 and 3 at the Abu Dhabi International Airport are home to endless retail shops, ranging from Middle Eastern and international boutiques to enormous Duty Free shopping areas.


High-end shops at the airport include Burberry, Bulgari, Emporio Armani, Mont Blanc, and Rolex.


While on Yas Island, drop by Yas Mall, one of the biggest shopping centres in Abu Dhabi. Whether you’re looking for high-end fashion items, the latest gadgets, or affordable souvenirs to bring home, you’ll find them at this mall.


You can also take part in a popular Middle Eastern tradition when shopping in Abu Dhabi — the Big Ticket Raffle. When you buy a ticket, you get the chance to win exciting prizes, including cash and a fancy car.


5. Indulge in great eats.


The area around the Abu Dhabi International Airport and Yas Island is teeming with a variety of dining establishments.


Whether you want to eat at a fine dining restaurant, buffet, hole in the wall, or fast-food chain, you’ll find a place where you can have your fill of your favourite dishes here.


If you want to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea or a more potent drink, head to one of the many cafes and bars near the airport or on Yas Island.


If you want to make the most out of your stopover in Abu Dhabi, take note of these travel planning tips and ideas.


Explore our website to get more ideas about planning a short or long vacation in Yas Island.

Getting To Yas island


Yas Express is our complimentary shuttle bus service that can get you to any of the major island attractions. For more information, timetable and map, download the pocket guide or call +971 (0) 600 511115.

To Yas Island:
Boarding spots are available at the Deira City Center entrance (beside Aloft Hotel) and Ibn Battuta Mall, Parking 7 stop (right in front of the China Court section).
Within Yas Island:
The shuttle service bus can take guests to any of the major island attractions.
Air travel to Yas Island
If you're coming from outside the UAE, aim to land in Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH), as it is located just 10 minutes away from Yas Island.
Rental car to Yas Island
From Abu Dhabi International Airport, you can rent a car. All car rental offices operate 24/7


Connect to the Wi-Fi at Abu Dhabi International Airport and book an Uber or Careem via their apps.
Taxis to Yas Island
You can take a taxi to Yas Island from Abu Dhabi International Airport (10 minutes), Abu Dhabi (25 minutes), and Dubai (45 minutes). To get a taxi, you can flag them down at the roadside, call the TransAD hotline 600 535353 to book, or use the Abu Dhabi Taxi app available for both iOS and Android platforms. Taxis are plentiful and fares are reasonable.
From Abu Dhabi:
Board the 102 Bus Route to Yas Island at the Abu Dhabi Bus Station next to Al Wahda Mall.
From Dubai:
Travel to the Dubai Al Ghubaiba Bus Station to ride to the Abu Dhabi Bus Station, then board the 102 Bus Route to Yas Island.