In my previous blog post, I talked about my arrival in Abu Dhabi and the visit to the Grand Mosque. On the final day of the conference, I had about 5 hours of free time. So, as soon as I reached the hotel, I made a quick itinerary and ordered a taxi. First stop – Emirates palace.
The palace has been converted into a luxurious hotel. Anyone can go into the hotel. Just out of curiosity, I asked the security at the entrance:
Me: Can I go into the palace?
Security: Sure, of course.
Me: So no restrictions with regards to taking pictures etc. right?
Security: Sure. Just make sure you don’t go into the guest rooms!! (Poker face)
Anyhooo, the show of wealth inside that place was crazy – right from Lamborghinis and Ferraris arriving at the entrance to people wearing expensive jewellery. Gold and diamonds everywhere – the perks of sitting on top of an oil mine!
Also, it exists! I only ever read about it on social media, but there is a Gold ATM. You put in cash and get gold in various forms!
I walked around for a bit – nothing much to see here. I wouldn’t recommend it. As the weather was pleasant, I started walking towards my next stop – The Corniche!
It is a curving path along a water body and has cycling tracks, jogging places and many park benches for just sitting and observing the Abu Dhabi skyline. It has similarities with the Marine Drive in Mumbai (Link).
I spent about an hour walking along the Corniche, looking at people fishing, joggers running and parents walking along with their kids. It was already 9pm and had to rush back to the hotel for dinner. Finally took a taxi and went home! Overall, a relaxing evening. However, in introspection, I recommend to visit the Yas Island instead. In my next post, I will visit the Masdar City – a planned city project aiming at sustainability.