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Your guide to the Abu Dhabi GP with Thomas Cook Sport
Promoted: Make the most of a trip to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix with the help of our travel guide

Abu Dhabi F1 atmosphere

Joining the calendar in 2009, the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was the calendar's first day-into-night event and the race has since become a must-visit spectacle that ends the Formula 1 season with a dramatic flourish.

When visiting this event in the United Arab Emirates, most fans opt to commute from neighbouring Dubai. The city is just 90 minutes along the coast from the Yas Marina circuit.

Even if you choose to stay in Abu Dhabi for the race, it's certainly worth visiting Dubai for some sight-seeing either before or after the GP.

Choose your Abu Dhabi Grand Prix experience

Officially opened in 2010 and standing 829 meters tall and boasting 57 elevators, the Burj Khalifa tower dominates the city's skyline and gives you a bird's eye view of downtown Dubai. The world's tallest structure is also home to some amazing bars, restaurants and shops.

Burj Khalifa tower Dubai

If you like shopping, the Dubai Mall is the world's largest shopping centre and is open for business in the city's downtown. Accessible by metro or car, the mall received 56 million visitors last year and it includes a zoo, an aquarium, the SEGA theme park, a 22-screen cinema and over a thousand shops.

Take time to recuperate in Dubai's Miracle Garden, home to more than 100 million planted flowers. The garden gives visitors a chance to get away from the busy downtown area and surround themselves with some of the world's most beautiful flora. Easily accessible via public transport, the garden is the perfect place to relax.

After the short trip along the coast to Abu Dhabi, the go-to sight is the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. The country's key site of Muslim worship is an incredible feat of architecture. Completed in 2007, the building cost more than $500million to create, is adorned with 82 domes and receives 40,000 visitors during Eid alone - the Grand Mosque is a must when in the UAE.

Racing fans should also immerse themselves in the world's only Ferrari-branded theme park: Ferrari World. Here you can spend the day riding one of the world's fastest rollercoasters, Formula Rossa, which goes from 0 to 240km/h in 4.9 seconds, before trying your hand on the flight simulators, getting behind the wheel of Ferraris, and a whole heap more. More sedate rides are also available for those interested in a less full-throttle experience.

Abu Dhabi desert

Part of what makes these two modern-day cities in the United Arab Emirates so incredible is their stark surroundings since they stand on the edge of the desert. Tours are available from both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, with various options on offer for visitors to experience the sheer scale and beauty of the Arabian Desert. Whether you want to ride dune buggies, be shown the sights in a 4x4 or even take it slow on a camel - the Arabian Desert is not one to be missed.

The tours usually run in the mild early-evening temperatures and offer a welcome change of pace from the bustling city.

Fast facts

Flight time: 8hrs from London

Currency: UAE Dirham

Time zone: GMT +3

Temperature: 31°C (average high during race weekend)

Ask the expert

The Thomas Cook Sport rep's view

If you are celebrating a special event, how can the experience be made more amazing?

You could treat yourself to the luxury of a Thomas Cook Sport 5* hotel option or take a trip up the Burj Khalifa where you can enjoy lunch and an afternoon of drinks. When it comes to racing, try the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport Experience which offers fans the chance to attend a live Q&A with a member of the team with complimentary food and drinks.

Abu Dhabi F1 atmosphere

Are the transfers long?

It's around an hour and a half from Dubai to Abu Dhabi and the area can be made busier due to the evening concerts. Bring lots of water and plenty of sun cream.

What local food or drink can you recommend?

Be prepared because drinks can be quite expensive and can only be consumed in the hotels (if alcoholic), so you have to plan ahead. When it comes to food, I'd recommend stuffed camel as it's a famous Arab delicacy.

What's your top tip for this destination?

If you are looking for a choice of restaurants Dubai is more vibrant, with lots going on, especially down by the marina. Whereas Abu Dhabi is the home to the race circuit and concerts, but is a much relaxing destination with the emphasis on luxury.

Thomas Cook Sport Break Details

4-night break, flight, hotel & ticket from £1,349 per person

Your booking includes:

Return flights from London Heathrow to Dubai

A great choice of hotel accommodation

Weekend general admission ticket

Thomas Cook Sport staff there to help

Service charges and taxes

For more details on Thomas Cook Sport's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix experiences click here

Abu Dhabi F1 plane and flag

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