Everything you need to know about visiting Yas Island

Everything you need to know about visiting Yas Island

One of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, Yas Island is known as the jewel in the crown of Abu Dhabi. Read on to discover everything you need to know about visiting Yas Island.

Much more than the home to the Grand Prix each year, Yas Island boasts beach clubs, thrilling theme parks, world class restaurants, a giant mall, luxury hotels and much more. Located only 30 minutes from Abu Dhabi, Yas Island is an entertainment paradise that caters to all tastes and ages.

Read on to discover everything you need to know about visiting Yas Island.

About Yas Island

Spread across 25km of land, the island’s development project began in 2006 with the aim of turning the space into a multi-purpose leisure and entertainment destination. The first phase of the development opened to host the Grand Prix in 2009, and the island’s infrastructure has continued to grow at immense speed into the world-class entertainment hub it is today.

Did you know? Yas Island was once part of mainland Abu Dhabi, but a strip of land was dredged to create a canal and separate it into an island.

Top things to do on Yas Island

Explore Yas Island’s theme parks

One of the most popular attractions on Yas Island is Ferrari World Abu Dhabi. Discover a world of thrills with over 40 record-breaking rides and experiences, including the world’s fastest rollercoaster, Formula Rossa. The ultimate adrenaline rush, this ride catapults you 52 metres in the air and matches the G force you would feel in an F1 car. Whether you are a Ferrari super fan or just looking for a fun day out with the family, Ferrari World Abu Dhabi is the ultimate thrilling day out for everyone.

Looking for more adrenaline pumping action? Then escape the desert heat and make a splash at the only Emirati-themed waterpark in the UAE, Yas Waterworld. Spread over 37 acres, guests can enjoy a full day of nonstop adventure with more than 40 rip-roaring rides, slithering slides and other attractions such as a wave pool, underwater VR experiences and flow boarding. This world leading waterpark offers a perfect day out for the whole family.

Located only a short walk away from Yas Waterworld, you will find Warner Bros. World™ Abu Dhabi. Set out over six themed lands, Warner Bros. World™ Abu Dhabi is the perfect place to meet your favourite iconic characters, explore their movie-sets, enjoy 29 state-of-the-art rides and watch family friendly live shows. The world’s first Warner Bros. branded hotel also recently opened its doors and includes Warner Bros. touchpoints and themes from check-in to check-out.

SeaWorld Abu Dhabi is set to open in 2022 and will feature the world’s largest aquarium and a theme park, as well as a dedicated marine life research, rescue, rehabilitation and return centre.

Leisure and entertainment on Yas Island

Home to the Grand Prix each year, Yas Marina Circuit is one of the best racetracks in the world. If you’re heading to Yas Island for the F1, then get ready for an experience like no other as you watch the world’s best drivers race around the iconic circuit. When there are no races, you have the opportunity to test your driving skills as you learn how to drag and drift high performance vehicles on this world-famous track.

If you’re looking to take a break from all the action, then hit the relaxing white sands of Yas Beach. The beach facilities include an infinity pool, private chalets and several bars and restaurants. You will also find a wide range of water sports. From jet skis to kayaking through the mangroves, there’s no end to the fun. Visitors staying at any of Yas Island’s hotels or apartments can enjoy complimentary access to the beach, otherwise there is an entrance fee.

Yas Marina is one of the most remarkable marinas in the world. Not just home to Yas Marina Circuit, you will also find many dining, fitness and leisure facilities available. Golf enthusiasts can head to Yas Links. Designed by Kyle Philips, the 18-hole golf course also boasts a pool, gym and some great dining options. Or watch world renowned musicians and entertainers at the newly opened Etihad Arena.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Time Out Abu Dhabi (@timeoutabudhabi)

Shopping on Yas Island

Time for a little retail therapy? Yas Mall, located in the centre of the island, is the largest mall in all of Abu Dhabi. Opened in 2014, the three-level mall offers a range of shopping, dining and entertainment experiences for residents and tourists alike. Featuring high-street stores, luxury brands, a children’s playground, over 60 eateries and a state-of-the-art cinema, you could easily spend a whole day at Yas Mall.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Sarah Johnston (@scenicsarah)

Where to eat and drink on Yas Island

Need to refuel after a big day out on Yas Island? Thankfully, the island boasts more than 160 different restaurants and cafés. Ranging from fast food to fine dining, you will find cuisines from around the world. Try authentic Emirati cuisine at Al Fanr, taste the flavours of Italy at Filini Garden or transport yourself to India and visit Rangoli. Discover the extensive cocktail menu at Casa De Cuba, try the W Lounge for something a little more sophisticated, or head to MAD nightclub to party the night away.

TIP! If you are planning on visiting during a major event, such as the Grand Prix, it is advised to book well in advance.

How to get to Yas Island

You can reach Yas Island by car, taxi, bus or boat. If you are coming from the centre of Abu Dhabi, the island is only a 30-minute drive away and only a 10-minute drive from Abu Dhabi International Airport. If you are visiting Yas Island from Dubai, then the drive is approximately one hour from Dubai city centre and 75 minutes from Dubai International Airport.

Getting around on Yas Island is easy thanks to the complimentary Yas Express shuttle bus, which takes you to all key points and major attractions throughout the island.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by January (

Best time to visit Yas Island

Since Abu Dhabi is in the middle of a desert, the summer months can be extremely hot and humid with minimal rain. However, the advantage of visiting in the summer is you might be able to nab a deal as accommodation prices tend to drop during this time.

If you’re looking for slightly cooler temperatures but still plan to visit the beach and chill by the pool, then the best time is April to May or September to October. The winter months are also a great time to visit, as the Emirates come alive with festivals, concerts and sporting events.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Yas Beach (@yasbeach)

Where to stay on Yas Island

There are several hotels and tourist apartments located on the island, from 3-star comfort to 5-star luxury, the accommodation offering caters to all budgets. The W Hotel is probably the most iconic on the island. One of Abu Dhabi’s top spots, it is the only hotel in the world that overlooks a F1 racetrack.

TIP! If you’re visiting Yas Island during the F1, the hotels fill up fast. However, there are also many great accommodation options in nearby Abu Dhabi.

Discover the top things to do on Yas Island for yourself:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.