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Everything you need to know about Qasr Al Watan – Full Guide

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Nestled in the heart of Abu Dhabi, Qasr Al Watan, also known as the Presidential Palace, stands as an iconic symbol of the city. This magnificent palace not only serves as a working presidential residence but also offers an enriching experience for both residents and tourists, providing insights into Arab cultural heritage, history, and the principles of Emirati governance.

For those with a curious spirit keen on unraveling the secrets of palace life, daily tours of Qasr Al Watan are available. Here’s your comprehensive guide to making the most of your visit to this prestigious Abu Dhabi palace.

Table of Contents

What is Qasr Al Watan?

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Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi, often referred to as the Presidential Palace Abu Dhabi, stands as an impressive architectural masterpiece. With its grand façade crafted from white granite and limestone, and a commanding dome spanning 37 meters, this opulent palace was completed in 2017, primarily serving official purposes.

In March 2019, the doors of Qasr Al Watan were graciously opened to the public, offering a unique opportunity to experience the rich heritage of the UAE. While it still maintains its role as a venue for government events, including hosting esteemed foreign dignitaries, the palace now also serves as a hub for educational activities and guided tours.

For those seeking an extraordinary experience in the United Arab Emirates, Qasr Al Watan Abu Dhabi is a must-visit destination. Luxury Destination Tourism, provided by Dubai DMC in Delhi, offers exceptional tours that include this remarkable palace in their itineraries, allowing travelers to explore the grandeur and history of this exquisite venue.

Qasr Al Watan opening hours

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The Qasr Al Watan palace warmly welcomes visitors from 11am to 6.30pm every day. However, it’s important to note that, since it is an active palace, the Qasr Al Watan timings might occasionally undergo adjustments. So, it’s advisable to review the palace’s timetable before planning your visit to Qasr Al Watan.

You can check the updated timetable here.

What to see and do at Qasr Al Watan

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At the UAE Presidential Palace, also known as Qasr Al Watan, there is a wealth of experiences waiting for visitors to discover. As you explore this splendid destination, you can immerse yourself in its expansive gardens, step inside The Great Hall, visit the Visitors Centre, and relax in the tranquil courtyard.

In the evening, the UAE Presidential Palace transforms with a captivating sound and light show, aptly named “Palace in Motion.” This breathtaking show pays homage to the rich culture and heritage of the UAE, bringing the exterior of the palace to life in a spectacular way.

While it’s not mandatory to join a guided palace tour during your visit, we highly recommend doing so. This will enrich your experience and allow you to make the most of your time exploring this remarkable place. Don’t forget to also visit the Qasr Al Watan Library to delve into the rich history and knowledge that this extraordinary palace has to offer.


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At Qasr Al Watan, there are various captivating zones for visitors to explore, making it a must-visit destination for those seeking a taste of luxury in their tourism experience. Let’s take a tour of these remarkable sections:

  • The Media Room: Your journey through the palace commences in the Media Room, offering an exclusive opportunity to capture timeless moments.
  • The Great Hall: A testament to traditional Arabian craftsmanship and artistry, the Great Hall stands as an architectural marvel. Immerse yourself in the intricate architectural details of this splendid room.
  • Presidential Gifts & Souvenirs: Witness some of the most extraordinary gifts the UAE has received from other countries, a testament to its global connections and importance.
  • The Presidential Banquet: Ever wondered how the president entertains? Delve into the world of presidential soirées, where you can examine the exquisite silver, china, and crystal table settings, and discover the customs, protocols, and cuisine of these grand gatherings.
  • Spirit of Collaboration: The circular hall that hosts the Federal Supreme Council, the Arab League, and the Gulf Cooperation Council. Here, learn about the intricate world of diplomacy and protocol.
  • Al Barza: Unveiled to the public in February 2022, Al Barza is the second-largest space in the Presidential Palace. Explore the traditional role of the majlis, a place for cultural, political, and social gatherings.
  • Presidential Meeting Room: This is where official state visits and crucial meetings take place.
  • Qasr Al Watan Library: Dive into a treasure trove of knowledge and culture with 50,000 books that preserve centuries of Arabian wisdom. The library welcomes visitors of all ages.
  • The Power of Words: If you’re familiar with Qasr Al Watan on Instagram, you’ve likely seen the stunning sculpture, “The Power of Words” by Mattar Bin Lahej. This golden calligraphy piece transforms the words of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the UAE’s founding father, into a beautiful work of art, conveying the message that “Wealth is not money or oil; wealth lies in people and it is worthless if not dedicated to serve the people.”
  • House of Knowledge: An exhibition showcasing valuable artifacts and manuscripts that highlight the contributions of Arabian scholars in fields such as astronomy, art, literature, and more.

For your convenience, a handy palace map is available for download to help you navigate through these extraordinary areas. If you’re interested in Qasr Al Watan tickets with discounts or seeking assistance from a DMC for Dubai in India as part of your Luxury Destination Tourism experience, this palace is a must-visit, where opulence and culture blend seamlessly.

Palace in Motion

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One of the top things to enjoy at Qasr Al Watan is the Palace in Motion light show. It happens every night at 8pm, and it displays the story of the UAE on the building’s side.

Qasr al Watan ticket prices

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When planning a visit to Qasr Al Watan, a magnificent palace in Abu Dhabi, you’ll need to secure your Qasr Al Watan palace tickets in advance. The Qasr al Watan ticket price offers you an enriching experience of luxury destination tourism in Dubai.

For general admission, the Qasr al Watan abu dhabi ticket price starts at Dhs30 for juniors (children aged four to 17) and Dhs65 for adults, depending on the chosen date. This ticket grants access to the Qasr Al Watan Tour, the stunning gardens, the informative visitor center, and all the captivating zones, exhibitions, and public spaces. Plus, you won’t want to miss the captivating Palace in Motion show, which beautifully narrates the story of the UAE, lighting up the palace nightly at 8pm.

If you’re eager to explore the finer details of the palace’s opulent craftsmanship, you can enhance your experience with an Architectural Craftsmanship Tour ticket, available for an additional Dhs20. This tour provides a closer look at the palace’s extraordinary features, including the 149,000 unique pieces of silver, crystal, and china used in the construction of the Presidential Banquet, and the dazzling chandelier made from 350,000 pieces of crystal.

For those with a keen interest in the Palace in Motion show alone, there’s a separate ticket option priced at Dhs12 for children and Dhs25 for adults. It’s an excellent way to witness the splendor of Qasr Al Watan without the full palace tour.

In summary, when seeking a delightful and informative excursion as part of your luxury destination tourism in Dubai, Qasr Al Watan offers a range of ticket options to cater to your preferences and interests, ensuring a memorable experience of Abu Dhabi’s grandeur.

How to get there

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To embark on your journey to this luxurious destination in Abu Dhabi, the palace is gracefully nestled on the Corniche, neighboring the Emirates Palace and Mandarin Oriental Abu Dhabi. Getting here is a breeze, whether you prefer traveling by car, taxi, or even a convenient bus service.

If you’re arriving by car, there’s no need to fret about parking – there’s ample free parking available. For those who seek extra convenience, a valet parking service is offered for a nominal fee of Dhs35.

Taxis are another hassle-free option to reach this luxurious destination. They can swiftly take you to the palace, ensuring a smooth and comfortable journey.

For the environmentally conscious and budget-savvy travelers, there’s an excellent bus service. As part of our commitment to providing top-notch service for Luxury Destination Tourism in Dubai, our partners at DCT Abu Dhabi and Visit Abu Dhabi offer complimentary shuttle buses that connect you to the city’s most alluring tourist attractions. Qasr Al Watan is conveniently located on Route A, making it easily accessible via this free shuttle service.

To qualify for this complimentary bus ride, simply display your valid palace entrance ticket on the day of your visit. It’s our way of ensuring your visit is as seamless as possible. For more details on this delightful Experience Abu Dhabi Shuttle Bus service, please click here.

If your journey begins in Dubai, we have a special treat for you. You can catch the complimentary Cultural Express shuttle bus, offered exclusively for those embarking on a Luxury Destination Tourism adventure in Dubai, from the Sheraton Mall of the Emirates Hotel. This bus will whisk you away to two incredible destinations – Louvre Abu Dhabi and Qasr Al Watan. For additional information on this service, please click here.

When planning your visit to this opulent palace and other luxurious destinations, don’t forget to book your travel through our Luxury Destination Tourism – Dubai DMC in Delhi. We’re here to make your journey memorable and hassle-free, ensuring you experience the best that Dubai and Abu Dhabi have to offer.

Dos and Don’ts

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When you visit Qasr Al Watan, a functioning palace, it’s essential to follow these guidelines:

  1. Dress modestly with attire that covers your shoulders and knees.
  2. You can take non-commercial photos, but always ask for permission before capturing people.
  3. Keep your mobile phone on silent mode.
  4. Smoking is allowed only in designated areas; not elsewhere.
  5. Enjoy your food and drinks in the restaurant areas and gardens, as no outside snacks or drinks are allowed in the palace.
  6. Leave your pets at home; they’re not permitted on the palace grounds.

Ticket prices:

  • Adults: Dhs25 for the ‘palace in motion,’ Dhs65 for entry.
  • Architectural craftsmanship tour (entry ticket required) is Dhs20.
  • Kids aged four to 17: Dhs12 for the ‘palace in motion,’ Dhs30 for entry.

Qasr Al Watan is open daily from 11am to 6.30pm and can be found on the Corniche in Abu Dhabi.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

On average, most visitors tend to spend approximately 2 to 3 hours immersing themselves in the splendors of Qasr Al Watan and its diverse exhibits. However, for those opting for a guided tour of the palace, you can expect to invest around 1.5 hours of your time. If your itinerary includes a visit to both the palace and the Emirates Palace, it’s advisable to allocate 1 to 2 hours for each location.

For those who wish to experience the captivating “Palace in Motion” evening light and sound show, it commences daily at 7:30 PM and enchants audiences for a duration of 60 minutes. You’ll be pleased to know that Qasr Al Watan welcomes guests from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM every day.

If you’re interested in booking a guided tour, you have two options. Standard guided tours are available in both English and Arabic at a rate of Dhs 30 per person, while private guided tours, conducted in either English or Arabic and catering to groups of up to 20 individuals, are priced at Dhs 600. Guided tours are conveniently scheduled to depart every half hour, in both English and Arabic languages.

Qasr Al Watan welcomed the public on March 11, 2019, and continues to extend its hospitality daily from 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM, with the exception of Fridays when its doors graciously open at 4:00 PM. It is advisable, though, to consult the official website or reach out to the palace directly for the latest updates regarding visiting hours, as these timings may be subject to change.

Qasr Al Watan is a real Presidential palace in Abu Dhabi. It’s a special place that teaches us about the UAE’s history and traditions. It’s not just a palace; it’s a modern place where you can learn about how the country is run, gain knowledge, and see beautiful craftsmanship.

Qasr Al Watan is a big cultural landmark that welcomes people from all over the world. It shows the important traditions and knowledge that have shaped the UAE. The building and its design are very well done, and they show how important the things inside are.

Qasr Al Watan is all about learning and sharing what you know. When you visit, you can learn about how the UAE was made and how the country is governed. It’s also a great place for tourists in the Middle East and has a chance to win a big travel award.

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