Qasr Al Hosn is the oldest stone structure in Abu Dhabi and has played an important role throughout the city’s history. Once home to the ruling family, it was also a consultative council before becoming a living exhibition of Abu Dhabi’s past.
There are two parts of Qasr Al Hosn: the inner fort and outer palace. Both are must-sees for history and architecture-lovers, as the building is one of the oldest and most significant structures in all of Abu Dhabi.
It was built in the 1790s and features one of the city’s original features: the watch-tower, which once protected coastal trade routes and the growing population. Visit Qasr Al Hosn and understand more about its function over the centuries and experience traditional Emirati crafts and artisans too.
History-lovers looking to learn more about Abu Dhabi’s fascinating past, as well as couples and families seeking a cultural day trip in the city.
Learning about Qasr Al Hosn’s history and what it means for Abu Dhabi, touring the different buildings and the unique activities.
Learn more about the history and culture of the UAE at the House of Artisans inside Qasr Al Hosn. Explore time-honoured crafts from the region, such as weaving, pottery and sea crafts, through exhibits and workshops. Immerse yourself in Abu Dhabi’s culture and make your very own authentic souvenirs to take home.
Many daily events take place at Qasr Al Hosn, revealing more about the past of both the structure and the city. Discover the ancient art of palm-weaving at a live demonstration, enjoy one of the traditional spoken word performances, and watch AIRazfa, a UNESCO-listed fusion of dance and poetry. Learn about the Al Hosn Police Force too, established in 1957 at the Guards Opening Ceremony.
The exhibits at the fort’s museum help bring to life fascinating periods from Abu Dhabi’s past. Some of the artefacts you’ll discover here are thought to be around 8,000 years old.
The museum also tells the story of how Abu Dhabi has grown and developed over time.
If you’re in luck, you’ll find yourself in Abu Dhabi at the same time as the celebrated Qasr Al Hosn festival. The festival has taken place for over 250 years in Qasr Al Hosn Square, and performances highlight both the richness of Abu Dhabi’s past, and its bright future in the modern world.
While visiting Qasr Al Hosn, check out the nearby Cultural Foundation, which offers workshops, classes and events dedicated to the cultural heritage of Abu Dhabi. Kids will love the Children’s Library, which even features soft faux dunes for kids to spend hours reading on.
Qasr Al Hosn is located on 2nd Street in the centre of Abu Dhabi, close to other main attractions such as the Corniche, making it easy to find and access.
It’s only a six-minute drive from the waterfront promenade, the Corniche, to Qasr Al Hosn.
It’ll take you around half an hour to reach Qasr Al Hosn from Yas Island. You’ll cross Al Jubail Island and Saadiyat Island before reaching the fort.
By car, it’ll take you just over 20 minutes to get to Qasr Al Hosn from the peaceful Saadiyat Island. You’ll travel along the north-eastern coast of Abu Dhabi on your journey.
There are two secure underground car parks at Qasr Al Hosn, providing around 500 spaces.
Free Wi-Fi is available to all visitors.
There are audio books and headsets available to help you learn more about the fort on your visit. You can book a private tour on the website.
Qasr Al Hosn is fully accessible for those with disabilities. You can approach the visitor experience specialists at the ticketing point for accessibility advice.
Qasr Al Hosn is open between 10am and 7pm Saturday to Thursday, and from 2pm to 7pm on Fridays.
Yes, you can book a private tour at Qasr Al Hosn or join a guided tour.
Yes, there are restaurants both at Qasr Al Hosn, in the Cultural Foundation, and around the site. The fort is located in the middle of the city, so you’re also within easy reach of some of the best restaurants Abu Dhabi has to offer.
Yes, children of all ages are welcome to visit the educational facilities at Qasr Al Hosn. Learning more about the history of Abu Dhabi is a fun activity for all the family.
The sun-kissed Corniche Road runs parallel to Corniche Beach on Abu Dhabi’s north-eastern shore. Hire a bicycle, have a picnic in the park or admire the epic skyscrapers.
Purchase a day pass to the Saadiyat Beach Club and spend the day in peaceful surroundings, lazing on the sand.
Discover the magic of the desert and enjoy unforgettable experiences like camel-riding and sand-boarding on a Desert Safari.
Qasr Al Hosn was transformed into a museum in 2018 after 11 years of renovation work.
Qasr Al Hosn was nicknamed ‘the White Fort’ and served as a navigational point for ships.
The fort is covered in plaster made from salt, lime and crushed seashells.
The watchtower is one of Abu Dhabi’s original structures.
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Step back in time at this reconstructed desert village. Take part in interactive, family-friendly craft workshops and look out for the monthly cultural festival.
Located on Saadiyat Island, the Louvre Abu Dhabi is an incredible arts and culture museum, featuring galleries dedicated to the world’s first civilizations, 18th-century society and more.
All imagery provided by © Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi