About the UAE
Seven separate coastal states formed the United Arab Emirates in 1971.
In the decades since, the UAE has evolved into a regional leader and
an important global hub.
A federation of seven emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain.
Founded 2 December 1971
President: Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Vice President & Prime Minister: Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
GDP $421.142 billion (nominal, 2020)
Today, 10 million people from over 200 nationalities call the UAE home. The population is now ten times what it was in 1980.
Business opportunities: 2020 World Bank Ease of Doing Business report ranks the UAE 16th globally and first in the Arab world.
Leading tourism destination: 15 million plus visitors drawn yearly by climate, beaches, leisure activities and culture, including international institutions like the Louvre
Peaceful co-existence: An Islamic country with many places of worship for Christians, Jews, Sikhs, Buddhists and Hindus. The Pope held an open-air mass in Abu Dhabi in 2019, first such event to take place on the Arabian Peninsula.
Strategic position: Provides allies such as the United States and NATO forces access to ports and territory, fly over clearance and logistical assistance. Works with global partners to confront extremism and terrorism and is participating in the fight against ISIS/Daesh.
Description: Al Shindagha Museum is for people interested in getting a deeper understanding of the Emirati culture. It connects Emiratis and expats with a rich and unique history of the UAE and its people. Its vision is to embrace the past – understanding how it has led to the present, and assessing how it will influence the future.
Etihad Museum is focused on inspiring its visitors with the story of the founding of the UAE. The 25,000 m2 landmark is befittingly located at the very place where the UAE was founded in 1971. Through a unique visitor journey, the various pavilions house experience-driven exhibitions, interactive programmes and education initiatives that explore the chronology of events that culminated in the unification of the Emirates in 1971, with a key emphasis on the period between 1968 and 1974. The programmes also aim to educate visitors about the nation’s constitution, in particular - the rights, privileges and responsibilities that it bestows upon the people of the UAE.
Al Seef celebrates Dubai Creek’s beginnings as the famous coastal pearl diving base. Hugging 1.8km of Dubai Creek’s stately shoreline, the 2.5 million square foot development has two sections – a heritage area featuring old architecture, and a second space featuring more contemporary structures.
In the 14th century, Al Jazirat Al Hamra was built by three local tribes, including the ruling Za’ab tribe. The piece of land was once a tidal island, and the name Al Jazirat Al Hamra translates literally from Arabic to mean “red island”. Al Jazirat Al Hamra is a hamlet of perfectly-preserved Ras Al Khaimah history. And dust isn’t the only thing covering the town; it’s shrouded in mystery, surrounded by rumours and possibly even haunted by ancient ghosts.
Culture & cuisine
With a historic creek-side setting and beautiful traditional decor, Zaman Awal provides the perfect backdrop for its menu of authentic Emirati dishes including camel meat.
Al Fanar Restaurant revives memories of Dubai when it was a small and quiet town near the waters of the Arabian Gulf. The menu includes delicious Emirati dishes, including fish kofta and rice dishes with charcoal grilled meat and fresh fish.
The UAE and France formed an unprecedented partnership for cultural exchange, and the highlight of this would be the establishment of Louvre Abu Dhabi on Saadiyat Island. The partnership would combine the UAE’s bold vision of cultural progression and openness, with France’s expertise in the world of art and museums.
The building is designed to be an architectural and engineering marvel that connects the past with the future, transforming the concept of traditional museums using the latest innovative technologies. The building flaunts the Arabic language, its façade bearing the sayings of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, engraved in a calligraphy.
Deira Creekside runs alongside the stretch of Dubai Creek that divides the city's older neighbourhoods of Bur Dubai and Deira. The creek that we know today was constructed in 1961, although it has been the lifeline of the area for centuries, serving as Dubai's main connection to the rest of the world.
Cinema Akil is an independent cinema platform that brings quality films from across the world to the audiences in the UAE. Showcasing directors and filmmakers across the decades, Cinema Akil aims to create awareness and interest in film and the cinematic arts. Launched in 2014 as a nomadic cinema, Cinema Akil has held over 60 pop-up cinemas attracting over 65,000 attendees in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. In September 2018, Cinema Akil opened its first permanent location in Al Quoz, Dubai making it the GCC’s first arthouse cinema.
The Museum of Illusions Dubai brings you a space suitable both for social and entertaining tours into the world of illusions which has delighted all generations. Enjoy more than 60 visual and educational exhibits featuring holograms, optical illusions, and immersive rooms that are designed to tease the senses and trick the mind.
The Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque Center was established in 2008. It aims to emphasize on the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s noble deeds and contributions to humanity, in a way that commemorates his legacy and memory.
Manarat Al Saadiyat is a haven for anyone and everyone to hang out, relax, be inspired and explore a diverse range of artistic expressions. Discover an exhibition, exchange ideas, enjoy delectable food, attend a talk or enjoy a movie. Its main objective is to create a vibrant, experimental community platform where visitors can be part of a cultural experience that is inspired by a diverse public programme including exhibitions - from both international and UAE artists.
Language & dialect
Al Ramsa institute is the only language center dedicated for Emirati Dialect & Culture in Dubai, UAE.
Freej is the Middle East's first 3D animated series. It’s the tale of four old Emirati women: Um Saeed, Um Saloom, Um Allawi and Um Khammas who are trying to live a peaceful life in the midst of the ever-expanding city around them.
Visiting the UAEUK travel advice UAE visitor portal Emirates inbound flight information
TourismDubai Abu Dhabi Sharjah Ajman Ras Al Khaimah
GovernmentUAE general information portal – about the UAE UAE UK Embassy UAE US Embassy MOFAIC Abu Dhabi Government Services World Government Summit Hedayah Center (CVE) UAE Vision 2021 programme UAE Mars Mission MBR Space Centre UAE Gender Balance Council
MediaThe National (newspaper) WAM - State News Agency
Business and commerceDP World London Gateway UAE-UK Business Council Dubai International Finance Centre Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry Twofour54 Media Free Zone Jebel Ali Free Zone Dubai Multi Commodities Center (Free Zone) Many many more free zones here Guide to starting a business in the UAE Abu Dhabi Global Market (International Finance Centre)
CultureExpo 2020 Year of Tolerance Louvre Abu Dhabi Abrahamic Family House
Tourism – inboundVisit Britain
UK/UAE RelationsBritish Council UAE UK Government – UAE and the UK British Embassy in Abu Dhabi British Embassy in Dubai