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Man-made Lulu Island opens to the public

posted on 13/04/2007: 3537 views

Lulu Island is part perfectly manicured and part rough terrain. The man-made six square kilometre island that stretches from the Abu Dhabi breakwater to the Mina Zayed area has finally opened to the public, years after rumours of its development began.

Boats take visitors from a jetty near the Emirates Heritage Village to Lulu Island, where buses and a little train awaits them to take them around the island.

There are four boats, and each can carry 25 people, as well as a sea bus which can carry 60 people. Officials say the number of boats and buses will be increased according to demand.

Lulu Island, which lies north of Abu Dhabi, currently holds two restaurants and four coffee shops, two stretches of beach on the North and South shores of the island, changing rooms, cafeterias, a duned area, mosques, two artificial lakes, and a track for camel and horse riding. Given the huge expanse of land, the island still looks bare and unfinished in some areas.

But Mubarak Al Falahi, engineer at the Department of Agriculture and Municipality and project director for Lulu Island says the island is ready for the public. "Nothing is under construction, it is all just cleaning and maintenance," he says. "By the time the weekend comes around, the island's facilities will be fully functional."

Saif Al Qubaisi, Assistant Under-Secretary for Roads and Technical Services, said the opening of the island underlined the desire shown by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan and General Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, to "turn Abu Dhabi into a major global tourism destination."

Opening hours are from 8am to 8pm, and entrance is Dh15; once on the island, all activities are free. (Gulf News)


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