The Festival of Lights is one of the most anticipated international events celebrated annually in Abu Dhabi. Not just the Hindu community but the Abu Dhabi expat community at large, and visitors can join in with this beautiful occasion involving dancing, colours, tastes, smells, and delights of India and beyond.
Note that attendance at any indoor venue or public ticketed event in Abu Dhabi still requires all those aged over 16 to present a Green Al Hosn
When is Diwali in 2022?
The exact date of Diwali is based on the Hindu lunisolar month of Kartika, so will fall between mid-October and mid-November each year. Tradition dictates that it’s a 5-day festival, with the darkest night of the new moon being Diwali.
In 2022, Diwali will be celebrated on Sunday, 24 October 2022 (though do expect celebrations to last for many days!)
Although predominantly a Hindu festival, the occasion is also marked by Jains, Sikhs, and some Buddhists. A national holiday in some countries, the occasion does not get a public holiday in the UAE but is widely marked in the community. Let’s take a look at what will be going on in 2022:
Diwali Events in Abu Dhabi
Yas Bay Waterfront
From street entertainers to henna, the most happening place to be in Abu Dhabi this Diwali is the newest nightlife and entertainment district in the city, Yas Bay Waterfront.
The boardwalk will see street entertainers every hour, including bhangra dancers and dhol drummers. For free hand decorations, seek out the henna station located near family dining hotspot Central (and show proof of purchase of 150 AED).
- When: 24 to 29 October 2002, 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm nightly
- Where: Yas Bay Waterfront, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi
- Cost: Free
* Still TBC if there are any scheduled Diwali fireworks in 2022!
A. R. Rahman Concert at Etihad Arena
Renowned Indian artist A.R. Rahman, a two-time Academy Award winner, is appearing for the first time in Abu Dhabi in this exclusive one-night performance. Along with an ensemble of singers and musicians, fans will enjoy songs from his classic movies, blended with visual effects and state-of-the-art technology.
- When: 29 October 2022, 7:30 pm to 10:00 pm
- Where: Etihad Arena, Yas Island
- Cost: From 80 AED
Learn more at etihadarena.ae
Chefs Table at Rangoli
Master Chef India judge Chef Ranveer Brar will be curating a Chef’s table experience including a 5-course dining menu for a limited time. In addition, fans can meet the chef as he launches his latest cookbook at Filini Garden, Radisson Blu.
You can also catch him at a cooking competition at Crowne Plaza from 3-5pm on 29 October.
- When: October 28 to 30, 2022 from 6:00 pm
- Where: Rangoli, Rotana Yas Island
- Cost: 399 AED per person or 699 AED for couples
Chef Vineet Bhatia at W Abu Dhabi
Celebrity Chef, restauranteur, author and the first Michelin-star chef for Indian Cuisine Vineet Bhatia will be making a guest appearance for five days at Angar restaurant.
- When: October 24-28, 2022 (lunch 12:30 to3:30pm and dinner 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm)
- Where: Angar, W Abu Dhabi, Yas Island
- Cost: TBC
- Learn more at marriott.com
3D Diwali Light Show & BBQ
A great one for families to enjoy, experience a Diwali-themed light projection on the facade of Hilton Abu Dhabi, accompanied by Bhangra dancers poolside and a fabulous Indian spread.
- When: 29 & 30 October 2022, 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm
- Where: Capila Pool Bar & Grill, Hilton Abu Dhabi, Yas Bay Waterfornt, Abu Dhabi
- Cost: A la Carte
Heading to Dubai? Catch all the Diwali action in Dubai over here
More Abu Dhabi Events in October
With the substantial lifting in COVID rules since the summer, Abu Dhabi has an action-packed calendar of international events this month, from Oktoberfest and Halloween celebrations to Disney on Ice and UFC at Etihad Arena, brining you extremes of entertainment on Yas Island!
Check out our Abu Dhabi in October guide for plenty more suggestions and how to fill your October days in the UAE now that the weather is cooling and public events are back on the calendar!
Before you go… Important things to consider planning a trip to Abu Dhabi
- Pop into our essential planning information page, it includes everything you need to know about getting around Abu Dhabi, a handy guide on what to pack as well as top tips for first-timers on the dos and don’ts, laws, and customs in the UAE.
- Check the most up-to-date COVID entry rules for Abu Dhabi.
- Don’t forget to pack your travel insurance!
- Discover the best places to stay in Abu Dhabi, or bag a bargain on your accommodation here:
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