The Louvre Abu Dhabi

What to expect at the Louvre Abu Dhabi – Complete Visitors Guide

by Abu Dhabi Travel Planner

Abu Dhabi continues to strive towards being seen as the cultural centre of the Middle East.  Opened in November 2017, the Louvre Abu Dhabi has quickly moved to the top of many international visitors “must-see” list when stopping in the UAE. 


Visiting the Louvre Abu Dhabi Post-Covid

  • The Louvre Abu Dhabi re-opened to the public at 30% capacity on 24 June, 6 days a week from 10 am to 6.30 pm (closed Mondays). Hours remain unchanged for Ramadan.
  • You must pre-book tickets in 30-minute entrance blocks, with a maximum stay of 3 hours.
  • Children under 18 years old are now FREE with an adult, a maximum of 2 adults, 2 kids per group.
  • Masks are required to be worn throughout. Gloves are no longer mandatory.
  • The touchscreens are currently not accessible, however, you can access the entire audio guide through a free app on your mobile – download in advance Google Play or App Store.
  • Bring your own headphones to follow the audio guide on your phone.
  • The grab and go food outlet, museum cafe, rooftop lounge and fine dining restaurant have all re-opened.
  • The hands-on Children’s Museum remains closed.

What to expect at the Louvre Abu Dhabi

A cultural masterpiece simply not to be missed on your UAE itinerary, the Louvre Abu Dhabi opened to the public in November 2017. The building alone is one of the city’s most incredible landmarks.

Roof of the Louvre Abu Dhabi

The Louvre is one of many ambitious projects set to transform this Middle East city.   Marked by its giant metalic domed roof it is a distinctly modern, eye-catching and intriguing building.

Describing itself as an art and humanitarian museum, your journey through the Louvre Abu Dhabi begins in the Great Vestibule.  From here you are then walked through numbered galleries. 

Tickets t enter the Louvre Abu Dhabi

Each transports you through different periods of human history, telling its own story that links smoothly to the next. From the first villagers, the great civilisations and empires, the impact of religion then the growth of trade routes, wealth, worldly perspective and modern art.

You can take the galleries at entirely your own pace, following along with the written commentary (each piece is described in English, French and Arabic).  Alternatively, use the audio guides on the museum app in your chosen language for a more detailed description.

The building itself is as much an artwork as the gallery displays.  Light and water interplay under the huge domed roof where your journey through time ends in the magnificent terraces.  Whether intentional or not – the metal roof groans and creeks in a haunting beautiful way, only adding to the magic of the experience.

View from the Louvre back to the main city of Abu Dhabi
View from the Louvre back to the main city of Abu Dhabi

After your journey through the main galleries, there is a special exhibit gallery, a children’s museum, auditorium, boutique and eatery area. 


Lourve Abu Dhabi for kids

They do have a Children’s Museum separate from the main museum complex that you will come to at the end of your tour of the main museum. Designed for 6 to 12-year-olds, it includes additional interactive displays in English & Arabic. [Currently still closed due to COVID-19 Measures]

Louvre Abu Dhabi Childrens' Museum
Inside the Children’s Museum Louvre Abu Dhabi

As parents ourselves, it’s not somewhere we’d put on the top of our family-friendly list for Abu Dhabi attractions, but certainly not one to miss just because you have kids in tow. You’ll probably not want to stop at every exhibit along the way but allow more time to visit the Children’s Museum at the end and explore the museum’s outside areas.

** Whilst the children’s museum is shut, you can still enjoy #ArtFromHome tutorials


Opening hours for the Louvre Abu Dhabi

  • Daily 10:00 AM to 6:30 PM
  • Last entry 5:30 PM
  • Closed Mondays
Terrace view from inside the Louvre Abu Dhabi, out to the Arabian Gulf
Terrace view from inside the Louvre Abu Dhabi, out to the Arabian Gulf

Admission pricing for the Louvre Abu Dhabi

  • Standard Admission Ticket 63 AED ($17USD)
  • Concessions 31.5 AED ($8.50USD) This includes UAE teachers, young adults 13-22 years, UAE military

Complimentary tickets for children under 13, Journalists, disabled, Louvre Art Club Members

Check other special deals for the Louvre including free entrance for taxi drivers and frontline workers here


Dining at the Louvre Abu Dhabi

There are several dining options to suit different budgets at Louvre Abu Dhabi.

Aptitude Cafe Open Daily 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM

Museum Cafe 12:00 Pm to 6:00 PM (closed Monday)

You can also use the cafe’s “Grab and Go” service (10:00 AM to 6:00 PM) if you’d prefer to sit outside on the terrace and enjoy the waterfront views, or there is a full table service meal Cafe.

The Art Lounge opens for the winter season only but offers one of Abu Dhabi’s most exclusive rooftop experiences.

Fouquet’s Abu Dhabi Restaurant. This Parisian Brasserie brings a more formal fine dining experience to the Louvre.


Kayaking at Louvre Abu Dhabi

An incredible add-on experience to your Louvre visit is to take a kayak tour through the waterways beneath the museum roof. Take on a new perspective of this incredible building, learn more about the architecture and marine life.

Run by the experienced team at Sea Hawk, the tours last for 60-minutes and cost 126 AED.

Top tips for visiting the Louvre Abu Dhabi

  • Due to the temperature control needed inside the museum, even in the peak of summer, you will probably want a light jacket or scarf/wrap with you to keep warm – see more dress code advice for Abu Dhabi here!
  • You could cover most of the museum in one hour moving at pace, but including a cafe lunch stop and time to admire the outside areas and gift shop, allow yourself 2.5 to 3 hours even for the mild enthusiast.
  • Take careful note that the museum is always shut on a Monday!
  • There are plenty of seats dotted between the galleries for those that feel they need a rest, but we always find the toilets seem to be few and far between, plan accordingly!

How to get to the Louvre from Abu Dhabi

The Louvre sits on Saadiyat Island which is only a stone’s through away from the main Abu Dhabi island – in fact, you may not even notice as you cross around the city how many waterways and bridges there are!

  • There is free covered parking on site as well as a paid valet service.
  • Taxies are plentiful to and from the venue.  If you are seeking a taxi between the Louvre and the cities other main cultural attraction, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque you can expect this to cost about 50AED.
  • Public Bus Route 94 can be taken from the central bus station.
  • The Louvre is included on the Big Bus Hop-on-hop-off Abu Dhabi Green Route [currently not operational]

You can easily reach Saadiyat Island from all other parts of the city, though the closest places to stay are the resorts actually on Saadiyat Island. Try:

Several incredible luxury resorts line the shores of Saadiyat Beach offering great access to the Louvre and other nearby cultural attractions – Picture courtesy Jumeirah at Saadiyat

Note none of these resorts is within easy walking distance of the Louvre Abu Dhabi. You will still be relying on taxies and other transport, at present the Louvre remains a standalone building on Saadiyat Island.

Following the E12 highway along the city’s outer islands, you are only 15 minutes from Yas Island with its multiple theme parks and entertainment as well as hotel plaza. The airport is about 25 minutes away – it is possible to squeeze a visit in during an airport layover.


How to get to the Louvre Abu Dhabi from Dubai

Visitors staying in Dubai can look to visit the Louvre in Abu Dhabi as a day trip*.

If you are self-driving take the E11/E10 for approximately 1 hour from Downtown Dubai, then take the E12/Yas Island exit. Follow the signs from the E12.

We have more on how to get between Abu Dhabi and Dubai here.

If you would prefer not to drive, here are some tour companies that offer Dubai to Abu Dhabi day trips including the Louvre*:

* Current border restrictions between Abu Dhabi and Dubai mean that most tours are not running at present as a 10-day self-quarantine is required on arrival into Abu Dhabi Emirate from overseas. Please bear this in mind when planning a trip to Abu Dhabi in 2021


What else is there to see and do on Saadiyat Island?

The Saadiyat Island Cultural District is an ambitious project.  The original master plan included a Guggenheim Museum and the Zayed National Museum, as well as a Maritime Museum and a Performing Arts Centre with the opera house.  Various setbacks saw the Louvre opening pushed back by several years and other projects remain on pause or have been delayed by many years.

Manarat Al Saadiyat was the first cultural offering to open on the island and included a display of the master project of what was to come and many temporary exhibits.  It is still a culture and arts centre and holds many workshops, performances and film viewings.

What you will find on Saadiyat Island is a string of luxury beachside resorts along some of the most beautiful soft white sands of the Arabian Gulf. Soul Beach is a popular spot to enjoy the sun in Abu Dhabi after a morning at the museum, or why not try an afternoon at one of Abu Dhabi’s luxury beach clubs.

Jubail Mangrove Park

Another must-see attraction near Saadiyat Island which pairs perfectly with a day trip to the Louvre is Jubail Mangrove Park. Situated on adjacent Jubail Island, explore the wonderful natural mangroves along the serene boardwalk paths. Best seen at high tide and in the cooler months – though open year-round – you may want to check your tide times in advance when planning a full day out on Saadiyat/Jubail islands.


Before you go… Important things to consider planning a trip to Abu Dhabi

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