Feed a fascination that likely began with sand castles, all those years ago…

Al Maqta’a Fort

Image: instagram.com/alvispab 

Located next to the Al Maqta’a Bridge, this fort was built over 200 years ago and is often praised as being as beautiful of a sight from afar, as it is up close. A photogenic, touristy spot with great views during sunset, this relic in the capital has been restored and preserved for its historical value. It also includes a two-storey watchtower, a beautiful backdrop that sits by blue waters.

Al Maqtaa Fort, Khor Al Maqta, Abu Dhabi.

Al Jahili Fort

Image: What’s On archive

Another heritage-infused site that was built close to two centuries ago, the Al Jahili Fort is one of the largest that have ever been built in the UAE. Located in Al Ain, it was built to serve as the summer residence of H.H. Sheikh Zayed bin Khalifa Al Nahyan, before British forces assumed military use of the tower until 1970. Today, with major rehabilitation completed and the addition of interesting visitor features, the Al Jahili Fort welcomes one and all.

Al Jahili Fort, Castle Park, Al Ain. 9am – 7pm daily. Tel: (0) 3 711 8311.

Qasr Al Hosn

Image: What’s On Archive

This castle translates to “fortified palace”, or loosely to “castle of beauty”. And true to its name, this is the oldest stone building in Abu Dhabi and truly a sight to behold. An ideal spot for lens-happy visitors in the capital, the Qasr Al Hosn also includes a watch tower. Est. 1790, this majestic structure truly taps into Abu Dhabi’s culture and heritage element, and has even been described as the “birthplace of Abu Dhabi”.

Qasr Al Hosn, Al Hisn, Abu Dhabi. Sat – Thu 9am – 8pm, Fri 2-8pm. Tel: (0)2 697 6400.

Al Darmaki Fort

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The Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Darmaki fort, initially built to protect the Qattarah Oasis, was originally part of an area known as the Buraimi Oasis, which has since been divided. Carrying strong historical importance, this site, like most other forts in the area was restored towards the latter part of the twentieth century and is a must-see on your fort pursuit in the capital.

Al Darmaki Fort, Al Qattarah, Al Ain.

Bin Helal Tower

A scene of Al Jahili fort one of the historical landmark in Al Ain Abu Dhabi. Photo taken with the scene of moving clouds effect using ND filter.

A fascinating tower accompanying the Bin Helal Fort, this archaeological wonder crowns a complex with several tiers, that resembles a massive wedding cake.  Free for you to visit, enjoy and explore, the restored watchtower is one of Al Ain’s spots that will make you stop and stare.

Bin Helal Tower, Al Jimi, Abu Dhabi.