“Ferrari World Abu Dhabi was created in tribute to Ferrari’s passion, heritage, excellence, innovation and performance.” Ferrari World Abu Dhabi
Multi award winning Ferrari World Abu Dhabi located on Yas Island here in Abu Dhabi has undergone a major transformation with the completion of its second phase extension earlier this year. Of course in true UAE style the theme park has not one but several world records, the world’s fastest rollercoaster Formula Rossa and the new Flying Aces ride, which has the world’s highest roller coaster loop at a whooping sixty-three metres.
With twenty Ferrari-inspired rides and attractions, the Ferrari red emblazoned park is the largest theme park of its kind in the world. New attractions and rides include the Karting Academy inspired by neighbouring Yas Marina Circuit, Ferrari Driving Experience, interactive family ride Benno’s Great Race and the revamped Junior Training Camp that offers children a range of activities such as climbing and free fall jumping activities. Alongside all the rides is the theatrical RED Show filled with acrobatics, dancing and stunt BMX biking and traditional Italian Cinema Maranello taking viewers back to the 1920’s with Coppa di Sicilia, a charming movie about how the ambitious Enzo Ferrari turned his motoring dream into the now legendary brand.
Honestly, when I first visited the world’s first Ferrari park here in Abu Dhabi way back in 2011 I was somewhat underwhelmed, my previous encounter of such attractions were in the UK, Europe and America, if you have ever visited any Disney and Universal Studios attractions they raise the bar of the theme park experience forever. Despite my reservations it still held much appeal for the speed demons in the family as they tried out Formula Rossa, the crazy fast roller coaster that can reach a speed of 240 kilometres per hour in just 4.9 seconds, recreating the same G force as driving in an F1 car and braking at maximum speed.
I recently re-visited the now extended park that can be accessed via Yas Mall and I was pleasantly surprised by its transformation. The newest attraction, record-breaking roller coaster, Flying Aces, which the other half braved, is inspired by Italian Count Francesco Baracca, the legendary ‘Ace of Aces’ aviator. Visitors enter the ride via corridors jam packed with aircraft memorabilia from that era and then board a military bi-plane to fly through the air on the world’s highest roller coaster loop reaching speeds of up to 120km/h.
Those non-speed demons among us can try Bell’Italia which takes a gentle tour through picturesque miniature Italy in small-scale vintage 1958 Ferrari 250 California Spiders. The ride passes seventeen famous Italian landmarks such as the Monza Racetrack, the Colosseum di Roma, Venezia, Maranello as well as Portofino and the beautiful Amalfi Coast, in amongst the Italian landmarks are 40,000 hand-planted miniature trees. Nearby a traditional open-air trattoria offers Italian dining options from Mamma Rossella, the recreation of the restaurant in Maranello offering fresh pastas and pizzas fired in a traditional wood-burning oven. Mamma Rossella is the first restaurant in the region to offer real Neapolitan pizza, accredited by the True Neapolitan Pizza Association.
Car enthusiasts can get up close and personal with the collection of classic and contemporary Ferrari’s. The collection, which is owned by private collectors, includes a limited edition F355 Serie Fiorano, classic 1947 models through to modern day cars. This year Formula 1 race goers can visit the park, which has won sixteen regional and international awards including the Middle East’s Leading Tourist Attraction at the World Travel Awards last year, for free as it and neighbouring attraction Yas Waterworld are included in the 2016 Grand Prix ticket prices.
A thrilling experience for residents, visitors, families and Ferrari fans alike Ferrari World Abu Dhabi offers thrills and spills along with various authentic dining options. If you haven’t visited for a while, pop back and see the new attractions and ride the exhilarating roller coasters, look out too for phase three for even more fast and furious Ferrari inspired fun.
Ferrari World Abu Dhabi
Location: Yas Island, Abu Dhabi
Telephone: 02 496 8000
Opening hours: 11am – 8pm
For ticket prices and to book online click here
All views are my own based on my experience. Unless otherwise stated all photos © Jo Brett 2016. All rights reserved. Additional information and photos used courtesy of ferrariworldabudhabi.com