Park in Abu Dhabi’s Mushrif district has name change
By Noor Hashem Al Shatry
ABU DHABI—Mushrif Central Park, one of the oldest parks in Abu Dhabi, has undergone a name change. It is now known as Umm Al Emarat Park (Mother of the Nation Park). The name change was made earlier this year.
The park is located on 15th Street between Airport Road and Al Karama Road. It is across the street from what is known as the “Helicopter Park,” a popular place for daily dog walking and picnics on Thursday and Friday evenings in fall and winter.
Mushrif Park opened for the first time in 1982, and at that time it was only for ladies and children. It was a place to walk and get aboard amusement park-like rides.
In January in 2013, Abu Dhabi Municipality closed the park to renovate it. Then, on 21 March 2014, the city re-opened the park in a new look that dazzled the eyes of the visitors. Under this new scheme, the park changed its name to Mushrif Central Park. It features plenty of green area to walk and play on, and many new exhibits, gardens, plus restaurants, an ice cream shop, camel barn, and amphitheater. There are also water fountains that are designed for children to enjoy on warmer days.
The park is essentially the same under its new name. Lots of green space for walking or relaxing.
Umm Al Emarat Park has had thousands of visitors since the city re-opened it under the new name in the spring. Park visitors are now coming in droves as the season heads toward winter and the temperatures become milder. The park’s natural areas and views make people feel happy and provide a place to get away from the fast-pace urban life for a few hours.
Admission is modest at Dh5 per person; children 3 years old and under are free.
Following is a look at some of Umm Al Emarat Park’s features:
Wisdom Garden—At the entrance to the park is the Wisdom Garden. It is an important landmark because it includes marble plates with water flowing underneath. The plates have been inscribed with words from Sheikh Zayed, the father of the nation.
Park Walkway—There is a long path that runs through the entire park. Visitors can walk in this walkway and enjoy the beauty of nature. Also, on the perimeter of the park, there is a path that runs outside the gates. It is a great way to get in a few kilometres of walking or jogging early in the morning or in the evening.
Green Space—Most of the park is green space where visitors can throw down a blanket and have a picnic or play a game of football.
The Amphitheatre—Here, as this platform, the park holds events, including parties, movies and concerts. The assembly area is large enough for 1,000 people.
The Zoo—Umm Al Emarat Park is a place to see domesticated animals. Children have a special area for feeding goats, camels and other animals.
Evening Garden—This garden is one of the nicest things about the park because it is in a quiet place where visitors can relax and enjoy nature at dusk and during the nighttime. The garden, which has a small stream running through it, is lighted and comes alive after sunset.
Shadow House—This is a building that contains plants that cannot grow naturally in the United Arab Emirates, so the Shadow House was built to protect them from the heat and humidity. Most of the plants are tropical.
Ripe Market—This is a popular Dubai-based organic market that is held inside Umm Al Emarat Park every Saturday from 4 until 9 p.m. Vendors sell fresh food, arts, crafts and flowers.
SALT—This hamburger restaurant sits just outside the main entrance of the park. It is incredibly popular with both Emiratis and expats. The highlight of the menu is the hamburger, which is actually two small patties, each resting on its own bun with special sauce and pickles. SALT also has outstanding lemonade. You can sit inside in the air conditioning or outside. The restaurant also has a ping-pong table for table tennis. The service is excellent, and there is a separate line for male and female customers.