Abu Dhabi’s Corniche Public Beach

Dousing myself into cool azure beaches is one thing that I enjoy a lot. I’m sure everyone would agree that it is so relaxing and definitely it relieves one’s stress whether from work or in life. I was in Abu Dhabi for Eid break and since I heard about its open beaches at its corniche area (there are more in other locations), I headed there together with Syaoran and Vaj. It was worth the time and what we got into did not disappoint us. In fact, we really had fun that afternoon and our stay lasted for more than 3 hours. Originally, our plan was to stay only less than an hour so that we could spend the rest of the evening roaming around the city center. The open beach is located at the west part of the corniche just across ADCO (Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations) building. I think it is one of the safest public beaches I’ve been to in both UAE and KSA. There are security guards stationed around. Lifeguards are visible and checking the swimmers from time to time. Beachgoers, men and women alike, who are clad in beach attires (bikinis) act properly as they were enjoying the water. Respect to everyone is observed. It is far from what we experienced in Dubai’s public beach where other nationalities ogle like hungry vultures. (please read my post: http://clecstrotter.com/2013/08/10/night-swimming-at-jumeira-beach/)

The beach is well taken care of. The white sand that stretches hundreds of meters is regularly raked. The swimming area is cordoned with buoys as marking suggesting that swimmers are warned not to go beyond. It is clean. I had not seen any trash at all. There is an area that exclusive for families. Mosque is near while restaurants, snack kiosks and children’s playgrounds are just within reach. Changing rooms and showers are also available. They have the basic amenities beachgoers need. But I hope they would add more facilities like water sports to delight those visitors and local residents alike who love water adventure.

The beach front at the Open Beach in West Corniche where we dipped into its blue water.

The beach front at the Open Beach in West Corniche where we dipped into its clear water.

The beach rules are posted in prominent areas to inform beach goers of the do's and dont's.

The beach rules are posted in prominent areas to inform beach goers of the do’s and dont’s

Beach map

Beach map. Corniche beach, the ultimate experience.

One of the kiosks in the area that sells soft ice cream.

One of the kiosks in the area that sells cold drinks and soft ice cream.

Dipping into its clear water is something I truly enjoyed.

Dipping into its clear water is something I truly enjoyed a lot.

The towering buildings serve as backdrop of corniche beach.

Background of the corniche beach is a cluster of Abu Dhabi’s towering buildings.

Syaoran and Vaj reminiscing child hood days, playing a Pinoy game they both enjoyed.

Syaoran and Vaj reminiscing child hood days, playing “kingking baka”, a Pinoy game, they both enjoyed.

Across the beach is where Marina Mall and the highest flag in UEA are located. That was our destination after the swim.

Across the beach is where Marina Mall and one of the tallest flagpoles in UAE are located. That was our destination after the swim.

Abu Dhabi’s corniche beach serves its purpose i.e. a public beach that is accessible and free for everyone. It is one of the treasures that Abu Dhabi could offer to its guests and also to Emiratis who desire a healthy life, a better quality of life above all. As visitors, let us do our part to ensure that cleanliness and orderliness are maintained at corniche beach or at any beach for that matter. Let us not deprive others of the same fun we too experienced, because afterall in this world everyone, like us, deserves to enjoy the nature.

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Cebu Restaurant Abu Dhabi – Have it the Filipino way

While walking on the streets of Khalidiya district in Abu Dhabi searching for a store to get a new shirt to replace the “soaked-in-sweat” shirt I wore after a long walk/jog at corniche, I bumped into one distinct restaurant just beside the mosque in Zayed The First Street at the back of Lebanese Flower Restaurant. It can be recognized as truly Pinoy as its name is similar to one of my favorite destinations in the Philippines, Cebu. Cebu Restaurant simply offers Pinoy style cooking at Abu Dhabi’s busy district.  The restaurant occupies a small two-storey building. On the first floor is the turo-turo section where you could order the ready cooked meals. More tables are found on the second floor with LCD TV mounted on the wall showing ABS-CBN TFC programs. With its size, it could accommodate perhaps around 30 people.

Cebu Restaurant is located in Khalidiya District, Abu Dhabi beside the mosque and at the back of Lebanese Flower Restaurant.

Cebu Restaurant is located in Khalidiya District, Abu Dhabi beside the mosque and at the back of Lebanese Flower Restaurant.

At the resto's 2nd floor. Attached on the wall is a LCD TV that plays TFC shows.

At the resto’s 2nd floor. Attached on the wall is a LCD TV that plays TFC shows.

The counter at the 1st floor. The restaurant has actually free wifi.

The counter at the 1st floor. The restaurant has actually free wifi.

Stairway to the second floor with photos hung on the wall.

Stairway to the second floor with photos hung on the wall.

Cebu Restaurant offers a wide array of Pinoy dishes from the usual breakfast meals like tapsilog, bangsilog, hotsilog etc., their sizzlings bulalo steak, tanigue, pusit, chicken fillet, and their seafood-based dishes like sinigang, sweet and sour fish fillet, ginataang tilapia, bangus (grilled/daing) among others. Chicken meals are likewise served such as inasal, tinola, kaldereta and adobo. But I also found out that they offer not so Pinoy like chicken cordon bleu, orange-ginger chicken and terriyaki. Beef meals include humba, steak, kare-kare, nilaga, sinigang, bulalo, kaldereta and even papaitan. Desserts like halo-halo, biko, maja blanca and biko are also available.

The restaurants menu list.

The restaurants menu list.

So what we got for our dinner? We ordered their recommended dishes, probably their best seller. We got sinigang na hipon, sizzling tanigue steak, chopsuey, beef steak and grilled bangus. Their food is typical Pinoy with perhaps infusion of their own cooking style. Admittedly, what we had savored were similar to other Pinoy dishes we had previously tried. But, we did enjoy our dining experience knowing that it is one of those that carries Filipino identity in Abu Dhabi.

The restaurant's sinigang na hipon. Not that I didn't like, but I prefer a bit sour.  Syaoran liked this.

The restaurant’s sinigang na hipon (AED 22). Not that I didn’t like, but I prefer a bit sour. This is okay with Syaoran, though he said his mother’s sinigang is still the best.

Sizzling tanigue steak. I think I was the only one who ate this.

Sizzling tanigue steak (AED 28). I think I was the only one who ate this.

Chopsuey - made up of chicken cooked with different kinds of vegetables.

Chopsuey (AED 15) – stir fried chicken meat cooked with different kinds of vegetables.

Beef steak - thinly sliced beef cooked in soy sauce and calamansi juice garnished with onion rings.

Beef steak (AED 20) – thinly sliced beef cooked in soy sauce and calamansi juice with sliced potatoes garnished with onion rings.

Inihaw na bangus - grilled milkfish stuffed with ingredients like onions, garlic, tomatoes etc.

Inihaw na bangus – grilled milkfish stuffed with ingredients like ginger, onions, garlic, tomatoes etc.

Inside of grilled bangus with its stuffing.

Grilled bangus with all its stuffing.

Syaoran and Vaj during our dinner at Cebu Restaurant.

Syaoran and Vaj during our dinner at Cebu Restaurant.

“Have it the Filipino way” is Cebu Restaurant’s slogan. It tries to bring Filipino culture closer to the Arabs while at the same time offers our kababayans Pinoy home-cooked food at affordable prices. It is but best for Pinoy expats living in Abu Dhabi or Pinoy tourists visiting the place to support our own. Ika nga, tangkilikin ang sariling atin.

Cebu Restaurant

Zayed The First Street, Khalidiya

Beside Lebanese Flower Restaurant

Telephone: 02 665-2886