Khalifa City Area Guide 2024

Dictricts Khalifa City Area Guide 2024
~14 min


Khalifa City, once divided into three areas, has evolved into a prominent region within Abu Dhabi. Formerly known as Khalifa City A (now simply Khalifa City), Khalifa City B (now Shakhbout City), and New Khalifa City (now Zayed City), this area has gained recognition for offering affordable apartments in Abu Dhabi.

Its strategic location along the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway makes Khalifa City an attractive choice for residents. Notably, the suburb hosts the prestigious head offices of Etihad Airways, a visible landmark when approaching Abu Dhabi from Dubai. The ease of access and key establishments contribute to Khalifa City's significance in the vibrant landscape of Abu Dhabi and the UAE.

History of Khalifa City

Khalifa City traces its origins back to its development as a residential area catering to Emirati families. Established with the vision of providing a thriving community for locals, it began as a residential haven.

Over the years, Khalifa City has witnessed substantial growth and transformation. Its significance is underlined by becoming home to over 100,000 people, marking a milestone in its journey. This demographic shift highlights the area's evolution into a vibrant and populous community.

From its initial conception as a residential enclave, Khalifa City has evolved into a dynamic and sought-after locality. The population surge reflects the success of its development, transforming it into a thriving community within the broader landscape of Abu Dhabi. The history of Khalifa City is marked by progression, turning it into a key contributor to the cultural and residential fabric of the region.

Geography and Architecture

Khalifa City's physical layout is characterized by three distinct areas: Khalifa City (formerly Khalifa City A), Shakhbout City (formerly Khalifa City B), and Zayed City (formerly New Khalifa City). Each area is undergoing significant development to emerge as an integral district within Abu Dhabi. Notably, Khalifa City A is strategically positioned along the main highway to Dubai, approximately 25 kilometers from Abu Dhabi.

The architectural landscape of Khalifa City is marked by its evolving urban planning and design. The city's transformation from its original subdivisions into major districts underscores its commitment to modernization and growth. Khalifa City A, in particular, stands out for its proximity to key landmarks, including Abu Dhabi International Airport and Yas Island.

As these areas undergo development, they are poised to become major districts of Abu Dhabi, contributing to the city's architectural diversity and urban richness. The strategic positioning of Khalifa City A, coupled with its accessibility to significant hubs like Abu Dhabi International Airport and Yas Island, sets the stage for a promising future in terms of both geography and architecture.

Key Attractions

  • Abu Dhabi Golf Club. Situated in Khalifa City, the Abu Dhabi Golf Club is a premier attraction for golf enthusiasts. Boasting world-class facilities and a stunning course, it provides a picturesque setting for golfers of all levels.

  • Forsan International Sports Resort is a hub for sports enthusiasts, offering a wide array of recreational activities. From state-of-the-art facilities to diverse sports options, it caters to the fitness and leisure needs of visitors.

  • Forsan Central Mall is a shopping haven in Khalifa City, offering a diverse range of retail outlets and dining options. With a blend of local and international brands, it provides a delightful shopping experience.

  • Khalifa Park is a green oasis in the heart of Khalifa City, offering a serene escape. With expansive green spaces, recreational facilities, and family-friendly amenities, it's an ideal spot for relaxation and leisure.

Some common tips for visiting include

  • Best Time to Visit. Consider visiting outdoor attractions like the Abu Dhabi Golf Club and Khalifa Park during the cooler months, typically from November to March.

  • Ticket Information. Check the respective websites or contact the venues for the latest information on tickets and any special events.

Culture and Lifestyle

Khalifa City encapsulates a vibrant tapestry of local culture, seamlessly blending tradition with modernity. The lifestyle here is a harmonious fusion of Emirati heritage and contemporary influences, creating a unique experience for residents and visitors alike.

The community in Khalifa City upholds several cherished customs and practices that reflect the rich cultural heritage of the United Arab Emirates. From traditional celebrations to family-oriented gatherings, residents engage in customs that foster a strong sense of community and connection to their roots. These customs contribute to the distinctive charm and warmth that define the cultural fabric of Khalifa City.

Culinary Scene

The culinary scene in Khalifa City is a delightful journey through the flavors of local Emirati cuisine and international influences. From aromatic spices to succulent meats, the local dishes showcase a rich tapestry of taste. Popular dishes often include savory kebabs, aromatic rice, and delectable desserts.

Here are some notable restaurants, cafes, and food markets:

  • Love Vibe Café Khalifa City. A trendy spot offering a blend of local and international fare. From artisanal coffees to flavorful dishes, it's a favorite among locals for its cozy ambiance.

  • Zaatar w Zeit. Known for its Lebanese cuisine, Zaatar w Zeit is a go-to spot for delicious wraps, savory pastries, and a variety of mezze options.

  • Karam Al Sham Restaurant. This restaurant brings the flavors of traditional Syrian cuisine to Khalifa City, offering a diverse menu of authentic dishes.

  • Gazebo Restaurant. Celebrated for its North Indian cuisine, Gazebo is a culinary gem. Known for its rich curries, flavorful biryanis, and warm ambiance, it's a top choice for those seeking an exquisite dining experience.

Shopping Experience

  • Forsan Central Mall in Khalifa City stands out as a modern retail destination. Offering a diverse shopping experience, it houses a mix of local and international brands. Visitors can explore trendy fashion outlets, discover unique items in specialty stores, and enjoy a variety of dining options.

  • Gardens Plaza adds to the allure of Khalifa City's shopping scene. This mall creates a welcoming environment for visitors, featuring a range of retail outlets, dining establishments, and entertainment options. Whether you're in search of the latest fashion trends or looking to unwind with a delicious meal, Gardens Plaza offers a well-rounded shopping experience, making it a popular destination for locals and visitors alike.

  • Al Raha Mall. Although not directly in Khalifa City, Al Raha Mall is conveniently located nearby, offering an extensive shopping experience. Known for its array of shops, diverse dining choices, and entertainment options, Al Raha Mall caters to various tastes. Its accessibility from Khalifa City makes it a favored destination for those seeking a broader selection of brands and amenities.

  • Al Muneera Beach Plaza. Also in close proximity to Khalifa City, Al Muneera Beach Plaza complements the shopping landscape. Situated near the beach, it combines retail therapy with scenic views. Shoppers can explore a mix of outlets, enjoy waterfront dining, and take in the coastal ambiance. The combination of shopping and leisure makes Al Muneera Beach Plaza a distinctive addition to the nearby retail offerings.

While haggling may not be customary in these settings, shoppers can make the most of promotions, sales, and loyalty programs. Navigating these malls is made easy with clear signage and helpful staff, ensuring a seamless and enjoyable shopping adventure.

Accommodation Options

  • Apartments. In terms of apartments, there is a range of choices, from budget-friendly studios to more spacious 3-bedroom units. Studio apartments offer annual rents between AED 18k and AED 45k, providing affordable living spaces. For those seeking a bit more space, 1-bedroom flats come with a price range of AED 28k to AED 85k per annum. Families or individuals desiring extra room can explore 2-bedroom apartments, with rents ranging from AED 40k to AED 128k yearly. For even more space, 3-bedroom apartments are available, priced between AED 60k and AED 145k per annum.

  • Villas in Al Forsan Village, Khalifa City, are highly sought after, known for their competitive rental prices. For those in search of a 3-bedroom house, the minimum annual rent is AED 80k. Larger 4-bedroom villas are available for as high as AED 230k yearly, while 5-bed villas are priced at AED 250k annually. For those with a taste for luxury, 6-bedroom villas can be rented for as high as AED 280k per annum.

  • New Units. Additionally, Khalifa City offers new units, including studios and 1-bedroom apartments to 3-bed luxury apartments, with a price range of AED 20k to AED 125k per annum. New villas, ranging from 3 to 6-bed units and larger 7, 8, and 11-bedroom mansions, provide modern options for those seeking fresh and contemporary living spaces.


  • Marriott Hotel Al Forsan in Khalifa City stands as a luxurious accommodation option, offering a blend of modern comfort and elegant design. With a range of amenities, including well-appointed rooms, dining options, and recreational facilities, it caters to both business and leisure travelers seeking a sophisticated stay.

  • The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa, situated in Khalifa City, is a haven for those seeking a tranquil retreat. Surrounded by the lush greenery of the golf course, it provides a serene atmosphere. The resort features upscale rooms, dining venues, and spa services, ensuring a rejuvenating experience for guests.

  • Al Raha Beach Hotel. While not directly in Khalifa City, Al Raha Beach Hotel is conveniently located nearby. This beachfront hotel offers a luxurious escape with stunning views of the Arabian Gulf. With well-appointed rooms, diverse dining options, and access to recreational activities, it provides a comprehensive and upscale hospitality experience.

Getting Around

Navigating Khalifa City is facilitated by a variety of transportation options, contributing to the area's accessibility. While the city does not have an extensive public transportation system, taxis are readily available, providing a convenient mode of travel. Ride-hailing services also operate, offering an efficient way to move around. Additionally, private car rentals and personal vehicles are common, providing flexibility for residents and visitors to explore the city and its surroundings.

Here are some tips for navigating the area include:

  • Taxis and Ride-Hailing. Taxis are a readily available and convenient mode of transportation. Ride-hailing services such as Uber and local alternatives enhance accessibility and offer a comfortable travel experience.

  • Car Rentals. For those who prefer independence in exploring the area, car rentals are widely accessible. This option allows visitors to navigate at their own pace, especially considering Khalifa City's connection to major highways.

  • Bicycles and Walking. Khalifa City features pedestrian-friendly areas, and cycling can be a pleasant way to explore. Walking and biking paths contribute to a more active and eco-friendly mode of transportation, particularly for short distances.

  • Planning Routes. Familiarizing oneself with the city layout and main landmarks is beneficial for efficient navigation. Major roads, such as the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway, serve as key reference points.

Special Events

Khalifa City offers a vibrant calendar of events, ranging from local community gatherings to larger-scale festivals and cultural celebrations. Residents benefit from the proximity to a diverse array of events, enhancing the cultural and recreational aspects of the suburb.

Throughout the year, residents can partake in various community events that contribute to the lively atmosphere of Khalifa City. Additionally, the suburb provides easy access to prominent events in nearby areas:

  • Music Festivals at Yas Island. Residents can immerse themselves in the dynamic music scene by attending festivals held at Yas Island. These events showcase a diverse range of musical genres, creating an exciting and entertaining experience for attendees.

  • Art Exhibitions in Saadiyat Island. Art enthusiasts can explore the rich cultural scene on Saadiyat Island, where art exhibitions regularly take place. This provides residents with an opportunity to engage with diverse artistic expressions and be part of the vibrant arts community.

  • Cultural Events in Emirates Palace. For those interested in cultural experiences, Emirates Palace hosts a variety of events that showcase the rich heritage of the region. From traditional performances to contemporary cultural celebrations, residents can participate in enriching experiences at this iconic venue.

Practical Information

  1. Currency. The official currency is the UAE Dirham (AED).

  2. Language. English is widely spoken, and Arabic is the official language.

  3. Communication. Communication is generally accessible for visitors due to the prevalence of English.

  4. Convenience Stores. Khalifa City boasts numerous convenience stores, supermarkets, and shopping centers for everyday needs.

  5. ATMs are readily available, providing convenient options for currency exchange.

Safety Considerations and Emergency Contact Information

  1. Emergency Services. Dial 999 for immediate assistance from police, fire, or medical services.

  2. Emergency Response System. The UAE has a well-established emergency response system for swift assistance.

  3. General Safety Precautions. While Khalifa City is generally safe, visitors should exercise standard precautions, such as safeguarding personal belongings.

  4. Local Authorities. In case of emergencies or concerns, contacting local authorities promptly is advisable.

  5. Staying Informed. Staying informed about local regulations and customs contributes to a secure and enjoyable experience in Khalifa City.


Khalifa City Abu Dhabi stands as a multifaceted community, encompassing a blend of residential, commercial, and recreational elements. From the city center to the luxurious villas in sought-after villa communities, Khalifa City offers a diverse range of living options. The presence of international hotels, commercial properties, and key amenities like jogging tracks and schools contribute to its appeal.

For those seeking a well-rounded living experience in Abu Dhabi, Khalifa City's strategic position, array of facilities, and proximity to key landmarks make it a noteworthy choice. Encouraging readers to explore the area themselves, Khalifa City invites individuals to discover its unique charm and diverse offerings firsthand.


  • 1.

    How many people live in Khalifa City?

    Khalifa City is home to a population exceeding 100,000 people, reflecting its status as a thriving and dynamic community in Abu Dhabi. The diverse range of residential options, amenities, and strategic location contribute to its appeal as a sought-after living destination.

  • 2.

    What are the areas of Khalifa City?

    Khalifa City is divided into several distinct areas, including Khalifa City A (now known as Khalifa City), Khalifa City B (now known as Shakhbout City), and New Khalifa City (now known as Zayed City). Each of these areas offers a unique blend of residential, commercial, and recreational spaces, contributing to the overall diversity of Khalifa City.

  • 3.

    Which bus number is going to Khalifa City?

    To reach Khalifa City from Abu Dhabi without a car, you can take bus number 160, which offers a convenient and cost-effective transportation option. The bus journey takes approximately 37 minutes, with fares ranging from AED 3 to AED 5.

  • 4.

    How to get to Dubai from Khalifa City?

    To travel from Khalifa City to Dubai, you can utilize various transportation options. The most common and convenient method is to take the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway by car. Alternatively, you can use ride-hailing services, such as Uber or local alternatives, for a comfortable and direct journey. Additionally, public buses or private car rentals provide flexible travel choices based on individual preferences and requirements.

  • 5.

    What commercial and educational facilities are available in Khalifa City?

    Khalifa City features commercial properties, a city center, and international hotels, catering to both business and leisure needs. For education, there are reputable schools like Raha International School, providing quality educational options for families residing in the area.

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Update date: 06/25/2024