Curious about the ethereal band of light in the night sky? That's the Milky Way, also known as the “River of Heaven.” For stargazing enthusiasts, witnessing the Milky Way is a sight of unparalleled beauty. Here's your guide to the best viewing spot for the Milky Way in the UAE: the Al Quaa Milky Way spot in Abu Dhabi.
Just a 90-minute drive from Abu Dhabi city towards Al Ain, Al Quaa desert is renowned as the ideal Milky Way viewing location due to its minimal light pollution. It's even recognized on Google Maps, where you can find images shared by fellow stargazers.
Al Quaa is a prime spot for both astrophotographers and stargazers. When planning your visit, aim for the days surrounding each new moon, when the sky is darkest. Autumn and Spring are particularly favorable for astronomy.
Visitors often describe Al Quaa as a mesmerizing and tranquil spot, perfect for observing our galaxy. The Milky Way appears as a band of light to the naked eye, composed of star clusters forming our galaxy. For a more detailed view, consider bringing a DSLR/mirrorless camera, as smartphone cameras may not capture the full glory of the star-studded sky. Telescopes and other stargazing equipment can enhance your experience.
Getting to Al Quaa is straightforward. Located about 70 km from Abu Dhabi, a 90-minute drive will get you there. You don't need a 4X4; just follow the coordinates 23.604633,54.750256 on Google Maps. For overnight camping, bring essentials like food, water, warm clothes, a flashlight, and camping gear. Remember, there are no toilet facilities, so plan accordingly.
Whether you're an avid stargazer or just looking for a unique experience, the Al Quaa Milky Way spot offers a glimpse into the cosmos like no other.