Etihad Airways is challenging travellers to experience Abu Dhabi’s host of ‘once in a lifetime’ activities and major attractions in two days.

The ‘48 Hour Challenge’ is part of the airline’s wider stopover campaign promoting Abu Dhabi as a ‘holiday within a holiday’ for transit travellers.

For the campaign launch, the airline challenged Ricky Wilson, singer-songwriter, TV personality and frontman of British indie rock band Kaiser Chiefs, to spend 48 hours exploring the best Abu Dhabi has to offer.

The video of his attempt can be viewed here:

Wilson commented: “For me a stopover meant sitting in the airport, or visiting duty free, but this is not what a stopover should be. It should be flying falcons across the desert, kayaking, visiting water parks….imbibing the culture of the place. Abu Dhabi has taught me that stopovers can be as relaxing as they are exhilarating. There is something incredibly refreshing about pushing yourself, getting out of your comfort zone and fully immersing yourself in a new city. I will never stay in the airport again during a stopover.

“It is an incredible place, with warm, generous and extremely hospitable people. The city perfectly combines a relaxing and chilled out vibe with excitement and adventure. It is a beautiful city with endless things to do in a short space of time.”

Peter Baumgartner, the airline’s chief executive officer, added: “The launch of Etihad Airways’ comprehensive stopover programme reinforces what we who live in this wonderful city have known for so long – that Abu Dhabi is a cosmopolitan, dynamic and thrilling destination packed with opportunities for all visitors, whether they are looking for adventure, culture, or a relaxing beach break.”

The airline has also launched a special competition. Until the end of 2017, the company will be giving away 500 prizes to members of the public who take up the 48 Hour Challenge and who post their experiences on Instagram using the hashtag #EtihadChallenge. The prizes on offer range from 24-carat gold spa treatments to desert safari trips.

More information on stopover packages can be found at

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