Etihad will launch flights to Osaka in Japan from October.
The national airline of the UAE is expanding its network by adding its first non-stop flights to the hub city of Japan's Kansai region.
Osaka will be the airline’s second destination in Japan, after Tokyo, which the airline has been flying to for 13 years.
From October 1, Etihad will run five weekly flights from Abu Dhabi to Osaka using its Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft.
Flights to the port city, which is nicknamed the Nation's Kitchen for its culinary finesse, will last about nine hours.
“We’re delighted to introduce flights to Osaka for the first time,” said Antonoaldo Neves, chief executive of Etihad Airways.
“As one of the world’s most cosmopolitan cities, I know visitors will enjoy exploring its heritage and sampling some of Osaka’s renowned hospitality. Equally, the new route opens up Abu Dhabi to visitors from Osaka, and we look forward to welcoming guests to our vibrant home as well as giving them access to our growing global network.”
The city is famous for its world-class culinary scene, offering travellers everything from Michelin-starred restaurants to amazing street food.
It also has an eclectic cultural scene, with buzzing nightlife, neon-lined streets, art galleries and museums all set against a striking architectural backdrop.
Japan recently eased travel regulations for visitors from the UAE, who no longer need to visit the Japanese embassy to apply for a visa.
UAE residents keen on exploring Osaka, or any of Japan's other hotspots, can now apply online for a short-term tourist visa that allows stays of up to 90 days.
No screenshots or printouts of the visa are required. Instead, travellers will use Japan's eVisa website on arrival in the country to show approved documents to immigration authorities.
This follows visa-free regulations for Emirati travellers, which have been in place since November.