Abu Dhabi residents and tourists can now tour five historically significant mosques in the Emirate, thanks to the newly launched initiative
22 December 2019| Last updated on 26 December 2019
Visitors will be able to enjoy public, guided tours of these five Abu Dhabi mosques from next week
The Departure of Culture Tourism, the General Authority for Islamic Affairs and Endowments, and various Abu Dhabi churches launched a new religious-tourism program: tourists and residents can now visit the UAE capital's historic and culturally significant mosques.
The Mosques Tour Initiative was established to introduce to and educate visitors on Islamic culture, architecture, and history, as part of an inter-faith partnership celebrating the Year of Tolerance.
The tour involves five mosques in Abu Dhabi: Al Kareem Mosque in Al Marina, Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed the First Mosque, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan the Second Mosque in Al Khalidiyah, Al Aziz Mosque on Reem Island, and the Mariam, Umm Eisa Mosque.
Visitors who join the tours will be given insight on what etiquette to follow when inside a mosque, the history of these places of worship, what is the role of mosques in Islam, and more.
"Providing tours of our houses of worship also syncs with our efforts to shed light on the features of Islamic culture and civilisation that characterise Abu Dhabi, which are reflected in the historic mosques built by our ancestors, as well as the contemporary mosques built by the new generation," said Ali Hassan Al Shaiba, acting Executive Director of Tourism and Marketing Sector at the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi.
"The originality and authenticity of the Emirati capital is reflected in all of the mosques selected, and they give visitors an opportunity to become acquainted with the true teachings of Islam and educate them on the values that teach us tolerance and noble ethics."
"As the tour takes place, this initiative will help in identifying the story of each of the mosques, the details of Islamic architecture used and the role played by mosques in Emirati society as a symbol of acceptance, peaceful coexistence, and cooperation."
Here are the five mosques in Abu Dhabi that is part of The Mosques Tour Initiative:
1. Al Kareem Mosque in Al Marina
Photo credit: APG
Designed in a modern style featuring gold mosaic tiles, illuminated crescents, and aluminium Colestra panels, the Al Kareem Mosque in Al Marina is a beautiful place of worship that also has 1,190 prayer rooms.
2. Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed the First Mosque
Photo credit: ProTenders
3. Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Mosque
Arguably the most jaw-droppingly beautiful mosque in the UAE, the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Mosque or the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi is a mammoth piece of stunning architecture, featuring marble walls, crystal chandeliers, noble Islamic-themed interior, intricate stonework, and more.
4. Al Aziz Mosque at Reem Island
At night, Reem Island's Al Aziz Mosque makes for a lovely sight. The place of worship was built in a contemporary design, with Arabic inscriptions of carved into the concrete bricks and act as calligraphic outer walls. When it's evening, these inscriptions are illuminated using optical fibres which transmit light through the stone.
5. Mariam, Umm Eisa Mosque
In 2017, the Mohammad Bin Zayed Mosque in Al Mushrif area was given a new name in honour of peace and tolerance in the UAE. The ruler of Abu Dhabi renamed the place of worship to Mariam, Umm Eisa Mosque, which means "Mary, Jesus' Mother."
The Mosques Tour Initiative's full schedule and how many people can sign up is yet to be announced.
For more information, visit: https://tcaabudhabi.ae/en/default.aspx