Visiting Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi – 3 Things to Know Before You Go

You might have heard of the Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi and seen pictures of its’ white marble floors and tall minaret towers. Once you are there wandering the arcades, you will feel like you are on the set of Aladdin.

The Mosque is one of the top sites in United Arab Emirates and it’s arguably one of the most beautiful buildings in the world!

I visited the Mosque twice while living in Dubai and both times it was as gorgeous as ever.

Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Amazing facts about Sheikh Zayed Mosque

Sheikh Zayed Mosque also known as Grand Mosque of Abu Dhabi took 11 years to build costing $545 million. No wonder every detail seems perfectly matched and carefully engraved to its’ marble walls and floors. The building consists of many different natural materials like marble, gold, and crystals.

The Mosque can hold up to 41 000 people at once and its floor area reaches up to 17 000 square meters wide.

Sunset at Abu Dhabi Grand Mosque

Stop and discover these beautiful engravings while you walking through the arcades.

1. How to get to Abu Dhabi Grand Mosque

I often get asked what is the easiest way to get to Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi…

The best time to visit Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi

There seems to be many different transportation options online such as tour buses. However, those who actually tried booking them found it a complicated process and ended up taking a taxi there. Taking a taxi to Abu Dhabi from Dubai takes roughly 90 minutes and usually costs about USD $100 one way.

Busses are naturally a lot lot cheaper – you can generally catch one for less than $10. However, buses tend to take longer and can include a relatively long waiting time. If you decide on taking a bus to Abu Dhabi, I recommend checking the timetable well in advance as the timings might change and the buses don’t generally run at night.

Another option is to hire a car. This is a great option if you plan to see other things outside of Dubai. Car rental in Dubai is relatively cheap and fares usually start from $25 per day.

Arcades at Sheikh Zayed Mosque

2. Best time to visit the Mosque

The Mosque is generally open from 9 am to 10 pm and there is no entrance fee. Some people like to visit the Mosque early in the morning or late in the evening to escape the heat of the hottest hours of the day.

Sunset at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

I would highly recommend planning your visit for late afternoon because you will definitely want to see the Mosque at sunset as well as at dark. This is when the lights illuminate making the experience even more magical.

Sheikh Zayed Mosque at night
Grand Mosque Abu Dhabi at night

3. Dress code at Sheikh Zayed Mosque

Dress code at Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Visiting a Mosque naturally means that you are entering a Muslim site which in turn means that visitors are expected to dress appropriately. However, dressing appropriately can mean very different things for people from different cultures….

First time I visited the Grand Mosque I was wearing long pants and a jacket and I thought that would be completely fine, however, I had no idea that they actually require women to wear abayas (long loosely fitted dress with head covering). So even though you might be fully covered with your own clothing, they still make you wear an abaya to enter the Mosque.

Final thoughts

Grand Mosque Abu Dhabi at night

If you are visiting United Arab Emirates, seeing the Mosque is a must! Not only does it offer beautiful views and architecture, but can also teach you more about Islamic culture and traditions.

Abu Dhabi is often dismissed by tourists who visit Dubai, but they have clearly started to come to Abu Dhabi more during the past few years.

One new attraction getting more tourists to Abu Dhabi is Abu Dhabi Louvre that was first opened in 2017. I haven’t been there yet but its definitely on my list.

Have you visited the Mosque? How about Abu Dhabi Louvre? I would love to hear about your experience and whether it’s worth the visit ๐Ÿ™‚

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