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Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

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Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque - The Most Beautiful Temples in the World

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Let’s take a look the Largest Mosque in the UAE Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi :

In the heart of Abu Dhabi lies a breathtaking architectural marvel that can be aptly described as an oriental fairy tale etched in stone—the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.

Bearing the name of the visionary sheikh who spearheaded the remarkable transformation of a once modest Bedouin nation into a prosperous and developed state, this grand mosque, also known as the White Mosque, stands as a symbol of gratitude from the Arab people to their founder and first president.

An iconic landmark, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque welcomes tourists from all walks of life, irrespective of their religious beliefs.

Why You Should Visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

This majestic architectural monument serves as a tribute to the memory of Sheikh Zayed, the great ruler of the Arab Emirates, who played a pivotal role in the nation’s progress. Sheikh Zayed, who passed away in November 2004, found his final resting place within the walls of the White Mosque.

This colossal structure, constructed with the direct involvement of the founding father of the modern UAE, was envisioned to seamlessly blend the cultural foundations of diverse peoples. To achieve this vision, Sheikh Zayed invited numerous foreign specialists to contribute to the construction and adornment of the mosque.

Constructed with the expertise of highly skilled builders and architects, the Sheikh Zayed Mosque stands as a true work of art crafted from marble, precious stones, and unique accessories. Setting it apart from many other places of worship in the Islamic world, this mosque embraces an ethos of openness, welcoming individuals of all backgrounds, genders, and ages.

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Whether exploring as part of an organized excursion or independently, the Sheikh Zayed Mosque reflects the Arab tradition of openness to diverse cultures and peoples.

Every day, approximately 50 thousand Muslims visit the Holy White Mosque in Abu Dhabi, leading to the closure of the main prayer hall at certain times for religious rituals. However, the majority of the mosque remains accessible to tourists and visitors, allowing them to marvel at the intricate mosaics, tapestries, calligraphy masterpieces, and record-setting chandeliers found under the arches of its 82 domes.

History of the Construction of Sheikh Zayed Mosque

Historically, the finest examples of architecture have manifested in religious buildings, and the cultural life of the UAE is deeply intertwined with the religious traditions of the Middle East. The Sheikh Zayed Mosque, completed in 2007, stands alongside historical masterpieces like the Taj Mahal and Hagia Sophia.

The Syrian architect Youssef Abdelki played a crucial role in the creation of this magnificent structure. The project was initiated in 1996, during the early stages of the UAE’s construction and infrastructure boom. Sheikh Zayed envisioned the mosque not only as a symbol of the city but as an emblem representing the entire nation.

The construction, spanning 11 years, involved a staggering cost of approximately 555 million US dollars. Over 3 thousand skilled craftsmen and 38 foreign construction organizations contributed to the creation of this unique masterpiece. The use of high-quality materials, from the stone foundation to the interior decor, contributes to the magical impression that captivates both believers and tourists alike.

Architecture of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque Building

The Sheikh Zayed Mosque, renowned for its fantastic effects and beauty, astonishes not only with its cost but with its ethereal architecture. The colonnades, minarets, and walls of the mosque are constructed using pristine Macedonian marble, radiating a dazzling shine in the sunlight.

This marble, cherished by Sheikh Zayed, symbolizes moral purity and religious piety for the ruler and founder of the UAE. The vast complex covers a total area of 12 hectares and has a capacity of accommodating 40 thousand people.

Minarets

The mosque is encircled by four minarets corresponding to the cardinal directions, each standing at an impressive height of 107 meters. Following religious tradition, the minarets have square foundations at the base, transitioning to octagonal walls in the middle, and culminating in cylindrical figures topped with domes.

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Domes

A striking feature of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque is the presence of 82 domes of varying diameters distributed across the roof. The largest dome, situated above the main prayer hall (exclusive to men), boasts a diameter of 32.8 meters and a height of 85 meters.

Columns

Supporting the domes are 1096 intricately designed columns, grouped in fours beneath each domed arch and entrance. The elegant white marble columns are adorned with inlays made of semi-precious stones and Swarovski crystals.

Ponds

Artificial rectangular reservoirs surrounding the mosque enhance its external beauty. These dark, mirror-like ponds effectively reflect the features of the white columns and domes, creating a mysterious and enchanting atmosphere.

Courtyard

The courtyard of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque showcases the influence of various Islamic styles, including Turkish, Mamluk, and Moroccan. Richly decorated columns border the patio, while the marble slab floor features a colorful mosaic pattern.

The entrance to the interior is adorned with massive door leaves, weighing approximately 2.2 tons and towering at a height of 12.2 meters. The interior is gracefully illuminated at night, creating a picturesque view with blue lighting concentrated on 22 special elevations.

What to See Inside the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

The interior of the White Mosque is a treasure trove of exquisite decorations. Renowned artists crafted rich mosaics from ornamental stones such as lapis lazuli, jasper, agate, and amethyst. These elements harmonize beautifully with the Macedonian marble, glowing with milky whiteness.

Stone inlays are complemented by a coating of thin gold leaf, and modern materials such as ceramics, fritted porcelain, and tempered glass add contemporary flair. Fiber optic lighting techniques create magical effects through the play of light and shadow. Noteworthy is the predominant motif of intertwining liana branches in the mosaic patterns and decor.

Prayer Hall

Ranked as the 6th largest mosque globally, the Sheikh Zayed Mosque boasts one of the largest prayer halls, capable of accommodating approximately 7 thousand worshippers. Additionally, two smaller halls cater to about one and a half thousand women for their religious rites.

Carpet

A record-breaking carpet, crafted from natural camel wool and weighing an astounding 47 tons, graces the mosque. Spanning an area of 5627 square meters, this carpet, noted in the Guinness Book of Records, is the heaviest and required the collaborative effort of over a thousand weavers.

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Qibla Wall

The Qibla wall within the mosque features a mosaic of calligraphic depictions of 99 qualities and deeds of Allah. This awe-inspiring artwork, crafted from glass and gold details, is illuminated to provide a spectacular view of the sacred inscriptions.

Chandeliers

Standout accessories within the mosque are the chandeliers, adorned with precious stones and rhinestones. The largest chandelier boasts a diameter of 10 meters and a weight of 12 tons.

Rules for Visiting Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Since 2008, tourists worldwide have been welcomed into the Sheikh Zayed Mosque, irrespective of their religious affiliations. Visitors are required to adhere to a dress code in line with Islamic customs, which prohibits revealing or short clothing.

Women must have their heads covered, and some Abu Dhabi mosques may provide appropriate clothing for those not meeting the dress code. Guided tours are available for those interested in exploring the mosque’s architectural and cultural significance.

Excursions to the Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Exploring Abu Dhabi can be a rich experience when undertaken independently or as part of a guided tour. The city boasts numerous captivating sites, and guides not only narrate the history of these places but also unveil hidden features.

Excursions to the Sheikh Zayed Mosque are often included in city sightseeing tours, both group and individual. Opting for a guided tour from Dubai is a convenient way to reach Abu Dhabi, saving time compared to public transport or taxis.

Entrance Price to Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi in 2024

Local residents and individual tourists can enter the mosque for free. For those booking half-day excursions in advance, tickets cost Dh176. Day trips from Dubai to the mosque are priced at 400 dirhams.

Opening Hours of Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi

The White Mosque opens its doors to Muslims and tourists every day. From Saturday to Thursday, it operates from 9 am to 10 pm, with Fridays reserved for believers until 3:00 pm. During Ramadan, mosques may follow special schedules.

Address of Sheikh Zayed Mosque in Abu Dhabi

Situated in the United Arab Emirates, the Sheikh Zayed Mosque is located on Sheikh Rashid Bin Said Street, No. 5.

How to Get to Sheikh Zayed Mosque

Traveling within Abu Dhabi allows visitors to reach the mosque by public bus, with a ticket costing 25 dirhams. The bus stop is approximately a 20-minute walk from the attraction. Alternatively, numerous excursion options are available from Dubai, typically priced around $100.

The Sheikh Zayed Mosque, with its immaculate form and white facade, stands as a captivating sight during sunny days and nights. Its distinction as one of the largest Islamic shrines offers visitors the opportunity to appreciate both its exterior and interior beauty. The grandeur of the White Mosque, adorned with exclusive decorations, provides a captivating experience for many travelers.

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Top 10 Best Hotels in Bangkok

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Best Things to do in Silom Bangkok

Top 10 Best Hotels in Bangkok

Top 10 Best Hotels in Bangkok : Bangkok boasts a plethora of hotels that cater to every traveler’s needs and preferences. These hotels have earned their place among the top 10 based on positive reviews from satisfied guests, reflecting their exceptional amenities, services, decor, and locations.

Whether you’re seeking a luxurious riverside retreat or a chic urban oasis, these hotels offer unparalleled experiences that elevate your stay in the bustling metropolis of Bangkok.

Oriental Residence Bangkok

Nestled on a tranquil street near the American Embassy, Oriental Residence Bangkok offers a sophisticated retreat amidst the vibrant energy of the city. Perfectly situated near Siam’s shopping district and Silom’s business hub, this hotel boasts elegant interiors adorned with fresh flowers in the lobby and a chic pool deck with cabanas.

Indulge in delectable international cuisine at Café Claire or savor the innovative Chinese menu at Mandopop, making your stay a culinary delight.

Chatrium Hotel Riverside Bangkok

Experience luxury on the banks of the majestic Chao Phraya River at Chatrium Hotel Riverside Bangkok. With its panoramic views and contemporary decor reflecting Bangkok’s heritage, this hotel offers a serene escape from the bustling city streets.

Enjoy impeccable service, divine pampering at Nemita Spa, and exquisite dining options, including Chinese cuisine on the 36th floor and international fare on the ground floor. Plus, take advantage of complimentary speedboat transfers to explore the city with ease.

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Sukhothai Bangkok

Exuding timeless elegance, Sukhothai Bangkok captures the essence of Thai luxury with its exquisite interiors and impeccable service. Adorned with rare antiques and silk curtains, this hotel offers a sensory journey through Thailand’s rich cultural heritage. From the elegant lobby to the sumptuous guest rooms, every detail reflects the hotel’s commitment to excellence, ensuring a memorable stay for discerning travelers.

Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok

Situated along the picturesque Bangkok Riverside, Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok epitomizes luxury and sophistication. With its opulent furnishings, delectable cuisine, and world-class service, this hotel offers a truly indulgent experience for guests. Whether you’re lounging by the pool, savoring culinary delights at the renowned restaurants, or pampering yourself at CHI, The Spa, every moment at Shangri-La Hotel Bangkok is designed to enchant and delight.

The Peninsula Bangkok

Regarded as one of Bangkok’s finest hotels, The Peninsula Bangkok exudes elegance and sophistication from the moment you arrive. With its sleek design, impeccable service, and unparalleled views of the city skyline, this hotel offers a luxurious retreat for discerning travelers.

Indulge in gourmet cuisine, relax by the riverfront pool, or embark on a journey of wellness and rejuvenation at The Peninsula Spa. From arrival to departure, The Peninsula Bangkok ensures a truly unforgettable experience.

Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok

Elevate your stay in Bangkok at Siam Kempinski Hotel, where contemporary luxury meets Thai hospitality. Adorned with stunning works of art and surrounded by lush greenery, this hotel offers a tranquil oasis in the heart of the city. Whether you’re dining at the Rotunda restaurant, relaxing by the pool, or indulging in a spa treatment, every moment at Siam Kempinski Hotel is designed to enchant and delight.

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Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit

Experience modern luxury at Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit, where comfort and convenience await. Located in the heart of the city’s bustling Sukhumvit Road, this hotel offers easy access to shopping, dining, and entertainment options.

With its stylish accommodations, gourmet restaurants, and state-of-the-art amenities, Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit is the perfect base for exploring all that Bangkok has to offer.

Grande Center Point Hotel Terminal21

Discover contemporary elegance at Grande Center Point Hotel Terminal21, where modern design meets Thai hospitality. From its striking architecture to its luxurious amenities, this hotel offers a truly memorable stay in the heart of Bangkok.

Whether you’re lounging by the infinity pool, dining at one of the on-site restaurants, or exploring the nearby shopping centers, Grande Center Point Hotel Terminal21 offers an unforgettable experience for every guest.

Pathumwan Princess Hotel

Experience the perfect blend of style and comfort at Pathumwan Princess Hotel, located in the heart of Bangkok’s vibrant shopping district. With its elegant interiors, world-class amenities, and impeccable service, this hotel offers a luxurious retreat for discerning travelers.

Whether you’re indulging in a gourmet meal, relaxing by the pool, or exploring the city’s attractions, Pathumwan Princess Hotel ensures a truly unforgettable stay.

Eastin Grand Hotel Sathorn

Situated in the prestigious Sathorn district, Eastin Grand Hotel Sathorn offers a luxurious retreat for business and leisure travelers alike. With its spacious suites, contemporary design, and state-of-the-art amenities, this hotel provides the perfect blend of comfort and convenience.

Whether you’re attending a meeting in the business center or unwinding at the rooftop bar, Eastin Grand Hotel Sathorn promises an unforgettable experience for every guest.

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In conclusion, these top 10 hotels in Bangkok offer unparalleled luxury, comfort, and convenience for discerning travelers. Whether you’re seeking a riverside retreat, an urban oasis, or a shopping haven, these hotels provide the perfect base for exploring the vibrant city of Bangkok.

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Where to Stay in Padua Italy

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Where to Stay in Padua Italy

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Where to Stay in Padua Italy

Where to Stay in Padua, Italy : A Detailed Guide

Padua, situated just half an hour away from Venice in the northern part of Italy, often gets overshadowed by its more famous neighbor. However, this charming city has much to offer, including impressive palaces, historic churches, and bustling squares.

While you can explore Padua in a day, it’s worth staying for 2-3 days to fully appreciate its beauty and discover its hidden gems. Plus, using Padua as a base allows for easy day trips to nearby cities like Venice, Verona, and Ferrara, all while enjoying more affordable accommodation and fewer crowds.

Choosing the Right Area:

When deciding where to stay in Padua, consider your travel preferences and priorities. The main areas to focus on are near the train station (Padova Centrale), the historical center around the cathedral (Duomo di Padova), and the Basilica of St. Anthony of Padua (Basilica di Sant’Antonio di Padova).

Near the Train Station (Padova Centrale):

If you plan to use Padua as a hub for exploring other cities in the region, staying near the train station is convenient. This area offers easy access to public transportation, including buses and trains, making it ideal for day trips. Additionally, hotels here tend to be more affordable, and parking is easier to find compared to the city center.

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The Hotel Grand’Italia, located directly opposite the station, offers excellent soundproofing and spacious rooms with modern amenities. Nearby, the Hotel Al Cason provides secure parking and a cozy atmosphere, though rooms facing the street may experience early morning noise from passing buses.

Towards the southeast of the station is the Padova Fiere Exhibition Center, suitable for those attending events or exhibitions. Hotels like NH Mantegna Hotel and Best Western Premier Hotel Galileo Padova offer comfortable accommodations and amenities like buffet dinners and fully equipped kitchens.

Historical Center (Duomo di Padova):

For a more immersive experience in Padua’s rich history and culture, consider staying in the city’s historical center. This area is bustling with shops, restaurants, and attractions, including the bustling market squares of Piazza del Erbe and Piazza della Frutta.

The Albergo Verdi hotel offers a convenient location near the market squares and provides free bicycles for exploring the city. Alternatively, Diamantino Town House offers apartment-style accommodations with views of a picturesque square, perfect for a more authentic stay. For a touch of luxury, consider Le Camp Resort & Spa, housed in the Palazzo Marzari, with a modern wellness center for relaxation.

Basilica of St. Anthony of Padua:

If you’re drawn to the spiritual and historical significance of Padua’s beloved saint, staying near the Basilica of St. Anthony of Padua may be appealing. While the area can be bustling with activity, it offers stunning views of the basilica and easy access to religious sites.

Hotels like Hotel Donatello and Hotel Casa Del Pellegrino overlook the basilica and provide convenient parking options. For a homely atmosphere and personalized service, Hotel Al Santo offers comfortable accommodations and friendly staff.

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In conclusion, Padua offers a range of accommodation options to suit every traveler’s needs and preferences. Whether you prefer the convenience of staying near the train station, the charm of the historical center, or the spiritual ambiance near the basilica, there’s something for everyone in this delightful Italian city.

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Where to Stay in Verona Italy

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Top 10 Most Scenic Train Routes / Tours in Italy

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Where to Stay in Verona Italy

Where to Stay in Verona, Italy : Verona may not seem like a place where you’d want to spend more than a few hours, but it’s actually one of Italy’s most captivating cities. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and romantic ambiance, Verona deserves at least three days of exploration.

You can spend your time wandering through the charming streets, visiting museums, exploring the ancient castle, and even catching an opera performance at the iconic Arena. So, when planning your trip to Verona, one of the key decisions is where to stay.

Let’s delve into the various areas of the city to help you make the best choice for your accommodation.

Choosing the Right Area:

Verona is relatively compact, but it’s essential to stay in a central location to minimize travel time and make the most of your visit. The main areas to consider are Città Antica (the Old Town), Cittadella, San Zeno, Veronetta, and Borgo Trento. Each area has its own charm and benefits, catering to different preferences and budgets.

Città Antica (Old Town):

The heart of Verona, Città Antica, is where you’ll find most of the city’s attractions, including the iconic Arena di Verona. Accommodations here tend to be more expensive, but they offer proximity to key sights and a unique historic atmosphere. Hotels around Piazza Bra, near the Arena, are particularly popular for their convenience. For those attending opera performances, staying near the Arena is ideal. Look for authentic accommodations with traditional features like wooden beams and views of the Arena, such as Locanda Ippopotamo.

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While the Old Town is bustling with tourists during the day, it quiets down in the evenings, allowing for peaceful strolls and romantic moments. Keep in mind that rooms in historic buildings may be smaller and amenities more basic, but the charm of the surroundings makes up for it.

Castelvecchio and Piazza Erbe:

Another appealing area is around Castelvecchio, known for its resemblance to the Moscow Kremlin. While hotels along busy streets like Corso Cavour may be noisy, those with views of the castle or river offer breathtaking panoramas. Castle View Apartments, directly opposite Castelvecchio, provide stunning vistas and a serene atmosphere.

Piazza Erbe and the Church of St. Anastasia offer a quieter alternative, with fewer crowds and a medieval ambiance. Hotels in this area provide a glimpse into Verona’s past and offer charming accommodations amidst cobblestone streets and historic buildings.

Cittadella:

Located south of the Arena, Cittadella is a more modern area with slightly cheaper accommodations. It’s still within walking distance of major attractions and the train station, making it convenient for travelers. Hotels like Giberti Hotel offer comfortable stays at a reasonable price, perfect for those exploring Verona on a budget.

Veronetta and Borgo Trento:

Veronetta, across the river from the Old Town, offers a quieter, more authentic experience. With fewer tourists and a local vibe, it’s an excellent choice for those seeking a more immersive stay. Hotels like Residenza San Faustino provide cozy accommodations away from the hustle and bustle.

Borgo Trento, adjacent to Veronetta, offers stunning views of Verona and a peaceful atmosphere. While accommodations may be limited, options like Agli Abbaini Hotel offer panoramic vistas and a tranquil setting, perfect for a relaxing stay.

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Veronafiere Exhibition Center:

For those attending events at the Veronafiere exhibition center, hotels in this area provide convenient access. While it’s farther from the city center, modern accommodations like Crowne Plaza Hotel Verona – Fiera offer comfort and affordability. However, be prepared to travel to reach the main attractions.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Verona offers a range of accommodations to suit every traveler’s needs. Whether you prefer the historic charm of the Old Town, the tranquility of Veronetta, or the convenience of Cittadella, there’s something for everyone in this enchanting city. Share your thoughts and views in the comments below regarding Where to Stay in Verona Italy?

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