Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque | Abu Dhabi, UAE

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Abaya: HERE | Sandals: Hermes

Hello from the United Arab Emirates!

Waseem and I have been in Dubai for a little over a week with still quite a few days left! Waseem is here on business and I was at Pop Con Dubai over the weekend speaking on a social media panel as well as being Chrisspy’s model for her masterclass (also at Pop Con!). I’ve been to Dubai several times, usually for long layovers so my mom could hit up the gold souq; but Waseem and I also visited for our first wedding anniversary almost three years ago! I was excited to come back for such an extended period of time with a little bit of experience under my belt. What I was most excited for was the chance to drive down to Abu Dhabi and visit the gorgeous Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque again! This mosque is my favorite place I’ve ever visited in the world – how can it not be?! It is so gorgeous and peaceful – not pretentious like I expected prior to my first visit. It’s beyond decadent, adorned with marble, gold, precious stones, and crystal galore, don’t get me wrong – but I think there’s something really beautiful about feeling proud of your place of worship.

The Grand Mosque was established by the late president, who wanted to create something that truly unified the Muslim world – its peoples, history, & art. Materials and artisans from all over the world were brought to design and create this mosque and the design is best described as a fusion of Arab, Persian, Mughal & Moorish architecture. Yes, I got that from Wikipedia haha ;) The Grand Mosque accomodates over 40,000 worshippers and is made up of over 1000 columns and 82 domes, it will seriously take your breath away!

Tourist hours vary depending on the day. I was lucky enough to pray jummah (Friday prayer) twice here! In 2014 it seemed as though tourist hours began right after prayers ended (busloads of tourists came through as we were getting out) but the current schedule shows that tourist hours begin after 4:30pm on Fridays – be sure to check the schedule! I was a bit nervous about taking photos after prayers but no one said a thing & the mosque seems to be very photo friendly – they even host a photography competition every year! I have heard that you cannot bring tripods though, luckily I didn’t visit alone! :) To be honest, I don’t understand the Rihanna controversy from a few years back – she wasn’t doing anything that everyone else wasn’t doing! All tourists take a million photos. It’s the #1 tourist destination in Abu Dhabi and there are guided tours daily!

I drove down to Abu Dhabi with my friend Shyema (who took my bomb photos!) on Friday for Jummah prayer. Waseem & I spontaneously drove down last night and I have to say it is also soooo beautiful at night! To visit during Mahgrib (sunset prayer), is on my bucketlist! I don’t know if I can handle another drive this week, but God willing – next time!

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Abaya: HERE

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12 Comments

  1. October 31, 2016 / 3:58 am

    Beautiful photos irene ❤❤❤ from safiya

  2. Henna
    October 31, 2016 / 4:24 am

    I’d say in one word AWESOME .You both look so graceful .Couple made in heaven. I pray that God always shower his blessings on you both .Lots of love coming all the way from Mauritius <3 <3

    • October 31, 2016 / 4:25 am

      SO sweet! Thank you so much love!!

  3. Ana
    October 31, 2016 / 5:31 am

    Hi Irene

    What camera and equipment did you use? X

    • October 31, 2016 / 5:35 am

      Straight to the point lol! I hope that means you enjoyed this post. If that’s the case, thanks so much!

      I have a gear post on my blog.

      • Ana
        November 1, 2016 / 4:36 am

        I did
        Its very inspiring
        Ive travelled the world but always have failed to capture it how i wanted to.. it gets frustrating, photography is everything!
        I have had issues with hiring photographer’s in the past because of my privacy need they dont understand as they wish to upload their work but because of this clause they do a shoddy job.. since then i decided to do research and invest in a good camera.
        Btw thank you for responding
        Appreciate it xxx

  4. iqra
    October 31, 2016 / 7:51 am

    The masjid looks amazing, your photography is truly on point. :)

  5. Abir
    October 31, 2016 / 10:25 am

    You guys literally look like royalty! Amazing photos! <3

  6. October 31, 2016 / 12:40 pm

    I live for your blog posts. Teach us your ways! You always have the best photos, and you and waseem are #relationshipgoals ! Love you 🙌🏾❤️

  7. Isabel
    November 4, 2016 / 11:27 am

    Hi Irene, love love all your traveling post, vlogs and make up videos. I miss you on YouTube! lol. Anyways, just curious, where did you buy the veil that covers your head? I’ve been in the look for some but cannot seem to find any. Please let me know when you get a chance. I would appreciate it :)

  8. Rugaya
    November 4, 2016 / 1:09 pm

    These photos are absolutely gorgeous Irene! So talented at what you do :)

  9. Laila
    December 1, 2016 / 10:39 am

    BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL PICTURES! Irene can you please link me to your gear post? what camera and what lens you use? I can’t fin it at all on the site. Thank you!

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