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Faro, Portugal

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Avenida dos Descobrimentos, Albufeira, Faro District 8200-161

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351 963317484

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  • A Guide to London Central Mosque

    London is considered one of the top destinations in the world but to the constant surprise of visitng tourists and inhabitants, it also has an array of beautiful mosques. The first of its kind in London, one of the most beautiful ones is none other than the London Central Mosque (also known as Regent’s Park Mosque). The beautiful architecture, the serenity of the location and the historical importance of the Masjid should make it a top location for both Muslims and non-Muslims to visit. Here’s why! Check out the London Muslim Lifestyle Show 2018 Find things to do in London History Picture Credit - www.iccuk.org The London Central Mosque represents a step forward in the beautiful history of religious exchange in London. In the year 1940, King George VI gifted the land on which the London Central Mosque now resides. A grand thank-you gift to honour the King Farouk of Egypt and Sudan for the Anglican Church in Cairo. It took 34 years to get started on the building infrastructure, but in 1994, the Mosque was officially completed with the two prayer halls, three storey wings, the grand entrance hall, the library, a reading room, administration offices, symbolic minaret and the golden dome which all stand as a wondrous completed unit. The international support and financing for these characteristic units of the London Central Mosque came from leaders all over the Middle-East as a representation of the strength of Islam.   Location Picture Credit - openbuildings.com Based in the affluent area of North-West London, The London Central Mosque can be found on Hanover Gate, West of Regents Park. If you're feeling adventurous, a walk through Regents Park can be an exciting way to get to the mosque, as the Gold Dome peaks through the trees and the Minaret signals your destination, and you can truly appreciate the serenity and greenery of the location, another side to London away from the hustle and bustle. It is also easily accessible by tube (Baker Street or St John's Wood) and various bus routes which would require a short walk along the streets of extravagant estates and housing. Address: The Islamic Cultural Centre & The London Central Mosque, 146 Park Road, London, NW8 7RGE-mail: info@iccuk.orgTel. : 020 7724 3363Website: http://www.iccuk.org/  Facebook | Twitter | Instagram   Architecture Picture Credit - www.iccuk.org An International competition was held to find the perfect architect for this grand project, Sir Frederick Gibberd, a prominent English architect, won with his simple but grand approach to Islamic architecture. The eye-catching golden dome and prominent minaret on the corner of the square complex gracefully replicates the traditional structures that can be found all over the Islamic world, such as Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo and Al-Zeytuna Mosque in Tunis.   Interior Design Picture Credit - facebook.com/iccuk.org If the exterior does not impress you, the inside should do the job. The bespoke chandelier hangs from the centre of the dome and the symmetrical, geometric Islamic tiled patterns colour the ring. It’s a beautiful site that could transport you spiritually to feel as though you are in a Muslim country, yet the lush greenery of London pokes through the arched windows, thus it feels as though you are in two places in the world at once.   Day-to-Day functions Picture Credit - londontemplevisits.blogspot.sg The Islamic centre offers a wide variety of services that make the London Central Mosque and Islamic Centre a versatile location with much to offer, from the Halal Café serving fresh food to an Islamic Bookshop to satisfy your curiosities and questions on the Deen. In addition, educational services for a range of ages and levels of knowledge are available, with “one of the largest and oldest Islamic reference libraries.” So, we hope that we've kindled your curiosity to visit the London Central Mosque.  Come on down, you'll be surprised by this Islamic gem in the middle of London! Find a Mosque near me in London Find a Halal Restaurant near me in London...

  • Beautiful Mosques of the UAE

    The United Arab Emirates is famous for its towering skyscrapers and amazing architecture. Known for their grand vision, ‘think big’ attitude and pushing the limits, the UAE applies this approach not just to modern goals but to balance the old and new. The presence of its culture and heritage is visible everywhere around the country, and it does a good job of creating mosques that stand out in design or blend into the surrounding area very well. Whether you are trying to find prayer places and mosques near you in UAE or make it a goal to visit the most beautiful mosques to see in UAE, here are some of the ones you cannot miss.   Abu Dhabi   1) Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi Of course, we would start with this one! Iconic in its own right and a major tourist attraction, some people visit Abu Dhabi just to take a look at this mosque. One of the biggest mosques in the UAE, it is also the National Mosque and where the previous ruler of the country, Sheikh Zayed’s resting place can be found. It is open to Muslims and non-Muslims alike, as long as they are decently covered. Traditional abayas and shawls are provided at the entrance to those who require it. The multiple domes, exquisite symmetry and intricate detailing all seem like something out of a movie (think Chamber-of Secrets-like bathrooms). Click here for more information on the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque    2) Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak Mosque at Mohammed bin Zayed City, Abu Dhabi  Picture Credit - arabianindustrial.com One of the more unique mosques in the UAE, this mosque is worth a visit simply for its slightly futuristic look and non-traditional architecture. Opened in 2011 and built to accommodate over 5000 people, its spiralling dome and minaret make it one of the most unique mosques in the UAE. Click here for more information on the Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak   3) Al Aziz Mosque in Marina Square on Al Reem Island, Abu Dhabi Picture Credit - www.apgarch.com Truly a breath-taking sight to behold, especially at night, Al Aziz Mosque is a must-visit. Very different from the traditional mosques, it was built to fit in with its surroundings, yet it also stands out. During the day, Al Aziz Mosque showcases its triangular-cut minaret, glass fittings and walls carved with the Names of Allah in Arabic calligraphy. At night, however, light plays a major role in transforming the space. The minaret and dome are lit up in a unique way, and the calligraphy inscribed on the outside walls is also illuminated. Using optical fibres that transmit light through the stone – or light transmitting concrete – the walls come to life. The incredible outside invites worshippers to enter another world and leave this one behind when it the time for prayer comes. The mosque is as good inside as it is outside as it makes the most of natural light during the day, it recycles wastewater, uses energy efficient bulbs, and has an effective waste management system.   4) Masjid Bani Hashim, Abu Dhabi  Picture Credit - islamicresourcedubai.com If you want to be transported to another place and time, look no further than Masjid Bani Hashim, close to Shangri-La Hotel, in Abu Dhabi. An exact slightly miniature replica of the Dome of the Rock Mosque in Jerusalem – down to the ruined pillars outside – the mosque has gained popularity since its opening in 2011 but its fame has been overshadowed by the likes of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, which is why it still remains to be fairly unknown. Away from the main roads and its noise, it offers a quiet spot to pray and reflect, while imagining being in Jerusalem. Click here for more information on the Abdul Rahman Siddique Mosque   Dubai   5) Al Salam Mosque, Al Barsha Picture Credit - azeem.me Located right behind Mall of the Emirates, you can take your prayer stop there instead of at a prayer room at the mall. It is a stunning building that stands out from afar – in structure as well as due to its reddish-pink exterior – and is a mix of Emirati, Andalusian and Ottoman architecture.   6) Abdul-Rahman Siddique Mosque on The Palm, Jumeirah Picture Credit - Archnet.com  Only in touring the mosques in this country can you realise how different a basic structure with a dome and minaret can look. The challenge when designing this mosque on the Palm Island was to create a modern look that matched its surroundings. It achieved that with its slightly futuristic appearance made with glass, steel and stone, but it doesn’t take away from the peace worshippers find within. Click here for more information on the Abdul Rahman Siddique Mosque   7) Masjid Al Rahim, Dubai Marina Picture Credit - www.thenational.ae The only mosque in the Dubai Marina, Masjid Al Rahim seems regular enough with its warm beige exteriors. It sports a unique feature, however, in the form of a stand-alone piece with the words “There is no God but Allah” in Arabic cut out in block letters – not the usual calligraphy – at the side of the mosque. The interiors are exquisite in their white and gold detailing; with the chandeliers even being inscribed with Arabic calligraphy along the outside edges. Click here for more information on the Masjid Al Rahim   8) Al Farooq Omar bin Al Khattab Mosque, Al Safa Picture Credit - alfarooqcentre.com Inaugurated in 2011, Al Farooq Omar bin Al Khattab mosque became the third mosque in the UAE to open its doors to non-Muslims. Also known as the Blue Mosque due to its similarity to the Blue Mosque in Turkey, it takes design cues and interior detailing from Turkish and Andalusian architecture. Rather like a castle out of Disney from afar, the mosque’s many minarets stand out like spires. Al Farooq Omar bin Al Khattab Mosque was established in 1988 and expanded in 2003 until it was finally rebuilt in 2011 and can now hold 2000 people. Click here for more information on the Al Farooq Omar bin Al Khattab Mosque   9) Jumeirah Mosque, Dubai Picture Credit - www.visitdubai.com One of the most iconic mosques in the Emirates, it was the first one to be opened to non-Muslims as well, that allowed them a tour through the religious place. It was also the mosque used for the Adhan (call to prayer) on TV years ago, bringing it its fame. Before the introduction of the grand mosques visible in the UAE today, Jumeirah Mosque, built in the late 1970s, was one of the most photographed mosques. Built in the medieval Fatimid tradition, the Jumeirah Mosque is one of the attractions in UAE. Click here for more information on the Jumeirah Mosque   10) Iranian Mosque, Bur Dubai Picture Credit - dubaitravelator.com The only Iranian mosque in UAE, you cannot miss this mosque located a short distance from the Jumeirah Mosque. Its Persian influences are clearly visible in the mosaic-patterned exterior that stands out in all its colourful glory, blue being the dominant hue. It also includes a library with over 14,000 books and has weekly tours run by the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding for non-Muslims. Click here for more information on the Iranian Mosque   Sharjah   11) Al Noor Mosque, Sharjah Picture Credit - www.beautifulmosque.com Built at the Sharjah Corniche, Al Noor Mosque also opens its doors to non-Muslims. It stands out with its 34 domes and Turkish Ottoman architecture and can accommodate over 2000 worshippers. At night, it lights up like a party. Click here for more information on the Al Noor Mosque   12) King Faisal Mosque, Sharjah Picture Credit - beautifulmosque.com One of Sharjah’s largest mosques, King Faisal Mosque can host up to 17,000 people. Constructed in the 1980s, it has a unique style not visible in the more modern places of worship. The architect, hailing from Saudi Arabia, was determined to keep the design as simple as possible so as to not distract worshippers. The large courtyard inside the walls of the mosque sports plenty of pillars on all four sides to help the people praying to maintain straight rows. Until the opening of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, King Faisal Mosque was the largest one in the UAE. Click here for more information on the King Faisal Mosque   13) Salem Al Mutawa Mosque, Khor Fakkan Picture Credit - www.thenational.ae The second-oldest mosque in the UAE, Salem Al Mutawwa Mosque is famous for being the mosque that appears on the 5 Dirham banknote. Talk about a landmark. Built over 200 years ago, it is very simple in its architecture and named after a local resident who never missed a prayer at the mosque.   Fujairah 14) Masjid Al Badiyah, Fujairah Picture Credit - www.beautifulmosque.com You cannot visit the UAE and not make a trip to Fujairah if only to see the oldest mosque in the country. It was constructed during the Ottoman period in 1446 and, compared to the mosques of today, it resembles a mud hut. It still stands though and is still in use by worshippers. Click here for more information on the Al Badiyah Mosque This is not, by far, a complete list of mosques in the United Arab Emirates. There are many incredible and photogenic mosques in the UAE, as well as those with plenty of history, and if you happen to visit any of them outside the ones mentioned here, do update us via the HalalTrip App. The Dubai mosque list, in particular, can have plenty more added to it. You don’t just have to be looking for a place to pray when you vacation in UAE to visit these mosques, but you could make it part of your itinerary to cover all these and more in your travel to UAE. Pictures don’t do justice to the breath-taking beauty that is visible here....

  • Andalusia: An Insight Into Moorish Spain

    Spain, today, is country with a majority population of Christians. But a lesser known fact is that Muslims conquered and ruled a region of the country called Andalusia or Al-Andalus, at the time, for several centuries. These days were some of the most prosperous times in the history of Al-Andalus, and one of the best examples of minorities -the Christians and Jews- living peacefully in the Andalusian Umayyad dynasty, which lasted from 756 to 1031, and was referred to as “the golden age of tolerance”.   A Brief History of Moorish Spain Andalusia, known as Al-Andalus was a Muslim territory in today's Spain and Portugal. The era of Muslim rule began when Tariq Ben Ziyad conquered Andalusia in 711 AD in an attempt to free the region from the Visigoths who were wreaking havoc in the area. History states that he arrived with 7000 of his men and claimed victory, after which followed a period of Islamic rule, which lasted from the eighth to the fifteenth century. This time period Is also often referred to as “Moorish Spain”.   Places To See Andalusia is situated in the southern region of the Iberian peninsula and is made up of several cities, such as Seville, Malaga, Jaen, Almeria, Cordoba, Cardiz, Granada, and Huelva. Seville is the capital of Al-Andalus. Andalusia is a region that has it all, from ancient cities to mountainous ranges, picturesque beaches to deserts. There are also several historical attractions and landmarks that one could visit to get an insight into the days of Islamic rule on a Muslim-friendly travel to Andalusia. Islamic architecture in Spain is intricate and ornamental, with delicate designs and high arches. The outside walls are usually made of stone, stucco, and plaster.   Here are some of the Andalusian destinations to mark on your travel itinerary:   1. Al Hambra in Grenada This beautiful historic palace is set against a backdrop of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Al Hambara is known as “red fort” or “red palace”, because of the colour of its surroundings. It was originally built in 889 AD on Roman ruins as a small fortress during the Muslim rule. Afterward, it remained abandoned until its renovations in the mid-13th century. Today, it is one of Spain's most famous attractions, and definitely a place not to be missed on an Andalusian holiday. Here, you can so many amazing things like the Patio of Lions, the Justice Gate, and more. Depending on the time of visit, you might have to book your spot in advance as it can get pretty busy. Tickets cost 14 euros for adults, and 9 euros for disabled persons. Children under 12 are allowed free admission. Address: Calle Real de la Alhambra, s/n, 18009 Granada, Spain.Open Hours: Tuesday – Saturday: 9 am – 6 pm, Sunday: 9 am to 3 pm (Mondays closed)Phone: +34 958 02 79 71Website: https://www.alhambra.org/en/   2. Alcazar of Seville This is an ancient royal palace in Spain that was built by the Muslim kings of Moorish Spain. Even today, this is considered to be one of the most beautiful palaces in Spain and is one of the most outstanding examples of Mudejar architecture in the Iberian peninsula. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The upper levels of the castle are still occupied by Spain's royal family as the official Seville residence currently. Tickets to visit the Alcazar of Seville cost about 10 euros normally. You do not have to book ahead, although you might experience long queues at times. Address: Patio de Banderas, s/n, 41004 Sevilla, Spain.Hours: Monday – Saturday: 9:30AM–5PMPhone: +34 954 50 23 24Website: www.alcazarsevilla.org/english-version/   3. Giralda in Seville Originally built as a minaret of the Aljama Mosque during Moorish Spain, today the Giralda serves as the bell tower for the Seville Cathedral. It is one of the most iconic landmarks in all of Spain, but few know the Islamic history it holds. It was gazetted as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 1987. The building remained the tallest in the city for over 800 years. Although it no longer holds the title, you can climb to the top and experience amazing views of the city. Address: Av. de la Constitución, s/n, 41004 Sevilla, Spain.Hours: Open 24 hours every dayWebsite: http://www.andalucia.com/cities/seville/giralda.htm   4. Plaza De Espana in Seville The Plaza De Espana in Seville is one of the best symbols built for the Ibero-American Exposition World Fair in 1929, along with being one of the most beautiful pieces of Neo-Mudejar architecture. This grand building is definitely something you cannot miss on your Andalusian travel itinerary. Not only is the Plaza De Espana an amazing sight to see, there are also plenty of things to see around it, including a beautiful park with ponds and birds. There is also plenty of activity going around at various times of the day, like flamenco dancers! Address: Av de Isabel la Católica, 41004 Sevilla, Spain.Hours: Open 24 hours every day   5. Torre Del Oro Torre Del Oro, translating to “Tower of Gold”, was constructed in the early 13th century by the Almohad Caliphate. The top of the building served as a military watchtower in Seville while the actual tower was used as a prison in the Middle Ages. It is one of the most popular Andalusian attractions for visitors of all kinds, and a great place to witness a bit of history of Moorish Spain. Address: Paseo de Cristóbal Colón, s/n, 41001 Sevilla, Spain.Hours: Monday – Sunday: 10:30AM–6:45PM.Phone: +34 954 22 24 19   6. Albaicin Albaicin or Albayzin as it was known during the Muslim rule of Spain is a region of Andalusia that that is a great place to visit. Even today, you can see the narrow winding streets as it existed during the days of the Nasrid Kingdom of Granada. This is often known as “the Arab quarter” or Granada and is one of the best places to witness Moorish architecture. Other Andalusian attractions you can visit in Albaicin include Carrera Del Orro, one of the oldest streets in the region, Church of San Salvador, a 16th-century mosque that was built over an Albayzin mosque, and numerous 11th-century Arab baths that used to be part of the Mosque of the Walnut Tree. This is also one of the best places to find Halal food in Andalusia.   7. Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba The Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba is also known as the Great Mosque of Cordoba and Mezquita. Although its name contains the word “mosque”, it is also a Catholic Cathedral called the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption. It was one of the biggest mosques in the world, and it's unique design reflected the harmony between the Muslims, Christians, and Jews. The history of the building goes even beyond Moorish Spain. It was originally a small Visigoth temple that was converted and expanded into a mosque by Abd al-Rahman in 784. But when the rule of Cordoba returned to the Christians, it was converted back to a Roman Catholic Church. Still, it is known as one of the most accomplished achievements of Moorish Spain and its architecture is something to see on your Andalusian holiday. Address: Calle Cardenal Herrero, 1, 14003 Córdoba, Spain.   8. Alcazaba of Malaga The Alcazaba is a beautiful Moorish fortress in Malaga that was built in the 11th century by the Hammudid dynasty. It is known to be the best-preserved Alcazaba in Spain today, and one of the two Moorish fortresses in the city. This fortress whose name translates from Arabic to “citadel” is located at the base of the Gibralfaro hill. The view from the top overlooks the busy port city and has a gorgeous garden to explore as well. There is also a small archaeological museum located at the former servants' quarters where you can see exhibits of Moorish pottery and ceramics. Address: Calle Alcazabilla, 2, 29012 Málaga, Spain.Phone: +34 630 93 29 87   9. Toledo's Old City The city of Toledo is built atop a rugged hill atop the plains of Castilla-La Mancha in central Spain. This city has a long and winding history, starting from the pre-Islamic era of the Romans, to the Visigoths, the Muslims, and then finally, the Christians. As such, the city holds pieces of each of these times in history. There are a number of ancient buildings to visit where you can witness the remnants of Moorish Spain, like the Bisagra Gate and the Sol Gate. 10. Madinat Al-Zahra Picture Credit: www.medinaazahara.org Situated little ways outside Cordoba, this was a Moorish city built by Abd ar-Rahman III, the first Umayyad Caliphate of Cordoba. It took him 25 years to build the city, and it was magnificent in its day. He chose this place to build his palace because of its beautiful landscape, as it lay facing the valley of Guadalquivir river. Picture Credit: www.medinaazahara.org Today, most of the city that remains are the ruins of the once majestic city-palace, but there are several fragments of the buildings remaining. You can visit the palaces, the offices of former government heads, the sprawling gardens and the Abd ar-Rahman III hall, one of the most beautiful and ornamental places in the entire city. Picture Credit: www.medinaazahara.org It is one of the most important Andalusian attractions to see on your Muslim-friendly holiday to get an insight into Moorish Spain. If you are an EU resident, entrance is free. Otherwise, a ticket cost 1.5o euros. There is shuttle service at the bottom of the hill to take you to the site entrance. Address: Ctra. Palma del Río, km 5.5, 14005 Córdoba, Spain.Hours: Sunday: 9AM–3PM, Tuesday - Saturday: 9AM–6PM (Mondays closed)Phone: +34 957 10 36 37Website: http://www.medinaazahara.org/en/ For more ideas on where to travel in 2018 check out our travel blog or top travel destinations 2018 page...

  • Dubai's Most Beautiful Mosques

    As the largest and most populous city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), one of the richest and most well-developed Muslim countries in the world, Dubai is an amazing place to visit. As such, it draws millions of tourists every year; it's top points of attractions being architecture, shopping, and modern lifestyle. Amongst its stunning architecture, Dubai has its fair share of grand and majestic mosques that might not be as tall as the world famous Burj Khalifa (tallest building in the world), but make just as much of an impact. When planning a travel to Dubai, make sure to get yourself a Dubai mosque list. We'll start you off with the most beautiful mosques in Dubai to visit. Credits - giphy.com   1. Al Farooq Omar Bin Al Khattab Mosque Credits - http://alfarooqcentre.com Address: Al Raffa St, Dubai 25444, United Arab Emirates.
Phone: +971 4 394 4448 Al Farooq Omar Bin Khattab Mosque, named after Umar Bin Khattab, a companion of the Prophet Muhammad (sal), who was later nicknamed Al Farooq, is a famous mosque in Dubai. It was originally built in 1986 but has since been through two renovations in 2003 and 2011. Following the second renovation is when the Al Farooq mosque became one of the largest mosques in Dubai, with a capacity of 2000 people. The mosque is often referred to as the 'Blue Mosque' because the architecture was inspired by Istanbul's Blue Mosque, and presents a mix of Ottoman and Andalusian architecture. This was the third mosque in Dubai to open its doors to non-Muslim visitors, along with daily tours (except on Friday).   2. Grand Mosque Credits - www.flickr.com Address: Ali Bin Abi Taleb Street, Al Souq Al Kabeer, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Phone: +971 800 600 If you're trying to locate a nearby mosque in Dubai's Bur Dubai area, the Grand Mosque is definitely something you cannot miss! Located across the Dubai Museum road, it is one of the oldest mosques in Dubai and the cultural and religious centre of Dubai Muslims. Originally built in 1900 as a madrasah for children, it was then demolished in 1960 and renovated in 1998, although the original structure of the building has been kept the same through for more than a 100 years! The mosque's wooden and stained glass windows represent the era and the area in which it was built. The minaret, which looks like a lighthouse, is designed in Anatolian architecture and is the tallest in the city. Non-Muslims aren't allowed into the mosque but are allowed to go up the minaret which offers stunning views of the mosque and the city.   3. Jumeirah Mosque Credits - www.flickr.com Address: Jumeirah Beach Road, Jumeirah 1, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Phone: +971 4 353 6666 As another contender for the title of the most beautiful and famous mosque in Dubai, this stunning mosque is situated in the Jumeirah neighborhood . It was built in 1976, influenced by the traditional Fatimid style. It is said to be the most photographed landmark in Dubai, and we can see why especially when it comes alive with bright lights as the sun goes down. The inside of the mosque features gorgeous intricate designs of pastel shades, Islamic calligraphy and golden chandeliers. In line with the mosque's “Open doors. Open minds” program, it is open to non-Muslims and also offers guided tours.   4. Iranian Mosque (Imam Hossein Mosque) Credits - www.flickr.com Address: 226 Al Wasl Rd, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Phone: +971 4 344 2886 Located on Al Wasl Road in Jumeirah, this is one of the most famous Shia mosques in Dubai and was founded by the Iranian community in Dubai, in 1979, with the aid of the Iranian Red Crescent. The architecture is inspired by quasi-Fatimid with Persian influences. The outside of the mosque and its dome are covered in traditional blue tiles, similar to the architecture and design of the Iranian Hospital situated across the road from it. The interior shares the same striking blue tiles with green and gold accents, with Arabic inscriptions over them. The mosque houses several halls, including a massive library with books on many different topics and languages including Arabic, Persian, Urdu and English. Non-Muslim visitors are allowed into the mosque in guided tours (4 times per week).   5. Iranian Mosque (Ali In Abi Talib Mosque) Address: Ali Bin Abi Taleb Street, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Phone: +971 52 483 0380 The second of the two most famous Iranian mosques in Dubai also deserves its spot on this list for its stunning architecture and culture. This mosque is also located in the Bur Dubai district of Dubai, near the old textile souk, and represents Persian-style architecture. It's exterior and dome are designed with extensive Persian faience tile work, and calming blue background with floral patterns. Green, yellow, and red are the other most common colors you'll find here, along with the calligraphy of Quranic quotes drawn in gorgeous swirls.   6. Al Salaam Mosque Credits - www.flickr.com Address: 23rd St, Al Barsha 2, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. If you're looking for a nearby mosque in Dubai when in the Al Barsha area, this mosque is a sight to behold! Situated near the Mall of Emirates, it's stunning red architecture was influenced by the Turkish buildings of old, resulting in a mix of Ottoman and Emirati culture and design. This makes it one of the most unique mosques in the UAE, and what makes it stand out strikingly against all the other buildings. The outside also features white accents, as well as gold domes and balconies on the minarets. The mosque is a new addition to the Al Barsha area, having been opened in 2014 by His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. It has the capacity to accommodate 1500 worshipers and is a peaceful place with gorgeous lighting for some quiet time and religious reflection.   7. Masjid Al Rahim Credits - commons.wikimedia.com Address: Southern end, Dubai Marina, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Walking along the banks of the Dubai Marina, and you'll find Masjid Al Rahim, one of the most beautiful prayer places in Dubai. Following a four year construction, it was opened in 2013 and is the only mosque in the Marina. It features prayer rooms for men and women, ablution areas, a madrasah, and an Islamic library. The outside features a minaret and dome, which becomes even more stunning in the evening when the lights from the skyscrapers nearby fall upon it, bathing it in blue and white.   8. Khalifa Al Tajer Mosque Credits - http://www.dubaiconfidential.ae Address: Bur Saeed Street, Near Deira City Centre, Deira, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Khalifa Al Tajer is well and truly deserving of the title of the most unique mosque in the UAE, because it is the first Eco-friendly mosque in the country! Located in Bur Saeed Street in the Deira neighborhood of Dubai, it opened its doors to a capacity of 3500 worshipers in 2014. The environment-friendly design of the mosque features ablution stations with water-saving technology, energy-efficient thermal-insulation systems, solar panels, energy-saving lights and fittings, and air conditioners that emit lower greenhouse gases. Although the mosque is gorgeously decorated, it might seem “simple” in comparison to other mosques of this size in Dubai. This too is so that the mosque can stay as environment-friendly as possible because the simple Bedouin Emirati architecture of the mosque drastically reduced cost and energy. ...

  • Traveling to Chicago? Here's a Muslim-Friendly Guide

    If you're a Muslim traveler planning visit Chicago, HalalTrip has compiled a Halal-friendly guide to help you out. Here's where you can find Halal food and mosques in Chicago to help ensure that you experience a hassle-free stay. Read on for more information. Click here for a Muslim-friendly city guide to Chicago About the City Famously known as the Windy City, Chicago is home to towering skyscrapers, world class museums and numerous cultural attractions alongside commercial ventures. Located in north eastern Illinois, on the south western shore of Lake Michigan, Chicago is the third most populous city in the United States, after New York and Los Angeles. The city is a metropolitan hub for finance, telecommunication, technology, commerce and transport. Chicago is home to the largest number of highways in the United States and also houses the second busiest airport in the world; O'Hara International Airport. Whether you are visiting Chicago for business or pleasure, you can expect to find world class facilities available; including some of the best Halal restaurants, attractions and shopping.   The Muslim Community Chicago has quite a large and active Muslim population, mostly consisting of immigrants from Asia and the Middle East. It is also home to a large number of African-American Muslims. Most of the Muslim neighborhoods are located in the southern part of the city and are home to many Muslim owned businesses, restaurants and mosques. Muslims visiting this part of America need not worry about finding Halal facilities when visiting; as there are many Halal restaurants and mosques spread around Chicago. Things to See in Chicago The city of Chicago has much to offer its visitors, with its many famous museums, parks and cultural attractions. Downtown Chicago also includes The Loop, which is the central business district of Chicago that is home to the city's commercial core, city hall and some famous landmarks and attractions such as; Willis Tower, Buckingham Fountain, the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago Cultural Centre and Grant Park. The Willis Tower, formerly known as Sears Tower, is a popular tourist attraction as it is the tallest building in the western hemisphere. The building houses the Skydeck on the 103rd floor, which is an observation deck that offers visitors a bird’s eye view of the city's many landmarks and the surrounding areas. The observation deck includes an enclosed glass balcony that extends 10 feet out on the side of the building where tourists can look straight down.   Navy Pier is also popular among tourists as it is a city within a city, spread across prime lakefront territory with shops, restaurants, parks, gardens and museums. Not to be missed is a ride on the 150 foot Ferris wheel, which is the most visited landmark in the Midwest. During summer, visitors can catch a fireworks display twice a week at Navy Pier. Chicago is home to many parks and gardens, Lincoln Park is one of the popular parks among tourists as it houses the Lincoln Park Zoo. Chicago is also home to Millennium Park which houses the popular Cloud Gate sculpture and an ice rink during winter. The city has many top class museums that tourists might enjoy visiting. Field museum of Natural History, Museum Campus, National Museum of Mexican Art and Museum of Science and Industry are some of Chicago’s better known museums. Shedd Aquarium is another popular attraction among tourists as it is one of the largest indoor aquariums in the world and guests can explore 80 habitats with over 1500 species of sea creatures. The aquarium is the ideal place to spend a day out with the family. Another great attraction to visit with the family is the Adler Planetarium. Not to be missed is the Magnificent Mile, where visitors can enjoy a mile of architecture, shopping and restaurants, starting at Michigan Avenue and ending at Oak Street.   Halal Restaurants in Chicago The city of Chicago has many Muslim-friendly facilities; including Halal restaurants and prayer facilities, due to its large Muslim population. With an array of diverse cuisines served in its many Halal restaurants, Muslim visitors will have no problem finding Halal food in Chicago. Chapati Grill and Pita Belly are restaurants serving Mediterranean cuisine, while I Dream of Falafel serves Middle Eastern food. Mughal India serves authentic Indian dishes, Nini’s Deli and Wing Bros serve fusion food and Kan Zaman serves Lebanese cuisine. These are just a few of the several Halal restaurants that Muslim travelers could dine at. These restaurants usually have a Halal sign displayed in the restaurant however it is best to confirm its Halal status before dining. Devon Avenue is the best area to find Muslim-friendly food. The Muslim community of metropolitan Chicago reflects the ethnic diversity of global Islam, with Arabs, Asians, and African-Americans all being part of the same community. Mosques in Chicago With nearly 70 masjids dotting the city, Muslims will not find it difficult to locate a mosque to offer prayers in. The Downtown Islamic Center, The Chicago Islamic Center, Masjid Al-Noor, Al-Madina Islamic Center, Jame Masjid, Masjid Al-Farooq and Masjid Rahmat are just a few of the many mosques in Chicago.     Chicago, with its large Muslim community, many Halal restaurants, mosques and tourist attractions, is the perfect destination for Muslim travelers. It is one of the most popular Muslim-friendly cities in the United States and therefore is definitely a must-visit. So here’s your chance to make plans for your next family holiday. You won’t be disappointed!   Click here for a Muslim-friendly city guide to Chicago   ...



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