Ever thought of a vacation to picturesque Oman? Then you must stop at Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque set in a gorgeous backdrop of extensive gardens and brilliant lightings. The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque architecture is a perfect example of a blend of different styles and is a symbol of harmony of various traditions in the Omani society.
Conveniently located in the heart of the city, you can reach it in 20 min from the airport. Renowned for its largest crystal chandelier and magnificent classical prayer carpet, it creates an everlasting impression on every tourist to Oman. Here are 7 interesting facts on Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque Oman that will make your visit worthwhile.
The Grand Mosque Muscat, built on a site of 416,000 sqm, was opened in 2001 to celebrate 30 years of Sultan Qaboos Bin Said’s reign. The Sultan Qaboos Mosque consists of four sections: the main prayer hall, a women’s hall, a library, and a lecture theater. The five minarets represent the five pillars of Islam. The main minaret is 91.5 meters tall and the others reach up to 45 meters.
An exquisite pattern of mosaic works greets you at the entrance and leads you to the graceful arches built in brilliant colored sandstone. It has a central dome which rises 50 meters above the floor. The archways and the wooden ceilings reveal medieval Islamic geometric designs and arabesque.
The prayer hall is square-shaped and is large enough to hold over 6,500 people. Altogether it has a total capacity of up to 20,000 worshipers, which includes the women’s musalla and additional space in the interior courtyard and the passageways.
The top of the mosque and the internal courtyard is linked with a bar. It is inscribed with verses from the Holy Quran in Thuluth script, a variety of Islamic calligraphy. If you look keenly on the front walls of the corridor, you can make out the names of Allah written in the Diwani script, which is a calligraphic script in Arabic.
The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque Chandelier is the second-largest chandelier in the world. More than 600,000 shining bright Swarovski crystals would shimmer at you once you enter the men’s hall. The gigantic chandelier measures 14 m and weighs 8.5 tons and has a 24-carat gold plating.
It has a diameter of 8 m and 1,122 halogen lamps are operated through 36 switching circuits inside. It took more than four years to complete this immense work. Smaller chandeliers of the same design are hung in other parts of the grand mosque.
The fascinating rug is woven in an intricate pattern of 28 colors of altering shades from natural dyes. It is the second-largest single-piece carpet in the world and takes in antique Persian designs from Tabriz, Kashan, and Isfahan.
Touch and feel this fine hand-woven carpet in Sultan Qaboos Mosque which weighs 21 tonnes and covers the 4,343 sqm area of the prayer hall. It took 600 weavers to finish this exquisite work with 1,700 million knots in 27 months.
The Sultan Qaboos Mosque interiors are covered with white and dark grey marble and adorned with murals of leafy patterns and geometrical designs. The four pillars in the main hall support the internal dome.
The dome is embellished with spherical triangles, pointed arches, and porcelain panels. The doors are decorated with Islamic calligraphic writings from the Holy Quran and some doors have colorful stained-glass panels.
Do you love books? Glance through an impressive collection of 20,000 books in the vast mosque library. It is considered a cultural landmark of the Omani Renaissance. The collection includes reference volumes in science, Islamic culture, and humanity.
Moreover, there is an Institute of Islamic Sciences and a conference hall that can accommodate 300 people. The library is open from 9 am to 2 am and 4 pm to 9 pm from Saturday to Wednesday, except on Thursday, when it is open in the morning hours only.
The Oman Grand Mosque is the only mosque that is open to all visitors in Oman. Non-Muslim visitors are also allowed here. The visiting hours are from 8 am to 11 am from Saturday to Thursday. There is no entry fee for visitors.
And what to wear when you visit Qaboos Grand Mosque? Keep in mind to dress modestly. Men and women must wear long trousers, and women must cover shoulders and hair. Children under ten are not permitted into the prayer halls, and the use of cell phones is not encouraged.
So, don’t miss this grand architecture during your visit to Oman. Remember to return at sunset or at night to take amazing photographs to mark your amazing tour to the land of Sindbad!
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Also, visit Royal Opera House Muscat, Oman Natural History Museum and National Museum of Oman during your visit to Oman.
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Sultanate of Oman
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