Given that Dubai is a Muslim country there is more than one mosque around. However, this particular mosque holds tours several days a week in the hope of fostering greater understanding of cultural differences.
Naturally we all have to dress more circumspectly before we are allowed inside – long sleeves and trousers/skirts with the women covering their heads.
We were permitted to take photographs of the inside of the mosque, and it truly is a beautiful place, very ornate and beautifully coloured.
The tour lasted just over an hour and our guide showed us through the process that Muslims have to go through before they pray – washing three times – one arm and hand and then other, one lower leg and foot and then the other, the face, the hair and then washing out the mouth – all three times each to be absolutely certain that they are clean.
Once inside the mosque (having left our shoes outside) he told us more about the Muslim religion and how they pray – we were encouraged to take photographs and ask questions. I actually asked whether it would be rude of me to ask a Muslim woman to lift their face coverings in order to lip read them (otherwise life could be very difficult!). The reply was that the coverings are worn out of personal choice and not any religious demand and so I could indeed ask without fear of offending anyone.
All in all it was quite fascinating and I am glad I went.