UAE Pavilion at Al Janadriyah Festival Attracts Saudi Audience
The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) is presenting a UAE Pavilion at the current edition of Saudi Arabia’s Al Janadriyah Festival for Heritage & Culture, taking place in Riyadh until 9th January. This 33rd edition of the festival, with a theme of “faithfulness and loyalty”, boasts participation from both public and private entities.
The UAE Pavilion has attracted attention from visitors since the festival started on 20 December, with the displays and activities aiming to showcase the country’s rich heritage as a major component of the national identity. The pavilion also serves to promote Abu Dhabi as a tourist destination in the Saudi market and attract more Saudi visitors to the UAE capital.
HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary of Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi, stressed that the UAE’s participation is indicative of the country’s openness and its deep connections with other nations, and particularly highlights the cultural bonds between the UAE and Saudi Arabia. He obseved that the vast engagement with the various unique events on offer in the UAE pavilion is due to previous successful participations in the acclaimed festival. HE Ghobash noted as well the impressive collaboration between all participating entities in the pavilion, which collectively works to revive and preserve our heritage, and pass it on to the next generations.
HE Ghobash said: “The Al Janadriyah Festival is an incredible regional platform through which we are able to showcase and celebrate our rich and deep-rooted heritage and history. This is based on the solid ties that link the UAE to the rest of the GCC countries, which are evident in the significant mutual efforts in conjunction with other GCC countries in various fields. The festival also allows the UAE the chance to promote its own unique attractions and facilities in Abu Dhabi, such Louvre Abu Dhabi, Qasr Al Hosn, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Ferrari World, and Yas Waterworld, along with the year-round programme of activities and events organised by DCT Abu Dhabi.”
The Undersecretary expressed his gratitude to the Saudi organising committee, for its organisational and administrative support of the UAE’s participation.
This year, the UAE pavilion offers exceptional interactive activities that aim to introduce participants to the major facets of Emirati heritage, through a design that embodies traditional architectural elements. Visitors can enjoy folk music and dances, as well as a range of diverse cultural activities, including Ayala, Al Harbiya, Al Yola, Al Azi, Al Shila, and poetry nights throughout the festival.
One special activity at the Pavilion is “Celebrating Al Ain”, with a display of traditional architecture and crafts, and experts on hand to explain the crucial role that Al Ain plays in preserving the UAE’s national identity, and provide context for its key historical sites such as forts, tombs, and several oasis locations.
Other aspects of traditional life on show include a spotlight on marine life, through traditional Emirati fishermen singing sea chants and demonstrating their net making skills. The pavilion also presents aspects of Bedouin life, falconry, and folk arts performances, and teaches visitors about the agricultural environment and the irrigation systems used traditionally in the UAE.
The old-style souq in the UAE pavilion is a major stop for festival goers, as it exhibits traditional Emirati handicrafts, as well as handmade products produced by talented Emirati artists and artisans.