The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi Organises tours of Al Jahili Fort
In collaboration with Emirates Heritage Club and Emirates Falconers Club, the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has organised a series of morning and evening tours at Al Jahili Fort in Al Ain during the month of November and December. Al Jahili Fort is one of the largest forts in the UAE and was built in 1891 during the reign of Sheikh Zayed the First, and was completed in 1898 thanks to the political stability the region was enjoying at the end of the 19th Century. Thereafter the residence became a summer residence for the rulers of Al Ain.
Morning tours take place every Sunday from 9am till 11am in the footsteps of Sheikh Zayed the First at the Round Tower and introduces visitors to the history of falaj (water channels) and Al Jahili Fort Mosque on the south side. The tour then leads to the north side of the site to introduce visitors to the history of the four towers and the square fort. From there, the tour continues to the entrance of the square building on the southern wall, where a poem praises the founder of the fort, Sheikh Zayed the First.
The tours also include an explanation of the recent restoration work done at the fort and includes a visit to the fort’s two exhibition halls, one of which is for temporary exhibitions, while the other houses the permanent exhibition celebrating the travels of ‘Mubarak bin London’ (Wilfred Thesiger) who crossed the deserts of the Empty Quarter twice in the 1940’s. The tours end with an educational workshop for visitors.
The evening tour of Al Jahili Fort will be held on 23rd of November and 28th of December from 5pm till 8pm, and will visitors the chance to experience an introductory session of falconry, an important element of Emirati heritage, which has been listed on UNESCO’s Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The tour includes a visit to a traditional Majlis (sitting room for visitors) where guests can sample and enjoy traditional Emirati hospitality.