Welcome to a quick visual tour of Abu Dhabi. All of the photos below were taken in the course of a two hour bus tour of downtown Abu Dhabi, which is the capital of the seven member confederation, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The citizens of these oil-rich monarchies are incredibly wealthy. Native-born citizens account for only approximately 20% of the Emirates’ populations. The other 80% include full time foreign residents as well as thousands of guest workers, of which the largest ethnic group are from India. The Emirates’ native-born citizens do not do any manual labor jobs. All such work (construction, chauffeurs, cooks, housekeepers, nannies, tailors, salespeople, etc.) is the exclusive domain of the multi-national guest workers.
Susan (and I) were fortunate enough to have had our travel and hotel paid by the 12th Annual Medication Safety conference in Abu Dhabi, where Susan delivered the opening keynote address and two workshops. I provided musical contributions to her presentations which offered a living example of what music does in relieving stress. The three day conference was attended by doctors, nurses, and pharmacists from around the Middle East.
As impressive as Abu Dhabi’s buildings are, believe it or not, neighboring Dubai has even more such impressive buildings! This is why Dubai is often called the “Las Vegas of the Middle East.” Dubai has the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa (shown below after the buildings of Abu Dhabi). I simply didn’t have the opportunity to take a bus tour of Dubai that would have enabled me to take even more impressive architecture photos.
Taken on a previous trip, here is the one photo from Dubai for comparison with Abu Dhabi, of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa:
The following photos are all from Abu Dhabi’s Grand Mosque which can accommodate forty thousand worshippers. Below is the inner courtyard of the Grand Mosque, followed by different views from around the courtyard, followed by several interior photos, and concluding with the world’s largest chandelier.
The following photos are from the “world’s largest chandelier” which is constructed of approximately one hundred thousand Swarovski crystals and other precious stones. The final detailed photo of the bottom section reveals enough detail to discern the many individual stones/jewels that comprise the chandelier.