Grand Friday Mosque, Malé

Orchid Magu, Malé, Malediven
+960 302-0200

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### Exploring the Grand Friday Mosque: A Glimpse into Malé's Rich History and Architecture If you find yourself in the vibrant city of Malé, the capital of the Maldives, a visit to the Grand Friday Mosque is an absolute must. Also known as the Malé Hukuru Miskiy or the Old Friday Mosque, this architectural gem is not only one of the oldest mosques in the city but also holds immense historical and cultural significance. ### A Historical Marvel Built in 1656 during the reign of Ibrahim Iskandar I, the Grand Friday Mosque stands as a testament to the rich Islamic heritage of the Maldives. It was constructed over an earlier mosque built in 1153 by the first Muslim Sultan of Maldives, Dhovemi. The mosque underwent several renovations and additions over the years, with the most notable being the construction of a minaret and a gate by Ibrahim I after his Hajj pilgrimage in 1668. ### Architectural Marvels The Grand Friday Mosque showcases the unique sea-culture architecture of the Maldives. Made primarily of coral boulders of the genus Porites, which are abundant in the archipelago, the mosque's construction is a marvel in itself. The coral, when dry, forms sturdy building blocks, making the mosque not only visually stunning but also structurally sound. As you step inside the mosque, you'll be greeted by intricate carvings and inscriptions in Quranic script. The prayer halls are surrounded by antechambers on three sides, and the vaulted ceiling is adorned with indented steps, adding to the mosque's grandeur. The woodwork, roof, and interior were crafted by local master carpenters, showcasing traditional Maldivian woodcarving and lacquerwork. ### Historical Significance The Grand Friday Mosque holds immense historical significance for the Maldivian people. It is believed to be the oldest mosque in the Maldives and played a crucial role in the spread of Islam in the archipelago. The mosque is also home to the tomb of Abu al-Barakat Yusuf al-Barbari, a Sunni Muslim visitor who introduced Islam to the Maldives in 1153 AD. This tomb, known as the Medhu Ziyaaraiy, is located opposite the mosque and adds to the historical charm of the area. ### When to Visit The Grand Friday Mosque is open to visitors throughout the year, but it's important to note that it is an active place of worship. As a sign of respect, visitors are advised to dress modestly and remove their shoes before entering the mosque. It's also recommended to visit during non-prayer times to fully appreciate the architectural beauty and tranquility of the surroundings. ### Nearby Attractions While exploring the Grand Friday Mosque, take the opportunity to visit other nearby attractions in Malé. The Muliaage, the former presidential palace, is just a stone's throw away and offers a glimpse into the country's political history. The bustling local market, known as the Malé Fish Market, is also worth a visit to experience the vibrant atmosphere and sample fresh seafood. ### In Conclusion A visit to the Grand Friday Mosque in Malé is a journey through time, offering a glimpse into the rich history and architectural wonders of the Maldives. From its coral construction to its intricate carvings, every aspect of the mosque tells a story. So, make sure to include this cultural gem in your itinerary when exploring the beautiful city of Malé.

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