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The Founder’s Memorial

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Attractions Details

📌 Address

Abu Dhabi - Al Ras Al Akhdar - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates

Opening Hours

9:00 AM - 10:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

Free

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"Visit The Founder's Memorial in Abu Dhabi just before sunset to enjoy the stunning transition of the artwork 'The Constellation' as it lights up gradually against the dusky sky— a magical sight often missed by early visitors. Also, don't skip the elevated walkway around the back of the memorial; it's a quiet spot that offers a unique perspective of the monument and the cityscape, making it perfect for contemplative moments or photography."

What is The Founder's Memorial?

The Founder's Memorial is a tribute to Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the man who is revered as the founding father of the United Arab Emirates. Nestled in the heart of Abu Dhabi, the capital city, this cultural landmark celebrates the visionary leader's legacy, values, and love for the nation he helped to forge from the Trucial States into a unified, prosperous country. It is a place of reflection, inspiration, and education, shedding light on Sheikh Zayed's monumental impact on his people and the wider world.

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History of The Founder's Memorial

The Founder's Memorial was officially opened to the public in 2018, marking 100 years since the birth of Sheikh Zayed. The centerpiece of the memorial is a monumental artwork titled 'The Constellation', where an abstract portrait of Sheikh Zayed is brought to life through a dynamic three-dimensional installation composed of geometric shapes suspended in the air. This artwork, created by public artist Ralph Helmick, was designed to evoke Sheikh Zayed's enduring presence through an innovative use of form and light.

This initiative to honor Sheikh Zayed was envisioned to provide a permanent space in the UAE where his story and values would continuously educate future generations. The project, closely overseen by the UAE government, involved international artists and designers who collaborated to ensure that the memorial encapsulates the spirit of the leader it is dedicated to.

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Why is The Founder's Memorial Important?

The Founder's Memorial is not just a tourist attraction; it serves as an important symbol of national identity and pride for Emiratis. For visitors, it opens a window to the region's history and the remarkable transformation of a nation under Sheikh Zayed's leadership. By bringing together people from all walks of life, the memorial fosters a deeper understanding of the United Arab Emirates' cultural roots and aspirations, embodying the country's progress, unity, and heritage.

It also holds a powerful educational dimension, with The Welcome Centre offering interactive experiences that delve into Sheikh Zayed's life, his commitment to environmental stewardship, and his diplomatic efforts that placed the UAE on the global stage. Thereby, the memorial transcends mere aesthetics, becoming a source of inspiration and a repository of the principles and vision that sculpted the modern UAE.

Things to Do & See at The Founder's Memorial

'The Constellation', the awe-inspiring centerpiece, is a sight to behold, especially when illuminated at night, revealing the portrait of Sheikh Zayed through a constellation of lights against the canvas of the night sky. Surrounding this masterwork is a beautifully landscaped garden that features plants native to the Arabian Peninsula—a testament to Sheikh Zayed's environmental philosophy—and offers a serene environment for contemplation.

At The Welcome Centre, visitors can immerse themselves in a series of personal encounters with Sheikh Zayed's life and values. Exhibits include photos, personal stories, and multimedia presentations, providing an intimate portrayal of the leader's journey. Outside, guests can stroll along the Heritage Garden, or, if you happen to visit during the right season, participate in one of the cultural events or public programs that often take place onsite, connecting the memorial's significance to contemporary cultural practices.

I recommend timing your visit to coincide with sunset, as the transition of light around 'The Constellation' adds a dramatic effect to the installation, enhancing the poetic experience of Sheikh Zayed's enduring influence. Whether you're a history buff, art lover, or simply looking for a tranquil spot to pause and reflect, The Founder's Memorial offers a profound experience that resonates with diverse interests and backgrounds.

Frequently asked questions

What is The Founder's Memorial?

The Founder's Memorial is a landmark tribute to Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the United Arab Emirates, showcasing his legacy and promoting the values he exemplified during his lifetime.

Where is The Founder's Memorial located?

The Founder's Memorial is located in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates.

What are the main features of The Founder's Memorial?

The main features of The Founder's Memorial include a monumental artwork known as 'The Constellation', lush gardens, an informative Visitor's Centre, and public spaces that host various cultural events.

Is there an entrance fee for The Founder's Memorial?

No, entry to The Founder's Memorial is usually free of charge, allowing visitors from all walks of life to come and pay their respects.

What are the opening hours of The Founder's Memorial?

The Founder's Memorial is open daily, but the opening hours may vary. It is recommended to check the official website or contact the Memorial for up-to-date opening hours before planning your visit.

Attractions Details

📌 Address

Abu Dhabi - Al Ras Al Akhdar - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates

Opening Hours

9:00 AM - 10:00 PM

💸 Entrance Fee

Free

Find it on google maps