Middle East’s first traditional Hindu stone temple, located in Abu Dhabi, is set to be inaugurated by the gracious hands of Narendra Modi. The new BAPS Hindu Temple is a strong testament to fostering cultural harmony between two civilizations. Moreover, the structure has become a symbol of friendship for the two nations, India and the UAE. The inaugural ceremony of the Abu Dhabi Hindu temple — emphasizing the values of peace, tolerance and respect— is named the ‘Festival of Harmony.’


The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, will officially open the doors of the temple on February 14, in the presence of Sheikh Mohamed, Mahant Swami Maharaj, and prestigious gatherings. The invitation was sent to PM Modi by Pujya Swami Ishwarcharandas, a leader of BAPS. On this grand inauguration ceremony, there will be traditional rituals, prayers, performances, and speeches — that will echo the bond of the two nations.

History and Significance of BAPS Hindu Temple


Swami Maharaj, a spiritual and religious leader from the BAPS organization, seeded the idea of establishing a Hindu temple in the UAE’s capital almost three decades ago. In 2015, Narendra Modi was invited for the UAE visit. On the official tour, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, gifted a 27-acre land in Abu Mureikhah, next to Al Rahba. Two years later, PM Modi visited again to lay the foundation stone of this ambitious temple. They signed the Memorandum of Understanding, which solidified the unity and served as the groundwork for the beginning of the temple project. The construction initiated in 2019, with a whopping budget of 700 crores. Today, as the completion is near, one can see that the temple’s design isn’t merely aesthetically pleasing; it’s deeply symbolic, creating a bridge for interfaith prosperity.

BAPS Hindu Temple Abu Dhabi Design and Construction Facts

  • The blueprint of the temple is made by RSP Architects Planners & Engineers Private Limited and Capital Engineering Consultants. Its design is highly inspired and influenced by Hindu scriptures.
  • Touted as one of the largest Hindu temples outside India, this is an excellent achievement on the grounds of religious harmony and engineering eminence.
  • The BAPS Hindu Temple in Abu Dhabi is 108 feet tall, 262 feet long, and 180 feet high,. It is constructed using 40,000 m3 of marble, 180,000 m3 of sandstone, and over 1.8 million bricks. This beautiful temple is erected with an effort of 400,000 man-hours.
  • The entire assembly is done without any steel or concrete.
  • With a resplendent facade made out of pink sandstone and meticulously carved white marble, the temple showcases fine craftsmanship and architectural excellence. The structure is built by skilled artisans who are inhabitants of Rajasthan and Gujarat, two western states in India.
  • Lifelike statues and effigies are sculpted and chiseled on the front, walls, and pillars, creating an impressive surrounding. Delicate floral and geometric patterns adorn the walls and ceilings, each motif imbued with symbolic meaning.
  • Interestingly, the temple blends India’s heritage with the UAE’s culture. The structure has seven shikars (spires) that represent the seven emirates of the UAE.
  • There are two ghumats (domes); the Dome of Harmony culminates the five natural elements: earth, water, air, fire and space.
  • The use of modern construction techniques and sustainable materials ensures its longevity and environmental consciousness.
  • It also employs state-of-the-art technology, using the latest sensors, providing crucial data on earthquake, temperature, and pressure, making it resistant to calamities.

Inside the Abu Dhabi Temple

The temple is home to various gods and goddesses. You can visit the shrine to admire the architecture, pray to deities and bow down. You can meditate and chant in the prayer room.

The temple complex not only houses the main shrine but also features educational and cultural facilities, aiming to spread a vast knowledge on Hindu religion. It includes a library and a community center, with a capacity of 5,000 people. The complex also features a large amphitheater and a gallery for deeper awareness. Families with kids can visit the playground, unwind in a lush garden and savor delicious snacks at the food court.

What is the BAPS Organisation?


The Abu Dhabi Hindu temple is built by BAPS (Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha), a holy community that worships its founder, Swami Narayan. Claimed to be an avatar of Lord Vishnu, his life dates back to the late 1700s. There are 3850 BAPS centers all over the world, sharing their spiritual beliefs rooted in Vedas. BAPS was officially established in 1907 by Shastriji Maharaj. To date, they have built around 1,100 Hindu temples worldwide, including Akshardham Mahamandir in New Jersey and Delhi.

Days after the consecration of the much-anticipated Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, PM Modi is ready to inaugurate another colossal temple. Numerous Indian celebrities and diplomats have already paid a visit to this divine temple in May 2023 and were stunned by its architecture. Get ready to be part of a historic chapter.

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Image Credit: facebook.com/AbuDhabiMandir

Intrigued by the breathtaking beauty and unbelievable diversity around the world, Shambhavi has taken the agenda of inspiring travellers to embark on their new journeys with passion and information. She has a pen in one hand and a camera in the other. She is a food-enamoured introvert who is fond of plants, reads fiction and taps feet to Bollywood music.

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