A symbol of Abu Dhabi’s heritage and a component of the Unesco World Heritage Site of Al Ain, Qasr Al Muwaiji is the birthplace of Shaikh Khalifa. Image Credit: TCA Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi: Qasr Al Muwaiji, the birthplace of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, open its doors as a museum on Sunday evening in Al Ain.

Under the patronage of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and following an elaborate conservation process undertaken by the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), the museum will be host to a permanent exhibition which celebrates the President’s life and explores Al Ain’s influence on the culture and history of the UAE.

The historic fort underwent an extensive conservation programme which originally started in the late 1970s. In 2009 the work was extended to include archaeological excavations, preservation measures and restoration interventions.

A component of the Unesco World Heritage Site of Al Ain, the careful restoration has emphasised its original architectural features such as its freestanding minaret.

Qasr Al Mawaiji was home to generations of the Al Nahyan family, and saw the birth of Shaikh Khalifa in 1948. The fort functioned not only as a home and an oasis in the desert but also as a place of rule and a focus for the community.

The exhibition will showcase a variety of historical and traditional stories associated with the venue, including significant moments of Shaikh Khalifa’s life from his early childhood, leadership and vast national achievements.

It will also provide the public with an insight into the chronology of the members of Abu Dhabi’s ruling family associated with Qasr Al Muwaiji and progression of the Al Nahyan Family.

The museum will present the story of the fort from the earliest archaeological traces of life at the oasis through to the present day.

To mark the reopening a programme of interactive activities and performances will be held which will celebrate the overall spirit of the significant cultural site. Visitors will be introduced to the fort, its history and the ongoing rehabilitation and preservation measures.

More information on the museum can be found on qasralmuwaiji.ae