Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding

The Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU) is based in the Bastakia Quarter/Al Fahidi area of Dubai and was established with the aim of removing the barriers between people of different nationalities and to raise awareness of the local culture, its traditions, customs and Islam among foreign residents and visitors. They do this by organising numerous tours and activities.

Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding, Jumeirah Mosque Tour
Jumeirah Mosque Tour

Jumeirah Mosque Tours

Jumeirah Mosque is the only Mosque in Dubai open to non-Muslims. Visitors must be accompanied by a SMCCU guide. Tours are every day (except Friday) at 10 am. No booking necessary. Appropriate conservative dress required. The meeting point is outside the Jumeirah Mosque.

Cultural Breakfast

Experience a traditional home made U.A.E breakfast in the ambience of the SMCCU’s centre, a typical wind tower house in the Bastakia quarter. The breakfasts are held on Mondays and Wednesdays at 10 am. Bookings required.

Bastakia Walking Tours

A traditional tour of the historical Bastakia Quarter (Al Fahidi). Bookings are essential.

Cultural Lunch

Enjoy a freshly prepared lunch of local dishes with an explanation of the region’s tradition and culture by a UAE national. Every Sunday and Tuesday at 1 pm. Bookings required.

Spoken Arabic Courses – Gulf Dialect

Arabic language course are held on a rolling basis. Contact the centre for more details.

Nearby Attractions

Tourist attractions and things to do near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:

Nearby Cinemas

Cinemas near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:

Nearby Shopping

Places to shop near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:

  • Al Seef (0.3 miles) - Waterfront development on the Dubai Creek.
  • Spice Souk (0.3 miles) - Market selling herbs and spices
  • Old Souk (0.4 miles) - Traditional market in Bur Dubai
  • Central Mall (0.4 miles) - Shopping mall near Sharaf DG Metro Station.
  • Perfume Souk (0.4 miles) - Offers perfumes and fragrances
  • Gold Souk (0.5 miles) - Large number of shops selling jewellery
  • Al Ain Centre (0.6 miles) - Mall in Bur Dubai
  • Naif Souk (0.6 miles) - Traditional souk in Deira.
  • Al Khaleej Centre (0.6 miles) - Small shopping mall in Bur Dubai.
  • BurJuman (0.8 miles) - Located in Bur Dubai, BurJuman is a classic, family-friendly community mall with an eclectic mix of stores to suit every taste.
  • City Centre Al Shindagha (0.9 miles) - Shopping mall in Al Shindagha. Stores include Carrefour, Babyshop, Max, and Splash.

Nearby Restaurants

Restaurants and places to eat and drink near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:

  • XVA Cafe (0.1 miles) - Courtyard restaurant at the XVA Art Hotel. Peaceful atmosphere. Offers vegetarian Arabic dishes.
  • Arabian Tea House (0.1 miles) - Outdoor cafe in Bur Dubai. Relaxed courtyard setting with tables shaded by canopies. Offers more than 100 varieties of tea from all corners of the globe. Food menu includes Arabic breakfasts, salads, sandwiches, and BBQ dishes.
  • Al Ustad Special Kabab (0.3 miles) - Legendary Iranian restaurant. One of the best budget restaurants in Dubai. Founded in 1978. Aka Special Ostadi Restaurant.
  • Danial Restaurant (0.5 miles) - Buffet restaurant. Good range of dishes. Good value for money.
  • Sind Punjab (0.6 miles) - Hole-in-the-wall restaurant established in 1977. Offers authentic Punjabi cuisine. Great butter chicken. Located in Meena Bazaar.
  • Karachi Darbar (0.6 miles) - Cheap restaurant offering a variety of Pakistani, Indian, and Chinese dishes.
  • Aseelah (0.6 miles) - Arabic restaurant at the Radisson Blu. Licensed. Entertainment and belly dancing.
  • The Pub (0.6 miles) - British-style pub. Cosy interior with wood-panelled walls.
  • Yum! (0.6 miles) - Pan-Asian restaurant with open kitchen. Dishes from Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore etc.
  • Creekside Japanese Restaurant (0.8 miles) - Japanese restaurant at the Sheraton Dubai Creek Hotel and Towers in Deira. Buffet nights feature various Asian cuisines. Terrace offers good views of the Dubai Creek.
  • Doors Freestyle Grill (0.9 miles) - Steakhouse and seafood restaurant at Al Seef. Offers super juicy steaks, lamb chops, and more. Overlooks the Dubai Creek. Unlicensed.
  • Rasoi Ghar (1 miles) - Vegetarian restaurant offering Gujarati and Rajasthani thali. Located opposite BurJuman.

Nearby Hotels

Hotels near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:

  • Arabian Courtyard Hotel & Spa (0.2 miles)
  • Al Seef Heritage Hotel Dubai, Curio Collection by Hilton (0.3 miles)
  • Grand Nova Hotel (0.3 miles)
  • Al Khaleej Grand Hotel (0.3 miles)
  • Best Western Plus Pearl Creek (0.4 miles)
  • Downtown Hotel (0.4 miles)
  • Al Khoory Inn Bur Dubai (0.4 miles)
  • Hyatt Place Dubai Baniyas Square (0.4 miles)
  • York International Hotel (0.4 miles)
  • Carlton Tower Hotel (0.4 miles)
  • OYO 578 Oasis Deira Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Galaxy Plaza Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • White Fort Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • OYO 314 24 Gold Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Phoenicia Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • TANHA HOTEL (0.5 miles)
  • OYO 140 Al Hashemi Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Landmark Plaza Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Holiday Inn Bur Dubai - Embassy District (0.5 miles)
  • Sun and Sands Plaza Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • DreamWhite Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Mount Royal Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Sahar Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Orchid Vue Hotel (0.5 miles)
  • Better Living Hotel Apartments (0.6 miles)
  • Raviz Center Point Hotel (0.6 miles)
  • Central Paris Hotel, Baniyas Square (0.6 miles)
  • Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek (0.6 miles)
  • Gateway Hotel (0.7 miles)
  • Ascot Hotel (0.7 miles)
  • Fal Hotel L.L.C (0.7 miles)
  • New Penninsula Hotel (0.7 miles)
  • Mark Inn Hotel Deira (0.7 miles)
  • Zagy Hotel (0.7 miles)
  • Hyde Park Hotel (0.8 miles)
  • Deema Hotel (0.8 miles)
  • City Seasons Towers Hotel Bur Dubai (0.8 miles)
  • Grayton Hotel (0.8 miles)
  • Park Regis Kris Kin Hotel (0.8 miles)
  • Sheraton Dubai Creek Hotel & Towers (0.8 miles)
  • Grand Square Hotel (0.8 miles)
  • Majestic City Retreat Hotel ( Formerly Majestic Hotel Tower) (0.9 miles)
  • Hampton by Hilton Dubai Al Seef (0.9 miles)
  • Africana Hotel (0.9 miles)
  • Le Wana Hotel (0.9 miles)
  • Royalton Hotel (0.9 miles)
  • Canopy by Hilton Dubai Al Seef (0.9 miles)
  • Jonrad Hotel (0.9 miles)
  • Howard Johnson Bur Dubai (1 miles)

Nearby Metro Stations

Metro Stations near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:

Nearby Transport Links

Transport links near Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding include:


Map showing location of Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding.

Click here for a detailed map showing all points of interest.

Map showing location of Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding


Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding

Al Mussallah Road
Bur Dubai
United Arab Emirates

Visit Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding Website

Photo Credit: Victor Jiang/Shutterstock

Reviews and Additional Information

  1. I would like to enroll for Arabic classes. Kindly provide me with further information.

  2. New rates from SMCCU

    Duration: 90 minutes

    CULTURAL BREAKFAST – AED 120 per person
    Every Monday & Wednesday at 10am

    CULTURAL LUNCH – AED 130 per person
    Every Sunday to Thursday at 1pm – AED 130 per person

    CULTURAL BRUNCH (Morning Fuala) – AED 150 per person
    Every Saturday at 10:30 am

    CULTURAL DINNER – AED 150 per person
    Every Sunday, Tuesday & Thursday at 7pm

    EMIRATI FUALA (Afternoon Tea) – AED 150 per person
    Every Tuesday & Friday at 4:30 pm


    Heritage Tour – AED 100 per person
    Duration: 90 Minutes

    Creekside Tour – AED 315 per person (minimum 5 persons) Prior booking is required
    Duration: 150 Minutes


    Mosque Visit – AED 25 per person
    Daily at 10am (Except Fridays)

  3. This is a great tour where you get to learn a lot about Arab culture. Good explanations were provided and all questions answered.

  4. Just a quick update on the information above on the programmes offered by SMCCU.
    Jumeirah Mosque visit is at 10am every Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. 10 AED pp, no advance booking required.
    Cultural Breakfasts are every Monday and Wednesday at 10am. 60AED pp, advance booking is essential.
    Cultural Lunches are every Sunday and Tuesday at 1pm. 70 AED pp, advance booking is essential.
    Bastakiya Walking Tours are operated on a frequent basis upon demand. Booking is essential. NO NOT SHOW UP WITHOUT A BOOKING as the schedule is subject to change.
    Spoken Arabic Courses are held on a rolling basis. Please contact the centre for more details.
    Please contact or 04-353-6666 for booking information.

  5. Excellent job with the informative images and small descriptions of Islam and Muslims that are placed in several malls around Dubai. This is a tiny mistake in one of the pieces I was reading that might confuse many people so if possible make the change. One of the slabs should say "through the angel Jibrail" rather than "though the angel". I spotted this mistake at festival city shopping mall (near second cup).

  6. The Jumeirah Mosque tour with the Centre for Cultural Understanding costs dhs 10. Don’t forget you’ll have to cover up. You can also just turn up, there’s no need to book.


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