Visiting the Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi is a great way to spend a few hours in the UAE. The mosque offers free guided tours at set times if you want to learn more during your visit. The tours take 45 minutes long and is more of a narration from one place in the mosque than a walking tour; headphones are provided to hear the guide. The mosque only restricts visits during Friday prayers and has reduced visiting hours during Ramadan.
We visited around 4pm on Friday and there was already a queue of visitors formed to enter. The guards were letting visitors in even though 4:30pm was the official reopening time after Friday prayers. The line was long but only took about 15 minutes to get through the security checkpoint. There is a separate entrance for females, which had no line. After entering the complex, there is another checkpoint to make sure appropriate clothing is worn. This means no shorts for men (capri pants that go below the knee are acceptable according to the pictured sign) and for women basically everything covered up. I was also told people with any tattoos that are visible would also be denied entry to the mosque. There seemed to be a variation of what’s acceptable or not. There is a massive courtyard area before entering the main mosque. At one end of the courtyard is the separate praying hall for females-only which is not connected to the main prayer hall. This is where the scheduled tours start from.
In addition to the female prayer hall, there is the large main prayer hall at the other end of the courtyard (you cannot walk across the courtyard to cut across) so it's a fairly long walk all the way around to the other side. Females are welcome to visit the main hall but the smaller hall is females-only. There are rows of shoe racks where you can leave your shoes before entering the prayer halls. Whether you decide to join one of the tours or just have a look around the grand mosque, it’s definitely worth a visit if you are going to Abu Dhabi. There are no entry fees and tipping is not expected after the free tours provided by the mosque. Below are the visiting hours and tour times from the mosque's main website