Traditional Handicrafts Festival

Taking place in the emirate’s heritage heartland, the festival features heritage activities and initiatives including a crafts souk with traditional products.

The festival will highlight the importance of traditional craftsmanship in Emirati heritage and support craftsmen’s efforts to preserve, revive, and transfer their skills to future generations. 

A wide variety of heritage and cultural events and activities at the festival include:
- Folkloric Arts
- Heritage & Cultural Competitions
- Falconry
- Artisan Shows including Al Sadu, Al Khos, Al Talli and Henna
- Art Exhibition of Handicrafts
- Popular Souk
- Workshops

In addition, you can enjoy an array of cultural performances such as:
- Al Harbiyah
- Al Ayala 
- Al Yola
- Rababa
- Taghrouda
- Al Shillah 
- Al 'azi

The handicrafts competition includes three categories: palm frond items, Al Sadu weaving and liberal professions. Participants have to be over 15 years old and must present works incorporating materials from the local environment. Entries in the liberal professions category must add a modern touch while preserving traditional identity at the same time. 

The Al Yola dance competition - a traditional Bedouin dance where a dancer performs while constantly spinning and throwing a rifle - is divided into three age groups (15 – 20 years, 10 – 14 years and 5 – 9 years). Specialised judges will evaluate the performance of every participant according to his skills of moving in harmony with the music, controlling and rotating the weapon and controlling its grip.

Making Arabic coffee competition demands that participants adhere to a specified timeframe to make coffee in front of a panel of judges. Participants fall under four categories: 15 – 20, 21 – 50 and over 51 years old men, with a fourth category exclusively for ladies. 

A traditional dishes competition, open to anyone over 15 years old, will make six popular Emirati dishes, one dish for each day of the festival. The dishes are Al Harees, Al Mouhalla, Al Qurs, Al Aseed, Al Blaleet and Al Luqaimat. There will be several cultural competitions in addition to the above. 

Specialised workshops will focus on the early machinery used to turn them into products, the production stages and the marketing methods to present them as traditional goods.

The festival will offer a range of hospitality choices from Arabic Coffee to a variety of dates, sweets and popular dishes.

date and time

Thu, Oct 29, 2015 - Sat, Nov 07, 2015

event location

Al Qattara Oasis, Al Ain


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