My World: Gas Station Mosques (400th Post!)

Today’s post is a celebration of sorts: my 400th post!
There are literally mosques everywhere here in Saudi Arabia. In the cities, every few blocks you will find a mosque. Out in the country in less unpopulated areas, every few miles you’ll be able to locate a mosque. One thing that I have noticed is that many gas stations either have a mosque right in the same plaza or right next door. This makes it very convenient for men on the go and nearby workers to perform the five daily prayers required in Islam. All mosques generally are equipped with a place where wudhu can be performed as well. Wudhu is the ritual of washing up in a very particular manner prior to reciting the prayers. I thought I would share with you the interesting phenomenon of the seeming connection between gas stations and mosques in this post.
The gas station above is bordered on both sides by a mosque. The beautiful towering minaret belongs to a newer mosque than the smaller and much older minaret on the right.
The brand new gas station plaza above is located in a very sparsely populated area along a stretch of highway. The extremely tall and graceful minaret of the mosque in the plaza is visible for miles.
I added an arrow pointer to help you identify the location of the mosque in this busier photo of a gas station with a neighboring mosque.

See more of my previous posts of mosques: What’s Left, Mosque Reflections, Floating Mosque, Island Mosque by the Sea, Al-Anani Mosque at Dusk, Small, Funky Mosques, Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah, and Mosque Shades.

Well, That’s My World for this week! That’s My World! offers a unique glimpse at life all over our planet. Take a peek at other people’s lives from all over the world by visiting That’s My World!

About SusieOfArabia

American woman now living in hubby's homeland of Saudi Arabia
This entry was posted in Architecture, Buildings, Photo, Religion and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to My World: Gas Station Mosques (400th Post!)

  1. Vamsee says:

    That was such an interesting and informative post. I had so idea that they have drive-thru mosques!!

    Thanks a lot for sharing your world and telling us new things.

  2. Jenn says:

    How interesting! I thought at first how strange it was to have a gas station beside a mosque… Congrats on your 400th post!

  3. Grami says:

    I just want to make a point here, you said that most gas stations have a mosque nearby which is true because to my best knowledge this is required by the law in Saudi Arabia, forget safety equipments, forget good services, forget recovery tow trucks, make sure there’s a mosque and a wudhu facility and bang on! Honestly, I don’t mind that, that gives some character to Saudi otherwise bland stations

    • I had no idea that it was actually required by law! Within cities, there are just so many mosques anyway, but I had started to notice the correlation more when we have been outside of town. Thanks for letting me know it wasn’t just my imagination!!!

  4. Karen says:

    Congratulations on your 400th post !!

    Very interesting and informative post.

    It’s kind of interesting that they would put the Mosques near or beside, gas stations ..

  5. Carver says:

    Congrats on 400 posts. That’s a milestone for sure. Love the shots and this was an interesting post. Now that I think of it there are so many different churches on the road near my house that I use to go to gas stations that I can see the steeples from almost all the gas stations. Sort of a similar situation although not the same place of worship. There are a few mosques in my town but not the concentration like there are of the various denominations of Churches.

  6. Judy says:

    Congratulations on the 400th post! This one was very informative.

  7. Fishing Guy says:

    Susie: I see a lot of first on your site but this is outstanding.

  8. Puça says:

    Congratulations for your 400 post!

    Always interesting pictures. So many mosques :0)

  9. Bill B. says:

    What we should do here is put churches next to freeway entrances. They would be full of people praying before entering our dangerous roads.

  10. Thank you to everyone for your comments and congratulatory words!

  11. Arija says:

    Congratulations on you 400th post, quite a lile stone.
    The mosques are a great public service where it is mandatory to pray visibly so many times a day.

  12. ArneA says:

    Congrats on the 400th post

  13. Great post and photos. Thank you for sharing.

  14. ladyfi says:

    Fascinating – I could hardly see the mosque in that last photo!

    And a BIG HUGE congratulations on your 400th post! Wow!

  15. Dina says:

    Congratulations on creating 400 posts, and every one so interesting!
    Gas station mosques! Very practical. I never knew. (That’s why we have you, to open our eyes to this other world.)
    Have fun with the next 400.

  16. Geogypsy says:

    Contrats on you 400th blogoversary! It’s so amazing the lengths gone thru to satisfy the religious need.
    Here we compare the number of churches to bars.

  17. Mel says:

    I forgot – congrats on your 400th post, Susie!!

  18. Mel says:

    A far cry from around here, where I’d have to walk for a bit to find a church…and I have no idea where the nearest mosque or synagogue is (although I found a Jewish community centre on one of my long walks!).

    Speaking of which, reading about the prayer times – they have to improvise a little bit up here because of the long days of the summer (and vice versa) – I thought it was just North of here, but I found out that they have to do that here too! On June 21 (summer solstice, for example), if they followed the 5 prayers exactly, the first one would be at 3:34 am and the last at 11:37…pretty long day :/

  19. Jacob says:

    Congrats on your 400th post!

    So far as the mosques go…glad they’re not here. Do they compete with one another for members? Who pays for their construction and upkeep? Can you attend any mosque that you wish to attend?

    Sorry about all the questions, and you don’t have to answer them, but it is a curious thing.

    • I honestly can’t say whether the mosques compete with one another for members, but I would imagine that maybe they do since they would have to generate some kind of income to keep them running, unless they are funded by the gov’t or privately funded – but I don’t know this. What I have been told though is that many mosques are built by wealthy businessmen, to give back, in a sense. I could probably go to most mosques, but I would have to go to the separate women’s section, if there is one – some mosques do not. Men can go to any mosque they want, unless it’s a private one, like on the royal grounds or within a large wealthy family’s compound, etc.

      • janice says:

        A private mosque on a family compound, wow! If you could only sneak a peak and snap a picture of one of those for us..

        Congrats on your 400th post!

  20. Yoli says:

    This is so fascinating to me.

  21. Jerry M says:

    I guess this is what you get with a religion obsessed country.

  22. Yogi says:

    I find this fascinating on how people integrate their daily life with their spiritual life. The minarets are very unique.

  23. Erin says:

    fascinating phenom…five times a day. indeed that makes for a fractured day i would think. do most attend mosque in the daylight hours rather than in the evening or is there any set schedule for attendance? excuse my ignorance concerning…or is it held at varying hours?

    enjoyed the post and photographs.
    thanks as always for sharing.

    • Some men attend as many times a day as possible. Others men vary, but most try to attend at least the mid-day prayer on Fridays (comparable to church services on Sunday). Everyone prays the five daily prayers, but mostly only men go to the mosques. There has to be a separate place in the mosque for women to pray, and not all of them have it. Some men pray on the sidewalks, others at home.
      The times vary by a few minutes each day, due to the position of the moon. There is an early morning prayer, a mid-day prayer, mid-afternoon, dinner time, and evening. From summer to winter, the prayer times can vary an hour or more. Hope this answered your questions!

  24. SandyCarlson says:

    That is really convenient. It does create an interesting optical illusion!

  25. sylvia says:

    Your post are always so informative and interesting and I have enjoyed learning more about Jeddah! These photos are so great and the link between gas stations and mosques is really interesting! Thanks for sharing! Have a great week!

  26. Guy D says:

    So that is what gas statios look like in your neck of the woods, very cool and thanks for sharing.

    Have a great week
    Regina In Pictures

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