Beautiful mosques to visit post-COVID
Beautiful Mosques: For more than a year, COVID-19 has put all of our travel plans on hold with ongoing travel restrictions and indefinite quarantine periods. Australians are known to be avid travelers, so this has put a damper on our travel spirits with many of us itching to pack our bags and set sail. But with talks of borders opening up and travel bubbles, we have been given glimmers of hope that travel will be back on the agenda soon.
So, what better way to celebrate than by putting together a bucket list of places you want to visit?! Let’s start with the most magnificent mosques that everyone should visit, at least once in their life.
Blue Mosque and Bosphorus in Istanbul
Starting my list is the Blue Mosque in my own hometown, Istanbul. The Blue Mosque is a masterpiece that complements Istanbul’s beautiful skyline and can be seen from all parts of Istanbul – whether you’re cruising the Bosphorus or viewing it from the Galata Tower as seen below.
The Blue Mosque gets its name from the 20,000 blue hand-painted ceramic tiles that line its interior.
Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, Morrocco
This unique mosque is located on Casablanca’s coast. Partially built on land and sea, it towers over the Atlantic Ocean – a sight to see, indeed! Interestingly, it is the second largest functioning mosque in Africa and is the seventh largest in the world. To date, it has the world’s second tallest minaret at 210 metres.
Nasir al-Mulk Mosque, Iran
The Nasir Al Mulk Mosque which is famously known as the “Pink Mosque” is in the picturesque city of Shiraz, Iran. This is definitely a must-see on your tour of visiting the most beautiful mosques in the world. It was built during the Qajar dynasty rule of Iran and is decorated with extensive glasswork which gives it its famous name.
Kul Sharif Mosque, Russia
The Kul Sharif Mosque, at the time of its construction, was the largest mosque in Russia outside of Istanbul, until it was destroyed by Ivan the Terrible during the storming of Kazan in the 16th century. It incorporates elements of early Renaissance and Ottoman architecture which gives it its unique design.
Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba, Spain
Better known by its ecclesiastical name, the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption, the Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba is located in the Spanish region of Andalusia. Although it was originally a 6th century Catholic church, it was later converted into a mosque in the 8th century.
Sheikh Zayed Mosque, Abu Dhabi
Sheikh Zayed Mosque is located in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE. It was constructed between 1996 and 2007 and is one of the most visited mosques during Friday and Eid prayers with over 41,000 visitors. The stunning architecture makes it a must-see!
Al Aqsa Mosque
Located in the Old City of Jerusalem, the Al Aqsa Mosque is the third holiest site in Islam and is also a UNESCO listed site. Al Aqsa Mosque has a special significance for Muslims as it was where the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) ascended into the heavens as part of the miraculous events of Isra’ (the Night Journey) and Mi’raj (Ascension).
Al Nabawi Mosque, Medina, Saudi Arabia
The Al Nabawi mosque is also known as the Prophet’s Mosque as it was built by the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in the city of Medina, Saudi Arabia. It was the third mosque to be built in the history of Islam and is one of the largest in the world. It is considered the second holiest site in Islam. The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is buried underneath the green dome at the center of the mosque.
Last, but definitely not least, is the Masjid al-Haram, which is the holiest of all mosques in the world. It is located in the Makkah Province of Saudi Arabia and is the site of the Hajj pilgrimage, which every Muslim must do at once in their life. The Great Mosque includes other significant sites, including the Black Stone, the Zamzam Well, Maqam Ibrahim, and the hills of Safa and Marwa. The Great Mosque of Mecca is the largest mosque in the world and is also the eighth largest building in the world.