With Eid al-Fitr just around the corner, some of us are bound to experience the Ramadan Blues. To keep the Ramadan related nostalgia at bay, and simultaneously enjoy the much-needed break, here are the five most noteworthy Mosques from around the world that are worth your while.
Masjid al-Haram – Mecca, Saudi Arabia
The holy site synonymous with the pilgrimage of Hajj and Umrah, Masjid al-Haram is undoubtedly the holiest of mosques in Islam. With an impressive expanse of 356,000 Sq. m, the mosque has the capacity to accommodate up to four million worshippers. Considered the most sacred place for Muslims, the Kaaba and the sweeping minarets surrounding it, are sure to awe you this Eid.
The Blue Mosque – Istanbul, Turkey
Arguably Istanbul’s most famous tourist attraction, the Blue Mosque was built between 1609 and 1616 AD. An architectural sight to behold, the Blue Mosque was envisioned by its Patron Sultan Ahmet I of the Ottoman Empire. Featuring six towering minarets, unlike the customary four, the Sultan Ahmed Mosque, as it is also called, has interiors that are adorned with hand-painted blue tiles, which rightfully lends the mosque its name. The mosque is a must visit for those with a keen eye for architectural marvels.
Kul Sharif Mosque – Kazan, Russia
Located in Kazan, a city in southwest Russia, the Kul Sharif Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the whole of Europe. The mosque was destroyed in 1552 and was rebuilt in 2005; giving the mosque its markedly modern charm. The structure is divided into three parts, the mosque area, a memorial stone area, and an administrative wing. The Kul Sharif mosque, as of today, serves predominantly as a museum that houses ancient Islamic artifacts and would be an ideal destination for History buffs.
The Hassan II Mosque – Casablanca, Morocco
One of the largest mosques in Africa, Hassan II mosque, at 21- meters, features the world’s tallest minarets. Located in the idyllic city of Casablanca, Morocco, the Mosque is adorned with painstakingly minute, handcrafted, and breathtaking Arabesque patterns. The décor can be enjoyed by all since it is one of the few mosques in Morocco that permits the entry of non-Muslims as well.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque – Abu Dhabi, UAE
A modern marvel in itself, the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is one of the largest mosques across the globe. It can accommodate a congregation of approximately 40,000 worshippers. Standing tall and proud, the mosque is supported by snow-white marble walls and pillars with colorful in-lay patterns, shimmers with the glow of 24-karat gold and crystal chandeliers, and also sees the spread of the world’s largest hand-woven carpet measuring 5,630 sq. m. The mosque witnesses an impressive footfall of five million visitors a year.