The Noble Sanctuary/Al-Haram Al-Sharif

Max and I were VERY fortunate to be able to visit Al-Haram Al-Sharif, or as many non-muslims call it, the Temple Mount.  The entire complex contains Al-Aqsa mosque, the Dome of the Rock, El-Marwani Mosque and other madrasas, libraries, and museuems.  Iconicaly associated with Islam because of the golden dome, the compound has a past that makes it holy to Christians and Jews as well.  Both the first and second temples were built in this space and the Holy of Holies is said to be directly at the center of the Dome of the Rock.  This central space is called "The Well of Souls" by Muslims.   In fact, that picture of us in front of a rock?  It is the "foundation stone" as the Jews know it in the Well of Souls and directly where the Holy of Holies is said to have been.  Can you see why things are complicated here?     

The pictures above are of the Dome of the Rock and the pictures below are of Al Aqsa Mosque.  They are not open to the public, but, like I said, we were VERY fortunate to be able to tour the inside of all of these beautiful buildings.  The Al-Aqsa Mosque is the holiest sight for Muslims outside of Saudi Arabia (Mecca and Medina) and it is mentioned in the Koran.  It is the sight of Muhammad's night journey into the heavens.       
Lastly, we were able to see the enormous Al-Marwani mosque, formerly thought to be the place where Soloman housed his horses. 


  1. What great pictures! I would almost give my right arm to be over there with my camera next to you. And, I think the head scarf really suits you :)

  2. Lucky!

    Beautiful photos--it's a shame that these buildings are so hard to visit these days. Glad you guys were able to pull it off. You must have some serious كوسة.


  3. Amazing photography, Brooke (and Max)! Wow! And what a rare privilege! Can't wait to see you guys in six weeks. Love, Dan.

  4. What beautiful pictures! Most of the time pictures of the interiors come out so dark you cannot see the beautiful colors. I envy you. I am Muslim and live less than 10 miles away form the old city, but it has been years since I have been able to make it there.

  5. I'm guessing that Arabic is "Wusta"? Well, we're working on it Spencer :)

    I'm glad, in at least a little way, to be able and 'bring it to you' alajnabiya.