Open Hours: The golden domed structure encasing the Sacred Rock has special significance, in that it is the place where Abraham was about to sacrifice his son and from where the Muslim prophet Mohammed ascended to heaven. It is a unique and beautiful artistic piece of Islamic architecture built by Abd el-Malek in 691. It was converted to a church during the Crusader period. Downstairs is the wells of souls, a place where Abraham, David, Solomon, and Jesus were said to have prayed. Please check regarding access and visiting policies.
The golden domed structure encasing the Sacred Rock has special significance, in that it is the place where Abraham was about ... More
Dome of the Rock
The golden domed structure encasing the Sacred Rock has special significance, in that it is the place where Abraham was about to sacrifice his son and from where the Muslim prophet Mohammed ascended to heaven. It is a unique and beautiful artistic piece of Islamic architecture built by Abd el-Malek in 691. It was converted to a church during the Crusader period. Downstairs is the wells of souls, a place where Abraham, David, Solomon, and Jesus were said to have prayed. Please check regarding access and visiting policies.
The Temple Mount is not always open to non-Muslims. If you want to see it do not put it off til the end of your visit. At your first opportunity check to see if it is open to visitors. Keep in mind, the Muslims do not go onto Daylight Savings Time, and the Jews do. My father almost missed his opportunity because of the time difference.
I thought I had a good idea of what to expect but I was totally surprised when I was able to actually tour the site. The Temple Mount is much, much larger than I thought with beautiful stands of trees, tiled areas, large courtyards and magnificent views.
I love the arcitechure of the building. Just learning about the history and looking at the building first hand is amazing. Its jaw dropping beauty isn't all that makes this place exciting. But the history of how it was built around the cave where the prophet Muhammed asended to the heavens.
A visit inside the Dome of the Rock this year, 2007, for non Muslims is very rare. I was able to obtain rare permission from the authorities who regulate the activities at the Dome to photograph inside without restrictions for about an hour for a publication.
The Dome is not a mosque as many people think. Rather it is a shrine that houses the rock from which allegedly Muhammad ascended into heaven to meet with Allah. Today as a shrine it is used by Muslims to study the Quran and while photographing there, there were many Muslim families studying together throughout the structure.
Essentially unchanged for more than 13 centuries, the Dome of the Rock remains one of the world's most beautiful and enduring architectural treasures.
The Rock (stone) located inside the Dome is hard to see and is surroounded by a wooden fence of sorts to keep people from whittling off parts of the rock as souvenirs. The stone interestingly enough is not solid, beneath it lies a cave that I photographed and well know as the "the well of souls." East of the exposed rock is a tall cupboard where it is believed hairs from the beard of Muhammad are contained.
The Dome itself is not made of gold, but aluminum with gold plating and is nearly 80 feet across (20+ meters).
If you ever get a chance to enter and visit the Dome, please do so, but remember it is a holy place for the three monothestic religions, Islam, Christanity, and Judiasm and as such follow the local rules and regulations by respecting the rights of others with differing religions who may be present. Don't take any religious literature in with you and try not to use any flash photography inside. It is very dark however.
You need to request permission to enter a long time in advance...took me 8 months for permission to photograph inside.
If you are an architecture student, then the Dome of the Rock is a must for you to visit and see the structural work there. Magnificent.
Good luck and don't miss the Dome of the Rock!
The city has streets so close together.
The walls are surrounding you, with cobblestone walkways going through them.
They have crossover's from building to building.
When I was there last they were a closed shop, type city. Nothing at all was open since the fighting had gotten so bad. Plus it was during Ramadan, thus any Muslim or Palestinian shops were closed due to this time.
So What I disliked this time was the closed walls feeling with nothing happening.
I felt strangely crushed with nowhere to go to.
If you have never been there, picture yourself in between brick type walls (They actually are not brick, they are just rough rocks mortared together) about 6-10 feet apart. Walking down very rough (and smoothed from yrs of many feet, donkeys, horses, wagons, soldiers, and w/e else went down these streets) cobblestones. And I said down, because in many places the walk is down or up, since it is built right over top of hills. And they did not level or fill anywhere in those days.
There were also moments where you could see the leftovers of dead carcasses left on the walkways. One person I asked said they don't worry about the carcasses since the dogs at night will take care of them.
I am not sure why truthfully, but that part with the close walled city atomosphere was a bit unsettleing.
The History of the city is awesome and you can see where the city was, and still can be, very inspiring to see.
I liked the overall visit and knowing that Jesus walked and preached there, and many prophets walked there and preached there. That is quite a thought to walk around and imagine the history of that in itself.
Also you can see the city damage inflicted from old to new. Since there is still to this day parts of the old city left and new as well. The dome sitting on top of the orginal temple mount is still a reminder that there is something very scary yet awesome to come, depending on your beliefs.
It's so beautiful. It gives you a feeling of humbleness and when your actually there, it doesnt feel like its real. Its such a beautiful place thats visited by many different religions around the world. The best feeling is actually going inside and praying in it as well. It is the 3rd Holy Mosque in the Islamic Religion and one of the best sites to see in Jerusalem.
Old Jerusalem is the most beautiful and peaceful place on Earth. The people, the food , the history of it all is overwelming!!!! The view of it all atop Mount Of Olives at night is breathtaking. --but inside the walls of Old Jerusalem is something words cannot describe...If you ever get the chance to go take it.I promise you will never regret it...I only wish Palestine and Isreal could make peace with each other
the writhing around the wall the top of the dome the white smothe rock where Mohommad(PBH)went to hevan.to good for words.....(onec again breaht less)the best time to visit is any time.ooya and for lunch get a shawerma sandwih, srak not bread.
This is a place of magnific architecture, nice gardens shaded by olive trees where families come to enjoy fresh air and children are playing and running.
Non muslim can only get in through the Moor's Gate or possibly the Chain Gate which are on both sides of the West (or Wailing) Wall. You should not carry any religious item.
The access is difficult because the (occupation/security) police and the religious authorities seem to decide randomly when you can get in. Therefore, you may have to make several attempt before you manage to go there.
You have to take off your shoes because it's a holy place. It's really beautiful inside, and there is a place where you can put hour hand inside and touch the rock where Mohammed ascended into heaven. Cool! We had an Arab tour guide who showed us lots of interesting things. He even brought us to a healer because my brother's knee was hurting.
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