Hey, what’s up? Welcome Back to my New article. Hope all of you Would be fine. In today’s article, we are gonna explore places to visit in Najaf; a holy city for Muslims around the world. Because of the shrine of Imam Ali (AS). Other than that, there is the Kufa Mosque and the world’s largest cemetery.
I’ll try my best to explore all these wonderful places together with you. Another that I’d like to explain is that I am gonna use titles like Imam Ali (AS) and Hazrat Ali (AS) in this article.
Imam Ali (AS) Was in fact a very close companion, cousin, and son-in-law of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). As I said earlier, his shrine is in Najaf which we are gonna visit today. Another important thing is that the Shia Muslims around the world consin him as the 1st Imam. We are heading towards the Kufa Mosque.
Places to visit in Najaf, Iraq
First, of all, you can start your journey almost Fajar (sunrise) time and if you become a Muslim perform your prayers here.
Kufa Mosque; is one of the oldest and holiest mosques of Islam. In fact, this is a much ancient mosque as it was built at the worship place of Prophet Adam (AS). However, it was transformed into a mosque in the 7th century under the rule of Caliph Umer (Ra). It had been visited by many prophets (AS) of the past. Also, the Companions (RA) of the Holy Prophet prayed here. Even Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) prayed here.
So you should try and show each of the important places here. When you will go to this place you can see, what used to be a well. This well is historically significant because it is considered to be the starting point of the great flood of the prophet Noah (AS). And that’s where the flood started to diminish.
It is also believed to be the point where Prophet Noah (AS) built his ark. Without this, it is also believed to be the praying place of Muhammad (Pbuh) on his night’s Journey with Angel Gabriel. In a similar manner as he was taken to Jerusalem.
You can see the remains of a rock and sign telling this history. And you will see here a spot there some lady of people praying. There has a stone that marks it to be the court of Imam Ali (AS). After that, you should visit some other historical spots as this mosque is so rich with historical significance.
There have two points, that’s where Prophet Adam (AS) was blessed with forgiveness after he was expelled from Eden. The other spot that has the name of Angel Gabriel written on a tablet that’s where Angel Gabriel revealed that the 12 Km area of this mosque is declared holy. Let’s get in now.
History of Kufa Mosque
People should know the history of the place when they go to travel. In its continuity, when you go to places to visit in Najaf, you should know the history first.
The masque has a spot where Hazrat Ali (AS) was Martyred. He was hit by a sword while he was kneeling during prayers. Actually, he died from this wound two days later in the house. I’m not sure if you can go there but you can try it. It’s a very small place but out here people can pray. You should like to sit here for some time to pray to Allah and then you will go on.
There are 4 other points that are very important in this mosque. One of them is where the name of Prophet Abraham (AS) but I don’t know the reason. The second one is also in the pavilion and it has the name Hazrat Khizar (AS). then three are two more shrines here: Hani bin Urwah and Muslim bin Aqeel.
The mosque was renovated in 2010. This renovation involved a great deal of restoration work. The Dawoodi Bohra community of India contributed a great deal to this renovation. The tiles that you can see here were brought from India. Besides, the calligraphic artwork in the mosque was also done during that phase.
Imam Ali (AS)House
Let’s now go to the house of Imam Ali (AS). It is pertinent to note that he was the caliph of Islam. He could have lived in a grand palace or any grand building he desired.
In our part of the world Pakistan, India, and Persia you see palaces of great kings wherever you go but the house that we just were really simple. Some rooms are so small that you can just sit there or hardly lay down. So he chose a simple life over one with luxury. And that’s why his name is still alive today in the hearts of millions of Muslims worldwide.
Shrine of Hazrat Ali (AS)
After that, you can go to the shrine of Hazrat Ali (AS) But there has an issue that this whole area is sealed off. Only people who live here or the ones with permission can go there, with their vehicles. And there has another problem for tourists is that they don’t allow cameras, Monocular telescopes, and other electronic devices inside.
Wadi Al-Salam Cemetery
After that you can go to Wadi Al-Salam Cemetery; the largest in the world. It’s been in use for at least the last 1400 years. It has a total area of 1500 acres. Another interesting fact about this cemetery as believed by Shia Muslims that this land was bought by Prophet Abraham (AS) to be used as a graveyard.
As said by Hazarat Ali (As) this land is a part of the heavens. Shia Muslims all over the world desire to get buried here. So that they rise on the day of judgment in the company of their Imam.
During the Iraq war, there were about 200-250 funerals here each day. However, this number decreased after 2010. Other than that, this cemetery has graves of almost 40 thousand Prophets. Before Muslims, this used to be a sacred place for Jews as well.
Amazing History of Najaf city, Iraq
After all, Najaf is a very old city. As a result, you will see more places to visit in Najaf. Muslims used to come here. But it becomes a main Muslim center after the martyrdom of Imam Ali (AS). That’s when Muslims started settling here. The Euphrates used to flow here. Because of the abundance of water, agriculture was the main occupation here. Ibn-e-Batuta speaks highly of Najaf when he came here on his way to Makka for Hajj. It was maintained; there were beautiful houses and rich gardens.
But eventually, the river changed its course and that made the locals of Najaf suffer a lot. Then came the Ottomans the population of Najaf was almost 3000 by then. Besides the drying of the river was also under attack by the Safavid dynasty from Persia and also by nearby tribes. It went on to point out that the population of the city reduced from 3000 to 30.
The Ottomans tried really hard to get the river back and eventually they got successful in 1803. That really caused a population explosion here and now the city has a population of 100 thousand. When the British defeated the Ottomans and captured the city, the scholars of Najaf put up a great fight. As a response, the British cut the water supply and had to accept the defeat. Because It is a river it’s not like Coxe’s Bazar sea beach. It was an opportunity for the British.
Many scholars from Najaf migrated to Qom and it became the scholarly center. That in fact finished the scholarly tradition of this city until 2003. That’s when the Shia came to power and through their efforts, there are many religious universities and institutes are established.
Accommodation options near Najaf:
when you go anywhere for travel at first you have to think about sleep, That is why tourists rely on sleeping bags which they carry in their luggage. But here you do not have to worry. Because there are many hotels in Najaf and these are very standard.
The hotels of Najaf are very much famous for their variety of food and special type of service. we have listed here some standard hotels in Najaf:
- Ribal Hotel
- The White Palace Hotel
- Al Rasheed Hotel
- Al Mansour Milia Hotel
- Coral Boutique Hotel
- AlMasbah Plaza Hotel
- Baghdad Hotel
- Ishtar Hotel
- Palestine Hotel
- Almas Hotel
- Hotel Sadeer Novotel
- what are the best places to visit in Najaf?
we know that Najaf is a most historical place. so naturally, there have many places to visit in Najaf for travelers. from them more important places are Imam Ali Mosque, Great Mosque of Kufa, the Al-Salah Mosque, and the Wadi-us-Salaam.
- Where does Shia go for Hajj?
Some people ask: where go to Sia Muslime for hajj? Shia Muslims think sites associated with Muhammad, his family members (Ahl al-Bayt), Shia Imams, and their family members to be holy. After the four holy cities of Islam (Mecca, Medina, Jerusalem, and Damascus), Karbala, Najaf, and Qom are the most respected by Shias.
- What is Najaf famous for?
An-Najaf is famous as the site of the burial place of Muhammad’s son-in-law and cousin, Imam ‘Alī ibn Abī Tālib. After the four holy cities, The city is a center of pilgrimage throughout the Shi’ite Islamic world.
- Where is Najaf and Karbala?
The holy cities of Najaf and Karbala, that is renowned to Sia Muslims are located deep in the Shia heartland of southern Iraq. Undoubtedly it is the most historic city in the world, especially in Sia Muslim.
Read also: Importance of Visiting Historical Places: 6 Best tips for 2022