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Mashhad & Qom: Iran’s Holy Cities

iPhone Picture – Haram-e Razavi, Imam Reza Holy’s Shrine, Mashhad

Iran is known for its beautiful mosques – some of the largest, oldest and finest in the world. But without any doubt, the largest, and some of the most delicate shrines & mosques can be found in Iran’s two spiritual capitals: Mashhad and Qom. Continue Reading →

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Qom – Iran’s (Second) Vatican

The Fatima Masumeh Shrine in Qom, for Shia Muslims the second most sacred city in Iran after Mashhad - The golden dome lies right above the mausoleum, Qom, Iran

The Fatima Masumeh Shrine in Qom, for Shia Muslims the second most sacred city in Iran after Mashhad – The golden dome lies right above the mausoleum, Qom, Iran

The shrine of Fatima, sister of the 8th Iman, makes Qom the second holiest city in Iran, after Mashhad. This is conservative territory. All our Iranian friends were surprised when they we heard we were going there. This is where Khomeni lived and where the revolution against the Shah began. But we were too curious to leave out such a place and never regretted our decision, we would even claim it was a highlight of our trip. The shrine is huge with lots of different impressive buildings, stunning architecture. Inside pilgrims were milling around, men, women, families. Many of the walls are almost blindingly bright, small pieces of mirror form geometrical mosaics. All we could think off was how long it took to cover such vast spaces with tiny little pieces of glass, besides the word was flawless. Continue Reading →

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