Friday, April 12, 2013

The Bahá'í Gardens and Temple in Haifa

One does not just find Jews, Muslims and Christians living in Israel. Also the followers of the Bahá'í fait have strong historical connections to this this tiny country. But in comparison to Judaism, Christianity and Islam, the center of the Bahá'í is in Haifa, and not in Jerusalem.

Their religious founder, Baha'ullah, was kept for most of his life under house arrest in Acco, just north from Haifa. This took place in the late 1800's, during the reign of the Ottoman Empire.

You can read more about this little-known and 'young-ish' religion at their site.

The Bahá'í gardens and temple in Haifa is probably the most noticeable landmark on Mount Carmel. The striking golden dome and amazing terraced gardens are very hard to miss!

It is a large tourist attraction in this northern city and the vast gardens and temple itself are open free to visitors, every day until 12 am. Guided tours in Russian, Hebrew and English are also given.

The gardens are kept immaculate - not a leaf is out of place.

I have seen this eagle in many tourist brochures about Haifa. I wonder if he enjoys  his view of the harbor?
In the distance, one can just make out the Haifa bay with Acco on the other side.

The gardens are amazing peaceful and calm in this bustling harbor city.

The cooperation between the followers of the Bahá'í faith and the Jewish authorities and government also shows that Israel is not always synonymous with religious tension.

If you plan a visit, do NOT forget your camera. The Bahá'í gardens are incredible beautiful and photo-worthy!

A young visitor running between the arches that surround the temple.

Bahá'í  symbols on one of the doors.

Garden sculpture, Bahá'í style.

Tourists from all over the world sit on these steps and look out over the Haifa harbor

On last peaceful look before returning to the hustle and bustle of life in Israel 

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