Hala Sultan Tekke Mosque

Hala Sultan Tekki-Larnaka
Hala Sultan Tekki-Larnaka (Enlarge)

This historic mosque is located 3 kilometers west of Larnaka on the road to Kiti, on the main Salt Lake. After the Arab armies successfully landed in Larnaka in 648AD, the nurse and aunt of Muhammad - Umm Haram - died at the site when she fell off her mule. Grand Khalif Moavia, who was taking part in the expedition, immediately ordered the construction of a mosque on the spot. The mosque was first renovated in 1816, and most recently in 2002 by UNOPS (United Nations Office for Project Services), when archaeological excavations also revealed that the site has been inhabited since Neolithic times, with some archaeologists believing that the tomb is a monumental monolithic tomb of the prehistoric period. Today, the mosque is the main Muslim pilgrimage site of Cyprus. The excavated tomb and sarcophagus of Hala Sultan (Umm Haram), meaning 'Great Mother' in Turkish, is found left of the entrance, in what feels like a cave.

Palaepafos Aphrodite birthplace temple
Palaepafos Aphrodite birthplace temple (Enlarge)

Palaepafos Aphrodite birthplace temple omphalos stone
Palaepafos Aphrodite birthplace temple omphalos stone (Enlarge)
Martin Gray is a cultural anthropologist, writer and photographer specializing in the study of pilgrimage traditions and sacred sites around the world. During a 40 year period he has visited more than 2000 pilgrimage places in 165 countries. The World Pilgrimage Guide at sacredsites.com is the most comprehensive source of information on this subject.

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Hala Sultan Tekke Mosque, Cyprus