MAKKAH — The Museum of the Two Holy Mosques will open for the Umrah pilgrims and visitors from Oct. 18 (Rabi Al-Awwal 1) after a hiatus of more than six months.
The Haramain Museum, which is known as Exhibition of the Two Holy Mosques Architecture, was closed in March this year following the suspension of the Umrah pilgrimage and visit to the Two Holy Mosques as part of precautionary measures and preventive protocols to stem the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
The gradual resumption of Umrah service and visit to the Holy Mosques effective from Oct. 4 facilitated the reopening of the museum, which was established by the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques.
Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, head of the presidency, has issued directive to reopen the museum as part of the gradual reopening all other external facilities and institutions run by the presidency, according to a report carried by Al-Arabiya.net.
The museum, which highlights the cultural and historical dimension of the Two Holy Mosques, is unique in its character in the entire Islamic world as it showcases relics from the Grand Mosque in Makkah and the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah that are preserved since several centuries.
The museum was inaugurated by the late Emir of Makkah Prince Abdul Majeed on 25 Shawwal 1420. The museum extends over 1,200 square meters and its exterior design is in harmony with the unique Islamic decoration of the Holy Mosque. It is located next to the Kaaba Kiswa Factory in Umm Al-Jood neighborhood of Makkah.
The exhibits in the museum include pillars, marble insignia, and historical photos. There are two standout items: the ornate teak wooden stairwell on wheels, which dates back 1824 and was used to access the Kaaba, and a historic pair of the Kaaba’s spectacular giant gilded metal doors.
There are also inscriptions from the Two Holy Mosques, rare collections of ancient photographs of the two Holy Mosques, a collection of abstracts, manuscripts and rare copies of the Holy Qur’an.
The museum is divided into seven halls, starting with the entrance hall, where the visitors are received and that features old and recent pictures, as well as a small-scale model of the Grand Mosque; the Hall of the Grand Mosque, which contains the Kaaba ladder, which is made of teak, and contains a compartment that covers Maqam Ibrahim; the Hall of the Kaaba, which contains the maze of the Kaaba, which is made of wood and decorated from the outside with gold, and padded from the inside, as well as a teak pillar of the Kaaba, and the door of the Kaaba, which was ordered by King Abdul Aziz in 1363.
The fourth section is the photo hall, which contains a collection of the most important old and rare pictures of Makkah and Madinah, which dates back to 1299, apart from the manuscript hall, which showcases a collection of manuscripts and rare copies of the Qur’an, including a photocopy of the Holy Book, written during the reign of Caliph Othman Bin Affan.
The Hall of the Prophet’s Mosque contains one of the main doors of the Prophet’s Mosque, which was part of the first expansion in 1373H, and the main minaret of the Prophet’s Mosque, dating back to 1589 while the Zamzam Hall contains the Zamzam well, including the ring and lid and the water lifting wheel, dating from the late 14th century H.
It also showcased the old railing of the Zamzam well with a copper pail, dating back to 1882, used to draw water. The idea of the museum emanated from the need to preserve the invaluable Islamic artifacts from the Two Holy Mosques. The great expansions that took place in the two Holy Mosques through the ages led to the presence of these artifacts, inscriptions and architectural pieces.
The Presidency determined that it is necessary to establish a museum that includes these acquisitions. The exhibition is an Islamic masterpiece, which is keen to visit various people from inside and outside the Kingdom.
The museum aims at educating the generations and introducing them to the history of the great Islamic era, based on the great interest witnessed by the two Holy Mosques.
Saudi Gazette report