Salahuddin Ayyubi ( In west known as Saladin ) Tomb Situated adjacent to the Umayyad Mosque, the Mausoleum is recognisable by it’s distinctive red dome. The interior is unpretentious and dignified – perfectly appropriate for this man I have learnt so much about.
Born in Tikrit in 1137 Saladin (also known as Salah ad-Din Yusuf) joined the Military aged 15 and eventually established himself as a prominent Military leader and devout Muslim. At the height of his power his Ayyubid Dynasty ruled Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Hejaz and Yemen. His achievements included recapturing Jerusalem from the Knights Templar in 1187. restoring Sunni Muslim in Egypt, and founding Schools and Mosques. By the time he died in 1193 he had gained a reputation through Europe as a great warrior and chivalrous adversary and was revered throughout the Muslim world.
Within the Mausoleum Saladin rests in a carved wooden sarcophagi while an empty white marble sarcophagi sits adjacent. The latter was donated by Emperor Wilhelm II in 1898. The unadorned white walls are partly decorated with 17th century blue and white Damascan tiles.
My first visit was on a busy weekday afternoon and the area was crowded with tour groups. However I was able to visit again the following Saturday morning: it was a lot quieter, the pace was unhurried and the atmosphere was very peaceful. Also, because I had, by then, visited Saladin’s Castle and Krak des Chevaliers and learnt more of his history, the visit was more significant.
Entry to the Mausoleum is included with the s£50 entrance fee for the Umayyad Mosque. Shoes have to be removed before entering, female visitors must cover their hair, and photography is not allowed.