If you would like to visit one of popular and historical buildings of Afghanistan, you will find a nice and historical building suggestion here. Green Mosque is one of popular buildings of the country which is visited by foreign and local tourists everyday. This is not only mosque though, it is also the shrine of Khwaja Abu Nasr Parsa.
History of Green Mosque
Mosque has built in the beginning 1400s and shrine has built in the last years of 1500s. Khwaja Abu Nasr Parsa was the leader of the largest Sunni order which is called as Naqshbandi. It is said Timurid Sultan, Husayn Bayqara Mirza was also one of his followers. At the end of 16th century, Khwaja Abu Nasr Parsa dead in the Balkh. Sultan had deep sorrow when he died and he wanted to build a remarkable resting place for Khwaja Abu Nasr Parsa in the mosque. He ordered his builders to re-build the mosque and build a shrine with ceramics for the name of Naqshbandi leader. Despite of damaged at recent wars of Afghanistan in last 2 centuries, the mosque and shrine is standing in the heart of Balkh at the moment.
Architecture of Green Mosque
Each Turk-Islam countries which are existed in history have different architectural mentalities for mosques. Current looking of Green Mosque is cleanly shows every specialties of Timurids architecture. This is a good example of their heritage.
The mosque has a dome located at the mosque. There are multiple windows located in the shrine side of the building. Capacity of the building is not much when it is compared with big mosques but it needed too much efforts because of ceramic design.
Location and Travel
Both buildings; shrine and mosque is located in the city center where is near of the only public park of Balkh, Afghanistan. It is always open to visitors. You will able to see this location if you ever visit the city center.
For travel to Balkh, you can always use airlines to Mazar-e Sharif and get into the Balkh through bus or taxi. Mazar-e Sharif is only 22 kilometers away to Balkh. Since there is not much hotel options in Balkh, you will also want to stay in Mazar-e Sharif in your travel.