The Trip of a Lifetime By: Niamh buckley, professional adventurer

The Western Wall

Day One, July 9th: After a 14 hour flight I finally arrived in Jerusalem, I decided to head to The Western Wall, which is a sacred site to the Jewish religion. When I got there, I saw lots of people praying which some Jewish do daily along with reciting the entire book of Palms. I found lots of interesting facts about this sacred site. This site was built in 19 BC and became open to the public in 20 BC by Herod the Great. The Romans then tore it down in 70 AD but they were able to rebuild it and name it the Western Wall Plaza in 1967.

Tomb of the Virgin Mary

After spending a couple of hours at the Western Wall, I took a 15 minute walk to The Tomb of the Virgin, which is located at the bottom of the Mount of Olives. The tomb is a very sacred site to Christians because it is believed to be where Mary, the mother of Jesus, is said to have been buried here. There's actually some controversy about the belief though, some people believe the Tomb of Mary is in Turkmenistan.

The Hurva Synagogue

Day Two, July 10th: After getting some rest for the night I started off my day by visiting the Hurva Synagogue in the Old City of Jerusalem. This synagogue is a very nice example of the Judaism architecture and it was built during the 1700's. It was then destroyed by Muslims in the 1720's but then in the early 2000's it was rebuilt to its original 19th century glory. The synagogue is still active to this day.

The Al-aqsa Mosque

After visiting the Hurva synagogue I headed to the Al-aqsa Mosque. This is a cool place to see some of the architecture of the Islamic religion. It's also located in the old city of Jerusalem and it was constructed in 710 AD. The original Mosque is no longer around but the latest major build was in 1035.This is a very holy place in Jerusalem and it's always holding large prayers and is typically very crowded.

Mecca City, Saudi Arabia

Day three, July 11th: After a 7 and 1/2 hour flight I made it to Mecca! I got some rest and then headed into the city. This City is the most holy city to the Islam religion. A trip to Mecca may add an "al-Hajji" to your name if you're male and a "Hajjiyah" to your name if you're female. Many Islams try to make a trip to this city at some point in their lives.

Chota Char Dham

Day four, July 12th: After a nice, long nights sleep, I took a 4 and 1/2 hour flight to the Indian Himalayas. The Chota Char Dham is a sacred Hindu Pilgrimage. It has four sites ; Badrinath, Kedarnath, Yamunotri, and Gangotri. I only visited Badrinath due to the fact that they are all on different sides of the country. This is a very sacred pilgrimage and Hindu's even visit all of the sites in a specific order.

Gangotri

Day five, July 13th: After a 12 HOUR car ride I reached Gangotri and boy was I happy to walk around. Gangotri is also one of the Hindu pilgramige sites. It's known as the "Abode of Godess Ganga" and it's located in a town near China. It's the most important temple of river Ganga and many Hindu's travel here to feel close to God.

Kushinagar

Day eight , July 16th: After a 27 hour bus drive from Gangotri I needed a day to take a break from my travels and relax and sleep. Once I felt fully recovered I headed to Kushinagar a sacred site for Buddhists. People of the Buddhist religion try to visit here at least once in their lifetime and Kushinagar is an important pilgrimage site. It's also where they believe Buddha died and was cremated.

Lumbini

Day nine, July 17th: I headed from India to Nepal with a flight that only lasted 2 hours. When I got here I headed to Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha. Buddha was born in 623 BC and the place is now a pilgrimage are for Buddhists. The whole are is protected by the government of Nepal and there are archaeological remains that still stay there.

Ely Cathedral

Day ten, July 20th: After arriving in England, I visited my family for a day and then got back to business with my last part of my trip. There's been a church on the site of Ely cathedral since 673 AD. This cathedral is an example of Christian architecture because it is a Church of England cathedral, which is a branch of Christianity. The cathedral is known for it's stain glass windows which all represent different things, like the octagon, which represents the history of the cathedral.

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