Reservations needed for visiting Baha'i gardens in Haifa?

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Dawud
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Reservations needed for visiting Baha'i gardens in Haifa?

Postby Dawud » Mon Nov 08, 2004 6:47 am

I may have the good fortune to travel to Haifa soon, and would very much like to visit the Baha'i gardens. Do I need to sign up in advance? If so, how? (I am not a Baha'i.)

I also understand that the Baha'is have some sort of museum with artifacts related to the Babi movement. Are outsiders admitted? Would I need to apply in advance? If so, how?

Thank you in advance!

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Thu Nov 11, 2004 10:16 pm

I don't think there is any need for tourists to go through the Baha'i gardens, but I also think the International Baha'i Archives is not open to the pubilc. Sorry I can't give an exact answer (I was hoping someone else could)...

Brett

Tony

Postby Tony » Fri Nov 12, 2004 4:47 am

Brett - Are you implying that tourists are now discouraged from visiting the Baha'i Gardens? This is news to me. I visited The Holy Places in 1994, and at the Official Opening of the Terraces in 2001, and the Gardens were then open to the public at certain times - even the Garden at Bahji. No special permit was required. Has this situation changed?

My understanding was that most of the Gardens and many of the Edifices associated with the Baha'i Faith are not just for Baha'is, but for everyone acting within the law of the land and the pleasure of Baha'i guides and custodians.

Some hearts have been changed in such circumstaces - and not impossibly even the heart (and mind) of Dawud, who might then be permitted to join the Baha'i Faith and, if subsequently admitted to a Pilgrimage, might view various relics in the Archives.

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Fri Nov 12, 2004 2:43 pm

Sorry, I meant that I did not think that there were any need for reservations to be made to visit the gardens...It came out wrong, sorry...

Brett

Dawu d

Postby Dawu d » Sat Nov 13, 2004 5:01 am

Does anybody know if there is some official website where I could find out about this? Preferably with an e-mail address.

What about that museum? Does anybody know the curator's name? Or if it has an internet presence? (If the heathen aren't allowed inside, then perhaps I could enlist the help of one of the elect.)

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Sat Nov 13, 2004 1:42 pm

At http://library.bahai.org/serv/guidem.html it states: "Researchers from outside the World Centre (including relatives of World Centre staff) require the authorization of the Universal House of Justice to have access to Library and Archival materials." and "Application should be made directly to the Universal House of Justice rather than to individual Library or Archives staff members."

But this might be for library items only.

I could not find a website for the Archives, but the library is at http://library.bahai.org

I believe the Archives is restricted normally to those on a pilgrimage (including restricted for Baha'is).

I'd recommend contacting www@bahai.org as this is the contact for the official website, and they can presumably forward your inquiry to the appropriate place.

Brett

Dawud
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Postby Dawud » Tue Nov 23, 2004 3:52 am

I heard back from them on the museum question. They say that technically there is no "Baha'i museum," only a collection of "relics" attached to the archives, which only Baha'i pilgrims are permitted to see. Requests for information by outsiders may in principle be considered, but they're real busy and don't make any promises.

No word yet on the procedure for visiting the gardens (terraces).

Dawud
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Postby Dawud » Mon Nov 29, 2004 7:12 am

Still no word from Baha'i sources about the procedure for visiting the Gardens (Terraces), but I did get a friend who lives in Haifa to telephone them. Here's what he says:

I phoned the number you gave me, and they say you have to reserve one day in advance, and that the place is open all week except wednesdays. I guess it's packed there sometimes.


I guess this supersedes Lonely Planet's admonition that group tours have to be reserved "long in advance." If anybody knows anything different, post something here, wouldja?

Hmm, I wonder if they'd get upset if I showed up with my golf gear? :D

Dorumerosaer
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Postby Dorumerosaer » Sat Aug 19, 2006 11:55 pm

Even though this is a very old topic, I found it an interesting question.

When I was in the Holy Land, this was the information I received. Please do not take it as authoritative. And even if it was accurate at the time, the policy might have changed.

And all of this is aside from whatever the situation is due to the recent shelling of Israel, which is now in a ceasefire.

All of that said, it was my understanding that visitors may not visit the Baha'i Archives building. Not Baha'i visitors, not non-Baha'i visitors. The only people who can visit the Archives, are those Baha'is who are on a full Pilgrimage -- known as "9 day pilgrims" because most Baha'i visitors stay for a shorter time.

Also, Baha'is who work at the Baha'i World Center for a long enough time, are apparently put on a list to visit certain of the holy places that are otherwise only visited by the 9-day pilgrims. If they cannot go to that spot on that day, for any reason, they missed their opportunity.

Again, this is not authoritative, but reportedly is the policy.

As far as visiting the gardens in Haifa, there are three parts to the gardens: The Shrine of the Bab, and the gardens on the same level, surrounding it; the terraces leading from Nof Street at the top of Carmel, down to the Shrine of the Bab; the terraces leading down Carmel from the Shrine of the Bab, to Hagefen Street.

When there is not a state of insecurity or war, there are many times during the week when anyone can visit the Shrine of the Bab, and the gardens on the same level as the Shrine. No appointment is needed. One part of the day is set aside for the 9 day pilgrims; there is also a period of 3 or 4 hours set aside for the public.

As for the terraces, the procedure *used* to be that people had to schedule an appointment to walk down Carmel, either on the upper terraces, or on the lower terraces, they had to make a choice. I believe this was scheduled through the City of Haifa Tourist Board, if memory serves correctly. Also, the tour guides were drawn from an Arab-Jewish friendship organization whose office is at the foot of Carmel; so the guides were mostly college-age Jewish, Christian and Muslim kids, who had been through a training program offered by the Baha'is.

The last I heard, which was a few years ago, the waiting list for the terraces was some months long. But I have no idea whether this procedure still exists, or will be reinstated. And the City of Haifa website is down right now.

That's all I have on this; maybe someone with more current information would provide corrections or confirmation.

Brent

shm
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Postby shm » Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:48 pm

I am pretty sure that visiting the Gardens in no problem at all. They are open to the public at certain times during the day. No reservation need to be made for that.

onepence
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Postby onepence » Sun Aug 20, 2006 11:53 pm

shm wrote:I am pretty sure that visiting the Gardens in no problem at all. They are open to the public at certain times during the day. No reservation need to be made for that.


yea ... i will second that ... seems to have been some news articles, archived not on this site but on the web, that pretyy much states that the visiting the Gardens is open to the public at certain times during the day ... in fact there is a rather famous photo of soldiers taking in some much deserved r&r at the terraces.

oneness
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