"Seidnayya" Top 5 Page for this destination Syria Things to Do Tip by MalenaN

Syria Things to Do: 414 reviews and 569 photos

  Convent of Our Lady of Seidnayya
by MalenaN
  • Convent of Our Lady of Seidnayya - Syria
      Convent of Our Lady of Seidnayya
    by MalenaN
  • Inside the convent - Syria
      Inside the convent
    by MalenaN
  • Seidnayya - Syria
    by MalenaN
  • Seidnayya - Syria

Seidnayya is situated only 26 km north of Damascus and can easily be visited on a daytrip from there, using public transport, also including Ma'alula. Buses to Seidnayya leave from Ma'alula Garage in Damascus.

High on a hill above Seidnayya, almost looking like a fortress, is the Convent of Our Lady of Seidnayya. From the roof of the convent you will have a great view over the small town and the surrounding hills.

At the time of the crusaders Seidnayya was considered to be second only to Jerusalem as an important place of pilgrimage. The reason is a portrait of Virgin Mary said to have been painted by St Luke. The portrait can be seen in a small dark room beside the chapel, together with many more recent icons and silver crosses. Many miracles are attributed to the icon. An Iraqi man visiting the convent asked if I had seen the image of Jesus by the stairs, halfway up to the convent. I hadn’t, so he took me down to show me the image. The image is protected behind bars, and is said to have appeared after a man rested his oil jar on that spot.

The convent is believed to date back to the 6th century and to be founded by the Byzantine emperor Justinian. Not much remains that is very old. Of what can be seen of the building today much dates to the 19th century.

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  • Written May 15, 2006
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