There are two claimants for being the most Northern mosque. Both are well inside the arctic circle, defined as 66° 33′ 39′ North of Equator. These mosques are;
- Nurd Kamal Mosque, Norilsk, Siberia, Russia (69°20’27.19″ North) and
- Alnor Senter, Tromsø, Norway (69°39’15.01″ North).
Both the claimants are correct. It all depends how a mosque is defined.
In a broad sense the term ‘Mosque’ most commonly refers to a space which has been permanently or semi permanently demarcated as a place of public Muslim worship. Dome and/or minaret are not compulsory, have no religious significance but are just part of traditional Islamic Architecture.
While the Nurd Kamal Mosque in Norilsk – the Northern most city in Siberia, is a custom built mosque with a dome and minaret, the Alnor Senter in Tromsø, Norway has no dome and no minaret. It is housed in a portion of normal building which has been been declared as mosque. There are many such mosques in Europe, America and other parts of the World which are not custom built and are located in some house/complex some or whole area of which has been declared and used as a mosque.
Thus the main difference between the two is architectural. One has a dome and minaret and the other is just a plain structure. Although Wikipedia
says that the Norilsk mosque in Siberia is the Northern most I feel that functionally (and not architecturally) the Tromsø mosque is Northern most.
1. Alnor Senter, Tromsø, Norway – World’s Northern Most Mosque
The mosque is located in a modern building complex which has both residential as well as offices also. Only a small part of this building is occupied by ‘Alnor Senter’ which was till 2006 known as Al Noor Mosque.
The Arctic city of Tromsø has an estimated Muslim population of 700 to 800 individuals. In fact there are two mosques in the city. Other being Al Masjid al-Rahma (69°39’9.41″N) which is older than the Alnor Senter. Since Alnor Senter is in north of the older mosque, the Alnor Senter is considered as the Northern Most Mosque in the World. Here are the images of two mosques.
Alnor Senter, Tromsø, Norway – World’s Northern Most Mosque
Image from GEC is by Tychee
Al Masjid al-Rahma (World’s Second Northern Most Mosque)
Image from GEC is by Tychee
View location of Tromsø mosques in Google Earth Google Maps
Source of info:
Credits: Tychee who on my request personally visited the mosque in Tromsø and took the photographs included above. Thank you Tychee
2. Nurd Kamal Mosque, Norilsk, Russia – World’s Northern Most Custom Built Mosque
Nurd Kamal Mosque, is located in the city of Norilsk which not only has one of the the most harshest climate amongst the populated places but is also amongst the 10 most polluted place in the World. The city was built in 1930 on one of the world’s richest metals deposits and today its power and smelting plants send smoke thick with sulphur into the air. Norilsk has an extremely harsh climate. Average temperature is approximately −10 degrees Celsius, and the Polar winds drop the temperatures here to as low as −58 degrees. The city is covered with snow for about 250-270 days a year, with snow storms for about 110-130 days.
The mosque, opened in 1998, was built by Mukhtad Bekmeyev, an ethnic Tatar and Norilsk native who doesn’t stay here any longer. The town has about about 50,000 Muslims, however only about 500-800 are regular visitors to the mosque.
Image from Flickr is by ayra_jo1
Image from Panoramio is by Vladimir Maltsev
Image from Flickr is j_ayra
Image from Flickr is ayra_jo1
View location in Google Earth Google Maps
Source of info