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Cheap Flights to Najaf

Travel, tourism, and global connections can foster peace and create stability to a troubled region. Al Najaf Airport, which was constructed and completed in 2008, is a part of this effort in the war-torn country of Iraq. Formerly a military base, Al Najaf International Airport (NJF) is located in south-central Iraq and is an impressive size to serve the population of the nearby city and other communities in the area. It’s an encouraging trend, and hopefully, one that will continue, as this ancient land is deeply fascinating, fiercely intellectual, and culturally rich.

Best time to book a flight to Al Najaf Airport

Tourists aren’t exactly beating a path to Najaf’s door these days, but that’s changing rapidly. This is a desert climate, with temperatures in the winter as cool as 14C and a summer climate that can reach a blazing 42C. If you don’t plan on spending a lot of time indoors, spring or fall is probably ideal. As this city is an important religious and educational focal point for the whole Middle East, watch the calendar for special events and festivals that attract more visitors to the region.

Airlines that fly to Al Najaf Airport

If you’re traveling to this region from Canada, virtually all of the flights leave from Montreal and require at least one stop. There are a surprising amount of choices when it comes to flights to this region, and although there are no Canadian airlines represented at Al Najaf Airport, several national airlines team up with their Middle eastern partners to serve this route. This is a long flight that can require a couple of connections, so be prepared for a stopover or three.

  • Qatar Airlines is one of the few options for flights to NJF with only one connection in its home city.
  • Air Canada flies to NJF with help from Qatar Airlines. This route has two stops in Chicago and Qatar.
  • Air Transat can take you from YUL In Montreal to NJF as long as you don’t mind a tour of several global airports. The list of possibilities includes Brussels, Madrid, Istanbul, and Kuwait.
  • British Airways departs from Montreal, stops in London, and flies directly to Qatar from Heathrow.

What to expect when arriving at Al Najaf Airport

There are no jetways at NJF, so be prepared to ride to the main terminal via a shuttle. Your first step will be to pass through immigration, where your passport gets the appropriate visa or stamp depending on the purpose of your visit. At this point, you can enter the main part of the airport and visit the bathroom, do some banking, or get a bite to eat. Other amenities here include free WiFi, baby changing rooms, showers, a post office, and a mosque. There are no public transit connections at the airport, so travelers have to take a taxi or airport shuttle into the city.

What to see and do in Najaf

An amazing city with an equally compelling past, Najaf, also known as A Najaf Al Ashraf, has a lot to see and even more to experience and understand. This is the holiest city in Shia Islam and the spiritual capital of the Shi‘ite world, making it an important city for pilgrimages and religious observances. And that’s just the beginning. Here are a few things that you need to see in and around Najaf, and a lot of them are probably on your bucket list.

  • Babylon and Ur. Yes, this is the original Babylon, the former capital of antiquity's most illustrious and notorious empires, and it’s barely 30 kilometers outside of the city. Ur, another Babylonian city, is also nearby. Even in ruins, these cities are still impressive, and nothing like them exists anywhere else on the planet.
  • Burials. This doesn’t include only extensive ancient Christian cemeteries, which date from the time of Christ, but also the revered and sacred tomb of Caliph ‘Alī ibn Abī Tālib. The largest cemetery in the world is in Najaf, Wadi-us-Salaam, and many prophets and devout followers are laid to rest here.
  • The Imam ‘Ali Mosque. This is the third holiest site in the Muslim world, but you don’t have to be religious to appreciate the precious objects on display and the gold-gilded dome.

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