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Bet Maryam of the Rock Cut Churches of Lalibela

Lalibela, Amhara, Ethiopia
7 Kudos
Bet Maryam (House of St. Mary) is another one of the UNESCO honored rock cut churches of Lalibela. It is in the northern group of churches, adjacent to the bigger Bet Medhane Alem. Around it on the sides, cut into the edges of the rock are some cave-churches. But Bet Maryam is freestanding, monolithic. It's unique amoung the churches of town in that it has some significant decorations in the interior. These include some frescoes of bible scenes, beautiful carvings of crosses, geometric designs, and one moon-faced face of Jesus. It was really enjoyable to explore the church and see these ancient decorations. Bet Maryam might be the oldest of the churches here, which were built over only 23 years starting in the 12th century.
Story Details


Lalibela Airport
I flew in and out. Flights aren't too expensive, and it beats a brutal long bus ride.

Points of interest

FikirandRay Lodge
A pretty good budget hotel. About a 20 minute walk from the churches.
Bete Amanuel
This nice looking rock cut church may have originally been a royal chapel.
Beta Gabriel Raphael
sort of a double rock cut church -- the rooms for each of these are adjacent to each other.
Bete Medhane Alem
The largest monolithic church in town, and in the whole world.
Asheton Maryam Monastery
A rock cut church and monastery high above the town of Lalibela.
Lalibela Museum
You can learn a little more about the rock cut churches at this museum.
Bete Maryam
Bete Maryam
One of the rock cut churches, ,this one featuring some ancient interior artwork.

On The Map