Top 10 Places To Visit with kids and family In Mecca
Saudi Arabia Is Not Just Oil And Religion. Here Are Top Places To Visit With Kids In Mecca, Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia is usually known for its strict religious laws and a shielded and defensive approach towards modern social advancements, yet at the same time having enough of material and technological modernity to keep the country in check with the changing times.
Going by its reputation, the country is not exactly known as a tourist destination for many, except for religious pilgrimages of Western workers who work on engineering and oil projects in the country. However, we would like to diverge from the stereotype of the country and present before you the top sightseeing destinations that the city of Mecca has got to offer.
Make no mistake; the city is one of the holiest cities of Islam and hence only Muslims are allowed inside. So if you are a Muslim, but are looking for something more than religious, especially the religious, then this post will help you to get to know Mecca beyond a religious prism.
We also urge for your safety that never forget to follow the strict rules and customs laid by the Saudi law since the penalties are extreme and cannot be retracted.
So here are the top destinations in Mecca where you can visit with your kids.
- Great Mosque Of Mecca:
This is where you visit with your family on your annual pilgrimage and perform your duties as a devout Muslim. The Great Mosque of Mecca spans centuries back, and the place has been of religious even before the Islamic times. Always remember to follow the rules and restrictions laid down here.
- Hira Cave:
The cave of Hira also holds a lot of religious significance in Islam. It is believed by Muslims that this is where Muhammad had to hide from his Meccan attackers and this is where he received the revelation. Even if you are not so religious, you can still visit the cave as a place of historical significance.
- Jabal Thawr:
Known in Arabic as Mount Of The Bull, Jabal Thawr is one of the prominent religious landmarks near Mecca not created by man. This is one of the mountains where Muhammad had to seek refuge while hiding from his tormentors.
- Mecca Astronomical Clock And Exhibition Center:
The period ranging from the late ninth century to the early thirteenth century was known as the Islamic Golden Age when science, philosophy and other areas of learning prospered. The Mecca astronomical clock is designed in the Arab tradition of medieval astronomy, and the building also holds exhibits that reflect the Arab achievements in astronomy and science.
- Zubayda Canal:
The Zubaydah Canal may seem like a modern rural canal, but was actually built in the early medieval times has been providing water to the Mecca city since then. Although you may not notice it as a significant tourist destination, if you are into the early medieval history of Arabia, this place will get your interest.
- The cornerstone of Arafah:
This is another religiously significant monument for Muslims in Mecca. The Cornerstone of Arafah is situated to the south of the Mecca Mosque and is known to play a significant role in shaping Muhammad’s spiritual knowledge.
- Al Amwaj Children’s Amusement Park:
This amusement park certainly cannot compare with those in the West, but if you think your kid’s had a hard day seeing religious and historical places of interest, then you can gift them some kid’s time as well. The amusement park has small rides and swings that will easily help to get the stress out of your kids.
- Hudaybiyyah Well:
The well itself is not very old as it is known to have been created sometime in the fifteenth century. However, the place itself is known for the historical Hudaybiyyah Treaty that was carried out between Muhammad who represented Medina and the Qurayza tribe that represented Mecca. Although there are no monuments or ruins in place from the period that signify the event, the well is a landmark that demarcates the place.
- Qasr Bin Suleiman Historical Center:
This place is not exactly well known to be a tourist center, but some say that they are starting to store the historical relics and cultural artifacts from the historical Saudi era. Although it the information is confirmed, you can check it out for yourself while visiting Mecca.
- Al Salam Gate:
Although we can count this as a part of the Grand Mosque Of Mecca, it is considered as a separate monument in the list since it is the traditional gateway for pilgrims to visit the mosque. In the modern times, more venues for visiting the mosque have been opened. However, during the Middle Ages, pilgrims were known to visit the Grand Mosque from this gate.
- Human Heritage Museum:
The museum is one of the few ones that you will find the city. It preserves the cultural and traditional heritage of the local Arab populations. It is more of a repository and reminder of how people in Mecca used to live until recently before modern advancements reached the city.
- Towa Springs:
These springs are located close to the Grand Mosque and are a good example of how the Arabs in antiquity used to harvest water from underground sources. The inner walls of the spring, as well as some of the minor structures near it, are said to have been built several centuries earlier.
- The Well Of Tuwa:
Known in Arabic as Bir Tuwa, the well is known for the legend that Muhammad had once stopped here and drunk water from the well during his first Hajj after the revelation. The well is also said to have healing powers in Islamic mythology. From a historical point of view, the well is known to have been built sometime around the fourth century and has been used well before the advent of Islam.
- Mount Arafat:
Mount Arafat meaning The Mount Of Mercy in Arabic is the most important natural formations having a religious significance in Islam. This mountain is known to be the place where Muhammad stood on its top and delivered a farewell sermon to his followers on the last day on his Hajj. The mount stands 70 meters tall and is also revered in Islam, alongside the Grand Mosque Of Mecca.
- Abraj Al-Bait:
If you think you had enough of the cultural and religious symbols in Mecca, then this will bring you back to the modern times. The Abraj Al-Bait is a complex of seven skyscrapers in Mecca which is built around the Grand Mosque. You don’t have to book a room in the hotel; you can just enjoy the view.
- Small Jamarah:
Also known as the Stoning Of The Devil in Arabic, this place is a part of the pilgrimage to the Mecca’s Grand Mosque but deserves a separate mention of its own. The symbolism of the devil in the center is where people gather around in circles and stone the symbol in their deep contempt of the so-called ‘devil’ in Islamic theology.
- Garden Lakes:
If want a place to relax after a long day’s travel, this is where you should park yourself. The Garden Lakes is a park or a garden in Mecca which is solely constructed for the traveler’s leisure and also has got lakes as a part of it’s show. You can spend your evening or your afternoon after a tiresome sightseeing in the city.
- Al Haramain Museum:
This museum houses the religious and spiritually important heritage of Islam. Most importantly, the museum contains Islamic heritage artifacts that span back to the early medieval ages. If you had ever wondered how did the Islamic religious symbolism and objects of religious significance looked like in those times, you need to visit this museum and know for yourself?
- Abu Kubais Mountain:
This mountain is located in the eastern part of the city of Mecca and has been revered as a place of spiritual significance even during the pre-Islamic era. According to some, this mountain was known as Al-Amin during the pagan times, and they worshiped the pre-Islamic Arabian Gods on this mountain. Some even state that the Black Stone found in the premises of the Grand Mosque was originally located here.
- Jabal Al-Nour:
Also known as the Mountain of Enlightenment in Arabic, this mountain is to be believed as the first place where Muhammad was known to receive the first verses of Quran from the Islamic God. It is also believed that Muhammad received his first revelation from the angel Gabriel when he was resting in a cave on this mountain. The mountain is 600 meters tall and is 1.75 meters wide at its narrowest.
This was our itinerary for your visit to Mecca. We would always urge our readers to be careful about following the Islamic law code and traditions even if they are not religious Muslims. This will help you to stay on the safer side and enjoy your stay in the city.