Jeddah has two sides of the story… In one side you can see all the modern and huge shopping malls, luxury houses and clean streets. On the other side you can see very poor community of beggars, homeless people, many immigrant of different nationalities specially Africans.
Medina or the city of the prophet is the second holy place in Saudi after Mecca, it stores the prophet mosque that includes prophet Mohammed grave. In an attempt to discover more about the history of the city we started to search for the historical places and we were so disappointed. This city is supposed to tell a lot about the Islamic history, unfortunately most of the historical places have been destroyed except for few old mosques. Old neighborhoods and houses are removed having 5 stars hotels and new roads built instead. A few left to tell about the history of Medina. We had our best meal in Medina; we visited the fish market that is 1 Km from the prophet mosque and where you can have a variety of sea food options. People and tourist are coming from everywhere at lunch time, the fish is being fried in really big pans that is full of oil, after taking out the fish from the pan the cooker takes a bunch of spices and put it over, the taste is really good Yum yummy.
It exhibits the distinctive patterns of Islamic cities in the past, the village was built in the 7th century.
Madain Saleh … For many people that we met, they dream to visit Petra. So we were very lucky to reach Madain Saleh. Many people don’t know that Madain Saleh exists! Madain Saleh is described as “sister city of Petra” and it’s a UNESCO World Heritage site. We can describe the place as an open museum to explore, the site is amazing and full of wonders, we were amazed with the tombs that are carved into the mountains and how it remains until today despite of erosion, also the desert and the remarkable and unique rock formation. We can talk a lot on how amazing the place is but we invite you to visit it and see it yourself.
Mecca The holy city of Islam, We consider ourselves lucky because we can visit this holy place. The city is forbidden for non-Muslims, more over it is very difficult to get a visa or permission for the non GCC nationals to visit Mecca. Some of them wait for years only to get the permission. In the contrary we don’t require any visa or permission, and we can visit Mecca easily any time during the year. We did Umrah as a must do when entering Mecca. Apart from the fascinating monument of Kaaba, Mecca city has a sad fact that it has really dirty environment that help in spreading many diseases. More care is needed to handle the huge number of people visiting the place during the year. We took a small tour to the neighborhoods around Kaaba and we witnessed a shocking reality!!