One of the most memorable moments in the journey of Umrah is, undoubtedly, the visit to the city of our Noble Prophet (S). Such a blessed visit to Medinah makes one appreciate the life of the Prophet (S) and all of the historical sites that are left for the believers to visit and ponder upon. In this section, Hajjplans.com will illustrate the most crucial things one needs to know when visiting Medinah. It is our hope that you maximize your time in such a blessed land by reaping the benefits from the information below.
Visiting the City of the Prophet (S)
Medinah, which lies 447 kilometers north of the Holy City of Makkah, is the city of the Prophet (S). This is the place in which the Holy Quran was compiled and the Prophet's (S) companions administered the affairs of the Muslim Ummah. The following is a list of things to consider and implement before and after your arrival to Medinah.
- When you start traveling to Medinah, Make your intention as such: "O Allah! I am starting my journey to visit the holy tomb of Prophet Muhammad (S). Please accept it from me". Also during this journey, recite Darud Sharif frequently, which is asking Allah to give peace and blessings on the Prophet (S).
- When the city of Medinah is in sight, show your extreme fondness and excitement and humbly enter the city while reciting Darud Sharif.
- After putting your luggage at your hotel or place of residence, take a bath or perform ablution (wudu), put on new and nice looking clothes, apply perfume, and proceed towards the Prophet's Mosque while repeating Darud Sharif.
- Try to enter the mosque through gate Al-Jibril or gate As-Salaam as these are the gates which lead to the grave of the Prophet (S). However, if this is not possible, enter through any other door.
- Place your right foot first in the entrance, praise Allah (such as say Allahu Akbar, Subhan Allah, Alhamdu Lillah, etc.), recite Darud Sharif and say: "Allah humma aftah li abwabe rahamte ka" "Oh Allah open for me the doors of your mercy."
- Upon entrance into the Masjid, offer two raka's of nafl tahiyyat Al-Masjid (greeting of the Masjid) anywhere in the mosque. If one is able to do this in the Riyadh Al-Jannah area, (the area in the Masjid which is known to rise into Jannah, this is also where the Prophet (S) used to lead the Salah) then this is preferred. However, this place is normally packed of people at all times, especially in the Hajj season. Don't let that stop you from praying two raka's there at least once on your visit, but also don't exhaust yourself trying to always pray there, for this could involve harming other to do so.
- Visit the grave of the Prophet (S) and that of Abu Bakr and Omar. In front of the sacred tomb of The Holy Prophet (S), there are three sections of brass screens and all three have holes in them. If you stand in front of the middle section between the pillars, you'll see a big round hole on your left. This is in front of the face of the Holy Prophet (S). Adjacent to it is a door that stays closed. Right after it on the right side is a round hole which is in front of the face of Abu Bakr As-Siddique. On the right of it, there is another round hole which is in front of the face of Umar Bin Khattab. Standing in front of it and facing it, say in a respectful and low voice:" Assalamu alaika, ayyuhan-nabiyya wa rahmatul-lahi wa barakatuhu" (Peace be on you, O Prophet, and the mercy and blessings of Allah.) After this say: "Assalatu was-salamu alaika ya Rasul-Allah", "Assalatu was-salamu alaika ya Nabi-yallah", "Assalatu was-salamu alaika ya Habib-Allah". Then supplicate to Allah for good things in this life and the life after death. Then move a little to the right and stand before the grave of Abu Bakr. Greet him and supplicate to Allah to bestow His mercy and forgiveness on him. Then move a little to the right and stand before the grave of Umar. Greet him and supplicate to Allah to bestow His mercy and forgiveness on him.
- When you have to leave Medinah, offer your Salam again to the Prophet (S), cry at this separation, supplicate to Allah and leave with the earnest desire to come back.
Historical Places of Medinah
The following are some of many historical places in Medinah which a pilgrim would like to visit. Out of these, a visit to Masjid Quba is highly recommended as holds very high status, next to the Holy Prophet's Mosque.
- Al-Baqee The graveyard of Medinah, where a large number of Sahabah (companions) including Usman, Abbas, Imam Hassan, and wives and daughters of the Holy Prophet are buried. This graveyard is close to the tomb of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), right after the courtyard of Masjid Al-Nabawi.
- Masjid Quba This is the first mosque in the history of Islam whose foundation stone was laid down by Prophet Muhammad (S) himself on his migration to Medinah. To offer 2 raka's of nafl in it is equal to one Umrah. After visiting the Prophet's Mosque and his tomb every pilgrim should try his/her best to visit it and pray in this mosque as well. A visit to Masjid Quba is highly recommended since the Prophet (SWS) used to visit it quite frequently to pray 2 raka's.
- Masjid Qiblatain In this mosque, Allah directed Prophet Muhammad (S), who was in the middle of a Salah along with his companions, to turn his face from Islam's first Qibla (Bait-ul-Muqqadis) to Ka'aba in Masjid Al-Haram. That is why this mosque is known as a mosque with two Qiblas.
- Masjid Jumuah This mosque was built at a place where the Prophet (S) offered his first Jumuah prayer in Medinah.
- Masjid Ghamama This mosque is not far from Masjid Al-Nabawi. The Prophet (S) used to offer his Eid prayers here. Once the Prophet led Istasqa prayer (prayer for rain) in it and suddenly the clouds appeared and it started raining, hence the name Ghamama (clouds).
- Masjid Abu Bakr, Masjid Umar Farooq and Masjid Ali These three mosques that are near Masjid Ghamama.
- Badr The plain of Badr is south west of Medinah where the first battle between 313 Muslims and 1000 Quraish of Makkah took place in 624 A.D. The Muslims had seventy camels and two horses whereas the Quraish had a cavalry of 200 Horses and 700 camels. They were superior in weapons too, but Muslims were victorious because they were strong in morale and strategy due to the leadership of the Holy Prophet (S).
- Jabal Al-Uhad About four miles on the north of Medinah, famous battle of Uhad was fought at 3 A.H. Hazrat Hamza, the Holy Prophet's uncle, and other companions are buried here.
There are also many other historical sites in the blessed city of Medinah. Each pilgrim is recommended to visit as many sites as possible in Medinah, and it is therefore encouraged to ask group leaders which sites are planned to be visited in the journey.