For centuries, Mecca has been the mandatory pilgrimage destination for Muslims from all over the world. People have arrived in the most varied forms of transportation, from ultra modern planes to walking bare footed crossing the desert. It is no wonder that this massive traveling has produced over the years a rich and diverse collection of books that portray those experiences. Some of the books that you can read while planning your trip to Mecca are:

  • One Thousand Roads to Mecca: Ten Centuries of Travelers Writing about Muslim Pilgrimage, compiled by Michael Wolfe, this book collects 20 stories that reflect the diversity of the pilgrims who travel from the most diverse destinations. Not only the experiences are told but also descriptions of ancient sites as Cairo and Damascus in the Middle Ages and their development over time are included. The book also includes accounts by non-Muslims who could enter the forbidden city.
  • A Season in Mecca: Narrative of Pilgrimage by Abdellah Hammoudi and Pascale Ghazaleh
  • Mecca: From Before Genesis Until Now by Martin Lings
  • Mecca the Blessed, Medina the Radiant: The Holiest Cities of Islam, by Seyved Hossein Basr and Ali Kazuyoshi Nomachi. The book not only portrays the whole experience of pilgrimage with images of random people in their religious and everyday activities but it also includes unusual pictures of these two sites considering that taking photos inside Mecca is forbidden.