The first Islamic capital and the second holiest place for Muslims after Mecca; it is the capital of Medina located on the territory of the historic Hijaz in western Saudi Arabia, approximately 400 kilometers away from Mecca to the north-east and about 150 km to the east of the Red Sea. The closest port to it is the port of Yanbuh located 220 km away on its south western side.
Medina has an area of about 589 km² of which 29 km² is operated by the urban area while the rest are outside the urban area and consists of mountains, valleys, flood slopes, desert lands, agricultural activities, cemeteries, and parts of highways network.
The city has a dry desert climate and the temperature varies between (30 ° - 45 °) in summer, while in winter it is rainy.
Medina is composed of 20 administrative districts; the most famous are (Al Aghwat, Qubaa, Bab Al-Majidi, Al Saha or Harat Al Saha) with population of 1,300,000 people currently.
You can reach Medina by different means:
Prince Mohammad Bin Abdul Aziz International Airport is the main airport that serves Medina, and is about 15 km away from its center in the northeast direction. It is one of the outlets for the arrival and departure of pilgrims and Umrah performers from abroad and was opened in 1971 as a domestic airport at the beginning while international flights were limited to the Hajj season only. Then the significant increase in the number of flights in the Hajj and Umrah seasons led to transforming it to an international airport in 2006.
Highways: Medina has a network of highways which links it with the other cities and regions of the Kingdom:
- Medina - Kasseem Highway
- Medina - Tabouk Highway
- Medina - Yanbuh Highway
- Medina - Mecca Highway
In the old days Medina was linked to the Levant via railway lines through the Hejaz Railway, a line connecting the city of Damascus and Medina. Work in this line begun in 1900 and was officially opened in 1908, and continued to operate until 1916 when the First World War took place when it was ruined by the Great Arab Revolt and the fall of the Ottoman Empire after the war.
Currently Medina will be linked to Mecca through the Two Holy Mosques express train project, which is an electric railway project linking between Mecca and Medina passing through Jeddah and Rabigh with a length of 450 km. The first phase of the project will cover the construction of five passengers' stations, including two in Mecca and two in Jeddah, in each of King Abdul Aziz International Airport and downtown, and the fifth station will be in Medina. It is expected for the second phase to witness the construction of another station in King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh.
Mountains and Valleys:
Medina has lot of mountains and valleys (also considered historical sites); the most notably:
» Ahad Mount is one of the most important features of Medina, located 5 km north of the Prophet's Mosque, and extends as a mountainous series from the east to the west; it had its name after the invasion of Ahad.
» Raya Mount is one of the mountains of Medina, called by this name because the Islamic Army performed shows there, and the Prophet offers the commander the flag.
» Throwers' Mount is a small mountain near Ahad Mount, and was famous for the incident when some throwers disobeyed the Prophet's orders during the invasion of Ahad.
» Al Fakara Mountains are of the most important summer resorts in Medina due to the cool atmosphere of its highlands during summer and its rainy weather because of its high altitude.
» Salaa Mount is a mountain located 500 m to the west of the Prophet's Mosque, with a length of about 1000 m, a height of 80 meters, and a width of 500 m and extends from north to south.
» Eer Mount is a black mountain with almost straight top, located south of Medina and east of Al Akeek Valley, about 8 km away from the Prophet's Mosque.
» Aghwat Mount is one of Medina's mountains and was called by this name because Al Aghwat bought it to protect themselves from Medina inhabitants during the civil strife that took place between them in 1117 AH.
Al Akeek Valley one of the most famous valleys of Medina; Bathan Valley whose name was mentioned in the Prophet's conversation as he said: " أن وادي بطحان على ترعة من ترع الجنة ". It was said that the Prophet performed his ablution from this valley on the day of the parties' invasion; and Al Rouhaa Valley is located between Mecca and Medina.
Summer and Sports Festivals:
Many summer and sports festivals are being held in Medina; the most notably (Teeba Summer Festival).
A festival organized by The House of Organization for Saudi fairs and festivals. The festival is held annually each summer in various locations within Medina and includes a lot of programs and events such as fishing competitions, children rally contests, water sports village, air sports village, in addition to many popular and traditional events such as the Public Tent and camels and horses competitions. The city also witnesses many educational clubs such as summer Club Forum organized by the Saudi Ministry of Education, as well as some non-permanent special festivals such as the Medina Festival for the Twins, and the International Dates Festival of Medina and others.
Religious and Tourist Sites:
In addition to the Dates Central Market, Medina includes a lot of religious and tourist sites and recreational areas and public parks.
The Prophet's Mosque: It is the Mosque of the Prophet Mohammed Bin Abdullah, the second holiest places of worship for Muslims after the Grand Mosque in Mecca. It is one of the three mosques Muslims visit, located in the heart of Medina in the place where the Prophet's camel stopped when during his migration. It is rectangular in shape, consisting of ten minarets and contains many features, notably the platform of the Prophet, the holy meadow, the holy chamber, the pentagon wall, and the green dome with the Prophet's tomb beneath it.
Qabaa Mosque: It is the first mosque built in the era of the Prophet Muhammad, located southwest of Medina 5 km away from the Prophet's Mosque and contains a well attributed to Abu Ayoub Al-Ansari in addition to the camel's stop place. The Prophet was involved in building the mosque on his way to Medina during the migration from Mecca and was later completed by the Muslims. In the modern Saudi era, the Mosque was expanded where the prayer area alone reached approximately 5035 m² after it was only 1600 m², and the total area of the mosque and its facilities reached around 13500 m². Of the virtues of the mosque of Qabaa is what "Sahl Bin Haneef" quoted from the Prophet Muhammad: (من تطهر في بيته ثم أتى مسجد قباء فصلى فيه صلاة كان له كأجر عمرة)
The Two Kiblah's Mosque: Of the most important features of Medina, located in the south-west direction from Rouma Well near Al Aqeeq Valley above a high plateau, and is about 5 miles away from the Prophet's Mosque in the north-west direction. It got its name because the companions performed one prayer in it to two kiblahs, as the kiblah was to Jerusalem but in the second year of migration a new verse was revealed converting the kiblah to the Grand Mosque, so the Prophet sent one of his companions to inform Muslims in the outskirts Medina, and when the companion reached the people while praying and told them the news, they turned to the new kiblah immediately during their prayer. The current total area of the mosque is about 3920 m².
The Seven Mosques: Of the most important features visited when coming to Medina, and they are a group of small mosques which are really six not seven, but was known by that name since some people count the Two Kiblahs Mosque among them, because when one visits these mosques he also visits the Two Kiblahs Mosque during the same trip. These small mosques are located in the western side of Al Silaa Mount on a part of the ditch dug by Muslims in the era of the Prophet to defend Medina against Quraysh and the allied tribes in the fifth year of migration. It is said these mosques were sites for security and control during the invasion where each one of them was called with the name of the person who camped in it, except for Al Fateh Mosque which was built at the site of a Dome related to the Prophet.
Ali Bin Abi Talib Mosque one of the seven famous mosques, so called because Ali bin Abi Talib killed in this site Amr Bin Wid the Commander of the Quraish knights, who passed the ditch in the battle of the parties.
Al Fateh Mosque is the largest of the seven mosques, built over a hill in the western slope of Selaa Mount, so called because it was a place of praying for the Prophet and his companions during the battle of the parties.
Al Anbariya mosque is a mosque established by the Ottoman Sultan Abdul Hamid II in 1908 to be part of the Median Station Project of Al Hejaz Railway.
Du Al Haleefa Mosque also called a "Ali Wells Mosque", because the Sultan of Darfur "Ali Ibn Dinar" dug some wells in that area when he visited Medina.
Al Bakeeh: Is the main cemetery for the people of Medina since the era of Prophet Muhammad and is the nearest historical place to the Prophet's Mosque, as it is located facing the south-eastern side of the Mosque's fence. The current area of Al Bakeeh is around 180000 m² and contains remains of thousands of people of Medina and those who died there from neighbors and visitors, in addition to the Companions, approximately ten thousand companions buried there, including the wives of the Prophet except for Khadija and Maymouna.
Public Parks, Cafes and Resorts:
Medina also has a lot of public parks and cafes, as well as popular restaurants and fast food:
King Fahd Central Park (located on the ring road), Prince Mohammed bin Abdul Aziz Park (located along Al Oyoun road next to Ahad Mount), Martyrs Park (located next to Ahad Mount after Nissan Agents), Al Zohour Park (Kurdi District next to Abu Sardah Mosque), Palms Park (Al Jarf District near to Teeba Castle) and others, in addition to many entertainment places such as recreational parks like Al Hokair (Luna Park) (Prince Nayef Project in Hijrah road), Al Baijan Recreational Park (Universities road next to the sports stadium), Dorah Al Medina Recreational Park (Airport Road behind Al Badr Market), Coco Majid Recreational Park (Bat'han Dam road in front of the Ministry of Social Affairs branch), Ghanouma Recreational Park (At the end of Airport Road next to Dowa), Medina Games Park (previously Al Kadi Park) (Al Aziziyah near cars showrooms). Medina contains also many markets such as Sultana Markets, Kabaa Markets, Korban Markets, Medina International Market, Medina Aleya Markets, Al Haram Markets, in addition to modern malls like Al Rashed Mall, Al Hasan Mall, and Al Nour Center. Medina contains many public parks, like Abu Tarboush (King Abd Al Aziz road, includes family place and games hall belonging to Al Hakir Recreational Park). Al Hamra Fish Park (on the migration road after the checkpoint and includes family sitting areas, children games, Bowling and Billiards Hall), Al Nawras Park (a branch of Al Nawras Jeddah, and has two locations in Medina), and others.
There are many resorts and guest houses in Medina which includes children recreational parks, in addition to supermarkets like, Teeba Land Resort (along Al Ouyoun Road, Al Khaleel area)
Teeba Resort is around 15 km away from the Prophet's Mosque, it is a place for the families of Medina, they spend their leisure holidays there, the resort consists of:
Large Rest Lounges: These consist of two sections for women and men, and there are 3 swimming pools, 2 pools in women's section (small one for children and a large one), and one swimming pool in men's section. This Rest Lounge is usually rented for parties and occasions.
Small Rest Lounges: Consist of (Salon - Bedroom -3 Baths - Kitchen - 2 large swimming pools and a small swimming pool for children).
"Al Manach Cafes", are places where craftsmen meet, and the people of Al Manach Market after Sunset prayer. These cafes start from Al Ghamama Mosque side, and ends at Kabaa, it is mentioned in order here in:
- Abd Al Wahed Al Maghrebi Cafe
- Al Mo'alem Cafe
- Saleh Hareeka Cafe
- Mohamad Nakawi Cafe
- Mobarak Al Mawlid Cafe
- Manaah Cafe
- Al Hadi Cafe
- Al Far Cafe
- Al Khodr Cafe
- Uncle Ahmad Tawal Cafe
- Kabaa Cafes
Famous Restaurants in Medina:
Al Shami Corner: Airport Road near Bureau of Investigation
Al Basheer: Prince Amir Abd Al Majeed Street, near to Al Rajehi Bank
Medina House: Beginning of Hijra Road after Kabaa Mosque
The Chinese Castle: Khalid Bin Al Waleed Road near Al Saha Mall
Al Hamra Fish: Hijra Road (Mecca-Medina-Highway) 20 km
In addition to fast food restaurants:
Kentaki: Abi Bakr Al Sadeek Road
Hardees: Abi Bakr Al Sadeek Road
Mc Donald: Abi Bakr Al Sadeek Road
Pizza Hut: Prince Abd Al Majeed Road
Dominoes Pizza: Abi Bakr Al Sadeek Road
Kodo: Prince Abd Al Mehsen Road
Burger House: Abi Bakr Al Sadeek Road
In addition to Al Beik Restaurant
Expansion and Development Projects:
The project of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques for expanding and building the Prophet's Mosque included the addition of a new building next to the current mosque compound that surrounds and connects to it from the north, east, and west over an area of 82000 square meters to accommodate 167000 worshippers, thus making the total area of the Prophet's Mosque 98500 square meters, also the expansion surface was covered with marble of an estimated area of 67000 square meters to accommodate 90000 worshippers, thus accommodating more than 257000 worshippers after the expansion with a total area of 165,500 square meters. The expansion works include the establishment of a basement with the same area of the ground floor of the expansion to accommodate air conditioning and refrigeration equipment and other services.
The project also includes surrounding the Prophet's Mosque with yards of 23000 square meters total area, covered with marble and granite according to geometric shapes of multiple beautiful Islamic designs, of which 135000 square meters were designated for praying accommodating 250000 worshipers. And the number of worshipers may increase up to 400000 in the case of using the full area of the surrounding yards, which makes the capacity of the entire mosque and its surrounding yards more than 650000 worshippers to reach million worshipers at peak times. These yards include entries for ablution and rest places which connect to the parking in the two underground floors, and are used for pedestrians only, and illuminated with special lighting installed on one hundred and twenty marble columns.
The exposed area which lies between the old mosque and the first Saudi expansion was covered with a dozen huge umbrellas of the same height as the roof, each shades an area of 306 square meters and are opened and closed automatically in order to protect the worshippers from the sun and rain and take advantage of the natural air when weather conditions permit to do so.
These are some pictures of Dar Al Arkan Real Estate of Al Tilal Residential Project which is implemented within the Haram, where it will develop 500 housing units as a first stage which was already put up for sale, followed by the development of 1000 Villa as a second phase.