Book Review: Makkah to Madina: A Photographic Journey of the Hijrah Route

There are many journeys that made history. Think Musa 'alayhi'l-salām (peace be upon him) crossing the Red Sea, Hannibal crossing the Alps or  Caesar crossing the Rubicon. But there’s one journey that irrevocably altered the course of human civilisation more than any other and it was made when two friends crossed the Arabian desert taking them from oppression in Makkah to the incubation of a nation-state in Madina.

The Hijrah – a journey so epic that Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) and the great companions of the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) who were alive at the time, chose it as the epoch of the age and the start of the Muslim Calendar.


Most of us are aware that the journey took place, but the actual route is one that is not as widely known. It is this route, with all its twists and turns, that Dr Abdullah Al-Kadi spent years of his life studying and researching. He did not just limit himself to dusty books and venerable scholars. Like any good scientist, he spent time out in the field and traversed the route of the hijrah many times over so that he could be familiar with even certain oddly shaped rocks that were used as milestones along the way.


To give you an idea of how much painstaking time and effort he put in, by the time his book was published, Dr Al Kadi had traversed a cumulative total of over 30,000 miles. The distance between Makkah and Madinah is only 275 miles.

Dr Al-Kadi was accompanied at various stages of his travels by his family and Peter Sanders – the renowned British photographer. The fruit of this collaboration can be seen in the gorgeously detailed scenes captured throughout the book.

This book is filled with locations and stories that even the most well read of us will find interesting. A well, a scribbled name on a rock face and an almost lunar looking passage way are just some of the features that remind us that this was not just a journey, but a dramatic escape.

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Sometimes we are in danger of thinking that the life of the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) has been so well documented that there is nothing new left to discover. Through his painstaking research and publishing this beautiful book, Dr Al-Kadi proves that even more than 14 centuries later, there is still so much more to learn.

To me, that is one of the greatest discoveries of all.



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12 responses to “Book Review: Makkah to Madina: A Photographic Journey of the Hijrah Route”

  1. Amatullah says:

    SubhanAllah!! Speechless!! May Allah bless him immensely and reward him abundantly for every step of those 30K miles.

  2. mohd ariff says:

    There is nothing in life that we wanted best but loving our Truthful Prophet Muhammad SAW is a must, as we knew Allah loving Him most and so to anythings connected to Him. This truthful journey from Mecca to Madina, how much do we knew about the truthful happening throughout His life, really it was miracle journey for us think but only if Allah wanted… as how it should be..Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar.

  3. MuQeet says:

    Alhamdulillaah. Amazing read!
    May Allah bless the author who walked in the footsteps of the Prophet (peace be upon him)
    I will definitely like to have this book, InshaaAllah.
    For now, I would like to share this beautiful clip here depicting the Hijrah Route:
    Click on the arrow, and don’t forget to keep the speakers on.
    Baarakallaahu Feekum.

  4. marie clark says:

    A awesome book with High Quality pictures and wonderful maps. It was a pleasure to read about the Hijra in such details alongside with the historical facts from lifetime of Prophet (salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam). Surely one of the best investements ever!

  5. bhagat says:


  6. bhagat says:


  7. DEAR SIR,

  8. Farook Khan says:

    I would very much like to buy a copy of this book.

  9. Jabir lawal kane says:

    Jazakallah, these is a good job may Allah reward you and give you the fortitude and courage to investigate more, for the benefit of all muslim ummahs

  10. Jabir lawal kane says:

    Salam, pls how can i get the book Makkah to Madinah here in Nigeria.

  11. WAJiD says:

    Walaikum asalaam everyone

    Note: You can purchase it here:

    I would imagine that buying it from an online book retailer that serves your country is the best way to get this book.

    I hope this helps inshaAllah.

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