Madinah, officially al-Madīnah al-Munawwarah (the radiant city)) is a city in the Hejaz region of western Saudi Arabia which lies 447 kilometres north of the Holy City of Makkah. It It is the second holiest city in Islam.
It was to Madinah that the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, and his followers, faced by the hostility and persecution of the Makkhan merchants, departed in 622 AD - and, when the citizens of Madinah asked the Prophet to live amongst them and to arbitrate in their affairs (an invitation taken to mean their rejection of polytheism and submission to the will of the one God, Allah), it was in Madinah that the Islamic era began.
The second-holiest site in Islam, the Prophet's Mosque in Madinah contains the chamber in which the Prophet Muhammad is buried
Madinah is also the place in which the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, was buried.
The significance of Medina stems from the presence of the most significant historical mosques; such as Al-Masjid al-Nabawi (The Prophet's Mosque), Quba Mosque (the first mosque in Islam's history), and Masjid al-Qiblatain (the mosque where the qibla was switched to Makkah).
The Islamic calendar is based on the emigration of Muhammad and his followers to the city of Medina, which marks the start of the Hijri year in 622 CE, called Hijra.
Modern city of Medina
The Medina Knowledge Economic City project, a city focused on knowledge-based industries, has been planned and is expected to boost development and increase the number of jobs in Medina.
The city is served by the Prince Mohammad Bin Abdulaziz Airport which opened in 1974. It handles on average 20–25 flights a day, although this number triples during the Hajj season and school holidays.
By Nouran Radwan