No, as of right now, there are no direct flights operating from the UK for Madinah city. The most preferred flight route to Madinah from the UK is to get a Royal Jordanian or an EgyptAir ticket to the city via Amman or Cairo respectively.
December and January are the absolute best times to visit Madinah. Madinah is hot during most of the year but in these two months, the temperature falls to its annual low. The average temperature during this time hovers between 15°C to 30°C. It is the best weather to do a little exploring into the cultures of the Orient. The weather is clear and the infamous Arabian heat is months away from your vacation.
The cheapest time to fly to Madinah is in the summer, especially in the months of July and August. It is true that the heat is unbearable but what most people do not realize is that most travel spots and tourists attraction are cooled down by massive air-conditioners. There are air conditioners everywhere – in the malls, in restaurants, hotels and cars. In reality, the encounter with the sun is fairly limited for people smart enough to take a tour of Madinah in July. The cost of accommodations falls from pounds to pennies and the air tickets might as well be for free during these months.
Prince Muhammad bin Abdulaziz International Airport (MED) serves the city of Madinah and assists in the annual transport of the Hajj pilgrims coming from every corner of the world. Apart from Jeddah Airport, Madinah Airport is the only other airport in Saudi Arabia that welcomes Hajj pilgrims. A large majority of the annual traffic received by the airport comprises of the Hajj pilgrims. Madinah Airport received about 6.5 million passengers last year and is situated 20 kilometres from downtown Madinah.
The British traveller is required to apply for a visa to visit Madinah. Unlike the city of Mecca where non-Muslims are requested not to enter, Madinah city welcomes all. Please engage the services of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia to obtain a visa and please make sure that your passport remains valid for another six months from the date of entry into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Please be advised that during the Hajj reason, in order to regulate the flow of people visiting the country, the authorities might deny you entry or prevent you to board the aeroplane in case you do not have a Hajj visa. So, please plan accordingly.
Madinah has been the centre of Muslim religion, culture and tradition. It is the second most important city in the Muslim world. Clearly, as the city has been the focal point of the reverence of millions of Muslims, Madinah has received a great deal of investment from the central government to make it a shining example of modern Islamic architecture and design.
- The Uhad Mountain is the site of the second battle of Islamic history, between the Meccan and Muslim forces. This landmark has a legendary place in Muslim history. Many tourists come to this place to imagine the gladiatorial war, between good and evil, which happened over fourteen centuries ago. Markings and signs indicate the exact location where the armies had camped all those years ago. It is an interesting and educational site to visit.
- The Hejaz Railway Museum in Madinah is a museum dedicated to train engines. The building of the museum was once an operating railway station, built by the Ottomans a century ago. After an extensive reclamation project, the grand look of the railway station was restored and the building is used to house the train engines and carriages that were once used to transport passengers and pilgrims to new destinations. The museum also has its own railway track that allows restored engines to run on the old track and bring back memories of forgotten days.
The people of Madinah are known for their kindness and welcoming nature. They hold their culture and the Islamic traditions very near and dear to their hearts, and encourage foreigners to ask questions, who are new to their ways of life. The Muslim religion has three occasions of festivities. Since Islam follows the lunar calendar, the dates of these events are hard to translate into the solar Gregorian calendar.
The first celebration comes in the Islamic lunar month of Rabi-ul-Awal when Muslims celebrate the Milad-un-Nabi, which is the birthday of Prophet Muhammad. The day is celebrated by hanging fairy lights all over the neighbourhood and distributing sweets and candies. Eid ul Fitr comes after Ramadan-the month of fasting in Muslim tradition. Eid ul Fitr is celebrated by giving children some pocket money for candies and by eating lots of regional desserts. The last major festival is the Eid ul Adha festival which begins as the Hajj in Mecca comes to a completion.
Madinah is a great city to visit and very easy to get around. From the airport, the traveller can get on a bus that rotates around the entire city. The most preferred mode of transportation is by hiring vehicles through Uber or Careem (a similar mobile application with Middle Eastern roots). The cars are air-conditioned and the cheap transport makes you want to move and experience Madinah more.
There are many five star hotels available in Madinah. These businesses are open for all and accommodate those who live lavishly and also who like to have more economic options.
- Shaza Al Madina
- Madinah Hilton
- Pullman Zamzam Madina
- Majlis Grand Mercure Madina