It is a dream of numerous Muslims living in the United Kingdom and other parts of the world to accomplish their Umrah by embarking on a memorable journey to the holy city of Makkah in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This Islamic pilgrimage is also known as the ‘minor pilgrimage’ or the ‘lesser pilgrimage’, as the major pilgrimage is the Hajj. The minor pilgrimage can be accomplished within a few hours as it involves lesser rituals as compared to the major pilgrimage. Upon choosing a suitable time of the year to perform Umrah, the Muslims residing in the UK can perform all these rituals with greater convenience.
Makkah has a hot desert climate, which means that this city is extremely hot during the summers. The weather in this city can be relatively pleasant during winters. This is the reason why Muslims living in the countries of Northern Europe prefer going to Makkah in the month of January when the daytime temperatures are extremely pleasant. The opportunities for Umrah January month brings for the UK Muslims can help them fulfil their dream of performing the lesser pilgrimage and get the spiritual benefits associated with it.
The presence of many travel companies or tour operators in the UK has helped numerous Muslims residing in the country to book packages for performing the lesser pilgrimage. Many of them also provide cost-effective January Umrah packages for those who book well in advance. Usually, the bookings made several months in advance reduces the cost of these packages to a great extent. However, they have to plan the dates much earlier to make sure that the bookings are done at the right time to get the maximum amount of discount. The savings thus made can be utilised by the pilgrims during their time spent in Makkah to buy some souvenirs from the local markets or to visit the important Islamic sites in the city and its surroundings.
One of them is the Jabal al-Noor, which is also known as the ‘Hill of Illumination’ or the ‘Mountain of Light’. It is located in the Hejazi region near the holy city of Makkah. An Umrah in January would give pilgrims of the UK sufficient time to visit this mountain and the ‘Cave of Hira’, which it houses. This cave is of great significance to the Muslims worldwide, as it is the place where Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) had spent a considerable amount of time in deep contemplation. It is also the place where he received the first revelation of the Holy Quran from the archangel Jibreel (A.S).
Another important place worth visiting is Mount Arafat, which is also known as Jabal al-Rahmah or the ‘Mount of Mercy’. Towards the end of his life, Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) had stood at this mountain and delivered his farewell sermon to the ones who had accompanied him for Hajj. This is also believed to be the place where The Almighty Allah had forgiven Adam (peace be upon him) for his sins. A pillar has also been erected at the spot where this event had taken place.
You can click here for more information on Umrah packages and the various benefits that they offer for Muslims of the UK.