Alhamdulillah. This Umrah and Ziarah trip with Andalusia Travel and Tours was booked by us since June 2015 to ensure my group of four secured a place for the early trip.
Our trip was from 7th December until 16th December 2015. Our baby was left in Kubang Kerian, Kelantan to be taken care by my parent since my mom is still on her school holiday.
Our Umrah and Ziarah trip went as below.
Kuala Lumpur –> Jeddah –> Madinah –> Makkah –> Jeddah –> Kuala Lumpur
From KLIA, we were informed by our ‘mutawwif’ (person who guide us for Umrah and Ziarah) that we should expect delay at the Jeddah Airport Immigration. Our group managed to get through the immigration check in approximately 4 hours.
Our bus departed for Madinah at approximately 0130 hours. Everyone was so tired that they decided not to stop at any R&R on our journey to the radiant city.
Our bus arrived in Madinah during Fajr time. Madinah was really cold; about 12 degree Celcius on the first day we arrived and get comfortably warmer in the next day. Our hotel name was Al-Fayrouz Shatta, just next to gate number 25 of the masjid.
3 days in Madinah were spent most at the Masjid Al-Nabawi and its surrounding area. Scheduled visit was arranged by the travel agent brought us to Masjid Quba’, the Dates Farm, the Uhud battlefield area and the Dates Market.
As our hotel’s dining area was not enough to cater all pilgrims, we decided to have our meal at the food court nearby. For most of the time, chicken kebab and chicken mandi with rice would certainly be our choice. I think I may have gained 5 kilograms due to this appetizing meals.
Thank you to the crowded situation at the hotel, my brother and I simply used stairways to the 13th floor where our room was. Surely it had burnt most of my fat.
The one attracted me the most in Madinah is the integrity of the hawkers who are selling goods in front gate 25. They knew that it is illegal for them to run their business there and the authority (my brother and I called them SB which stands for ‘special branch’) will come and seize their things. Even some of the enforcement officer did topple the hawker’s trolley containing henna. Yet, they were always there for us, heating the environment each and everytime we completed our Fardhu prayer in Masjid Al-Nabawi.
On the 9th December 2015, we departed for Makkah at 1400 hours complete in Ihram for the Umrah with Zulhulaifah (Bir Ali) being the miqat for us.