AP – Muslims awaiting the start of the annual Haj pilgrimage have climbed a historic mountaintop looking over the holy city of Makkah, taking in its modern sights from a place revered in Islamic history.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) received his first revelation from Allah while atop Jabal Nour. On Friday, the faithful visited Hiraa cave, the place where the Prophet (pbuh) prayed and received the divine inspiration to preach and spread Islam.
The journey up Jabal Nour isn’t easy, though children played on the stone steps ascending its side, the rooftops of modern Makkah visible below. Once at the top, worshippers stopped to pose for photographs at the cave’s mouth.
Others prayed facing down to the Kaaba in the Grand Mosque. The tip of the Royal Clock Tower Hotel could be seen rising above the rolling mountains surrounding the city.
On Saturday, more than 2 million worshippers are expected to begin the Haj.

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