To visit Madinah is not a Hajj or Umrah rite, but the unique merits of the Prophet’s city, his Mosque and his sacred tomb attract every pilgrim to visit it. There is no Ihram nor talbiyah for the visit to Madinah or the Prophet’s Mosque.
Madinah is situated in central Hejaz. Red Sea is towards the west and Makkah is about 200 miles to the south.
Madinah was called Yathrib before Hijrah and came to be known as Taybah or Madinah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) had great love for this city. He once said that "There is a cure for every disease in the dust of Madinah" (Al-Targhib).
Unique Merit of the Prophet’s Mosque. The Prophet (peace be upon him) himself participated in the construction of this mosque, called it "My Mosque" and led prayers in it for years. He has also said that a salah performed in the Prophet’s Mosque is better than a thousand salats in any other place except Masjid al-Haram in Makkah.
According to Hazrat Anas, the Prophet (peace be upon him) has also said:
"The person who offers 40 prayers consecutively in my Mosque, without missing a prayer in between, will secure immunity from the fire of Hell and other torments and also from hypocrisy." (Musnad Ahmad)
Visiting the Holy Tomb. It is a great privilege for the pilgrims to visit our beloved Prophet’s tomb. The Prophet (peace be upon him) once said:
The Holy Tomb
"The person who comes solely for the purpose of paying a visit to my grave, has a right on me that I should intercede for him." (‘Ilm al-Fiqh, Vol. V)
And he has also said:
"The person who performs Hajj and then visits my Tomb, will be regarded as though he had seen me in my worldly life." (Baihaqi)
Travel to Madinah and Niyyah. When you start travel to Madinah, Make niyyah (intention) as such:
" O Allah! I start journey to visit the holy tomb of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Please accept it from me."
During this journey, recite Darud Sharif frequently. When the city of Madinah is in sight, show your extreme fondness and excitement and humbly enter the city while reciting Darud and Salam.
Masjid-e-Nabvi. After putting your luggage at your residence, take a bath or perform ablutions (vudu), wear nice dress, apply perfume and proceed towards the Prophet’s Mosque while uttering Darud.
Bab-e-Jibril. Enter the mosque through Bab-e-Jibril or Bab-us-Salaam or if this is not possible, enter through any other door.
Right Foot. Place your right foot first in the entrance, praise Allah (such as say Allhu Akbar, Subhan Allah, Alhamdu Lillah, etc.), recite Darud and say:
"Allah humma aftah li abwabe rahamte ka"
Two Raka’t Nafl. If it is not undesirable (Makrooh) time, offer two rakahs of nafl tahiyyat al-masjid (greeting of the masjid) preferably in Riaz al-Jannah near the tomb of the Prophet or otherwise anywhere else in the mosque.
In front of the Holy Tomb.
Brass screens in front of grave of the Holy Prophet
1. The Holy Prophet
2. Hadrat Abu Bakr Siddique
3. Hadrat Umar Farooq
In front of the sacred tomb of The Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), there are three sections of brass screens and all three have holes in them. Look at the picture carefully. If you stand in front of the middle section between the pillars, you'll see a big round hole on your left. This is in front of the face of the Holy Prophet. Adjacent to it is a door that stays closed. Right after it on the right side is a round hole which is in front of the face of Hadrat Abu Bakr Siddique. On the right of it, there is another round hole which is in front of the face of Hadrat Umar Farooq.
Sacred grave of the Holy Prophet Here is an enlarged view of the screen in front of the sacred face of our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him). Standing in front of it and facing it, say in a respectful and hushed voice:
"Assalamu alaika, ayyuhan-nabiyya wa rahmatul-lahi wa barakatuhu"
(Peace be on you, O Prophet, and the mercy and blessings of Allah.)
After this say:
"Assalatu was-salamu alaika ya Rasul-Allah"
"Assalatu was-salamu alaika ya Nabi-yallah"
"Assalatu was-salamu alaika ya Habib-Allah"
Then supplicate to Allah for good things in this life and the life after death. You may use the same supplication recited earlier during the Tawaf :
"Rabbana atina fid-dunya hasanatan wa fil-akhirati hasanatan wa qina azabin nar."
Offer Salam of others. Now offer salam of relatives or friends in your own language or say:
"Asslamu alaika ya Rasul Allah min----."
After the word "min", add the name of your friend or relative.
Salam on Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique. Then move a little to the right and stand before the grave of Hazrat Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him). Greet him and supplicate to bestow His mercy and forgiveness on him.
Salam on Hazrat Umar Farooq. Again move a little to the right before the grave of Hazrat Umar ( may Allah be pleased with him), and greet him and make supplication for him.
Forty Prayers. Men should offer forty prayers (Salat) in the Prophet’s Mosque, but it is not a requirement of any kind. It is only Mustahab, i.e., rewarding if done, but if not done there is no sin.
Other places to visit. Other important places to visit are: Masjid Quba, Jannat al-Baqee, graves of Hazrat Hamzah and other martyrs of Uhud (may Allah be pleased with them). These places are described under the heading: "Historical Places of Madinah".
Departure from Madinah. When you have to leave Madinah, offer your Salam again to the Prophet (peace be upon him), cry at this separation, supplicate to Allah and leave with the earnest desire to come back.
The following are some of many historical places in Madinah which a pilgrim would like to visit.
Out of these a visit to Masjid Quba is highly recommended as it is only next to the Holy Prophet’s Mosque in status and sanctity. But spending time in Masjid-e-Nabvi is far better than visiting other places, because the reward for offering 1 raka’at of prayer there is 1,000 times more.
Jannat al-Baqee. The graveyard of Madinah, where a large number of Sahabah karam (companions) including Hazrat Usman, Hazrat Abbas, Imam Hassan, and wives and daughters of the Holy Prophet are buried. This graveyard is close to the tomb of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), right after the courtyard of Masjid-e-Nabvi.
Masjid Quba. This is the first mosque in the history of Islam whose foundation stone was laid down by Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) himself on his migration to Madinah. To offer 2 raka’ats of nafl in it is equal to one Umrah. After visiting the Prophet’s Mosque and his tomb every pilgrim should try his best to visit it and pray in this mosque as well.
A visit to Masjid Quba is highly recommended, and I repeat myself for the sake of emphasis, that 2 raka'ats of nafl here equal one Umrah.
Masjid Qiblatain. In this mosque, Allah directed Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), who was in the middle of a sal’at along with sahaba karam, to turn his face from Islam’s first qibla (Bait-ul-Muqqadis) to Ka’bah in Masjid al-Haram. That is why this mosque is known as a mosque with two qiblas.
Masjid Jum’a. This mosque was built at a place where the Prophet (peace be upon him) offered his first Jum’a prayer in Madinah.
Masjid Ghamama. This mosque is not far from Masjid-e-Nabvi. The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to offer his Eidain prayers here. Once the Prophet led Istasqa prayer in it and suddenly the clouds appeared and it started raining, hence the name ghamama (clouds).
Masid Abu Bakr, Masjid Umar Faooq and Masjid Ali. These three mosques are near Masjid Ghamama.
Badar. The plain of Badar is 20 miles south west of Madinah where the first battle between 313 Muslims and 1000 Qureish of Makkah took place in 624 A.D. The Muslims had seventy camels and two horses whereas the Qureish had a cavalry of 200 Horses and 700 camels. They were superior in weapons too, but Muslims were victorious because they were strong in morale and strategy due to the leadership of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him).
Jabal-e-Uhad. About four miles on the north of Madinah, famous battle of Uhad was fought at 3 A.H. Hazrat Hamza, the Holy Prophet's uncle and other companions are buried here.
Jabal-e-Sal'aa. This is the site for the battle of Ditch which was fought in 5 A.H. Now there are six mosques at this place.