Discover the Top Things to Do in Makkah

Makkah, the most sacred place in Islam, is the focal point for Islamic religious pilgrimages. Every year, the Saudi Arabian city beckons millions of Hajj and Umrah pilgrims from far and wide to several of its important religious sites that offer interesting glimpse into its formidable connection with the historical past of Islam.

Apart from its rich history and spiritual significance in the Islamic wold, Makkah also offers plenty of remarkable things to do and see for its visitors to partake in.



Kiswa creation for the Holy Kaaba at Al Kiswa Factory


Discover Abraj Al Bait, Makkah’s sensational shopping and hotel complex

An essential guide to visiting the stunning Abraj Al Bait complex in Makkah, including its luxury hotels and shopping mall packed with exclusive stores.

The Abraj Al Bait complex is the most striking modern development in Makkah city center. Featuring the world’s largest clock faces, its tallest tower rises over 600 meters high and is visible from miles around.

The landmark complex houses the five-storey Abraj Al Bait Mall with around 4,000 shops, a museum of Islamic art and prayer rooms for up to 10,000 worshippers. Two viewing platforms offer sweeping views over Makkah.

A revolutionary building project

Opened in 2011, Abraj Al Bait is part of the King Abdulaziz Endowment Project. It is built on the ruins of the historic Ajyad Fortress and consists of seven Islamic-style towers.

The main entrance, King Abdul-Aziz Gate, is just south of the Grand Mosque. The towers are arranged with the lower ones in front, so as not to block the enchanting view of the Grand Mosque and the Kaaba.

Abraj Al Bait is one of the largest constructional developments in the world, covering an area of more than 1.4 million square meters. At just over 600 meters, it is the third tallest building in the world.

Introducing Abraj Al Bait hotels

The tallest tower is home to a luxury hotel, the Makkah Clock Royal Tower, a Fairmont Hotel. Rising 76 stories over Makkah, it has spectacular views over the city. Other 5-star hotels in Makkah’s Abraj Al Bait complex include the Raffles Makkah Palace hotel, the Swissôtel Makkah hotel, the Swissôtel Al Maqam Makkah hotel and the Pullman Zamzam Makkah hotel. The hotels overlook the Grand Mosque, the Kaaba and the city center.

Guests staying in an Abraj Al Bait hotel are able to walk in and out easily, as there are enough podiums and elevators to allow 75,000 people to come and go for prayer without difficulty.

World-class shopping at Abraj Al Bait Mall

Abraj Al Bait contains one of the best shopping malls in Makkah. Spread over five levels, it contains around 4,000 shops and stores. You can find anything you need, from essential items to souvenirs and clothing from luxury brands. There is also a popular food court.

Other features you’ll love to discover

The Abraj Al Bait complex offers:

  • Male and female prayer rooms for up to 10,000 worshippers
  • Two viewing platforms offer sweeping views over Makkah
  • A museum of Islamic art
  • An observation center used for sighting the moon
  • Residential apartments
  • A parking garage with space for over 1,000 vehicles

Need help finding your way around?

If you are staying at one of the luxury Abraj Al Bait hotels, simply ask the concierge for directions or information about facilities and opening times.

Kaaba with Abraj Al Bait clock tower in the background

Abraj Al Bait hotels have gorgeous views of the Kaaba


Abraj Al Bait Mall interior

Discover world-class shopping in Abraj Al Bait Mall.

Introducing the best places to shop in Makkah

Stay cool on your trip to Makkah by visiting some of the city’s most sensational shopping malls – or venture outside to explore the buzzing market streets. Impress your family and friends by taking them straight to the best shops!

Abraj Al Bait Mall: everything you need and more

The size of Abraj Al Bait Mall is jaw-dropping: 4,000 stores over five levels and parking space for 1,000 cars. Part of the King Abdulaziz Endowment Project, Makkah’s most famous commercial complex stands directly in front of King Abdulaziz Gate, steps from the Grand Mosque.

Women will love the local and international clothing brands and perfume stores, as well the collections of accessories and bags. Looking for a gift to take back home? There are plenty of gift shops selling just what you were looking for – even if you didn’t know what you were looking for.

There’s no chance of going hungry at Abraj Al Bait. The mall’s international food court on the 4th and 5th floors has restaurants and cafés with a capacity of over 5,500 people. You can tuck into anything from fast food to fine dining. For a coffee break, experience the refinement of the Makkah Raffles Café with its balcony overlooking the Grand Mosque.

Al Aziziyah, a shopping hotspot

The Aziziyah district, a 10-minute walk east of the Grand Mosque, is famous for its markets. Al Aziziyah Central Market is a popular place to shop after Hajj, packed with clothes, textiles, bags, shoes, cosmetics and household appliances. If you’re looking for gold and jewelry, this is a great place to come.

Right next to Al Aziziyah Central Market, Al Majaz Market has international brands and a wide range of textiles and jewelry shops. The kids will love the children’s play area on the ground floor.

These aren’t the only shopping centers in Al Aziziyah. Stroll a few minutes and you’ll see many other enticing malls, including Al Salam Shopping Center, the International Family Complex and Aryam International Mall – and more! Whatever you’re looking for, you’re bound to find it here.

Makkah Mall, great for kids

Walk southwards in the Aziziyah neighborhood and you’ll discover Makkah Mall on King Abdullah Road. This large shopping center features more than 140 brands and entertainment areas, including the Billy Beez amusement park for children and a branch of Hyper Panda supermarket. Take the family – they’ll love it!

You’ll find plenty of cafés and restaurants amongst the shops, as well as a food court with a wide range of international choices. It’s only a 15-minute walk from the Grand Mosque and has good parking facilities, so you’ll see many other visitors and pilgrims exploring the shops.

Stop at Al Hijaz Mall on the way to Jeddah

Located on the Makkah-Jeddah highway, Hijaz Mall is a great place to stop on your way into or out of the city. One of the oldest shopping centers in Makkah, it is known for its stores selling gold, textiles and clothing.

Al Hijaz Mall features a branch of the Jarir Bookstore and a special section for women’s evening dresses. Kids will love the entertainment area on the first floor.

Modern design at Al Diyafa Mall

One of the trendiest malls in Makkah, Al Diyafa (which means “hospitality”) is located on Al Hajoun Street in Al Zaher district. The striking modern building contains good facilities for women and families, including a children’s play area and several restaurants. You can find the most famous international fashion and cosmetics brands here.

Bustling markets

If you’re seeking high-quality goods at low prices, come to Makkah’s oldest popular market, Al Otaybi Market. It’s about 3 km away from the Grand Mosque and bustles with 2,000 shops over several streets, selling everything from souvenirs to abayas and gold. Wear comfortable shoes (or buy some when you’re there). Men can also find high-quality clothes at good prices.

Al Otaybi Market is so popular that during Ramadan and Hajj season it can be extremely busy – so try to come earlier in the day and be prepared for a crowd!

For traditional gifts and souvenirs, you can also try Al Siteen Street Market at the western entrance to Makkah.

Need more shopping secrets?

For directions and shop opening times – especially during Ramadan and other festive periods – simply ask the concierge of your hotel.


Abraj Al Bait Mall - interior

Shop in style and comfort at Abraj Al Bait Mall

Makkah jewelry shopping

Makkah is a great place to buy gold and jewelry

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