Hundreds of thousands of Muslims began arriving in Mecca ahead of the Hajj pilgrimage, which traces the route Prophet Muhammad took 14 centuries ago.
Over 1,600,000 pilgrims had arrived in Saudi Arabia for the Hajj, which begins on August 9, according to the Saudi Ministry of Haj. The majority of them are residing in Mecca while others are staying in Medina, the ministry said.
Tight security has been employed in the holy city to ensure the safety of worshippers before the start of the official Hajj activities.
Hot weather is expected to prevail during the Hajj season, but the Saudi Government has taken measures to keep pilgrims cool, such as spraying water in the streets and providing air conditioning in various buildings.
The Hajj is an annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, which Muslims are expected to make at least once in their lifetime.