Ibn Battuta is the world’s greatest tourist and traveler. When there was no system of modern transportation, this man traveled almost whole of the known world. He spent 30 years of his life during this journey. His full name was Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Battuta. He was born in city Tanja (Morocco). Year of his birth is 1304 A.D. His got his early education in his home town and stayed there during his early life.
Ibn Battuta biography – Events of Journey
At the age of 21 or 22 he went out on his great journey. His first destination was Alexandra. Then he stayed for sometime in Cairo. After his stay in Cairo, Ibn Battuta moved towards Palestine, Halb and Damascus. He then performed Hajj. After his stay in Madina and Makkah, he then visited a number of other places including Najaf, Basra, Isfahan, Sheraz and Kufa etc,
Ibn Battuta again went to Makkah to perform Hajj and stayed there for 3 years. During that journey he explored and search for knowledge and wisdom. He got a chance to meet some notable scholars of that time.
In 1330, Ibn Battuta again started his journey. He reached Yemen, Adan and Hermuz strait. In Bahrain, he saw divers to pick out pearls from sea. He reached till South and East Africa and on return moved towards Oman. In the way, he met a caravan of Hajis. Along with them he once again reached Hijaz and performed his 3rd Hajj.
Then, Ibn Battuta moved towards Anatolia. He reached Qoonia and visited the shrine Maulana Room. He also visited other cities as well and met the kings of these areas. Most of his stays were as a royal guest. He then traveled along the shore of Black sea.
Ibn Battuta during his journey also visited Constantinople which had not yet come under Turkish rule. He then shifted his direction towards East and went to great centers of Islamic culture. These include Samarkand, Bukhara, Balk and other nearby cities.
Journey towards Indian Sub Continent
Ibn Battuta crossed the mountain ranges of Hindukash to enter in Kabul and Sub-continent. In Indian Sub-continent, he traveled across Punjab and reached Delhi. He met Sultan Muhammad Tughlaq in Delhi. Sultan Muhammad Tughlaq was the second ruler of Tughlaq dynasty in India. Sultan when heard about his wisdom and courage appointed him as Qazi (Chief Justice). Battuta stayed in the Sub-continent for 10 years. Once during his stay Sultan was annoyed with him and he subjected him to house arrest. Afterwards when misunderstanding was cleared, Sultan tried to appoint him again on his job. Ibn e batuta denied and was sent to China as an Ambassador.
Return and Death
His ship got destroyed during the travel and he was rescued. Then, Ibn Battuta toured the Islands on the South and East of India. On his return, he again visited famous places and reached Makkah to perform Hajj for the 4th time. During 30 years of his journey, he traveled a distance of 75 thousand miles. Ibn Battuta lived for 73 years and died in 1378 A.D (779 Hijri).
Literary Work of Ibn Battuta
During his whole travel, Ibn Battuta gathered valuable information about the world. On the order of a King he made written all that information in his great travel book “Safarnama”. Safarnama was written by Muhammad Ibn Jazai. Safarnama of Ibn Batuta provides enormous information about the culture and traditions of world at that time. He was not only a traveler but was also a geographer. Enough geographical information can be obtained from his famous book Rihlah. Rihla is an important source of history and geography of that time.