It was like no Hajj journey the world had ever seen. The richest man to have ever lived paved his path to Makkah with gold and put his kingdom on the map… Literally.
His name was Mansa Musa and he was an African Muslim king, whose 4000-mile trip to Makkah went down in history.
His caravan was said to have been 60,000 people strong and it stretched as far as the eye could see. It reportedly took a whole day for the caravan to pass.
Some reports say he built a mosque en-route every Friday and gave away so much gold that he destabilised the economy in parts of the Middle East for ten years.
Upon his return from Hajj he brought back artists and scholars, helping him to develop the Mali Empire. In Timbuktu, he had the Djinguereber Mosque built and established a university attracting students and scholars from across the Muslim world, making Mali the most important place for knowledge in Africa.