Ibn-e-Battuta was a great explorer who spent almost 30 years of his life traveling across the world and covered the whole of the Middle East and beyond. He moved through Southern and Eastern Europe, North and West Africa, the sub-continent, China and some parts of Southeast Asia. Ibn Battuta shared the findings of his remarkable journey with his Moroccan fellow Ibn Juzay.
Early Life of Ibn-e-Battuta
Ibn-e-Battuta spent most of his early life in Tangier, Morocco, where he was born on 24th February of 1304 C.E. Morocco, was under the Marinid rule in those days and Battuta’s family had a line of judges working for the government. Ibn-e-Battuta followed the family tradition and got an education in Islamic Law. But instead of becoming a Judge, he decided to become a traveler and an explorer.
The beginning of the Incredible Journey of Ibn-e-Battuta
When Ibn-e-Battuta was twenty-one years old, he decided to perform Hajj and went to Mecca. His Hajj journey lasted for sixteen months and sparked in him a wish to go beyond Mecca and see what the world holds in for him. He did not go back home for almost twenty-four years and explored virtually every major area of the world. He chose to travel by land for most of his journey, and he often became a part of caravans.
By joining caravans, Ibn-e-Battuta reduced his risk of being attacked, and caravans also enabled him to meet new people. The more people he met, the more stories he had to tell, and it also made him want to travel more and explore more. During his journey, he even got married in the town of Sfax.
Ibn-e-Battuta’s journey was not always easy, and he often has to face extreme conditions. He witnessed a lot of wars and even had to take measures to survive them. Apart from conflicts, he also survived rebellions and several shipwrecks.
The Lands He Explored
As Ibn-e-Battuta was a native of the Middle East, he started his journey by exploring his land first. He went to almost all of the countries inside the Middle East, and from there on, he took the path through the Red Sea and went to Mecca. After performing Hajj and spending some time in Mecca, Battuta decided to go to the Arabian Desert which is notorious for its harsh living conditions. He crossed the desert and set his feet in Iraq and Iran.
Through the Red Sea, he then went on to visit Aden and Tanzania in the year 1330. He spent two years there, and after that, he began a journey to explore India. India was well-known for its rich culture and history, and the Sultan of Delhi welcomed Ibn-e-Battuta with an open heart and even gave him a chance to practice law. He lived and worked in India for almost eight years.
After India, the next stop for Ibn-e-Battuta was China. He also visited Mali in the African Kingdom by making his way through the Sahara Desert. Ibn-e-Battuta returned home in 1335 and described all the places he visited during his journey. He also gave an account of how he experienced culture shock many times during his travels, especially seeing how women were so independent in some parts of the world.
Death of Ibn-e-Battuta
Ibn-e-Battuta gave an account of his travel experiences in Rihla and completed it by 1355. After his journey ended, he followed in his family’s footsteps and worked in Morocco as a judge. He passed away in 1368, and the world still remembers him as one of the greatest explorers of all times.