Ibn Battuta

From ArticleWorld

Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Battuta was born around 1304 in Tangier, Morocco into a Berber family. Ibn Battuta studied Islamic law and later served as a judge.

At the age of 20, Ibn Battuta left the area to go on a Hajj (a pilgrimage to Mecca required as part of the Islamic faith). His journey turned into a 29-year tour of Muslim nations, searching 75,000 and reaching 44 modern-day countries.

Upon his return to Morocco, Ibn Battuta made more travels to Valencia, Granada, and Egypt.

The date of Ibn Battuta’s death is unknown, but is believed to be between 1368 and 1377.


Ibn Battuta shared his travels with Ibn Juzayy, who turned them into A Gift to Those Who Contemplate the Wonders of Cities and the Marvels of Traveling. The work is referred to as Rihla (or “journey”). While some of the story is embellished with fictional places and events, Rihla is the best account available that maps the world during the fourteenth century.

Rihla covers Ibn Battuta’s travels through almost all areas of the known Islamic world. His journey took him into present-day India, Sri Lanka, Southeast Asia, and China.

Rihla is also the only existing document that gives information on Ibn Battuta. During his exploration of the Muslim world, he was attacked, almost drowned, nearly beheaded, married several times, involved in several love affairs, and fathered several children.

Rihla was lost for hundreds of years and finally rediscovered in the 1800s when it was translated into several European languages.