Madain Saleh - Cities inhabited by the People of Thamud |

Madain Saleh in Saudi-Arabia – Cities inhabited by the People of Thamud

While Muslims believe in the message of Quran without any doubts, their faith gets even stronger when they see and experience real life proofs for the messages, events and other facts mentioned in the Quran. The sites of the people of Prophet Saleh is one such example.

MADAIN SALEH saudi arabia

These sites referred to as Madain Saleh are not only mentioned in the Quran but they continue to exist today in remote areas of Saudi-Arabia. Madain Saleh (translated as cities of [prophet] Saleh) is located near a city called “Ula”, about 400 kilometers north of Al-Madinah Munawwara in Saudi-Arabia. Madain Saleh was also referred to as “Al-Hjr”. Muslims believe that Madain Saleh was once inhabited by the people of Thamud, who are mentioned in the Quran. The name “Al-Hijr” is also mentioned in the Quran.

Quran Islam Allah Dua

Quran Islam Allah

If you happen to visit Madain Saleh today, you will see the tombs and stone like structures that the people of Thamud had carved in the mountains (see picture below and above).

MADAIN SALEH quran surah

The Quran mentions about this fact by stating:

surah ash-shuara verse 149 madain saleh saudi arabia

“And you carve houses out of mountains with great skill” – (Chapter 26 Ash-Shuara, Verse 149) – Quran

Click here to download the book: The miracles of the prophet

The story at Madain Saleh is about Prophet Saleh whom Allah had sent to preach to the people of Thamud. Prophet Saleh also had a she-camel about which Allah had specifically instructed Thamud not to harm the she-camel or they would face the consequences.

The Quran states in the same chapter:

surah ash-shuara verses
  • “And touch her not with harm, lest the torment of a Great Day seize you.”
  • “But they killed her, and then they became regretful.”
  • “So the torment overtook them. Verily, in this is indeed a sign, yet most of them are not believers.”– (Chapter 26 Ash-Shuara, Verse 156-158) – Quran

If you happen to visit Madain Saleh and the cemetery in the area, you will notice many tombs. These tombs have various inscriptions that date back to sixth century BC.


These cities were later known to be inhabited by the Nabatean civilization. Therefore, some historians believe that some or all of the tombs were carved by Nabateans. However, Muslims believe (by referencing the Quran) that they were originally built by the people of Thamud.

quran stories ibn kathir

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) through his teachings and experiences had taught Muslims to avoid being in such places simply because God’s wrath had fallen on such places. At the same time during his visits, he also pointed out in those places the lessons that others can learn from such historical places and events. The Prophet (saws) said, “Do not pass through the dwelling place of those who wronged themselves without crying….”. The crying out of reflection refers to thinking about denying and violating Allah’s message and the punishment that may be caused by it.

book end of the world

These archaeological sites that existed so long ago and inhabited by people of high sophistication definitely can drive us to reflect regarding the temporary nature of this world and to ponder about the fact that material things that tend to preoccupy us so immensely in our daily life, don’t really matter at the end.

MADAIN SALEH saudi arabia

(Saudi-Arabia Culture)

book end of the world

— End

support islamic newsletter

25 comments… add one
  • Khalid Link Reply

    very good article, keep up the good work,
    Allah will bless you in the hereafter.
    Verily the hour is approaching near,
    but most of mankind are heedless of the signs of ALMIGHTY
    May Allah guide us to learn from the mistakes of the previous generations
    and mend our lives to earn the real happiness.
    The most important thing for all the Muslims is to stay united and together.

  • Lukman Oyebode Link Reply

    Glory be to Almighty Allah who has spoken without any tint in the Quran and his words remain forever.

    Facts and findings by the modern day scientists has shown a lot about the living proof of the sermons in the Quran and these have made it undoubtful for whosoever wishes to live by the truth.

    It now depends on those of us who have belief in the monotheism of Almighty Allah, His holy words, His prophets, His Angels and the day of judgment to in the name of peace and salvation rescue those who have lost so that they may also share in the joy of Aljanat.

    I pray that Allah will continue to reveal the truth and make those who have been in the dark to hear, see and understand His words as sent through prophet Muhammed (SAW).

  • Muhammad Bello Link Reply

    salaam, this is really educational and a cause for reflection for all believing muslims. Surely the might of Allah is supreme. And his boundries should thus be respected. Sallalahu ala Sayidina Muhammad wa ala alihi wa sallim. Bis salam.

  • Assallam Alaekum Warahmotullah wabarakakuhu.

    The Article is an educative one and as well an interesting article. please keep on giving us historical and educative articles like you have done today. i say “jazakumu llahu khaeran”

  • iqbal husain Link Reply

    As a student of history of ancient civilizations, i am too much happy to see the pictures of the destroyed place of the Madain Saleh-city inhabited by the people of Thamud. It implies that our people are really working hard to show the evidences related to Quran. People expect such evidences mentioned in the Quran. In the world of science, which required evidences based on facts. In this regard we expect from our Ulmas to corelate the name of the old cities or countries mentioned in the Quran and the cities or countries destroyed by the God for their bad deeds mentioned in the Quran. Inshallah even today or will never be, Quran can be challanged in future.

  • I suggest Link Reply

    I suggest the Saudi Government to be allowing Umrah and Hajjis to be visiting
    these and similar historical sites even for Educational purposes

  • Nurideen Yussif Link Reply

    I think that these are clear signs for non beleivers to come to the notice that
    God does exist, and that Islam is true religion of God. But there is a worrying factor, others
    these days have consistently been trying to potray the most peaceful and true religion as the most
    violent religion. Muslims need to be faithful and to be truthful in all our endeavors.
    assallaamualaikum warahamatullaahi

  • Garba Abdulrahman Link Reply

    Assalam Aleikum.It goes to that the Holy Quran was from the Almighty ALLAH.Keep it up.

  • Abdur-Rafiu Yusuf Link Reply

    Alhamdu lillah. Thanks to all of you for opening the eyes of everybody to
    the truth and beauty of Islam. This is highly welcomed as it is opening
    fresh insights into the history of Islam as received by the Prophet Muhammad (SAW). May Allah be with your organisation as you continue to disseminate the truth.

  • lujain Link Reply

    Subhanallah!! I never knew that Madain Saleh still exists! The carvings on the mountains
    are awesome. Mashallah the pictures are great! Well done for the good work, really
    informative. With iqrasense and its articles i think millions will benefit. Jazakumullah Khairan.

  • May Almighty Allah continue to expand the wisdoms of all those who contributed to this Muslim Historical Facts, and may Allah reward them with Al-jannah firdaus amin.

    I am surprised to see that the remnants of what our saviour refers to in the Holy Qur’an rrgarding this people are still remain. This has strengthened our faith further.

    Once more may Allah bless those who have contributed to this discovery amin.

    Ma Assalam.

  • Bayo Adebiyi Link Reply

    Alhamudu lilahi. I am a muslim. Qur’an is a living word with facts and accurate accounts of events and occurences.
    I wish more of these facts are discovered and spread to non muslims

  • Khalid Link Reply

    Please check out the following links for maps and waypoints that I recorded during my visit to Madain Saleh in September 2009, immediately after Ramadhan.:,41.19873&spn=9.322106,14.084473&z=6
    Here are some pictures related to Madain Saleh and Al Wajh. May Allah protect us from His wrath.

  • Safiya Mohamed Link Reply

    It is a very good article teaching people to believe in what Prophet Saleh (s.a.w)did to the thamud.

  • Robina Link Reply

    My father has been wanting to visit this place ever since he has seen pictures of the ruins. Muslims in Saudi Arabia fear to go there, because it is believed to be a cursed place. I myself am apprehensive when i think about the magnitude of Allah’s Wrath on the place. My father wants to go purely out of archeological interest. Would it be right? Especially since our Prophet (PBUH) warned us not to?

  • Kamaroon Link Reply

    Lovely Pictures….when you live in a place that is full of trees and flowers, with beautiful mountain scenery, it is amazing to think of people living in what is actually ‘glorified’ caves.

    Man is so smart and skilled…..Allah preserved the skill of the Thamud, though he preferred to wipe the people off the face of the earth and recorded their sins in the Quran, so we can learn to be humble.
    Thanks for the beautiful pictures and the wonderful text. .

  • Halima Abass Link Reply

    Subhannallah… i also read somewhere that in Jordan there’s a place called petra where either the Aad or the Thamud resided there please research on it and share with us In Shaa Allah.

  • Sachal Hussain Link Reply

    JazakAllah o khaira…..
    A very informative article!!!

  • Muhammad Alfa Link Reply

    I am personally touched by your comment below as regard the habitation of the Thamud compared with what obtain among Muslim brothers and sisters in the present generation. The comment;-
    “These archaeological sites that existed so long ago and inhabited by people of high sophistication definitely can drive us to reflect regarding the temporary nature of this world and to ponder about the fact that material things that tend to preoccupy us so immensely in our daily life, don’t really matter at the end”
    May Allah bless you abundantly and increase you in knowledge.

  • Ahmad Ibn Muhammad LAUWAL Link Reply

    Educative and revealing. Jazaa kallahu khayran. May we be Guided always by the Qur’an and Sunnah. Some of us are living in castles; some are heedless until the hour beckons.

  • Those activities were also the power of Almighty Allah given by him to mankind so that our believe comes in human mind that Allah is the superpower.

  • Ruhoof Nozeer Link Reply

    I wonder whether the unbelievers will ponder on the Might and Power of Allah?
    So we as Muslims need to continue our Da’wah and it’s up to Allah to give GUIDANCE as this is NOT in our hands.
    First and foremost may all Muslims learn and practise their religion and
    be united on the teachings of Qur’aan and Sunnah, and put a STOP on Dividing ourselves by strictly adhering to the true teachings of Islam. Aameen

  • Subhannah Allah!!! Alhamdulillah Tabarikallah. The pictures of Madain Saleh confirming what we’ve been reading in the Qur’an are awesome. We are to believe even if we don’t see but see the evidence reinforces or strengthens our belief. I never knew I will ever see where the people of Prophet Saleh the Thamud people, thanks to your endeavour to bring knowledge and evidence based truth to us.

  • Alamin Link Reply

    May Allah protect all Muslim and grant our parent pardon and internal peace.

Leave a Comment