The Haramain rail line is a recently-built high-speed railway that links Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia, with stops along the way in other cities.

Because Mecca and Medina are places where only Muslims are permitted, are non-Muslims allowed to board the train in general? Do the end stations have some sort of "non-Muslim escapes" to exit outside the restricted areas?

1 Answer 1


I've never visited but I have researched this in the past.

The upshot is that the station at the Medina end is outside the boundaries of the holy city, which are quite limited. On the other hand Mecca's holy city is huge, and the station is within the bounds of these. So non-Muslims are permitted to board and alight at Medina, but not at Mecca. So non-Muslims are not allowed to travel beyond Jeddah.

I'm afraid I don't have any practical experience with regards to how if at all this is enforced. So I don't know if for instance the station itself is somewhere you can go and then immediately leave as a non-Muslim. I'd err on the side of assuming that this would not be allowed though.

  • 15
    I am a Saudi and I confirm that this answer is correct. You will be fine riding the train from Jeddah, KAEC, Madinah. Commented Mar 1, 2023 at 16:51

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