This Couple Is Travelling From Shah Alam To Makkah In A Modified Camper For Haj

They would have travelled 12,554km across eight countries by the time they reach Makkah.

Cover image via Syrrushaqwa/SAYS

On 2 May, married couple and retired lecturers Adnan Abdullah and Hadibah Idris left their Shah Alam home in a camper.

Their goal? To make the journey all the way to Makkah, Saudia Arabia, where they hope to perform the Islamic pilgrimage.

According to an exclusive interview by New Straits Times, the pair have driven an average of 500km a day in the past three months, across countries like Thailand, Myanmar, India, Nepal, and Pakistan.

Their sole mode of transportation for the expedition is a modified Ford Ranger 2.5 WLT, gifted to them by their five children.

Inspired by a Quranic verse about Haj, the duo affectionally dubbed the camper Unta Kurus (Lean Camel).

The verse from Surah Al-Haj encouraged Muslims to make the haj pilgrimage even if it was difficult.

"Whenever people ask me, why don't you and your wife take a flight to perform the haj? I will simply say to them: I prefer to do the journey the hard way," 66-year-old Adnan said.

Adnan led the design and construction of a cabin with a bed, a kitchenette, and a sitting area into the four wheel-drive.

The couple's son Syrrusilah designed the solar power system used for some of the caravan's equipment.

"I always believe in the conservation of energy and resources. That's the way it should be," Adnan explained.

While the pair continue to travel, their children are the "technical support unit" of their trip - their daughters Syrrulfarah and Syrrushaqwa handle their travel documentation and finances, as well as update relevant authorities when necessary.

For food, the couple cook simple meals in the mobile camper home's kitchenette

When they travelled during Ramadan, the pair were often too tired to prepare food after driving all day.

"We lost some weight as for several days in a row we relied on just serunding and bread to break fast and for sahur," 64-year-old Hadibah told New Straits Times.

The couple maintain Unta Kurus on their own and check its tyre pressure every day. At night, they sleep in hotels or camps at designated spots.

On two occasions, they had to stay in a police station and military camp due to security reasons.

In preparation for any medical emergency or health scares, there is a toolbox in the vehicle with plenty of medication from their son Syrrunnaja, who is a doctor.

The family "project" has been years in the making, and is intended to "make up" for all the times they could not travel while they raised their five children

"This trip is to compensate for all those challenging years of balancing family and work life," Adnan said in the interview with New Straits Times.

On top of the once-in-a-lifetime adventure, performing Haj is a "lifelong dream" for the couple.

However, their daughter told SAYS that their Hajj visa was unsuccessful.

Syrrushaqwa told SAYS that they found out about the unsuccessful application, made through Tabung Haji, in June.

The couple will reapply for the visa and hope for the best.

By the time they reach the holy land in August, Adnan and Hadibah would have travelled 12,554km across eight countries.

After Makkah, the couple plan to continue travelling to Baitulmaqdis, northern Africa, and Europe.

Malaysians interested in a caravan experience can stay in this Airbnb in Sabah:

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