The accuracy of that date is doubtful, as it would have been impossible to cover such enormous distances (from Mecca) in the course of only one year.

Because of that discrepancy, his subsequent dating until 1348 is highly uncertain.

From Cairo, Ibn Baṭṭūṭah set out via Upper Egypt to the Red Sea but then returned and visited Syria, there joining a caravan for Mecca.

Ibn Baṭṭūṭah witnessed all the glories and setbacks of the sultan and his rule, fearing daily for his life as he saw many friends fall victim to the suspicious despot.

His portrait of Muḥammad is an unusually fine piece of psychological insight and mirrors faithfully the author’s mixed feelings of terror and sympathy.

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Embarking on a boat in Jiddah, he sailed with a retinue of followers down both shores of the Red Sea to Yemen, crossed it by land, and set sail again from Aden.

This time he navigated along the eastern African coast, visiting the trading city-states as far as Kilwa (Tanzania).Nevertheless, he always felt happier in the realm of Islam than in non-Muslim lands, whether Christian, Hindu, or pagan.After his return from Constantinople through the Russian steppes, he continued his journey in the general direction of India.Ibn Baṭṭūṭah was received cordially and generously by all the local rulers and heads of religious brotherhoods (s).His journey continued across the Black Sea to the Crimean Peninsula, then to the northern Caucasus and to Saray on the lower Volga River, capital of the khan of the Golden Horde, Öz Beg (ruled 1312–41).In 1325, at the age of 21, he started his travels by undertaking the pilgrimage (hajj) to Mecca.