A spiritual journey of 47-year-old Bosnian Muslim Senad Hadzic to perform Hajj took him 10 months as he covered the distance of 5,650 km (over 3,500 miles) before reaching Makkah in Saudi Arabia, Bosnian media reported.
“There was not a day, which was easy. Every day was difficult,” Hadzic, who reached Saudi Arabia several days ago, told journalists.
Hadzic left on foot the town of Banovici, in the northeast of Bosnia-Herzegovina, in December carrying an amount of approximately 200 euros (some $260) and a backpack weighing about 20 kilograms (45 lbs).
During his 314-days walking journey to the Muslim holy city in southwestern Saudi Arabia he crossed Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Jordan as well as war-torn Syria.
Difficulties emerged already in the beginning of his pilgrimage, when in December he had to suffer frosts of -35 degrees Celsius (-31 degrees Fahrenheit), while crossing Bulgaria.
Hadzic said the most difficult stretch of his journey was in Syria, where an ongoing bloody conflict since last year between the ruling authorities and opposition already claimed, according to UN estimates, between 20,000 and 30,000 lives.
He said problems started already on the Syrian border and after that Hadzic had repeatedly to negotiate either with government troops or with rebels as he was crossing the country.
“One of the Syrian soldiers asked me to pray for him in Makkah if I manage to survive,” Hadzic said.