Muslim pilgrims gather at the Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia's holy city of Mecca on Thursday, August 8.
Abdel Ghani Bashir/AFP/Getty Images

Hajj 2019: The pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia

Updated 1:35 PM ET, Mon August 12, 2019

Muslim pilgrims gather at the Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia's holy city of Mecca on Thursday, August 8.
Abdel Ghani Bashir/AFP/Getty Images

The annual Hajj pilgrimage, which began Friday, is considered the spiritual pinnacle for 1.8 billion Muslims around the globe.

As one of the five pillars of Islam, Muslims who are physically and financially able to make the journey to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, are required to perform the Hajj at least once in his or her lifetime.

The journey, which is made over five days during the last month of the Islamic calendar, is a chance for Muslims to seek redemption, to forgive and be forgiven. During the pilgrimage a number of detailed rituals are carried out,