Muslim Pilgrims began their annual Haj on Wednesday, July 29.
This year's pilgrimage is significantly scaled back, with only 10,000 people already residing in Saudi Arabia attending the Haj — a stark contrast to 2019's 2.5 million figure.
Before and after Covid-19
The pictures paint a vastly different story from previous iterations.
Here is a picture from pre-Covid-19 days:
Here are the scenes from this year's pilgrimage:
As Haj reaches its climax
, masked pilgrims will climb Mount Arafat to pray and repent.
After sunset prayers, they will then climb down to Muzdalifah, another holy site, to sleep under the stars, before the final stage of Haj, the symbolic "stoning of the Devil".
Here's what that looked like in previous years.
Image from Saudi Ministry of Media