Muslim Village.com–Source: El Pais.com.– Night falls in Granada. Badiaa Lafdaili and Said Jellal leave their bags at the hotel and head out into the Andalusian city to explore. The Moroccan couple has already been in Bin al Mad’in, to give the nearby resort town of Benalmadena its orginal Arab name. “Andalusia is the birthplace of the great Arab poets and artists,” says Lafdaili, herself a teacher of Arab literature. Her husband, a civil servant, says that the only downside to their trip to Spain has been the absence of halal restaurants.
Laifdaili and Jellal are typical of a new generation of Muslims from countries with fast-growing economies eager to see the world. Spain is regarded by many as a must-see destination: a bridge between Europe and Islam, and whose history has left many visible traces of its five centuries under Arab rule.
“People think that Islamic tourism is half traveling, half praying, but they’re wrong. Muslims want to see the things that interest them, but without sacrificing their religious practices,” says Fazal Barhadeen, who runs Crescent Rating, which ranks hotels and restaurants according to their adherence to Islam. Such has been the interest from Muslims that an Islamic version of Trip Advisor is in the pipeline.
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