السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته
I’m Nadia and, before anything else, THANK YOU for visiting the blog!
This blog is about halal travel and food, mainly geared towards Muslim travellers but also to highlight to those who don’t know what halal travel means.
It was noted during the Arabian Travel Market’s Global Halal Tourism Summit—which took place at the Dubai World Trade Centre in April 2018—that Muslim travellers will spend $157 billion by 2020, driven by millennial travellers and the top outbound market remains Saudi Arabian, which will grow 17 per cent over the next three years alone, to reach $27.9 billion.
For more than a decade, I lived in the United Arab Emirates, a country that is home to people from all over the world, a haven for food lovers (halal food everywhere!), tall skyscrapers, and a short flight away from a lot of amazing destinations.
In February 2019, we moved to Hyderabad, India! I am very excited to explore this country’s rich history, places, culture, current events, and food!
Did you know that India has a Muslim population of some 170 million, making it the second-largest Muslim population in the world after Indonesia? I look forward to helping bridge the gap between Muslim travellers and destinations, particularly here in India.
While strolling the gardens and admiring the grand and elaborate Mughal-style architecture of the Taj Mahal, a couple of chipmunks came out of the woods and stood at my feet. Just when I crouched to observe them closely, one of the gardeners appeared and offered me a piece of bread to feed the chipmunks. I hesitated.
“Go on,” he encouraged me. I accepted the bread. The chipmunk feasted on it greedily, much to my amusement. Masood took a picture of this encounter. Afterward, when I stood up to thank the gardener for the bread, he told me, “Only 10 rupees for the bread, madam.”
Little did I know that the ten-rupee picture displayed above would end up being my main display picture online, both on this blog and all my social media accounts.
However, the travel bug had bitten me at a young age. I had my first passport at two-months old. I grew up traveling between two countries to be with both set of grandparents.
When I was about eight or nine years old, we moved six houses because my father was trying to establish his business. My siblings and I thought of these moves as adventures. My father had traveled extensively since he was a teenager so when, at bedtime, he would tell us all about his adventures, I would listen with great interest, picturing myself in those stories and dreaming about them when I fell asleep.
When I was ten, my father took me and my younger sister hiking. It was a mountain in Mindanao with no proper hiking trail. I remember walking for the longest time on uneven ground, wet from recent rains, tall trees all around us, and an angry river coursing on our right. My feet ached and I had a little swooning episode from thirst that day. But I still loved the trip!
I started blogging at The Purple Journal then moved to my own domain here in February 2011. The idea of blogging began when I returned from my very first trip to India. I came home with tons of stories, memories, and photographs that I knew I had to document somewhere.
It all began as personal blog where I’d write about anything: family, conversations, disasters in the kitchen, my neighbours. I was still quite new in Dubai so the posts reflected observations from an excited young woman who was starting a new phase in life. A woman who took cringe-worthy photographs and still thought it was decent enough to be posted online!
Gradually, as the number of my readers grew, so did I as a blogger. My blog has finally found its niche: halal travel, with lots of honest hotel and restaurant reviews. This blog hopes to help you maximize your paid time off and inspire you to travel and explore!
While the blog is being read by awesome folks of all ages and background, majority are couples and families who travel with some amount of comfort and luxury.
You’ll find three banners on the homepage of the blog to help you find your way. Posts have mainly been sorted by:
|Reviews||Hajj & Umrah||Recipes|
You can also click on the Category drop down on the homepage’s sidebar.
While most of the restaurants and hotels that I review have been booked and fully paid by us, I have accepted a few complimentary stays as well, and only because I love the establishment and the services they offer! I always make note on the post if a stay or meal is complimentary. However, rest assured that all opinion remain my own and what you get is an honest review.
I remember reading a popular blogger mention that travel blogs should never dedicate entire posts to hotel reviews. Well, I don’t quite agree with said blogger. I may have less readers in comparison but I have learned that the hotel and restaurant reviews on this blog garner a lot of views, and I regularly get emails and messages on Facebook about them!
When I’m not blogging, I enjoy dreaming about my next destination, reading and trying out new recipes.
Still have a question or two, a proposal to review your product or business, advertising, or perhaps to simply drop a line to say hi?
You can either leave a message on the contact page or drop me an e-mail at: [email protected]
Let’s connect on your favourite social media channel:
Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest
Have a nice day!
assalamu alaykum, thank u for your beautiful comments on my blog. It seems also we have some things in common 🙂 Take care my sis.
Walaikum Assalam. You are on my blog roll now so that I can visit you more often 🙂
Very best of luck to you. I hope this blogging experience is as therapeutic for you as it has been for me already. We both seem to be seeking the same results of inner-peace and fulfillment through our writing. Thank you for your comment on my blog. I appreciate it. And I look forward to reading more from you!
i’ve just read through your blog and i find it quite interesting! and i must say you have been blessed with a good mate mashallah. i pray allah grant your duahs inshallah..
thank you for your comment, its nice to be reminded that its all in allah’s hands…we can only wait and pray patiently.
Mary, thank you! It hasn’t been a month yet since I’ve started blogging, but the experience has indeed been therapeutic. Do visit me again soon 🙂 Best of luck to you too.
Pucca, thank you for dropping by, and specially for the duah. I really appreciate it.
God bless you too.
thanx for stopping by mine. such a sweet advice you gave. and you have a nice blog here. keep writing!
Hey, I decided to look your blog as well 🙂 and I really liked it.
So, you r also looking to reduce 16 lbs till Sep ’08? Me too!! How about we share advices/stuff like that? I am real need of someone to motivate me! 🙁
Sure, would love to have a weight loss buddy!
Hi – I have web pages and a blog attached to it for your comments – I write about social issues I hear about and other stuff – lots going on in there – Inviting you all over – Do visit me as well! 🙂
Pucca’s comment musta sounded rather odd and random eh…so sorry dear, i was reading your blog and musta signed in with my other account when i left that comment.
anyways, dearest…basra and pucca are one and the same.
No problem at all. Both Pucca and Basra are welcome here 🙂
Nice to meet you
Nice blog , and nice to meet you
With Best Regards
Eng. Hasan Al-Bahkali
~ Walaikum Assalam, Eng. Al-Bahkali. Thank you for stopping by. Have a nice day!
Yours’ is an interesting blog indeed with posts on diverse subjects. Nice work.
~ Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.
Nice weblog. Very enthusiastic.. 🙂
~ Thanks, Eerv! Glad you stopped by 🙂
Should I say your blog’s header is awesome! 🙂
i liked the posts related to ur travels…
hey. i got here through specs. loved the blog name and had to check it out!!
Figured I got your link from Umm Travis, read a couple of your entries and I’m hooked. LoL~! Insha’Allah, will be stopping by more often in future. 🙂
Masha Allah nice blog. Insha Allah will keep visiting often. 🙂
Though I doubt you remember me from oh so long ago… But I look forward to reading and catching up. In about 5 days. x_x
Despite the fact that i am very comment-shy i just have to say this- i think your blog is very original and i love the pictures you take. Another thing i couldn’t get enough of is the way you documented your trip to Saudi it was refreshing to see it through someone else’s eyes.
As’salamu Aleikum 🙂
Very nice blog. Masha’Allah 🙂
As Salaam Alaikum,
Thanks for your visit to Risk Rap.
I wish you a blessed Ramadan.
Peace and prayers,
now that is some gift a husband could give outta love 🙂
surely i m envious but pleased to hear 😀
OMG my name is Nadia too! And I love your site.
I like your blog
I visited your blog some time last year perhaps while searching some thing about UAE. I just loved it as a great information resource about UAE.
Today I saw this blog in my bookmarks and so visited it once again. I really like this blog, I must say 🙂
Ahmed Irfan, thank you and welcome to The Purple Journal 🙂
Mashallah this is a very nice blog! keep it going sister.
JazakAllah khair, Aufidius. Welcome to the blog!
Oh the theme of the blog is changed again…
Isn’t it a bit too early?
I loved the City name tabs in the previous template. How shall I access those posts now?
Ahmed Irfan, I changed the theme again just last night. I really had to. The sea green color started to get on my nerves. But I really liked the layout that came with that theme.
You can still access the city names under the “Places” dropdown, which is just after the “Recent Posts” list on the right of the blog.
Okay, so now I’ve moved the “Places” on top of the “Recent Posts” 😀
O thanks indeed… 🙂
Once again – your umrah posts are so awesome. mashaAllah.. you were referring to your mother-in-law as mom yes? 🙂
Welcome to the blog, Faheem! I’m glad you liked the Umrah posts, thank you. Yes, I was referring to my mother-in-law 🙂
Thanks for the comments on my page.
I don’t get a chance to read many other blogs as im doing this through a mobile connection, but reading yours has been really interesting.
Welcome to the blog, Gillank!
First of all, we both use the same theme (well, forget about the self-hosted wordpress blogs that I own). But here I see you’ve decorated and designed your blog in a much sweeter way. I especially loved the header.
I expected something more from the about page, such as who you are, where you live in, what you do etc.
Anyway, I think you’re blogging pretty well. I love blogging, too. But the problem is I love blogging in English while my native language (and also mother tongue) is Bangla. So, I feel limited while trying to write in English. I can’t stop blogging in English cause without this language I cannot reach a global audience. Whatever, I liked your blog and hopefully I will be coming back.
Please don’t forget to keep visiting my blog and comment on any post you like. (If you’re a technology-lover, you might like to try out this blog too that I own http://www.aisajib.com).
Welcome to the blog, Sajib! My “About” page is more about the blog and less about me. I mentioned my name, religion, marital status, where I live, and what I enjoy doing the most. I am comfortable sharing only that much (on this page, at least. Because you’ll eventually find random information about me and my husband as you read the posts) 🙂
I’m working on my English too! It’s my, well, third language 🙂
You writes well Nadia………………Your English is awesome too……..
I tried my best…..but I don’t know why I am not being able to better like other bloggers surrounded by me like you………
It’s nice to meet you and nice to read your blog.
Welcome to the blog, Shamim! I don’t have great tips to give you on how to improve your English writing skills, but you can perhaps start by reading a lot of English books, news, blogs, etc, and try to analyze how sentences are structured. I think you can start by reading 70 ways to improve your English.
I like your blog, it’s very unique and original. It’s cute~ 🙂
Walaikum Assalam, and welcome to the blog 🙂
Your page named Posts carries all your posts in chronological order. I find this very useful. Did you do this manually? Or through a plugin?
I did it manually. I started it when I had only 10 posts, and continued adding to it as I published each post.
Hi Nadia –
Thanks for stopping by my blog! I don’t have time to read your blog now…Am preparing for a trip to Europe, leaving tomorrow…but I will when I return!
Welcome the blog, Sherry! I’m looking forward to reading your Europe posts.
Thanks for dropping by & leaving a comment, if not I wouldn’t have found your blog! What lovely pictures you take! 😀
Walaikum Assalam, Ghazlena. Welcome to the blog!
walikum salam very nce blog n i have added u into my blog roll so that i can read it daily
Thank you, Reedsss. Welcome to the blog!
assalamualaikum sister. greetings from Indonesia 🙂
Walaikum Assalam, Dida. Welcome to the blog!
assalamualaikum nadia! thank you for visiting my blog, you have wonderfull pictures on your blog. i enjoy browsing it … 🙂 have a great day there.
Walaikum Assalam, Sis! Thank you so much and welcome to the blog!
You look really cute:) and interesting stuff you’ve here!
Thank you, spotlesssoul! Welcome to the blog 🙂
Sister, this is really nice to find your blog in the blog-o-sphere…
Hope I will be visiting this blog regularly in future. 🙂
Walaikum Assalam. Welcome to the Purple Journal!
I came across your blog today and have been reading through your very interesting posts. many of them make great reads and i enjoyed them. your Umrah posts are exceptional, i just came back from Umrah with my family few weeks back so i was able to relate to your words and feelings easily.
you are doing a great job here. keep it up. The purple journal is definitely going on my blogroll
Walaikum Assalam, SuperSpace, and welcome to the Purple Journal!
I’m glad you enjoyed reading the Umrah posts. It’s been a long time and I miss the entire experience. How was your own Umrah experience? May Allah accept your Umrah and prayers, ameen.
Have a nice day!
If you had not been on my site I would not have discovered this wonderful site and oh-so-awesome photographer.
Thank you, Elmer.
Assalaam Alaykum Nadia!! You have an amazing blog with amazing photographs!! Masha’ALlah! I wish you were here so I could get you to take some photographs for me 🙂
Keep up the amazing work sister!!!
Walaikum assalam, Zeba and welcome to the Purple Journal! I’d be happy to take your pictures!
Thanks for spending your time.. to see and comment on my blog…..that …with in the minutes of publishing …..receiving a comment…..obviously made me happy….that too from a new visitor……….Also…Its interesting to see your post names…definitely will take some time to read those…..Thanks and Have a great day!
You are most welcome, Sarav. Welcome to The Purple Journal!
وعليكم السلام ورحمة الله وبركاته
you are so great sis ^^~
i’m really glad to have your blog in my favorite bar ^^!
Assalamu alaikum, sis. Thank you so much and welcome to the Purple Journal 🙂
Ooooh, I like your blog. Just yesterday I got my first DSLR, and I am so happy!
Thank you so much, Zahara! Congrats on the new DLSR and have great fun taking pictures!
Life takes huge turns when you least expect it..And it’s great that you are making the most of every opportunity 🙂
I’ve lived in UAE for awhile and I love that place! By the way what made you choose the name “The Purple Journal”? Why purple?
UAE is a beautiful and safe place, and we love it here too! When I was choosing a name for this blog, I came up with a few interesting ones. However, they were all taken already. Also, I didn’t particularly know what I’d be blogging about; I had no idea this page will be filled with photography! Purple is my favorite color, that’s all there is to say about the blog’s name 😀
thanks for the appreciative comments on our blog.
we will now see UAE through your blog.
Happy travelling & blogging
Bindhu & Unny
Hello Bindhu & Unny!
Thank you and welcome to the blog 🙂
welcome to your new home Nadoo. (a name given to u by me ..forcefully) cholly for that :$
Aww, thank you, Pervisha!
Yeah, you’re the culprit! Acha theek hain, maaf kiya 😀
I’ve just stumbled upon ur blog and i think i’ll be coming around more often!
You just won an award from Me. 🙂 Visit http://khanumsays.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/awards-night-awards-delight/ and accept your Shiny award.
Thank you!!! *hugs*
and I’m stealing the arabic text at the top of this page from you :$ don’t sue me ok.
Too late…I’ll see you in court next week :p
I have awarded u with one more trophy. Please accept it. http://khanumsays.wordpress.com/2011/07/05/showcasing-photography-of-nadia-masood/
Oh wow! I’m coming right over to claim my trophy!
Nice site, im a regular visitor now 🙂
Thanks, Adeel! Welcome aboard.
Today, after a long gap, I thought of this blog. To ensure the url, I googled “purple journal” and…I am thrilled to see you have moved to your own domain ماشاء اللہ
A blog like this really deserved its own domain and hosting. الف مبروک
Thank you so much, Ahmed Irfan. Welcome to the blog!
Alsalam alikom Nadia
Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment so that I could discover your blog
Look forward to following your coming posts and exploring past ones
Thank you again
Walaikum assalam, Sawsan! You are most welcome. I just discovered your food blog today and I can’t wait to try some of your recipes!
Love the blog and very interested in reading through the Umra series. I lived in Saudi but used to get off at the motorway towards Mecca where it said ‘muslims only’. So great to be able to have a look inside through your eyes.
Hello Sally! Thank you so much. I’m glad you enjoyed the Umrah Series. Welcome to the blog!
A very interesting N colorful “home” you got over here 🙂 Keep it up!
Walaikum assalam! Thank you so much 🙂
Beautiful blog you’ve got going here!
Thanks for stopping by my blog 🙂
Thank you so much, Amira! Welcome to the blog 😀
Hi Nadia, you’ve got a great blog! And you’re tempting me to travel to UAE too! Thanks for visiting my blog BigOnTrips.
Thank you for visiting! If you plan on visiting the UAE, I’ll be happy to help you plan your trip.
“This means my travel stories do not include getting drunk, dancing, swimsuits, and gambling.” – dang! I didn’t realize till now that this site is so pale and so lame… I mean, what’s a blog without the excesses, huh? as far as I know, this blogging business has a lot to do with human frailties, is why people come over – to spy on one another and realize the living business is not for folding up yet…
am gonna stick around a while longer and see what mischief and mishaps could be managed on this side sans the necessary elements of life… the blogger better be creative – she has to invent them, by golly! no drinking, no dancing, no gambling? ay, it makes a mockery of civilization and its attainments, haha. 😉 am too slow, not recognizing this is such a poor, drab place… 😉 i better scout for entertainment some place else. wonder why i didn’t realize things are so the instant i landed on these pages. am getting old and dense, really… . 😉 hello, Nadia dear… ^_^
“what’s a blog without the excesses?” I agree with you on that. That is why this blog has excessive pictures and food-related posts 😀
Haha! “mockery of civilization and its attainments” that is so funny!
You are not old or dense, my dear. You are good at spotting talent when you see one 😉 (this is my humble self talking).
I cant believe i never looked at this section before, untill you pointed me on my blog site .. i guess that explains why that section was left empty .. hahahhaha… the expressions and sentiments regarding Masood bhai now means to its full to me when i faced troubles in my laptop today … God bless you guys both.. ameen
Ameen! So sweet of your sis *hugs*
I hope your laptop does not give you any more problems now. I love reading your posts!
I stumbled across your blog as I searched for tips for doing Umrah. My husband and I are InshAllah going in a few weeks and I loved reading about your experience! Thank you for sharing! 🙂
~ Shaza ~
Hi there:) I love your blogsite and I enjoy every bit of reading it.:)
Hi Nadia, today’s post on the vanishing Taj Mahal in Dubai Bloggers got me hooked onto your blog and here I am spending a lot of time browsing through your travel. You’ve got such a beautiful blog. Planning to hop in frequently now – have subscribed and Liked and Followed etc!!!
Hi Nadia, all the photos were amazing.
I also love the way you write… 🙂
MashahAllah! What a beautiful blog! I’m completely in love! If you wouldn’t have visited my novice blog and left a sweet comment I probably would never have came across yours! Will be stalking you now through Bloglovin’.
Walaikum as Salam! its so kind to start your intro with Salam!
I just come across you amazing world by Nawabi Musings blog & I’m glad I did it. Love your blog. It has so much to learn, as being from same culture. Photos are gorgeous.. no doubt! 🙂
Lots of love,
Sadaf F K.
You’re a great story-teller, masha Allah :). Landed here while im searching something about umrah.
Will follow u in instagram since im not into blogging nowadays :p
Feeling amazed on knowing that you married an Indian guy despite of strict visa regulations between two neighbouring countries. I really liked your previous blog and this one as well.
Welcome to the blog, Shaharyar! I don’t update The Purple Journal since getting my own .com so all new posts will be published here.
I love your posts! To be honest your blog inspired me to start writing. I can say I am your fan 🙂 Keep up the good work, may Allah bless you!
Walaikum assalam. Thank you so much!
Thank you for visiting my blog. this prompted me to visit your in turn. Very interesting reading and good photos. Will definitely be re-visiting to read all your posts.
Beauiful Blog Nadia…thought I’d stop by here and say a quick hello since we interact mainly on social medis:))
Hello Shy! It’s SO nice to see your comment here. We’ve always been interacting on social media. Thank you so much!
Hello Nadia, thank you for sharing your bird photos. It did help me identifying the most common feathered friends around the area where i am working. Good luck…