Mecca Population 2021

2,078,766
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Mecca's 2021 population is now estimated at 2,078,766. In 1950, the population of Mecca was 148,164. Mecca has grown by 36,660 since 2015, which represents a 1.80% annual change. These population estimates and projections come from the latest revision of the UN World Urbanization Prospects. These estimates represent the Urban agglomeration of Mecca, which typically includes Mecca's population in addition to adjacent suburban areas.

Mecca is a city located in Saudi Arabia. This city is the capital of the Makkah Region, and it is most known for being the holiest city of the Islamic religion. The population is 1,675,368, and with millions of Muslims visiting each year, it is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world.

City Size and Population Density

The city of Mecca encompasses a considerable surface area which comes to a total of 760 square kilometers (290 square miles) for the city proper. The metropolitan area expands out to 1,200 kilometers squared (500 square miles). The population density of Mecca is approximately 2,200 residents living per square kilometer (5,700 residents per square mile).

Mecca Demographics

Because Mecca is a city of Islam -which is enforced by strict laws- non-Muslims are not allowed to enter. The majority of residents reside in what is known as the Old City. Most of the workers are employed in the Hajj Industry.

Both people that live in the city and tourists come from different backgrounds and ethnicities. This includes people from South Asia, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, the Middle East, Africa and Europe. The city also has a large number of Burmese residents, with approximately 250,000 contributing to the overall population.

Mecca History

People of Islam believe that Mecca was first inhabited by the descendants of Ishmael. Throughout its early history, Mecca has been considered an integral center of trade - but this is somewhat disputed among scholars. In its earliest years, tribes would travel to Mecca annually to pay homage to the shrine, drive from the Zamzam Well, resolve debts, trade, and arbitrate disputes.

Muhammad was born in Mecca in 570 but later emigrated as the Muslims and Quraysh continued to fight. In 628, Muhammad attempted to enter Mecca but was not allowed. Muhammad later came back with 10,000 of his men, and the city eventually surrendered. At that time, Muhammad declared peace and amnesty for all residents. All pagan imagery was destroyed and it was dedicated to become a place to worship God.

In the 1800s, the First Saudi State captured Mecca and held it for ten years. It was also during the 1800s and early 1900s that cholera outbreaks from the pilgrims entering the company were at their worst. It was during the 1924 Battle of Mecca that the city was incorporated into Saudi Arabia. During this time, the most of the city was demolished and rebuilt. This has continued throughout the rule of Saudi Arabia. Since 1985, approximately 95% of historic buildings were destroyed. Much of this demolition was a result of new construction, including hotels, housing, and other infrastructure.

Mecca is considered to be the holiest center in Islam and millions of Muslims come from all over the world during the two pilgrimages: the Umrah and the Hajj. The city is home to the largest mosque in the world and it continues to evolve. The annual pilgrimages support the economy with the major influx of tourists and pilgrimage partakers. However, there are other important industries as well, including carpentry, iron manufacturing, copper, and banks. Because of the annual pilgrimages, the city has a rich cultural and historical heritage and is considered to be the most diverse city in the Muslim world.

Mecca Population Growth

The population of Mecca has seen steady growth throughout the years. Its role as a holy city of Muslims not only attracts millions of visitors, but many of these visitors choose to become residents. The city’s expansion to include highways, shopping centers, and many important industries makes it a prosperous city that appeals to new residents, so continued population should be expected into the future. Based on recent growth rate percentages, Mecca is on track to see a 2-5% annual increase in population.

Mecca Population 2021

Year Population Growth Rate Growth
20352,521,4371.07%26,640
20342,494,7971.12%27,625
20332,467,1721.17%28,533
20322,438,6391.22%29,321
20312,409,3181.26%30,034
20302,379,2841.31%30,756
20292,348,5281.36%31,501
20282,317,0271.41%32,193
20272,284,8341.46%32,830
20262,252,0041.51%33,424
20252,218,5801.56%34,020
20242,184,5601.61%34,632
20232,149,9281.67%35,253
20222,114,6751.73%35,909
20212,078,7661.80%36,660
20202,042,1061.86%37,218
20192,004,8881.92%37,794
20181,967,0943.08%58,823
20171,908,2713.08%57,064
20161,851,2073.08%55,358
20151,795,8493.08%53,702
20141,742,1473.08%52,097
20131,690,0503.08%50,538
20121,639,5123.08%49,028
20111,590,4843.08%47,561
20101,542,9233.08%46,139
20091,496,7843.08%44,698
20081,452,0863.09%43,480
20071,408,6063.08%42,122
20061,366,4843.08%40,862
20051,325,6222.95%38,012
20041,287,6102.48%31,161
20031,256,4492.48%30,365
20021,226,0842.48%29,632
20011,196,4522.47%28,876
20001,167,5762.48%28,256
19991,139,3202.48%27,535
19981,111,7852.48%26,870
19971,084,9152.47%26,184
19961,058,7312.48%25,623
19951,033,1082.48%24,967
19941,008,1412.48%24,364
1993983,7773.19%30,458
1992953,3195.52%49,869
1991903,4505.51%47,197
1990856,2535.51%44,731
1989811,5225.50%42,338
1988769,1845.52%40,237
1987728,9475.51%38,081
1986690,8665.51%36,091
1985654,7755.50%34,160
1984620,6155.52%32,465
1983588,1505.51%30,725
1982557,4255.51%29,121
1981528,3045.50%27,562
1980500,7425.52%26,194
1979474,5485.51%24,791
1978449,7575.51%23,495
1977426,2625.50%22,239
1976404,0235.52%21,135
1975382,8885.89%21,295
1974361,5937.41%24,953
1973336,6407.40%23,199
1972313,4417.42%21,659
1971291,7827.41%20,135
1970271,6477.41%18,745
1969252,9027.40%17,429
1968235,4737.42%16,271
1967219,2027.41%15,126
1966204,0767.41%14,083
1965189,9937.40%13,094
1964176,8997.42%12,223
1963164,6763.92%6,214
1962158,4620.56%884
1961157,5780.56%879
1960156,6990.56%876
1959155,8230.56%871
1958154,9520.56%865
1957154,0870.56%859
1956153,2280.56%857
1955152,3710.56%851
1954151,5200.56%846
1953150,6740.56%840
1952149,8340.56%838
1951148,9960.56%832
1950148,1640.00%

Mecca Population Data (Urban Area)

Name 2021 Population 2021 Growth
Riyadh7,387,8172.16%
Jiddah4,696,5351.87%
Mecca2,078,7661.80%
Medina1,517,5011.93%
Ad Dammam1,279,0922.12%
Hufuf Mubarraz848,4791.40%
Taif694,8940.90%
Buraydah684,6262.37%
Tabuk667,1551.50%
Jubayl631,0604.18%
Khamis Mushayt555,5891.44%
Najran418,7922.06%
Ha'il406,5461.54%
Hafar Al Batin359,0941.62%
Thuqbah351,9082.44%
Yanbu Al Bahr343,0302.40%
Khubar338,0722.74%

Other Cities in Saudi Arabia

  1. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations

Sources