What is a Caravanserai?

Caravanserai door

The original Caravanserais were established to support the flow of commerce in the time of the Golden Age of Islam, its beginnings in the 8th century. Mass amounts of knowledge, people & their commerce were crossing from the regions of Andalusia (now Spain) across North Africa, Middle of the East and into the depths of Asia. Muslims from all parts of these regions established these trade routes in part to make the sacred journey called Hajj in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Caravanserais offered a much needed place of rest to weary travelers recovering from the day's journey. Because the journey for many of the Muslims would take several months, the caravans were like floating cities of people bringing with them all necessities of life. They established a vibrant trade community wherever water was abundant, unknowingly giving birth to the Silk Road and modern day trade.