New Delhi: The first astronaut of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Hazza Al Mansouri, on his first journey to space sent a picture capturing the aerial view of Mecca, Islam’s holiest place on earth, from the International Space Station (ISS).

Sharing the picture from his official page on the social media platform Instagram, he said, “A satellite image of Mecca, a place that lives in the hearts of Muslims, that they turn to for prayers… An incredible image of Mecca from the @iss.”

Following the post, he shared another image on Twitter from MBR Space Centre’s official handle, showcasing the night view of the UAE from space.

“Hazza al-Mansouri takes a photo of the UAE illuminating at night from the International Space Station,” the tweet read.

His posts were well received by thousands of Instagram and Twitter users.

Not only this, but Mansouri also wore the traditional dress of the Emirates while onboard, served his crew members with local snacks and participated in fun scientific experiments blindfolded.

The first Emirati to go to space, 35-year-old Mansouri embarked on his space journey on September 25, from the same launchpad that sent Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin into space. The space mission was much lauded as a huge crowd gathered outside the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre in Dubai roaring in celebration of the launch. The tallest skyscraper in the world, Burj Khalifa in Dubai was also lit up during his launch.

Mansouri returned to earth from his mission on the ISS on Thursday, hitting a milestone for the Arab country.