Throughout the world are places of special significance to different religious groups. Here's just a sampling of the world's sacred spots.
The Holy Land?a collective name for Israel, Jordan, and Egypt?is a place of pilgrimage for Muslims, Jews, and Christians.
The Ganges River in India is sacred to Hindus. They drink its water, bathe in it, and scatter the ashes of their dead in it.
Mount Fuji, in Japan, is sacred to the Buddhist and Shinto religions.
The Black Hills of South Dakota are a holy place for some Native American people, who travel there in quest of a vision, a moment of peace and oneness with the universe. Vision quests last four days and four nights.
Mount Fai Shan is China's sacred mountain. It is thought to be a center of living energy?a holy place for Taoists and Buddhists.
The Sacred Mosque in Mecca Saudi Arabia, is sacred to Muslims. Muslims around the world face in the direction of Mecca five times a day to pray.
Lourdes, France, is the home of a Roman Catholic shrine where the Virgin Mary was said to appear to St. Bernadette.
Kairouan, Tunisia, became one of Islam's holy cities when, according to legend, a spring opened up at the feet of a holy leader, revealing a golden chalice last seen in Mecca.
See also Selected Worldwide Religions Sites on infoplease.com.