Many Muslims traveling across the globe finds it an issue to locate the correct direction of Kaaba, especially in the non-Muslim countries.
If you are west of Makkah, you should pray facing the east. In the US for example, the direction is South-East. If you are in Japan you would face South West, and if you are in South Africa, you would face North East.
Most mosques, prayer rooms in Halal hotels have little arrows in the room showing you which direction the Qibla is. If you are stuck in a scenario where you have no clue of Qibla direction, then you have a few options to figure out which direction you should pray:
Google has its own Qibla-finding service that uses the latest in augmented reality to help users find the right direction of the Qibla in Makkah.
The new webapp service, called Qibla Finder, is accessible through mobile browsers, enabling anyone to use the service regardless of their mobile’s model once the user enables the app to identify their location.
Use a compass
Not sure if many people are walking around with compasses in their pockets, but if you find yourself in a situation needing to pray without a smartphone at hand, you can only use a compass if you have a basic knowledge in geography. You have to know roughly where you are located from Mecca.
Hold out your compass flat on your hand, wait for the dial to settle North and then either turn left, right, up or down, depending on your geographical knowledge of where Mecca is.
Use the sun
Since the dawn of time, navigators have use the sun to figure their directions out. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west and knowing where the sun rises and sets in your area can give you a rough indicator of where Mecca is. Again this needs some basic geographical knowledge.
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