Saudis using a taxi. Picture is for illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Supplied

Riyadh: A Saudi family had forgotten to pick her sleeping child during a taxi journey in the holy western city of Makkah, the online newspaper Ajel reported on Thursday.

The family took at dawn the taxi near the Grand Mosque in Makkah after they performed the Umra (lesser pilgrimage) and headed to their hotel in the suburban town of Al Azazia, the paper said.

During the journey, the three-year-old girl fell asleep on the back seat of the car.

The family left the taxi outside a restaurant, oblivious of the sleeping child.

After the car left, they found out that the child was still inside.

They reported the incident to security authorities that alerted patrols in the area about the taxi.

The car was spotted hours later at a checkpoint on a road leading to the holy city of Al Madina, about 400 kilometres from Makkah, according to the report.

The driver, a foreign worker, was astonished at discovering the presence of the child whom police later handed over to her joyous family.