Saudi Arabia Travel Guide
There are not many of us that thought that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia would, in our lifetimes, be a leading country for tourism. However their vision by 2030 is to connect with the world, build bridges between cultures and create prosperity for the future. With the money at their disposal not to mention the incredibly beautiful natural resources they have to share, you would be a fool to argue!
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the largest country in the Middle East and home to 13 regions and provinces all offering something different to the curious and adventurous tourist.
These regions are Al Baha, Al Jouf, Asir, Eastern Province, Hail, Jizan, Najran, Northern Borders, Makkah, Medina, Qasim, Riyadh and Tabuk.
Tourists can expect to enjoy a unique destination with a warm welcome along with stunning natural landscapes, a rich heritage and a fascinating culture.
Table of Contents
Saudi Arabia on Film
Public transport in Saudi Arabia is improving all the time and is generally well priced.
There is a well established and wide ranging bus network called Saptco. Buses offer a good varied network to some of the more remote parts of the country however services can be slow.
Regional Airports mean this is the easiest and quickest way to cover large distances.
There are currently just the three train lines available and all are well priced, safe and reliable.
Riyadh–Dammam, Riyadh–Jauf and Mecca–Medina via Jeddah.
With petrol so cheap car hire is very popular and available in all the major towns and cities.
As with many places in the world obtain a fare first before departing as this could save you a fortune versus the meter. Taxis are found in the bigger towns and can be hailed down.
Top Things To See & Do
The annual pilgrimage known as the “Hajj” takes place at Mecca which is the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad. However it is worth noting non-Muslims are prohibited from entering city of Mecca as well as the area around the iconic Kaaba stone.
Riyadh’s Kingdom Centre Tower
The Kingdom Centre is a shopping mall and residential complex and also an observation deck for some of the very best views of the city of Riyadh
The Empty Quarter or Rub al Khali desert. borders, Oman, the United Arab Emirates and Yemen. As those who are familiar with holidays in Dubai there are for those seeking adventure, excursions such as dune bashing and sandboarding and camel riding to camping out in the desert Arabian style!
Lost City of Mada’in Saleh
Very much like the Lost City Of Petra the Saudi Arabian lost city of mada’in Saleh dates back to the Nabatean Kingdom of the 1st century.
Prophet’s Mosque in Medina
The Prophet Muhammad taught and lived part of his life in Mecca. The mosque of Al-Masjid an-Nabawī, whose origins date back to the year 622 is considered the top sight and attraction here.
Red Sea Scuba Diving
The coast on the Persian Gulf and the Red Sea is home to some of the very best snorkeling and scuba diving in the world with the most famous sights at Allah’s Reef and Boiler Wreck.
Saudi Arabian has some awesome trekking including its most famous hikes at the Edge of the World, Al Ahsa Oasis & Jabal Abyad.
Saudi Arabia’s Six Unesco World Heritage Sites
The Kingdom is home to six natural wonders of the world all of which are recognised by UNESCO:
Hima Cultural Area
In the mountainous southwest of the Kingdom is Hima, one of the largest rock art complexes in the world. Hima has 34 archaeological sites featuring inscriptions carved into the rock face and depicting hunting, fauna, and fauna scenes.
Ancient tombs of the lost civilization of the Nabatean tribes
Al Turaif, Diriyah
Diriyah is home to Al Turaif which is the Al Saud families original seat and founded in the 15th century. There are Mudbrick houses in the Najdi style and a wealth of ancient history to discover.
Located on the Red Sea is the city of Jeddah. Its most famous attraction along with its fascinating streets are its “Coral Houses,” built out of blocks of coral harvested from the sea. They are said to be over 500 years old. In today’s world I guess many would frown upon the destruction of coral especially given the countries Red Sea Development plans which are focused on eco-tourism and sustainability.
Al Ahsa Oasis
A lush desert oasis is the largest self-contained oasis in the world with wonderful views, hot and cold springs and stunning mosques.
Rock Art in Al Hail
In the northern Hail region of Saudi Arabia there is rock art in the desert dating back up to 9,000 years.
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