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9 Top Tourist Attractions to Visit in Saudi Arabia This Year

saudi arabia tourism

Saudi Arabia is as diverse in its landscapes as it is in its traditions and culture. From epic canyons to monumental desert tombs, evocative old towns to white-sand atolls, there are numerous beauty spots in Saudi Arabia waiting to be explored.

The country is home to pristine dive spots and great canyons that are simply awe-inspiring. The landscape is layered and varied, much like the ancient trading culture of the country. There is much to be explored in the souks of modern cities as well as around the pilgrims, poets, and desert homes of prophets.

As tourism opens up post-pandemic, we give you nine reasons to book الخطوط to Saudi Arabia to enjoy your holidays this year. These are the top tourist attractions that you definitely need to add to your Saudi Arabia bucket list.

  1. Wadi Al-Disah

Wadi Al-Disah

Located near Tabuk in the north of the country, Wadi Al-Disah is one of the most famous valleys in the Kingdom that will transport you to a time gone by. Visitors to this beautiful valley will be struck by its fresh air and tranquility. This otherworldly mix of Monument Valley and the Grand Canyon is an impressive collection of sandstone columns in a vast hollow.

On the edges of the valley, you will find striking red mountains. It also features an area known as the Blue Eye, into which water from different springs pours. The Nabataean façade and rock-carved tombs add to its beauty in addition to other archaeological sites that include the remains of residential settlements.

Make sure to witness the beauty of the sun when it casts its ethereal glow over the sculptural rock formations.

  1. Hegra

Hegra

This archaeological site offers clues about the mysterious empire that built it and its famous sister city of Petra in Jordan. In the scrub-speckled desert, you will come across beautifully carved giant boulders with classical-style columns and pediments poking out of the sands.

As the sun sets over the region, you will witness the dusty colors flare revealing the stains and pockmarks over these massive stones. Once a popular trade hub, Hegra has remained undisturbed for over 2,000 years. Its rock-cut constructions appear similar to its famous sister site of Petra located a few hundred miles to the north in Jordan.

With 111 intricately carved tombs, Hegra offers a closer look into the forgotten civilization.

  1. Umluj

Umluj

Also popular as the Maldives of Saudi Arabia, the coastal town of Umluj is home to 100 small islands known for their ancient swaying palms and egg-white sands. The quintessential activity in Umluj is spotting dolphins, snorkeling, fishing, and lazing on white sandbars.

The region is also a world-class dive area and is much quieter than Red Sea hotpots such as Sharm El Sheikh. Although a few sustainable resorts are under development on a few select islands, most of Umluj remains untouched by the masses.

You will also come across a black lava field of cones and craters here which feels a world apart from the turquoise waters and the dunes of the coast.

  1. Al Balad, Jeddah

Al Balad, Jeddah

A majority of Saudi cities have a historic quarter referred to as Al Balad which is marked by the scent of beautiful prayers and exotic spices. Al Balad in Jeddah is the most evocative of all. You will be mesmerized by the series of tight alleyways, clove-scented traditional bakeries, glowing Souq Al Alawi, and more while in Jeddah.

It was listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2014. Many of the crumbling mansions and other spots have been restored sensitively. The majestic 106-room Nasseef House is now a cultural center and a museum hosting photography and art exhibitions as well as lectures.

The cool cafés, mangour wood-crafting workshops, and galleries are infusing new life into the once-derelict buildings thereby promising a bright future to the district built during the seventh century.

  1. The Edge of the World

The Edge of the World

Located 90 km to the west of the capital Riyadh, Jebel Fihrayn is truly a geological wonder in Saudi Arabia and aptly named. It offers an uninterrupted view across the arid landscape where you can spot wild camels rambling across the ancient caravan routes.

The starkly dramatic views have turned it into one of the popular tourist destinations of Riyadh. Opt for a night camping in the Acacia valley after a good hike and witness the magical star-studded night sky.

  1. Diriyah

Diriyah

Located along the outskirts of Riyadh, Diriyah is one of the most striking desert cities in Saudi Arabia. Formed on the oasis that split from the banks of Wadi Hanifa, the region was once a powerhouse of commerce and culture. The city was once the seat of power for the Al Saud family in 1745.

You can explore the spectacular museums here such as the Salwa Palace which is popular for its mud-brick architecture. The ruins at At-Turaif were designated a UNESCO Heritage Site in 2010 and since then a restoration strategy has been devised aimed at bringing back its historical legacy to life.

  1. Al Qarah Mountain, Al Ahsa

Al Qarah Mountain, Al Ahsa

This is one of the lesser-known destinations in Saudi Arabia popular for its raw beauty. You can view a majestic stretch of canyons and sand-blasted caves sculpted over the millennia from the mountain summit.

The limestone cliffs, a warren of honeycomb caves, passageways, and nooks promise panoramic views of the region. Picturesque villages and palm-tree farms surround the mountain. Don’t forget to stop by the maze of artisanal shops and restaurants for a shady refuge.

  1. Al-Soudah Mountains

Al-Soudah Mountains

The Al-Soudah Mountains are home to the mud-brick village of Rijal Al-Ma’a situated above the clouds. You will come across beautiful buildings accentuated with colorful paint and gleaming white quartz. It is a popular destination in the country for nature lovers.

Several structures in the village have been restored and preserved by the local community. Want to ride a cable car and watch picturesque valleys? Head to the mud-brick village to experience a surreal landscape!

  1. Najran

Najran

Najran is one of the most colorful sites in Saudi Arabia. The region is home to one of the richest and the most diverse cultures dating back to hundreds of years. The government of Najran province and the locals are well-preserved the uncovered treasures here. Their clay houses are scattered on clifftops amidst farmlands and green forests. The locals are some of the friendliest you can come across while exploring hidden gems of the country.

Whether you seek adventure or laid-back exploration, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia offers something for everyone. With حجز مصر للطيران prices of falling every day, it seems like the perfect time to plan your holiday travel.