Mosque in Medina in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia

Explore our Saudi Arabia travel guides

Exploring Saudi Arabia: A Land of Ancient Heritage, Natural Wonders, and Cultural Transformation

Saudi Arabia, a country deeply rooted in its traditions and rapidly evolving towards a futuristic vision, presents a unique blend of ancient history, stunning landscapes, and modern development. From the spiritual significance of Mecca and Medina to the burgeoning metropolis of Riyadh, the archaeological wonders of Al-Ula, and the untouched beauty of the Red Sea coast, Saudi Arabia is a land of contrasts and discovery.

Riyadh: A Modern Capital with Traditional Roots

Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, is a city where modern skyscrapers stand alongside traditional markets like the historical Al Masmak Fortress. The city symbolizes the nation's rapid progress and ambition, evident in its thriving business districts and cultural institutions like the National Museum. Yet, it also retains a strong sense of its past, reflected in its cuisine, architecture, and local customs.

Mecca and Medina: The Spiritual Heart of Islam

Mecca and Medina hold profound importance for Muslims worldwide. Mecca, home to the Holy Kaaba in the Grand Mosque, is the birthplace of Islam and its most sacred site, while Medina houses the Prophet's Mosque and tomb. These cities offer a unique insight into the spiritual and historical foundations of Islam.

Al-Ula and Jeddah: Historical Treasures and Coastal Charm

Al-Ula, a region rich in archaeological sites, including the ancient city of Hegra, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a testament to Saudi Arabia's deep historical roots. Jeddah, on the Red Sea coast, offers a blend of old and new, with its historic Al Balad district and contemporary Corniche. The Red Sea also presents opportunities for diving, exploring coral reefs, and relaxing on pristine beaches.

The Edge of the World and the Empty Quarter: Natural Wonders

Saudi Arabia's diverse landscapes range from the dramatic cliffs of the Tuwaiq escarpment, known as 'The Edge of the World', to the vast dunes of the Rub' al Khali or Empty Quarter, the largest continuous sand desert in the world. These natural wonders offer adventure and a chance to witness the beauty of the Saudi Arabian landscape.

Saudi Cuisine and Cultural Transformation

Saudi cuisine, with dishes like kabsa, jareesh, and dates, offers a taste of the region's culinary traditions. The country is also undergoing a cultural transformation, embracing arts, entertainment, and tourism, marking a new era in its history.