Saudi Arabia Tourism


Ideal duration: 5 - 7 days

Currency: Saudi Riyal (SAR)

Best time: November - February (Read More)

Budget: Moderate

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"Hub of Temples and Mosques"

Saudi Arabia Tourism

Saudi Arabia, officially known as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is an Arab country located in Western Asia and constituting most of the Arab Peninsula. Most of the citizens are Muslims, and freedom of religion is restricted by the laws of the country. Only Muslims are respected in the country but, people are very helpful and friendly towards tourists. The rich history, vast stretches of deserts, forts, mosques and temples spread throughout the country will overwhelm you. The out-of-the-box festivals and Islamic cultures, etiquettes and tradition will leave you fascinated.

Tourist Places In Saudi Arabia

Regions in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is divided into thirteen regions. The northwestern region which has Tabuk, Jawf and Madinah is rich in antiquities and archaeological sites. While the traditional handicrafts and unique festivals of Al Qasim and amazing forts with intricate designs and architecture in Riyadh located in central Saudi Arabia will blow away your mind. Mecca region situated in southern part of the country is the holiest city and very sacred to Muslims. Witness the beautiful mosques and people flocking in huge numbers to perform rituals in religious places.

Best time to visit Saudi Arabia

November - February is the best time to visit Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is an extremely dry country and rainfall is minimum. In summers, the country witnesses blistering heat and humid temperatures thus, making it uncomfortable to get around. From November onwards, the weather is welcoming. However, nights are quite chilly but you can easily explore the place during day time.

Holidify's Opinion

  What's Great?

Generous people. A safe place for women. Hygienic country.

  What's not so Great?

You might face little racism. Less entertainment. Excessive restrictions. No adventures. Frequent sandstorms. Extremely scorching summers. Heavy traffic.

For Whom

Devotional people. Spiritual peace seekers. Islamic culture lovers.

Stay options in Saudi Arabia

There are various types of hotels throughout the country. It is pretty easy to find an accommodation and book hotels except during peak season which starts from November. You will find some of the countries best hotels in Riyadh, Al Khobar, Mecca and Jeddah. Camping in the country is a memorable experience especially in deserts. All the major cities of the country have holiday villages and resorts also. Most of them are located in Jeddah and Al Khobar. Youth hostels are also catching up.

More on Saudi Arabia


The only currency accepted in Saudi Arabia is Saudi Riyal having denominations of 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200. Credit cards are also accepted to a great establishments. It is advisable to carry enough cash with you to pay tips to taxi drivers or waiters. Sometimes, it can be difficult to cash traveler's cheque. Some shops and restaurants might refuse to accept traveler's cheque, or at some stores, you will get poor exchange rates.

Foreign currency can be exchanged at many outlets in Saudi Arabia. It is advisable not to change currency at your hotel since rates are horrible there. Many commercial banks offer suitable rates. ATMs are widely available in the country including shopping malls and major airports. Saudi Arabia's bureau de change is situated at the airport also.

Saudi Arabia follows strict laws against drinking and late night music. So, it's hard to find any bars or clubs offering you drinks. Saudis are not party-lovers, and they remain behind closed doors at night. So, if you are travelling here for dancing, enjoying and getting drunk, the country may disappoint you with its quiet nightlife.

Shopping can turn out to be a great experience in Saudi Arabia. There are many luxurious malls which have different brands. Saudi Arabian malls can fulfil all your shopping needs. Some of the famous malls are Al-Rashid Mall in Al Khobar, Red Sea Mall in Jeddah, Granada Centre and Riyadh Gallery Mall in Riyadh. Gold shopping is popular in Saudi Arabia. Soft and mouth-watering dates are worth taking home. Bazaars or souks are great places to head for not too expensive shopping. From these bazaars, you can purchase handicrafts. Haggling is very common and make sure to bargain as much as you can for a lower price.

Most of the festivals celebrated in Saudi Arabia belong to Muslims. Some of the prominent festivals celebrated throughout the country are Eid al-Fitr, Eid al-Adha, Ramadan, Saudi National Day, Islamic New Year. Janadriyah National Festival is the biggest cultural and folk festival which takes place in Riyadh, in February. Camel races, poetry reading, folk dances and traditional art and crafts shows are some of the highlights of this festival.

The long history of Saudi Arabia takes us back to the time when Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam from Mecca united the Arab tribes and led a successful campaign to spread Islam across Arabian Peninsula.The city of Mecca and Medina became the holiest cities of the Muslims in the whole world. After the death of Muhammad, the modern history of Saudi Arabia started when an Islamic reformer Al Wahhab and Saud founded the Saudi state in 1744. The Saud family faced opposition from Egypt and Ottoman Empire. After this, the modern state of Saudi Arabia was established by Abdul Al Saud. He took over the city of Riyadh and continued to win other areas. After his death in 1953, his son Saud became the King. Ruling for 11 years, he died, and many successors took over the throne. The present king of the country is King Salman.

Tap water everywhere is potable. However, travellers prefer bottled water to play safe. Summers are hot and humid. Make sure to keep the water level in your body high to avoid dehydration and sun strokes. There is no particular vaccination required to travel to Saudi Arabia. But, take over the counter medicines with you.

In Saudi Arabia, you are expected to dress very conservatively. Men should wear long trousers and long-sleeved shirts. You should avoid wearing shorts. There are certain dressing rules for local Muslim women like wearing an abaya, a traditional black over-garment. However, as a tourist, you should at least dress properly and always carry a headscarf for covering hair. When shaking hands or accepting gifts, the only right hand should be used. Greetings are limited to strong handshake with the right hand or a hug. But, physical contact between men and women is often stared upon in public or in parties.

Tipping practice in Saudi Arabia is common. You should give at least ten percent to waiters or taxi drivers. Behave generously with locals. Avoid drinking or smoking during festivals. Also, do not offer drinks to Muslims until you are sure that they drink. Photography is quite restricted in public places. Before clicking pictures, first, take the permission. Check for the sandstorms before visiting deserts.

Islam is the state religion of Saudi Arabia, and most of the citizens are Muslims. The law of the country restricts freedom of religion. There are people belonging to varied religions like Christians, Hindus and Buddhists but, they are allowed to practice their religion freely. Saudis believe in their values and cultures. They take their responsibility towards family seriously. Arabic is the official language of Saudi Arabia. Some people also use Urdu or Farsi. However, English is also widely spoken, and you will not face any communication problems.

The main ingredients of Saudi Arabian dishes are wheat, rice, lamb, chicken,Êyogurt, potatoes and dates. Some of the prominent dishes of the country are Kapsa, Margoog, Arekah, Mahela, Gursanand many others. Drinking tea and coffee is also popular in Saudi Arabia. Kahwa is an Arabian coffee which is ubiquitous and most commonly served to guests in households. From yoghurt, a drink named Laban is made. However, drinking alcohol, especially during festivals is illegal in the country.


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