Saudi Arabia

Home to holy cities Mecca and Medina, Saudi Arabia has had religious tourism for centuries, and now is also opening up to more of the conventional kind. Besides a look into a singular society, it also offers fascinating places like Madain Saleh and the vast Empty Quarter.

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Latest Activity: Oct 24, 2021

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A little known ancient Nabatean site in Saudi Arabia

A fascinating article from the BBC about a key site of the same Nabatean civilization for which…Continue

Started by José Balido Nov 30, 2020.

Saudi to offer unrestricted tourist visas for the first time, but...

The Guardian reports that as part of a push to…Continue

Started by José Balido Sep 27, 2019.

Saudi Arabian Airline’s Flight Network & Luxury Inflight Services

With 70 destinations and 133 aircraft, Saudi Airlines is the…Continue

Started by Tripatini Jun 17, 2017.

Saudi Arabia opens up for tourism

KSA (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) has opened up for non Muslim tourists, albeit they are not going in full force to promote the destination. Most parts of the country are open save the cities of Mecca…Continue

Started by Mahmood M Poonja Feb 21, 2010.

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Comment by EnLinea Media on December 31, 2010 at 10:55am

An 18th-century fortress is bulldozed to make way for a shopping mall and replica of Big Ben in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Is this progress, or a crime against the country's historical and cultural heritage? Read the story and share your thoughts.

Comment by Ed Wetschler on September 4, 2010 at 3:47pm
In February Saudi Arabia opened up for non-Muslim tourists, but the government seems to have changed its mind: It just announced that it will no longer issue visas for travel unrelated to religion or business. What next?
Comment by EnLinea Media on March 10, 2010 at 8:28pm
Rijal Alma: a national heritage village

( HRH Prince Sultan Bin Salman, the president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities, launched the project for developing Rijal Alma as a heritage village. Rijal Alma, located in Aseer province 70 kilometers to Abha, was chosen as a part of this program, because it contains a lot of historical houses and other ancient monuments. This project comes as a part of SCTA's initiatives to develop heritage villages and sites in various provinces in the Kingdom with the collaboration of other government departments. The project will be carried out as a joint venture - eight ministries and cooperative societies owned by the residents of the village will cooperate on this project, which will benefit the locals in particular and the nation in general.

During the launch, Prince Sultan stated: “Rijal Alma is one of the SCTA's projects for developing heritage villages and towns projects. It aims at rehabilitating these sites after being on the verge of destruction and transforming them into economical projects that attract investments and generates employment opportunities for locals."

Rijal Alma village won the Prince Sultan bin Salman Prize for Preservation of Urban Heritage in 2006. Commenting on this, SCTA's president stated: “Rijal Alma village has introduced itself independently. The residents initiated the rehabilitation works a long time ago to attract tourists to the area and benefit from its economic potentials. We learned a lot from the Rijal Alma experience; we ought to help and support them through this project. What you have seen now is an example of public and private sectors and local community solidarity and cooperation; moreover, an example of an integrated economic, architectural, renovation, and training project aimed at providing various benefits to the residents of the village, such as creating jobs, economic and investment opportunities, marketing local products, as well as fighting poverty."

Other heritage development projects include Al-Muthnib village in Qassim, Jubbah in Hail, Al-Ola in Madinah, Al-Ghat in Ghat, and Thee Ain in Al-Baha.

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