Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia

Blue Abaya’s Top Ten Amazing places to visit in Saudi-Arabia:

1. Madain Saleh If you visit only one place in Saudi-Arabia, let it be Madain Saleh. The other-worldly scenery, breath taking nature, and rich history make it a destination worth exploring for many days. Madain Saleh is not only the tombs of the ancient Nabatean people, but it offers much more for the tourist to explore. The Hejaz railway built Ottomans runs through it. Nearby the town of Al-Ula boasts a beautiful oasis, museums, an old mud village and ruins and tombs of Khuraibah.

madain saleh female tourists at tomb
al ula mosque wadi saudihjaz railway saudi engine

2. Najran The colorful city of Najran on the Yemeni border offers an unforgettable experience for travelers. Its unique history, architecture and culture blends in with the neighboring Yemen. Najran is the most tourist friendly destination in Saudi-Arabia that pleases even the most experienced traveler.

3. Farasan Islands A favorite diving destination of Jacques Cousteau, Farasan Islands have more than just private beaches and sand for every visitor to enjoy. The Islands are a bird watchers paradise and also have mangroves and endemic Gazelle species in addition to the numerous historical sites on the main island.

Read more about Farasan Islands here!

4. Empty Quarter It is not empty, it is full of beauty, silence, wildlife and tranquility. 

5. Al Soudah The Asir National Park and the Al-Soudah area near Abha are a lush, breezy paradise best visited in the hot summer months. The park offers trekking, camping sites, cable cars, and plenty of other outdoor activities in addition to interesting architecture and friendly people. Check out Blue Abaya’s Top recommended things to do in Soudah, Abha and Khamis Mushayt here!

6. Wahba Crater This volcanic crater lies 700km from Riyadh towards Taif. It has amazing scenery including lava fields, an oasis and salt pans and can easily be explored by foot. The site makes for an unforgettable camp out experience.

7. Al Lith

Al Lith is a small town about 275 km south of Jeddah. It is the port of departure for diving the Farasan Banks eco system.This is Saudi-Arabia’s best diving destination, with incredibly clear waters, amazing wrecks and abundant marine life.

8. Edge of the World One of the most spectacular views in Saudi-Arabia can be experienced from the Edge of the World which is part of the 800km long Jebel Tuwaiq Escarpment. When looking to the horizon from the edge it appears as if the plains continue endlessly. For the location and directions how to visit this magical place, go to Blue Abaya’s Guide to Edge of the World.

9. Taif

The mountain city of Taif is famous for its roses and rosewater. In the spring the flowers and the whole area are in full bloom. Taif is an excellent area for trekking and mountain climbing as well. (the lovely lady pictured below is a friend of mine)

10. Qassim The northern towns of Buraidah and Unaizah in the Qassim region offer rich cultural heritage and history. Unaizah has ancient farmlands, beautiful unique mosques, historical sites and an excellent traditional marketplace.

qassim marketplace unaizah
Lesser known amazing place in Saudi Arabia is this Riyadh Hidden Gem: The Secret Lake
Riyadh Secret Lake
For more amazing places to see in Saudi Arabia click here!
Experienced and adventurous travellers will enjoy treks Off The Beaten Path!

Don’t miss out on more Amazing travel inspiration from Saudi Arabia in the Wanderlust Wednesday KSA posts on Blue Abaya!

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  • bosnishmuslimaJanuary 4, 2012 - 2:38 am

    Love the pictures and would like to visit all the places. The deepest impact on me made the picture of the Empty Quarter. I already read a bit about it and am so longing to see it inshaallah…
    Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

  • AnonymousJanuary 4, 2012 - 6:04 am

    The only perfume I love is a bottle of Wardh taifi I bought from surrati’s. The smell is amazing and it is next to none compared to alcohol-based synthetic perfumes. The smell of roses must have lingered on your hands for days :)

    SirehReplyCancel

  • Meraj KhattakJanuary 4, 2012 - 10:28 am

    Very beautiful.

    I wish I could visit Wabha Crater, Al Soudah, Najran and Farasan Islands especially along with Asir National Park :) I wonder if Saudia govt allows foreign visitors to these places with ease?ReplyCancel

  • Almost a MuslimahJanuary 4, 2012 - 10:46 am

    amazing pictures! i loved the one of the carved in stone (?) entrance/gate on Farasan Islands I believe. The pattern is so intricate and it shows beautiful craftsmanship! thanks for sharing :)ReplyCancel

  • HeliJanuary 4, 2012 - 11:51 am

    Those places look so beautiful and interesting, I’d really, really like to visit them. Is it possible to travel to Saudi-Arabia as a tourist and move around by yourself?ReplyCancel

  • LaylahJanuary 4, 2012 - 1:57 pm

    bosnishmuslima-I hope you get to visit it someday its really another world out there!ReplyCancel

  • LaylahJanuary 4, 2012 - 1:58 pm

    sireh-yes the rosewater perfumes are sooo lovely! That is not me in the pic btw :)ReplyCancel

  • LaylahJanuary 4, 2012 - 2:00 pm

    Meraj-you can visit most places with ease but you will need permission to travel to Madain Saleh (you need police escort at all times because of the 2007 tourist killings),you need to plan and apply for permission for Empty Quarter as well because it has been closed off, and some sites in Najran need permission for foreign visitors.ReplyCancel

  • LaylahJanuary 4, 2012 - 2:02 pm

    Almost a Muslimah-thanks! I loved tatplace too. It’s actually the gate to a house on Farasan Island, or its a museum now but closed from public. We were lucky and the owner of the house invited us inside and I cannot praise this place enough, I could’ve just stared at this place for hours. Inside was even more amazing and colorful!ReplyCancel

  • LaylahJanuary 4, 2012 - 2:03 pm

    *that place*ReplyCancel

  • LaylahJanuary 4, 2012 - 2:04 pm

    Heli-at the moment it’s not possible because Saudi-Arabia has halted issuing tourist visas for unknown reasons until further notice, so most of these sites remain accessible for expats living in Saudi or persons on business or visitor visas.ReplyCancel

  • Chick Flick JournalJanuary 4, 2012 - 2:21 pm

    Heyy. Long time! Missed you! Lovely post. I’m loving the new tourism thing that’s going on hehe. well doneReplyCancel

  • AnonymousJanuary 5, 2012 - 6:26 am

    LOL, sorry mysterious Laylah, I thought that lovely lady was you :D

    SirehReplyCancel

  • Dorothy Explor'rMarch 3, 2012 - 12:31 am

    beautiful. i’m enjoying several posts from your blog :)ReplyCancel

  • FarooqMay 13, 2012 - 8:23 am

    happy to say that i have been to two places out of ten in the list. Madain saleh and edge of the world. hoping to go to more places on the list. Would appreciate if tourism would be a lil more easier in saudi.ReplyCancel

  • AnonymousSeptember 12, 2012 - 3:15 pm

    hey what is the best time for tourism in saudia arabReplyCancel

    • LaylahSeptember 15, 2012 - 1:11 pm

      I wouls say during the winter months oct-dec or then spring time march-april.ReplyCancel

  • Sarfraz AbbasiOctober 10, 2012 - 3:26 pm

    Winter is coming. Wahba crater and the so called edge of the world is on my list to visit as soon as possible. was really motivated by your other post about the edge of the world. Looking at those pictures, i really wished i was there to capture that.

    i do hope to go there on a clear day and the catches would come out good. Thanks for the details of how to get there.ReplyCancel

  • AnonymousNovember 14, 2012 - 4:13 pm

    hi layla, great photos and description as well. I wish u can suggest few fun places to visit in riyadh besides the edge, its really boring here on weekend and nowere to go but malls and restaurants, ps. I used to work at the finnish embassy here in riyadh on 2009, lovely people I must say :) – zeinaReplyCancel

  • A Free SpiritMarch 5, 2013 - 6:24 am

    The crater is at Wahba , not Wabha.
    Never common in Arabic the use of word Wahba too. Here just to clarify but was taken by the Good pictures too ..Thanx.
    A Saudi.ReplyCancel

  • Rizwan RiyazMarch 29, 2013 - 11:46 am

    Great job writer and uploader. Excellent pics , it would be great if you share details of traveling from Riyadh.
    ThanksReplyCancel

  • yasirimranMay 21, 2013 - 7:22 am

    Quite useful review. I would try to visit some of these place in future.ReplyCancel

  • HaiderOctober 24, 2013 - 8:32 pm

    Commendable work. Nice pictures clearly showing the true reflection of each site. The supporting write up is short, crisp and reasonably informative, leaving the rest to be actually explored.ReplyCancel

  • HeatherNovember 7, 2013 - 5:54 am

    Gorgeous pictures and nice descriptions! I can’t wait to move to Jeddah, and to explore!ReplyCancel

  • AfrozJanuary 14, 2014 - 6:34 pm

    Thank you very much for sharing these. I am working in Abha for almost seven years and have seen Al Souda and Al Farsan. On the way to Makkah passed through Al Lith and Taif. I have not heard of Edge of the world and Wahba crater. I request you share the directions from any major city or the name of the city nearest to these two places :- “Edge of the world” and “Wahba crater”. —Afroz Ahmed Khan SaudagarReplyCancel

  • […] Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia […]ReplyCancel

  • saudMarch 29, 2014 - 9:02 pm

    aoa
    i love all those places i m trying for a visa to Saudi Arabia as i live in Australia i got a visa last year and i saw the edge of the world catch you dummies later .ReplyCancel

  • roseMay 14, 2014 - 5:05 pm

    been in these places …. magical and amazing!!!ReplyCancel

  • Naveed AhmadJune 11, 2014 - 3:38 am

    most beautful mosque and most nice is kaaba sharif ReplyCancel

  • Sair ShinwariJune 11, 2014 - 11:35 am
  • Elinor ZindJuly 6, 2014 - 3:25 am

    Gorgeous places. I had no idea there was so much scenic diversity in Saudi Arabia. Have a great time vacationing and tae lots of photos.ReplyCancel

  • Mark Andrew MallariJuly 20, 2014 - 4:36 am

    its so beautifull place
    ReplyCancel

  • Arpit MathurJuly 25, 2014 - 1:24 pm

    shaandaar ReplyCancel

  • Cheryl Grace AdlawanAugust 3, 2014 - 3:21 pm

    hope i can go there….ReplyCancel

  • Sidhu RickySeptember 23, 2014 - 11:36 pm

    Soudi arabia means history ReplyCancel

  • AdelaSeptember 27, 2014 - 3:47 am

    Hi Laylah,
    I’m new to Riyadh (and Saudi Arabia). These places look amazing and wonderful and I want to go around and see things, but I’m a single female and it seems difficult/complicated to travel anywhere (can’t be with an unrelated male, and can’t drive on my own, and no public transport). Do you have any suggestions on how to get around this? Could I ask a married couple to go with me? Do you think it would be a problem if a mixed group went together? Would it matter if we were mixed ethnically (Indian, Filipino, Saudi, American) AND mixed gender? Or any other ideas :) Thank you so much and thank you for sharing all these wonderful resources!ReplyCancel

    • LaylaSeptember 30, 2014 - 10:28 am

      dear Adela,
      There’s no problem i traveling around the Kingdom asa single female, form the point of view that you can fly anywhere alone, take taxis, ferries, trains, boats buses, alone..all have female sections :) You can book a hotel as a single female too. Just make sure it’s one ogf the better hotels, preferable a known 4 or 5 star one.
      Traveling in groups in not a problem when you join organized tours. Some recommended tour companies; Amazing Tours, Haya tours, Najran Tours. Google and you will find more!ReplyCancel

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  • DESSERT_ROSEDecember 7, 2014 - 11:04 am

    Amazing and beautiful places. nice people..been all of them and i would like to visit again..ReplyCancel

  • NasserApril 15, 2015 - 10:21 am

    Gorgeous pictures and nice descriptions! I can’t wait to move to Jeddah, and to explore!ReplyCancel

  • Abdul WaheedMay 4, 2015 - 9:49 am

    I believe in the oneness of Allah and his last Prophet Mohammad(PBUH)ReplyCancel

  • […] Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia » Blue Abaya – Blue Abaya’s Top Ten Amazing places to visit in Saudi-Arabia: 1. Madain Saleh If you visit only one place in Saudi-Arabia, let it be Madain Saleh. […]ReplyCancel

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    […] Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia » Blue Abaya – Hi Laylah, I’m new to Riyadh (and Saudi Arabia). These places look amazing and wonderful and I want to go around and see things, but I’m a single female and it … […]ReplyCancel

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    […] Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia » Blue Abaya – Blue Abaya’s Top Ten Amazing places to visit in Saudi-Arabia: 1. Madain Saleh If you visit only one place in Saudi-Arabia, let it be Madain Saleh. […]ReplyCancel

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    […] Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia » Blue Abaya – Hi Laylah, I’m new to Riyadh (and Saudi Arabia). These places look amazing and wonderful and I want to go around and see things, but I’m a single female and it … […]ReplyCancel

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    […] Ten Amazing Places to Visit in Saudi-Arabia » Blue Abaya – Hi Laylah, I’m new to Riyadh (and Saudi Arabia). These places look amazing and wonderful and I want to go around and see things, but I’m a single female and it … […]ReplyCancel

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  • shahidOctober 15, 2015 - 8:22 am

    HI Layla,

    i am planning to visit in saudi arab next weekend. could you provide me complete details how i can reach in this places

    Regards
    shahidReplyCancel

  • Malik AzmatNovember 7, 2015 - 1:15 pm

    that’s a very beautiful placesReplyCancel

  • Shinadsayed Vk PadiNovember 14, 2015 - 8:39 am

    why u didnt put makkah and madinahReplyCancel

  • Expats life in Saudi ArabiaNovember 21, 2015 - 7:04 pm

    Visit my blog to more explore saudi arabia news , laws, culture and much more
    Expatslifeinsaudiarabia.blogspot.comReplyCancel

  • Aliya NaazFebruary 1, 2016 - 7:53 am

    Nice article. this inbformation help to travel Saudi arabiaReplyCancel

  • Freed AliMay 24, 2016 - 5:58 pm

    Planning to visit that secret Lake this summer as more hot means more fun on that lakeReplyCancel

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