15 Things to Do in Riyadh in the Summer

Many expats and locals find themselves “stuck” in Saudi for the summer with nothing to do, fearing death caused by boredom. Not everyone is lucky enough to escape the Saudi heat. With the schools now closed, children and youth get very bored! This causes frustration in parents, what to do?
There ARE other options than shopping people!

Here is a quick list of suggested activities for the summer mainly for families and women:

15 things to do in riyadh


Horseback riding
Dirab Golf course and recreation center http://www.dirabgolf.com/
Al Aghar Equestrian club Diplomatic quarters both have lessons available for children and women

Equestrian Club inside Diplomatic Quarters has outdoor swimming pool for ladies and children
Al Manahil also in DQ  has indoor pool
Diplomatic Quarters Sports Club has large outdoor pool complete with slides and a wave pool ladies/men’s days alternate (membership required)
Water Splash waterpark exit 9 Eastern Ring rd.
Dirab Golf course outdoor pool (membership required)

For a complete list of pools in Riyadh go here.

Rent an istiraha with pool
There are countless istirahas (rest house) spotted around the outskirts of Riyadh. One of the bigger ones is Yamamah Resort. You can also find many theme parks on the Thumamah rd, most of which have the possibility to rent a private isteraha/chalet with a pool.

Nofa safari park

it might be getting hot but the safari can still be fun in the morning or afternoons Details in this post; Nofa safari park in Riyadh. 

Try Family Bowling
Intercontinental Hotel
Alkhozama Bowling Center
Universal Bowling Center http://www.ubcriyadh.com/aboutus.html

Spend the day relaxing at a women’s center
Al Multaka http://www.almultaka.com.sa/overview.htm
Al Manahil http://www.almanahil.com.sa/english/index.html

Visit Dinosaur world
Inside Al Othaim Mall, on the third floor. Also in this mall there’s a large indoor amusement park with 5D movie theatre on the 4th floor.

Cool off Ice Skating

Ice skating rinks I’m aware of: Royal Mall (also for females), Othaim Mall exit 15, Hayat Mall, ChinaMart Mall upstairs (can be reserved for private functions as well) read more here: Ice skating in the desert

Play Paint Ball
Riyadh’s only paintball operator allows only men on site but they can be booked for private functions and women can play too http://www.facebook.com/groups/68469925659/

Visit King Abdulaziz Historical Center & surroundings
Visit the National Museum, Murabba Palace, the historical buildings, Public Library, King Abdulaziz mosque and Memorial Hall and browse the surrounding beautiful parks complete with fountains and picnic areas. Nearby also the water tower with a viewing platform and a small amusement park located next to it. Check out Blue Abaya’s Guide to the National Museum here.

Diplomatic Quarter
Despite the heat the parks in DQ are much cooler because they all have lots of greenery and shade, fountains and many are situated on the edge of the wadi so they catch the breeze. You will forget you’re in Riyadh! Guide to Diplomatic Quarter parks here. 

My Gym
Inside the Panorama Mall Women’s section, has activities for kids and moms this summer.

Visit the “Riyadh Corniche”
Newly developed Wadi Namar, 2km long lake complete with promenade and picnic spots off exit 20.

Any other suggestions? Feel free to send us links to events etc that you know of this summer! Don’t forget to subscribe to updates via email with the form below.

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  • AnonymousJune 5, 2012 - 6:14 pm

    is that you on the photo?ReplyCancel

    • LaylahJune 5, 2012 - 10:45 pm

      That’s my friend..ReplyCancel

  • Mariam (Saudi | Philippines)June 6, 2012 - 6:14 pm

    two other wonderful things you can do in Riyadh:
    a family can have some great family time at a restaurant
    and form an Islamic study circle where they, along with some friends, can exchange some Islamic knowledge

    whoever seeks Islamic knowledge (tries to learn more about the true religion Islam) God (Allah) makes it easier for him/her to enter Heaven/Jannah through guiding them to doing more good deeds with a good intention.

    Allah knows best.

    can I ask you, blue abaya blogger: are you Muslim? what is your name? if you’re Muslim, did you change your first name?ReplyCancel

  • imenbouyahyaJune 6, 2012 - 9:28 pm

    Hi Layla, I am Imen from Tunisia, I’ve read merely all ur posts and felt soooooooo much sorry and even shocked about a lot of things happening there that do not go with our beautiful Islam rules!! That’s unfortunately due to the false traditions and misunderstanding and misinterpretation of religion! I can’t see why women are treted as second place citizens! Nonetheless, I know so many young saudi ladies and men who are really starting a new era in KSA, very talented and skilled and who understand very well what their society need..I am so happy when seeing the hard work they are doing..Inshallah KSA woul be better ya Allah!
    I also admired your writing and describing style! Mash’Allah ;) you made me relive every moment with you or your heros! you drew an exact picture with your fair opinion and I do appreciate this..even when you disagree with some behaviours I like how you try to understand why? and How did this happen!
    I congratulate you for this successful blog and keep it up!
    way to go! warm greetings from Tunisia :)ReplyCancel

    • LaylahJune 7, 2012 - 1:00 am

      imenbouyahya nice to hear from you and thanks for the comment!
      I can see the new era slowly starting as well..hopefully sooner than later!ReplyCancel

  • ladyfiJune 9, 2012 - 9:17 am

    The horseback riding looks fun!ReplyCancel

  • AnonymousJuly 18, 2012 - 7:07 am

    Hello ,is there anything for children during ramadan,exept summer camps?ReplyCancel

  • […]  13. 15 THINGS TO DO IN RIYADH IN THE SUMMER […]ReplyCancel

  • om LameesMay 9, 2015 - 3:59 am

    As Salamo Alaikum, i want to know where can i get UCMAS course done for my kids in Riyadh????ReplyCancel

  • Mustafa HasaniJune 12, 2015 - 3:50 pm

    Dear All..
    Can anyone advice, which is the best place for swimming and activities for my kids (Girls) in summer vacation.
    Am staying in riyadh,, i dont know much about riyadh.
    Waiting here to get positive links to share with my kids

  • Suji VijayaJanuary 24, 2016 - 6:20 pm


  • essraaApril 28, 2016 - 9:22 am

    Can you help me find an activity centre/summer camp in Riyadh for my 7 year old son with Autism spectrum disorderReplyCancel

  • AidaJuly 4, 2019 - 11:25 pm

    You might also like to visit Edge of the world, ninety kilometres from Riyadh.
    You can visit this place all around the year, but it’s a one day trip. So it is advisable to start your journey at morning and return until evening.
    What makes the place beautiful is the spikes coming out of the plateau which makes them look endless from the corner spot.ReplyCancel

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