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InterContinental Riyadh

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Fawaz Al Farhan
Chief Concierge

The history of Riyadh dates back over 3,000 years; the name derived from the Arabic word 'rowdah' meaning a place of gardens and trees. Please contact me or my team to ensure you get the most authentic experience from your stay here.

Things to do
The Perfect Day

Morning

Wake up to a sunny day in Riyadh, take your breakfast at the Al Bustan Restaurant and have a stroll around Al Salam Park. The park has a lot of greenery and beautiful pathways which will make you forget that you are in the desert city of Riyadh. End your morning with a taste of local snacks in the Arabic Food Court on Prince Sultan Road in the Olaya District.

Afternoon

For lunch, try some authentic Saudi cuisines at the Najd Village, where you'll sit in a circle and squat just like the locals do. Should you be uncomfortable, chairs can always be provided. After a sumptuous lunch, visit Al Thumama Park and experience a camel ride. If you prefer to try a different resturant you can also try the favourite local Ouzi restaurant nearby.

Evening

Finish the day with a visit to Al Shallal, a traditional coffee shop where they serve shisha (famously called hubbly bubbly), gawa (Arabic coffee) and tea. Then go to the nearby Zal market where you will find locally woven carpets, antique silverware and coffee pots, all from Riyadh. If you have more time to spare, pass by the gold souks where you can find a wide range of gold and jewellery.

Day
1
Did You Know?
  • Al Musmak Fortress

    The Al Musmak Fortress is the citadel that Abdul Aziz Bin Abdul Rahman Al-Saud captured in 1902 to regain control of the city. The fort, which dates from 1865, is built of mud bricks, with thick walls and imposing watchtowers. It is now a museum with an interesting collection of artefacts and photographs from a century ago.

  • Almarai Farm

    Dairy production is concentrated around Al-Kharj in the south of Riyadh, where there are an estimated 120,000 head of cattle. Almarai has more than 24,000 cows on what is believed to be the largest dairy farm in the world.

  • Ancient Diraiyyah

    Just outside the capital is the ancient oasis town of Diraiyyah, dating from the 15th century and the spiritual home of the Al-Saud Family. The mud-brick buildings and palaces of ancient Diraiyyah have suffered the ravages of time but an extensive restoration programme is underway. Caves and palm trees abound in this town.

  • King Abdul Aziz Historical Centre

    The new King Abdul Aziz Historical Centre comprises a library, auditorium and the National Museum of Antiquities. Al Murabba Palace is also part of the centre and was built for King Abdul Aziz in 1934. It contains a series of rooms with displays of traditional handicrafts, weapons and furniture.

  • Saudi Shisha (Ghirac)

    Shisha is popularly known as 'hubbly bubbly'. It is a fruit-flavoured tobacco that is smoked using a pipe, served at selected places only.

What to Pack