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Explore Saudi Arabia

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Introduction to Saudi Arabia
With coastlines on the Red Sea and Persian Gulf, plus swathes of desert in between, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a land of spectacular dunes and mountains. Home to the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah, it’s the spiritual birthplace of Islam and a deeply conservative society. IHG’s wide range of accommodation includes affordable or luxury hotels in Riyadh, Jeddah and Makkah, among other cities.

Saudi Arabian riyal (SAR)

Official language

Mostly desert with cool winters and extremely hot summers (typically over 38C)

Arriving from the airport
King Abdulaziz International Airport is 24km north of central Jeddah. King Khalid International Airport is 35km north of the capital Riyadh. Journey time around 30 minutes by taxi (average SAR80–90)

Getting around Saudi Arabia

  • SAPTCO intercity buses – buy tickets online or at stations
  • Metered taxis

Top Saudi Arabia sightseeing

  • Riyadh’s 19th-century mud-brick Masmak Fortress
  • National Museum’s interactive history displays
  • Jeddah’s Al-Balad district featuring ruins of coral-block merchant houses
  • Ancient tombs of Madain Saleh

Top experiences

  • Shopping for carpets, jewellery and spices in souks such as Riyadh’s Souq al Thumairi or Jeddah’s Souq al Alawi
  • Diving Red Sea coral reefs
  • Touring fragrant rose farms in Ta’if
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