Be amongst the first to discover this utterly unique and endlessly inspiring kingdom which has undergone a significant cultural transformation, evolving century-old customs to fit the contemporary world we live in today. Now warmly welcoming travellers from around to globe to hear its story, and very different to other destinations in the Middle East, Saudi offers an inspiring array of adventures and landscapes for all travellers. You can discover centuries-old tombs amid the sprawling desert, stroll along the sun-kissed Corniche in cosmopolitan Jeddah, peruse a whole host of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, trek though lush date palms in AlUla, or gaze at stars beneath the spectacularly clear night sky.
Roughly the size of Western Europe, there is plenty to do and see in Saudi. We understand that it's a whole new world for holidaymakers so, to help you on your journey of discovery to this utterly unmatchable destination, we've worked with our partners in Saudi Arabia to carefully craft a selection of (varied length) itineraries for all travellers and tastes. You may wish to 'dip your toe in' to begin with by combining Saudi with a beach stay in Abu Dhabi, experience all that this diverse destination has to offer with an in-depth tour, or even combine it with the historical treasures of Jordan on an expert-escorted expedition.
In a word - yes! Back in 2019, Saudi Arabia opened its doors to visitors from all over the world with its completely historic e-visa programme, which allows international tourists to stay for up to 90 days. It can be applied for easily online, and the religion of the applicant is not relevant. In another bid to welcome worldwide guests, it is now also permitted for non-married travellers to share a hotel room - another historic change over recent years. Beyond the logistics, though, Saudi's locals are genuinely warm, welcoming and glad to see the rest of the world embrace their beautiful homeland.
As Saudi are welcoming visitors and respecting their customs, it's essential that (like anywhere) their traditions are respected too...
Dress code is dependent on individual establishments, some casual, others keen on sophistication. Places of worship specifically do require you to dress modestly while visiting. Visiting women do not need to wear the traditional abaya.
The sale, purchase, and consumption of alcohol is illegal in Saudi Arabia. But what your luxury holiday lacks in cocktails it will more than make up for in stunning surroundings, bucket-list experiences and memories that'll last a lifetime.
Etiquette: Bad language, loud behaviour, public displays of affection, and encroaching on other people's boundaries are considered disrespectful. Respectful public decorum is always advised.
Certain shops close briefly during prayer times to allow time for worship. During the holy month of Ramadan, the rhythm of the country changes into a mellow, spiritual one.
1. The kingdom is full of young people, with around 70% of the population under 30 - which bodes excellently for its modernisation plans!
2. Saudi Arabia is the 13th largest country in the world, though 95% of the country is considered desert.
3. The Arabian oryx, native to the country, was once classified as extinct in the wild. However, thanks to a government conservation project, the species has been reintroduced!
4. Saudi Arabia is one of the most generous countries in the world, donating over $4 billion in aid each year.