7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites To Visit This Winter In Saudi

Hera Shabbir

Saudi is finally welcoming in the cool breeze of the season and that means an abundance of outdoor activities. With exciting activities like Riyadh Season, Car rallies, Comic Con,  and many more going on around the Kingdom, it’s only normal to get your winter itinerary started. However, if you’re a fan of history and sightseeing, then you should definitely keep this list of the seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites around Saudi Arabia to get your history on. Scroll through to see how each of these has its own unique views and historical significance!


7. Visit the old capital of Turaif, Riyadh

Turaif is located in the historical district of Diriyah, which was previously known to be the original capital of the Kingdom! It was once home to the founder of the first Saudi State, Imam Mohammed bin Saud, and the Saud family. Apart from the gorgeous views of the unique clay-design, this spot has many other attractions like Bujairi Terrace and amazing views of Riyadh city that will definitely make your visit worthwhile.

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6. Walk through the gorgeous Al Ahsa Oasis, Hofuf

This gorgeous site is definitely a topper for nature lovers! From the most gorgeous canals, wildlife, wells, and millions of date trees makes this attraction one of the top UNESCO sites in the Kingdom. Walk through the world’s largest oasis as you tour through the area, taking pics of mosques and fortresses that date all the way back to the Neolithic period!

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5. Enjoy the historical architecture of Hegra, AlUla

Hegra, known as Madain Saleh in Arabic, was the first official UNESCO Heritage Site in the Kingdom. The site’s history dates back to the first century BCE and is said to have the same heritage as Petra in Jordan! The unique architecture has survived the scorching desert heat and harsh winds for hundreds of years, and is standing tall and bold for you to come visit!

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4. Enjoy the traditional markets of Al Balad, Jeddah

This gorgeous spot has preserved its structure for hundreds of years, which attracts tourists to its rustic streets on the daily! The district had actually been a port for the Indian Ocean trading routes back in the day.

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3. See some Oryx in their natural habitat at Uruq Bani Ma’arid Reserve, Riyadh

Located near the Empty Quarter, this spot is home to around 120 different indigenous plant species and the Kingdom’s famous Oryx! You can actually see them roaming free in their natural habitat! Make sure to take an extra jacket because this spot can get quite cold!

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2. Witness history with Hail’s mysterious rock carvings

Hail is actually know to have one of the largest collections of rock art in the world from over ten thousand years ago! From human figures to camels to unidentified objects, this place will really have you ponder about history and communication back in the day.

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1. Ponder about different scriptures at Hima’s Cultural Area carvings

This spot is also a famous hub for history fanatics looking for a quick peek into Saudi’s rock-carving days. Hima was previously part of a historical caravan route, where travelers would come mark their history spanning over seven THOUSAND years! You can find scriptures in Arabic, Greek, Musnad and even Thamudic. Make sure to grab some translation hacks to find the hidden message!

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