Latest Saudi Season offers adrenaline-fueled activities

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Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)
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Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)
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Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)
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Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)
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Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)
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Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)
Updated 28 July 2019

Latest Saudi Season offers adrenaline-fueled activities

  • It will offer authentic cultural, adventurous outdoor experiences, says Al-Soudah Season CEO Al-Madani

RIYADH: An adrenaline-fueled program of activities centered in one of Saudi Arabia’s most naturally stunning regions has been revealed by tourism officials.

Adventure sports, wilderness experiences, music, cultural and arts events will be among the highlights of Al-Soudah Season which kicks off in Asir next month.

As part of the Kingdom’s 11 festival seasons aimed at boosting domestic and international tourism, Al-Soudah Season will seek to redefine the summer experience in the country by bringing together an array of exciting activities in an area known for its natural beauty, ranging from lush forests to breathtaking highlands.

Al-Soudah Season CEO, Husameddin Al-Madani, told Arab News: “It is unique by nature, offering authentic cultural, adventurous outdoor experiences in astonishing landscape and weather that contributes to the development of the Saudi tourism industry.”




Cultural dancers of Asir region. (Supplied photo)

He said the festival was an integral element of the Kingdom’s 2019 Saudi Seasons initiative to transform the country into one of the most important tourist destinations in the world and establish it as a major player in the entertainment, adventure and culture sectors.

Al-Madani added that in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 reform plan, Al-Soudah Season would also help to create jobs for Saudi youth, further developing employment opportunities in the tourism sector.

 

Mountain slopes

For adrenaline junkies the region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, ziplines and slingshot rides, while the Spartan obstacle course challenge will launch the season’s series of races. Held in 40 countries annually, the Spartan Race tests participants of all levels on courses varying in distance and difficulty.

Al-Soudah Season transforms the quintessential summer experience, offering a must-attend set of events and activities in a unique natural setting, and plays a strong role in driving tourism to the region.

Noor Yamani, Al-Soudah Season’s head of communications and marketing

Noor Yamani, Al-Soudah Season’s head of communications and marketing, said: “Al-Soudah Season transforms the quintessential summer experience, offering a must-attend set of events and activities in a unique natural setting, and plays a strong role in driving tourism to the region.

“The program will also include quality new services in Al-Soudah parks, international luxury restaurants, and tours of the city and Abha.”

She added that the festival would include renowned cuisine from around the world, such as authentic Greek food from the Meraki restaurant.




Asir region’s mountain slopes will play host to activities such as bungee jumping, zip lines and sling shot rides. (Supplied photo)

The Flower Man Festival, which will take place during the season, will display the region’s subculture through arts and craft exhibitions, folklore events, and architectural light shows.

The season, set to run throughout August, will also feature various aeronautical and adventure sports activities, such as parachute jumping, in addition to art and entertainment events including performances from the likes of Iraqi singer, composer and songwriter Kadim Al-Sahir, and Emirati singer Ahlam Al-Shamsi.

 


Diriyah Gate to be a global, historical and cultural landmark

Updated 38 min 56 sec ago

Diriyah Gate to be a global, historical and cultural landmark

  • Diriyah is home to Al-Turaif District, built in 1744 and known as one of the largest clay cities in the world

DIRIYAH: With the establishment of the Diriyah Gate Development Authority (DGDA), the historical site of Diriyah will become one of the largest and most important international destinations.

The DGDA seeks to transform the site into a location to host activities and events aimed at exchanging historical and cultural knowledge through museums and venues spread throughout
Al-Turaif District.

 The DGDA aims to celebrate the people of Diriyah by telling their stories and demonstrating their social, cultural and historical the roots, as the cradle of the first Saudi state and a symbol of the beauty of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and
its people.

 Diriyah is home to Al-Turaif District, built in 1744 and known as one of the largest clay cities in the world. It was registered by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 2010 — one of five Saudi sites listed.

Not far from Al-Turaif District is the historic Al-Bujairi District, which was a center for spreading science and knowledge during the prosperity of Diriyah, as the capital of the first Saudi state. 

Today it houses many commercial centers and cafes and is the perfect destination to experience Saudi cuisine.

One of the historical landmarks in Al-Turaif District is Salwa Palace, which is located in the northeastern part. It is the largest of its landmarks and spans over 10,000 square meters. It was founded by Imam Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed bin Saud in 1765, and is historically known as the home of the first royal family. 

The palace houses the Diriyah Museum, which presents the history and development of the first Saudi state through works of art, drawings, models and documentaries.

BACKGROUND

At the northern end of old Diriyah, the town of Ghusaybah sits atop of a plateau surrounded by the Hanifa Valley on three sides.

Salwa Palace forms an integrated architectural system with its residential, administrative, cultural and religious units.

 Al-Turaif District also includes the Imam Muhammad bin Saud Mosque, known as the Great Mosque or Al-Turaif Mosque. It is adjacent to Salwa Palace on the north side, and Imams used to lead Friday prayers there.

 To make movement between the mosque and the palace easier, Imam Saud bin Abdul Aziz built a bridge to connect them on the upper floor. The mosque houses a religious school to teach religious sciences. It was formerly the largest mosque in the Arabian Peninsula and was built to symbolize the strength and unity of the Saudi state.

 At the northern end of old Diriyah, the town of Ghusaybah sits atop of a plateau surrounded by the Hanifa Valley on three sides. It was settled by Mani’ Al-Muraydi, the oldest ancestor of the House of Saud, in the 15th century. 

Ghusaybah is a well-established location, carefully chosen for the establishment of the new governorate, and its location played a major role in the protection of Hajj convoys and trade passing through its areas of influence in Al-Arid region.

 Ghusaybah was the seat of an independent governorate before the founding of the first Saudi state. It provided protection for the northern gate of Diriyah during the campaign of Ibrahim Pasha in 1818.

 Samhan is one of the historical areas south of Ghusaybeh on a triangle overlooking the valley when it meets another tributary, the villages of Omran. It directly overlooks the districts of Qusayrin, Mrayih, and Al-Turaif. This location was important during the reign of Imam Mohammed bin Saud and his son Samhan, being a well-fortified site during the siege of Diriyah. It was selected by Imam Abdullah to be his defense headquarters.

 In the field of philanthropy, one may mention “Sabala Moudhi” which was founded by Imam Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed bin Saud, who made it a charitable endowment in the name of his mother, Moudhi bint Sultan bin Abi Wahtan, wife of Imam Mohammed bin Saud. 

It is located east of the Salwa Palace on the southeast of Al-Turaif District. It is a two-story building and was established to provide free accommodation for visitors coming to the city of Diriyah.