Saudi AlUla cultural and heritage site to reopen in October

AlUla’s attractions, including the Kingdom’s first UNESCO world heritage site, will reopen in October and they will now be accessible all year round

  
Visitors tour at majestic rock-hewn tombs of Madain Saleh near the city al-Ula, Saudi Arabia January 25, 2019. Image used for illustrative purpose.

Visitors tour at majestic rock-hewn tombs of Madain Saleh near the city al-Ula, Saudi Arabia January 25, 2019. Image used for illustrative purpose.

REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

JEDDAH: When you’re already a quarter-of-a-million years old, a few months out of action because of a coronavirus pandemic is no more than a blip in time.

It is therefore safe to say that when visitors return to AlUla, the culture and heritage destination in northwest Saudi Arabia, not a lot will have changed.

AlUla’s attractions, including the Kingdom’s first UNESCO world heritage site, will reopen in October — and they will now be accessible all year round.

Walks, treks and trails will be available, guided by the local Rawi (Arabic storyteller) or self-guided, for visitors who want to delve deeper into the stories and customs of the region.

“We are developing immersive, light-touch experiences that harness the power and silence of the landscapes, experiences like guided stargazing in a desert night sky that has inspired science, religion, philosophy, art and literature for millennia,” said Phillip Jones of the Royal Commission for AlUla.

Adventure tourists can tear around in a desert buggy or take to the skies in a vintage light aircraft to see volcanic craters and the lava fields of Harrat Khaybar.

For families, Hijrat Noura, or Princess Noura Farm, offers a chance to observe the local flora and fauna. Winter Park, developed for the Winter at Tantora festival, will also return.

“A visit to AlUla is a transformative experience to all who have visited — its vast open spaces, its secrets of civilizations gone by and the pure wonder of its landmarks,” Jones said.

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