Saudi Arabia is the second biggest tourist destination in the Middle East, receiving millions of Hajj and Umrah pilgrims every year.
In Saudi Arabia many opportunities can be found for both summer and winter travel. In addition to Saudi towns and cities, and beaches, Saudi has recently unleashed a variety of mega projects in support of tourism as part of the Kingdom's Vision 2030 strategic framework.
Below are some of Saudi treasures representing their various diverse groups under which they fall
Saudi Arabia occupies the majority of the northern and central Arabian Peninsula.
It is the inheritor of a lengthy past. The Hejaz, which is located on its western highlands and along the Red Sea, is the birthplace of Islam and the location of its holiest cities, of Mecca and Medina.
The Arabian Peninsula contains extensive sand surfaces, among them Rubʿ al-Khali (“Empty Quarter”), the world’s largest sand desert area.
Birthplace of Islam
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is the heartland of Islam, the birthplace of its history, the site of the two holy mosques and the focus of Islamic devotion and prayer. Saudi Arabia is committed to preserving the Islamic tradition in all areas of government and society. Islam guides not only the lives of the people, but also the policies and functions of the government. The Holy Qur'an is the constitution of the Kingdom and Shari'ah (Islamic law) is the basis of the Saudi legal system.
Saudi Arabia is home to two of Islam’s holiest cities: Mecca, where the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was born and where the Sacred Mosque (Masjid al Haram) is located, and Medina, where the Prophet is buried (PBUH) and where The Prophetic Mosque (Masjid Al- Nabbawi) is located.
Saudi’s Elusive Cultural
Elusive cultural heritage is important as it gives it’s people a sense of identity and belonging, linking their past, through the present, with their future.
a cultural and social space
“Sitting place where people gather”
drumming and dancing with sticks
“traditional dances in Hijaz"
a living human heritage
“For training and flying falcons”
knowledge, skills, traditions and practices
a symbol of generosity, served in a Dallah, a traditional Arabic coffee pot
Saudi Arabian museums serve as a window into the rich history and culture of this magnificent nation.
Scitech Technology Center
The Scitech Technology Center, officially known as the Sultan Bin Abdul-Aziz Science and Technology Center is a very attractive site for tourists visiting the Eastern Province of the Kingdom.
Al Tayebat International City
Known for Science and Knowledge, Al Tayebat International City is a huge museum dedicated to the history of the region.
The National Museum of Saudi Arabia
The National Museum is the Kingdom's biggest and most entertaining museum detailing the history of the Saudi monarch and the Saudi royal family.
Dar Al Madinah Museum
This museum highlights the history of the city of the beloved prophet, peace be upon him, as well as its valuable heritage and great ancient civilization.
The Arabic Language
Iqra’, which means ‘recite’ in Arabic, is probably the most precious word in the entire Arabic language due to its enormous significance in Islam.
Iqra’ was the first word of revelation conveyed to the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) by the Angel Gabriel (A.S.) from His Lord and Sustainer of the Universe – Allah.
Iqra’ was the first word of The Final Testament, that is the Miraculous Quran, which was revealed in ARABIC to the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) in the Cave of Hira’, over 1400 years ago.
Recite, ˹O Prophet,˺ in the Name of your Lord Who created – [Quran: 96:1]
Arabic is ranked among the top five of the world’s major languages. As the language of the Qur’an, the holy book of Islam, it is widely used throughout the Muslim world. It belongs to the Semitic group of languages.
Classical Arabic – The language of the Qur’an, which was originally the dialect of Makkah.
Modern Standard Arabic – An adapted form of the Classical Arabic, which is used in books, newspapers, on television and radio, in the mosques, and in conversation between educated Arabs from different countries.
Local dialects – Which may vary considerably between one Arab country and another.
The Arabic Alphabet
Arabic is written from right to left. There are 18 distinct letter shapes, which vary slightly depending on whether they are connected to another letter before or after them. There are no “capital” letters.
The full alphabet of 28 letters is created by placing various combinations of dots above or below some of these shapes.
The three long vowels are included in written words but the three short vowels are normally omitted – though they can be indicated by marks and below other letters.
Although the Arabic alphabet as we know it today appears highly distinctive, the Latin, Greek, Phoenician, Aramaic, Nabatian alphabets probably share some common ancestry. Other languages – such Persian, Urdu and Malay use adaptations of the Arabic script.
The numerals used in most parts of the world – 1, 2, 3, etc. – were originally Arabic, though many Arab countries use Hindi numerals.
Arabic Words in the English Language
One might be surprised to find out that many English words are in fact Arabic, which have later been incorporated into the English Language. Such words, for example like the technical terms coined by Medieval Arab scientists in the fields of astronomy, mathematics, optics, medicine, and others include: algebra, alkaline, algorithm, almanac, zenith, nadir, azimuth and others.
Arabic Calligraphy is the artistic practice of handwriting and calligraphy based on the Arabic alphabet. It is known in Arabic as Khatt, derived from the word ‘line’, ‘design’, or ‘construction’. Kufic is the oldest form of the Arabic script.
From an artistic point of view, Arabic calligraphy has been known and appreciated for its diversity and great potential for development. In fact, it has been linked in Arabic culture to various fields such as religion, art, architecture, education and craftsmanship, which in return have played an important role in its advancement.
Although most Islamic calligraphy is in Arabic and most Arabic calligraphy is Islamic, the two are not identical. Coptic or other Christian manuscripts in Arabic, for example, have made use of calligraphy. Likewise, there is Islamic calligraphy in Persian or the historic Ottoman language.
UNESCO has recently added Arabic Calligraphy to its Intangible Cultural Heritage list saying, “Arabic calligraphy is the artistic practice of handwriting Arabic script in a fluid manner to convey harmony, grace and beauty.”
Reasons to Learn Arabic
Learning the Arabic language is important since it is one of the top 5 most spoken languages with an estimated 400 million people speaking it. It is also the official language in more than 25 countries and has been influential throughout the whole world.
Languages are perceived as the key to the traditions and cultures of other nations as they are the tool people use to express themselves, which is another reason why Arabic is an important language to learn.
Furthermore, it is out of discussion that Arabic literature is uniquely brilliant and has a remarkable place among the literature of all other languages. It directly speaks to your soul due to the fact that Arabic is super informative and can express a lot of meaning in just a small amount of words. Needless to say that the poetry in Arabic is also so wondrous and is still vibrant to the present day.
Learning Arabic will make you stand out, as there are very few people from the West that speak Arabic. There is a very high demand for Arabic translators and interpreters are needed by government departments and agencies as well as corporations seeking to enter the global arena.
By learning Arabic, you’ll be able to experience true Arab hospitality. Arabs are very proud of their language. Once a native speaker of Arabic hears a foreigner speak a few words in Arabic, they would be very eager and happy to help you learn their language and along with it their rich culture that is not often exposed to the Western world.
To learn Arabic, visit Madinah Arabic’s website, which offers free courses for beginners