Blogs from Saudi Arabia, Middle East - page 16


Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Abha November 20th 2008

Here in Abha.... and getting reading to set off for Najran tomorrow morning. Had a great day exploring old mud-brick villages and taking cable car rides down the edge of the escarpment. The city here is typically unattractive... but the sights in the area are great. All seem to be having a fun time... tough most have just sussed out that the tour is coming to an end soon. Just a few nights left. Staying here at the 5star Abha Palace has been great... and a nice upgrade. But, the location is a bit away from the center and the prices are high!!! Including this internet!! So... I am gonna try to send some pics.... and they will give you a better idea of what we have seen and what we have been doing. ok....have been ... read more
Mada'in Saleh
typical highway in the Hijaz region
old village of Al Ula

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Empty Quarter November 19th 2008

Well... we are now about 500km south of Jeddah. Had a great time in the city.... and surely could have used another day there (but without the group). It is the only city in the Kingdom that has somehow managed to retain some of the old architecture. Everywhere else in Arabia they knock the old down to build new. But Jeddah has kept a few gems. The heat and humidity were high there... being on the Red Sea. But not overwhelming at this time of year. Nothing killer like southeast Asia. Had a couple of great meals out ... and the women enjoyed the fact that Jeddah is more liberal than anywhere else in Saudi... and they could actually take their headscarves off at dinner!!!! WOW!!! Took a cruise in a large bay near the Red ... read more

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Jeddah November 16th 2008

OK... well, I have tagged this as 'Jeddah'.. though we are not there yet. So much has happened since my last post... and there is so much to tell. Sorry... but this may be kind of random. Right now we are in Al Ula... a stunning little oasis town in the northwest.. and gateway to Mada'in Salah. Mada'in Salah was the southern capital of the Nabateans (those who built Petra in Jordan)... and so is considered the Petra of Saudi. We spent 4 hours at the sight this morning... walking through the sand and admiring the magnificent tombs cut into the sandstone cliffs. Wow.. what a sight. Something truly amazing and probably the best archaeological sight in the country. Great place to hit in the middle of our tour. This area is also located on the ... read more

Middle East » Saudi Arabia November 13th 2008

at are some pics. A bit of everything... read more
camel market - riyadh
camel market - riyadh
Qara Caves near Hofuf

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Dammam November 12th 2008

OK... I continue to try and add pics here.... but all attempts ahve failed. Quick update. Great train ride from Riyadh to Hofuf. Giant train station.... empty. Strange 'first class' lounge with free fresh arabic coffee and dates. Plasma tvs... internet access... and a Sony Playstation??. After 3.5 hours of driving across the worlds most uninspiring landscape we were there. Oh... Tom & Jerry Cartoons and Mr Bean played on the video in our train car to help pass the time.... and more dates were passed around. Balance of the day was spent trying to make the most out of our sightseeing schedule. Such a headache... as the places we wanted to see were either closed for renovation or inaccesible. Why did nobody tell me that before. Managed to visit some funky caves and a womens ... read more


Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Riyadh November 9th 2008

Yes... we are in Saudi Arabia. Crap... I can't beleive it. This tour has been a long time in the works.... and I truly am finding it hard to believe that we are really here. WOW WOW WOW. I have had a tour to Saudi planned in my head for ages.... and finally got it rolling a year ago. All the planning and plotting... staring at the map... reading ... and now I am in Riyadh. Chilled in Dubai for the morning... including the always mandatory mall visit... and then headed out. Met with the group for an orientation meeting before leaving for the airport. Spent an hour prepping them for what to expect and what not to expect. So much is contrary to what one usually experieces or is prepared for when travelling. Can't do ... read more

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Riyadh April 16th 2008

Well, I've been here now in Saudi Arabia for just over six weeks. It feels like such a short time ago that Jamara and I stepped off the plane here in Riyadh only to be dropped off at an empty villa at 10.30pm with no one to direct our questions to and no idea of where we were to go the following day or how we were to get there. Over the last six weeks we've managed to take a trip into the desert to look at the beautiful red sands and amazing landscape that surrounds it. We've attended parties within the Australian and American Embassies. We've done LOADS of shopping in countless shopping malls over here. We've gotten into trouble off the Muttawa (religious police) for having our hair uncovered. We've gone desert diamond hunting, ... read more

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Barri February 28th 2008

this is my camera on hunting trip... read more

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Riyadh February 11th 2008

A view of "The Kingdom Shopping Centre/Four Seasons Hotel"... read more

Middle East » Saudi Arabia » Riyadh February 1st 2008

We arrived at our accommodation about 21:30 (Riyadh time) and have been settling in today. The flight was 6 hours of absolute comfort (no! Not business class), the plane was only half full so we could sit together and spread ourselves out. The food was excellent (included ice cream and a salad) and the crew were always coming round with hotcold drinks (soft and otherwise).... I met Pauline and Eileen at the airport and they're a good pair. Pauline and I have been paired to share a flat! The flat - where shall I start!!! 2 double bedrooms with walk-in closets, we flipped a coin for the end room as that has a full-sized en-suite (Pauline got it) but I'm not missing out. The rooms are the same size and I have a bathroom accross the ... read more
View from my room
Comfy Sofas

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