How to visit Saudi Arabia independently?

Travel Destinations

By Kristy Tolley

Visiting Saudi Arabia Independently

Saudi Arabia is a country with a rich history, diverse culture, and stunning natural beauty. While it was once difficult to visit this country independently, recent changes in visa regulations have made it much easier. If you’re interested in exploring Saudi Arabia on your own, there are a few things you need to know before you go. From obtaining a tourist visa to learning about the country’s customs and culture, this article will guide you through the process of visiting Saudi Arabia independently.

Obtain a Tourist Visa for Saudi Arabia

Before you can visit Saudi Arabia, you’ll need to obtain a tourist visa. In the past, this was a difficult and time-consuming process, but recent changes have made it much easier. Visitors from 49 countries, including the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, can now apply for an e-visa online. The process is straightforward, and you can expect to receive your visa within a few days of submitting your application. If you’re not from one of the eligible countries, you may still be able to obtain a tourist visa, but you’ll need to apply through a Saudi embassy or consulate.

Choose the Best Time to Visit Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has a hot desert climate, so it’s important to choose the right time to visit. The best time to visit is between November and February, when temperatures are cooler and more comfortable. If you visit during the summer months, you can expect temperatures to reach well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. While it’s possible to visit during this time, it’s not recommended for most travelers.

Book Your Accommodation in Saudi Arabia

There are plenty of accommodation options in Saudi Arabia, from budget-friendly hostels to luxurious hotels. If you’re on a tight budget, consider staying in a hostel or guesthouse. If you’re looking for something more upscale, there are plenty of luxury hotels in major cities like Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam. It’s important to book your accommodation in advance, especially if you’re traveling during peak season.

Learn About Saudi Arabia’s Culture and Customs

Saudi Arabia has a unique culture and customs that are different from those in the West. It’s important to learn about these before you go, so you can avoid causing offense or breaking any laws. Some things to keep in mind include dressing modestly, avoiding public displays of affection, and refraining from drinking alcohol or eating pork.

Dress Appropriately for Your Trip to Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is a conservative country, and it’s important to dress appropriately for your trip. For women, this means covering your arms and legs and wearing a headscarf. Men should avoid wearing shorts and sleeveless shirts in public. It’s also important to avoid wearing clothing with offensive slogans or images.

Explore Saudi Arabia’s Top Attractions

Saudi Arabia has plenty of attractions for visitors to explore, from ancient historical sites to modern shopping malls. Some of the top attractions include the Al-Masjid an-Nabawi mosque in Medina, the ancient city of Mada’in Saleh, and the Red Sea coast.

Get Around Saudi Arabia Using Public Transportation

Saudi Arabia has an extensive public transportation system, including buses, taxis, and trains. If you’re traveling between major cities, the train is often the most comfortable and convenient option. In cities, taxis are readily available and affordable, but it’s important to negotiate the fare before you get in.

Try Saudi Arabian Cuisine during Your Visit

Saudi Arabian cuisine is diverse and flavorful, with influences from across the Middle East and Asia. Some of the most popular dishes include chicken shawarma, falafel, and kabsa, a rice dish with meat, vegetables, and spices. It’s also worth trying some of the local sweets, like baklava and halva.

Stay Safe and Secure While in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is generally a safe country, but it’s still important to take precautions to stay secure. Avoid traveling alone at night, and be aware of your surroundings at all times. It’s also important to respect local customs and laws to avoid any trouble.

Plan Your Budget for a Trip to Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia can be an expensive country to visit, especially if you’re planning to stay in luxury accommodation and eat at high-end restaurants. However, it’s also possible to travel on a budget if you’re willing to stay in hostels and eat at local restaurants. It’s important to plan your budget in advance, so you don’t overspend during your trip.

Conclusion: Enjoy Your Trip to Saudi Arabia!

Visiting Saudi Arabia independently can be a rewarding and unforgettable experience. By following these tips, you can ensure that your trip is safe, enjoyable, and culturally sensitive. Whether you’re exploring ancient historical sites, trying local cuisine, or simply enjoying the natural beauty of the country, Saudi Arabia has something for everyone. So, pack your bags and get ready for an adventure of a lifetime!

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Kristy Tolley

Kristy Tolley, an accomplished editor at TravelAsker, boasts a rich background in travel content creation. Before TravelAsker, she led editorial efforts at Red Ventures Puerto Rico, shaping content for Platea English. Kristy's extensive two-decade career spans writing and editing travel topics, from destinations to road trips. Her passion for travel and storytelling inspire readers to embark on their own journeys.

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