Saudi Arabia is a country in Asia according to eningbo. What one imagines when thinking about Saudi Arabia usually does not correspond to reality and in many cases turns out to be a prejudice; in fact it presents itself as a country with many beautiful oases, dramatic mountain peaks, sandy beaches and river courses. Although there is no nightlife in Saudi Arabian cities, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants. There is also a wide range of shopping opportunities, from the simple souk to the huge department store. In general, the major cities of Saudi Arabia are very modern and their facilities are of a high standard. Islam’s holiest city is in Saudi Arabia because Mohammed was born here. Indeed, protecting the integrity of the Holy Land is taken extremely seriously here, and Islamic law is strictly enforced by the mutawwa (religious police). Not only for Muslims, Saudi Arabia is a beautiful and praiseworthy, albeit complex, country that will continue to maintain its important role in the world in the future.
Arriving by plane
The national airline Saudia (SV) offers non-stop daily connections including Frankfurt am Main, Munich and Geneva with Riyadh and Jeddah, and Vienna with Jeddah. Lufthansa (LH) offers non-stop connections from Frankfurt/M. to Jeddah and Riyadh and flights via Kuwait City to Dammam; Feeder flights to Frankfurt/M. with Austrian Airlines (OS) from Vienna and Swiss (LX) from Zurich. The Saudi low-cost airline Flynas (XY) flies non-stop from Vienna to Riyadh several times a week. Swiss (LX) flies in cooperation with Saudia (SV) via Geneva to Jeddah and via Rome to Riyadh. KLM (KL) flies from Hamburg via Amsterdam to Riyadh.
Frankfurt/M. – Jeddah: 5 hrs 30 mins; Frankfurt/M. – Riyadh: 5 hrs 50 mins; Frankfurt/M. – Dammam: 7 hrs 25 mins (with stopover); Vienna – Jeddah: 4 hrs 50 mins; Vienna – Riyadh: 5 hrs 30 mins; Zurich – Jeddah: 7 hrs 20 mins (with stopover); Zurich – Riyadh: 8 hours 5 minutes (with stopover).
€12 (50 SAR) (Children under 2 years old and Haj or Umrah pilgrims are exempt).
Arrival by car
By car: The main long-distance routes run from Amman (Jordan) to Dammam, Medina and Jeddah. In addition, there are roads to Saudi Arabia from Yemen, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, and a causeway between Al Khobar and Bahrain. Long-distance buses: The Saudi Arabian Public Transport Company (SAPTCO) connects Saudi Arabia by bus with Bahrain, Jordan and the United Arab Emirates as well as with Egypt (including ferry). Traveling by long-distance bus is also possible from Jordan and Turkey, among others. Tolls: There are currently no toll roads in Saudi Arabia. Documents: In addition to the national driver’s license, the international driver’s license must be carried.
Arrival by train
There are no rail connections to Saudi Arabia.
Arrival by ship
The largest international passenger ports are Dammam (on the Gulf) and Jeddah and Yanbu (Red Sea).
On its cruise world tour starting in Europe, Phoenix also calls at Jeddah, among other places.
Namma Shipping Lines ferries connect Saudi Arabia with Egypt and Sudan.
Traveling by plane
Saudia (SV), the largest airline in Saudi Arabia, connects the country’s major cities. Flynas (XY) offers domestic flights to numerous other cities.
Traveling by car/bus
The more than 150,000 km long road network, which is constantly being expanded, connects the larger cities and the more rural regions. Among other things, there is an expressway from Jeddah to Medina and a relatively well-developed road from Jeddah to Dammam. Tolls: There are currently no toll roads in Saudi Arabia. Petrol stations: Petrol stations can be found everywhere in the cities and on main roads. In rural regions and areas with little traffic, travelers should take advantage of opportunities to refuel.
Right-hand traffic/left-hand traffic
Condition of the roads
Most of the main roads are in excellent condition. However, there are unpaved roads that should only be used with four-wheel drive vehicles. For desert drives it is important to inquire locally about the necessary precautions.
Rental cars are available both at airports and in larger cities within the metropolitan area. Drivers must be at least 25 years old.
Taxis are available in the cities. Meters are rare, and fares should be agreed in advance. There are no street names; Travelers must therefore know their destination and be able to show the driver the way.
SAPTCO offers long-distance and local bus routes throughout the country. Buses are modern and comfortable, but often slow. Faster buses are also available that run directly from city to city, at around 50% surcharge on the fare.
Traffic regulations: – There is an absolute ban on alcohol! – Women have been allowed to drive cars since 2018. – Children must be carried in the back seat. – Medina and Mecca must be bypassed by non-Muslims. – In traffic accidents, the clarification of who is at fault is often extremely arbitrary; numerous traffic violations are automatically punishable by imprisonment; In this case, be sure to notify the embassy! Speed limits: – urban: 40 km/h; – country roads: 120 km/h; – Motorways: 150 km/h.
The ADAC foreign emergency call offers ADAC members and holders of ADAC foreign health and accident insurance comprehensive assistance in the event of vehicle breakdowns, traffic accidents, loss of documents and money, and medical emergencies. The emergency number is available around the clock; in the event of damage to the vehicle: Tel. +49 (0)89 22 22 22, in the event of illness: +49 (0)89 76 76 76. In the event of accidents with the rental car, the lessor must be informed first.
In addition to the national driver’s license, the international driver’s license must be carried.
Traveling in the city
Jeddah: Many hotel chains offer “water taxis” or small minivans to take hotel guests to malls and the main shopping streets. Taxis are very cheap; the white cabs are far more comfortable than the increasingly rare yellow cabs. Riyadh: Again, the white taxis are available everywhere; they are the most practical means of transportation.
Locally on the way by train
The main Saudi Railways Organization line runs from Riyadh to Dammam via Harad, Hofuf and Dhahran. Air-conditioned trains with dining cars run on it every day. The Al Haramain bullet train connects Mecca and Medina (journey time: 2 hours).
Traveling by ship
On both coasts you can rent dhows for excursions.