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Things to do in Jeddah

07 May 2014 7 AM

Things to do in Jeddah
Jeddah is the gateway to the holy city of Makkah but it is also a worthy destination in its own right. Famous for being Saudi Arabia’s commercial centre and one of its most easy-going cities, it’s also one of the country’s most popular destinations for visitors.

If you’ve never been to Jeddah or you’re planning a trip there, here’s just a taster of what you’ll find and a few of its hidden gems.

King’s Fountain

Also known as the Jeddah Fountain, the King’s Fountain is the tallest fountain of its type in the world. Watch it as it shoots water 1,024 feet up into the air above the Red Sea – it really is an impressive sight to see.

Wherever you are in Jeddah you’ll be able to see it, making it one of the city’s most iconic landmarks. It’s been in operation since 1985 and uses more than 500 spotlights to illuminate it at night. It’s one Jeddah sight that literally cannot be missed and truly reflects Jeddah’s status as an important Saudi Arabian city.

Silver Sands Beach

Located on the beautiful Red Sea coastline, Jeddah is a city with superb access to sun, sea and sand. Silver Sands is one of the best private beaches in the city – offering an exclusive and tranquil place to relax without the crowds of a public beach.

The best time of day for true peace and quiet is early morning before other people arrive and the temperature starts to rise.

Wake up in your luxury room at the Waldorf Astoria Qasr Al Sharq and head to the beach to continue your relaxation under a shady palm tree.

Floating Mosque

The floating mosque is one of Jeddah’s best-known monuments and at high tide it appears to be almost completely floating. Surrounded by water on three sides, the mosque is a popular place for Muslims who are visiting Jeddah on their way to Makkah to stop and pray.

While many non-Muslims come and view the floating mosque, they should remember that it is a religious place and not a tourist attraction. Being respectful of local traditions and culture should be paramount at all times.. Stay for a night at the Jeddah Hilton Hotel
and use the mosque to pray or simply enjoy its beautiful surroundings.

Makkah Gate

In the old part of Jeddah (the south of the city) lies the Makkah Gate. It’s one of the largest replicas of the Holy Qur’an and is built on an archway across the motorway.

100 years ago there was a wall around Jeddah with four gates for leaving and entering. The site of today’s Makkah Gate used to be the eastern gate out of the city and was only open during the day.

Since the gate is across the motorway it’s illegal to stop your car and get out to admire it but even from your vehicle you’ll be guaranteed a spectacular view.


Al-Balad is the historic centre of Jeddah and a bustling souq area. It’s a popular area for shoppers with indoor and outdoor souq areas and place to experience real Saudi Arabian culture.

Its traditional buildings will give you a taste of Jeddah’s past and it’s easy to lose yourself here while you wander down its old, meandering streets.

Try your hand at haggling and come away with a bargain, or head to one of the higher end shops and treat yourself to some high fashion before returning to your luxury hotel.

Whether you grab a bargain or treat yourself here, you’ll be able to soak up the real atmosphere of a Saudi souq here.

And there you have it – the top things to do when you visit Jeddah. Have you been here? Perhaps you know some of Jeddah’s hidden gems – let us know!


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