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Saudi Arabia

The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office advises against travel to within 10km of the border with Yemen.

If there is a final frontier of tourism left, it's Saudi Arabia. The birthplace and spiritual home of Islam, Saudi Arabia is rich in attractions and stirring symbolism. For Muslims, the cities of Mecca and Medina, rich in Prophetic significance, have no equal, while the carved temples of Madain Saleh, known as the second Petra, and the sophisticated rock art at Jubbah are the Kingdom's greatest pre-Islamic treasures.

Other wonders abound, from echoes of TE Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) along the Hejaz Railway to the sculpted red dunes of romantic deserts. Fascinating Riyadh is a showpiece for modern Saudi Arabia, while Jeddah's World Heritage coral architecture whisks you back to the history of this bustling pilgrim port. The pristine, azure waters of the Red Sea ache to be explored and in the south, the jewel in the Kingdom's crown, Asir, reveals breathtaking mountain scenery where mysterious and spectacular villages wait to be discovered.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Saudi Arabia.

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