Jiddah Things to Do
Jiddah, which is also sometimes spelled Jeddah, is one of the largest and most cosmopolitan cities in Saudi Arabia.
The Old City
This UNESCO World Heritage site is the best preserved old city center in Saudi Arabia, and it’s thought to date back to the time of Alexander the Great. Here you’ll have an opportunity to observe some of the traditional architecture of the region.
While in Old Jeddah, tour Beit Matbouli. Beit Matbouli is a traditional house that was converted into a museum. Inside, you’ll see furniture and architecture featuring intricate and beautiful carvings. You may also want to check out Beit Sharbatly, a home that once belonged to the very prominent Sharbatly family. The Sharbatlys are major players in the country’s food industry, and are well known throughout the country. Beit Sharbatly is their ancestral home, and local lore has it that Lawrence of Arabia was a guest there during his time in the city.
The Balad Souq offers a window into Jiddah daily life. A souq is a marketplace, and this one is an authentic souq, and has not been cleaned up and geared toward tourists.
The Jiddah Corniche, located along the coast of the Red Sea, has something for everyone. This is an excellent place to catch fish, snorkel, fly kites, camp out, barbecue, or even just sit and watch the sunset. Keep in mind that the local culture is very conservative – there are no nude beaches, no obscenity is allowed, and single men may not be permitted into areas designated for women or families.
You can see the Corniche from a different perspective by taking a boat ride on the water. This allows you to people watch and observe the activities on the shore while you enjoy the Red Sea.
Along the coastline, you’ll also observe a number of sculptures, monuments, and modern art pieces. This section of Jiddah functions as an open-air museum. Jiddah can be described as the most creative and artistic of the Saudi Arabian cities, and the inhabitants of the area are proud of their displays of art.
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