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Saudi Arabia
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Weather & best time to visit

30°
Saturday, 10.12.2016
12:00 UTC

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Good to know

City map Jeddah

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    Good to know

    Jeddah – a brief overview

    Saudi Arabia’s commercial hub, the ancient trading port of Jeddah sits on the southern coast and dominates Red Sea trade – just as it did in centuries past. More open and less conservative than the capital Riyadh, the city boasts a beautiful waterfront corniche as well as a collection of ancient coral fishermen’s cottages, albeit in varying states of disrepair. Like other cities in the region, the centre is dominated by glass-and-steel skyscrapers, while endless identikit malls are dotted all over the city.

    Nevertheless, with its thriving wharves and bustling souks, modern Jeddah hasn’t strayed too far from its mercantile past – and exploring the city’s fascinating side streets and maze-like markets is a real pleasure.

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    Top 10 sights in Jeddah

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    Dschidda, Saudi-Arabien, Lufthansa, Travelguide, Travel Guide

    Naseef House

    Souq al-Alawi
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Tel.: +966 2 647 2280
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Daily 1700-2100

    This beautiful old coral house was built in 1872 and is one of several in old Jeddah, although easily one of the best preserved. Originally constructed for a wealthy local merchant, it is now a tiny museum and has a lovely rooftop terrace.

    Khuzam Palace

    Al-Nuzlah
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Various

    Built in 1932 for King Abdulaziz (and designed by Muhammed bin Laden), the vast Khuzam Palace is now a museum with exhibits covering everything from Stone Age cooking implements to al-Saud royal possessions.

    King’s Fountain

    Corniche Street
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Shooting 255m into the air, the King’s Fountain dominates the Corniche from out at sea. Particularly beautiful at night, when it is illuminated.

    Al-Tayibat City Museum for International Civilisation

    Rayhanat al-Jazirah St
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Sat-Thu 0800-1200 and 1700-2100

    A really lovely little museum covering four floors of an old house in central Jeddah, the Al-Tayibat includes everything from ancient coins to beautifully illuminated Islamic manuscripts.

    Balad

    Balad
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    One of the oldest parts of Jeddah, Balad is a warren of winding streets, souks and pretty old mosques as well as the Merchant’s House – an old coral house that was once home to Lawrence of Arabia.

    Jeddah Corniche

    Corniche
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Stretching 35km from the Gulf of Salaman to Jeddah Islamic Port, the Corniche wends its way past city beaches and luxury hotels as well as more than a few gorgeous old coral homes.

    Makkah Gate

    Old Makkah Road
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Surrounded by old mosques, the historic Makkah Gate is also close to the Bedouin Souq, so named for its high proportion of former nomads among stallholders and wonderful handmade crafts.

    Red Sea

    North Obhur, Obhur Road
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Like the better known Egyptian resorts, Jeddah’s waters are home to an embarrassment of riches, including coral reefs and scores of tropical fish. Desert Sea Diving is the oldest and best known of the diving companies, although there are plenty to choose from.

    Floating Mosque

    Corniche
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Various

    Despite the nickname, the Fatimah Azzahra Mosque is actually built on a floating platform. Nevertheless, it is one of the prettiest sights in Jeddah and easily accessed via the Corniche.

    Souq al-Alawi

    Al-Dahab St
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Sat-Wed 0800-1300 and 1700-2100

    Jeddah’s biggest souk is also one of its oldest and is home to a warren of fascinating stalls selling just about everything imaginable, including local crafts.

    Good to know

    Country information

    Country overview

    No other country in the world is as misunderstood as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and perhaps no other country – rich with culture, heritage, and natural beauty – is as worthy of a first visit.

    Geography

    Saudi Arabia occupies four-fifths of the Arabian peninsula. It is bordered to the northwest by Jordan, to the north by Iraq and Kuwait, to the east by the Gulf of Oman, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Oman, and to the south by Yemen. To the west lies the Red Sea. Along the Red Sea coast is a narrow coastal strip (Tihama) which becomes relatively hotter and more humid towards the south and has areas of extensive tidal flats and lava fields.

    Behind this coastal plain is a series of plateaux reaching up to 2,000m (6,560ft).

    The southern part of this range, Asir, has some peaks of over 3,000m (9,840ft). North of these mountains, in the far north, is An Nafud, a sand sea, and further south the landscape rises to Najd, a semi-desert area scattered with oases. Still further south the land falls away, levelling out to unremitting desert, the uninhabited ‘Empty Quarter’ or Rub al Khali. Along the Gulf coast is a low fertile plain giving way to limestone ridges inland.

    General knowledge

    Key facts

    Population: 26939583

    Population Density (per sq km): 12

    Capital: Riyadh.

    Language

    Arabic. English is spoken in business circles.

    Currency

    Saudi Arabian Riyal (SAR) = 100 halala; 5 halala = 20 qurush. Notes are in denominations of SAR500, 100, 50, 10, 5 and 1. Coins are in denominations of 50, 25, 10, and 5 halala.

    Electricity

    127/220 volts AC (with plans to change completely to 220 volts), 60Hz. Flat and round two-pin plugs and British-style square three-pin plugs are used.

    General business opening hours

    Sun-Thurs 0800-1200 and 1500-1800 (Ramadan 2000-0100), Fri 0800-1200, with some regional variation.

    Government office hours

    Sun-Thurs 0730-1430.

    Public holidays

    Below are listed Public Holidays for the January 2016 – December 2017 period.

    Note

    Muslim festivals are timed according to local sightings of various phases of the moon and the dates given below are approximations. During the lunar month of Ramadan that precedes Eid al-Fitr, Muslims fast during the day and feast at night and normal business patterns may be interrupted. Some disruption may continue into Eid al-Fitr itself. Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha may last up to several days, depending on the region. During Hajj, all government establishments and some businesses will be closed for 10 to 14 days.

    2016

    Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan): 07. July 2016
    Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice): 13. September 2016
    National Day: 23. September 2016

    20167

    Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan): 26. June 2017
    Eid al-Adha (Feast of Sacrifice): 02. September 2017
    National Day: 23. September 2017

    All information subject to change.

    Enjoy

    Nightlife in Jeddah

    ListMap

    Like Riyadh, Jeddah has little in the way of Western-style nightlife thanks to Saudi Arabia’s blanket ban on alcohol and discos.

    Nevertheless, the city has plenty of shisha cafés and coffee bars as well as a comedy club.

    Jeddah Comedy Club

    Corniche Road
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Most of the performances are in Arabic, but it’s worth going along for the atmosphere alone.

    The Lounge

    Al Hamra'a Dist.
    Park Hyatt Hotel
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Serving up coffee, tea and non-alcoholic cocktails, this bar boasts lovely Red Sea views.

    Layla’s Gourmet

    Villa 50
    Tahliya Area
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Tucked away in a suburban villa, this little café looks as if it could be in Paris.

    Caffe Aroma

    Al Mansurah, Al Ham'mra
    Al Hamraa Commercial Center
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    One of the best places to try a water pipe, this shisha café is for adults only.

    Kalila Bakery and Café

    The Courtyard, Prince Sultan St. & Al-Rawdah St. intersection
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    A cosy little café serving up really good coffee and some of the best cakes in Jeddah.

    Enjoy

    Restaurants in Jeddah

    ListMap

    Thanks to its seaside location, the fresh fish served up by Jeddah’s restaurants is second to none.

    Although there are plenty of Saudi dining spots, many more serve up European fare as well as cuisine from the rest of the Middle East.

    Green Island

    Ash Shati
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Price: Expensive

    The fresh seafood is lovely, but the real draw is the location: a series of glass-bottomed chalets in the sea off the Corniche.

    Aromi

    North Corniche Rd
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Price: Expensive

    A seriously good Italian in one of Jeddah’s most luxurious hotels.

    Al Nakheel

    8109 Al Kurnaysh Rd
    Al Shaty
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Price: Moderate

    Hugely popular with the locals, this is a great place to get a taste of Saudi cuisine.

    Yildizlar

    Al Maadi, Al Hamra
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Price: Moderate

    Really good Turkish food served up in a setting that looks like something from Arabian Nights.

    Semson Jeddah

    Al Amir Sultan, Al Khalidiyah
    Jeddah
    Saudi Arabia
    Show on map

    Price: Cheap

    Lovely little Lebanese restaurant specialising in big tasty portions and low prices.

    Discover

    Calendar of events

    Jeddah Ghair (Jeddah Summer Festival)

    1 June – 31 July 2016
    Website

    Venue: Various venues.

    One of Saudi Arabia’s biggest events, this summer festival is packed with concerts, sporting events (from water polo to roller skating), stand-up comedy, kids’ activities and theatrical performances. Festivities take place in malls, parks, squares and tourist sites throughout the city, with twice-weekly fireworks displays on the Jeddah Corniche.

    Eid al-Fitr

    7 July 2016

    Venue: Throughout Jeddah.

    Families and friends gather at home, in restaurants, at the beach and in parks during this religious holiday marking the end of Ramadan. In the evening, the Corniche turns into a massive party zone, heaving with celebrating crowds and cruising cars. There are usually fireworks and a fun, festive atmosphere.

    Eid al-Adha

    13 September 2016

    Venue: Throughout Jeddah.

    Muslims in Jeddah and throughout Saudi Arabia traditionally slaughter an animal and enjoy a feast with their families on this religious holiday. It’s also a time for prayer and giving, with people offering food, money and clothing to those who are less well off.

    Saudi National Day

    23 September 2016

    Venue: Throughout Jeddah.

    Each year on 23 September, Saudis commemorate the unification of the kingdom with a public holiday. In Jeddah, locals dress up in green, pile into their cars and drive along the Corniche, hooting their horns, singing, shouting and waving flags. A fireworks display over the water rounds the day off.

    Decofair

    10 – 13 November 2016Website

    Venue: Jeddah Centre for Forums and Events.

    Over 10,000 visitors check out the newest Saudi Arabian and international interior design trends at Decofair. Furniture, furnishings, lighting, textiles and accessories are all on display. Top design professionals lead educational seminars and workshops, and visitors can pick up the latest products.

    Foodex Saudi

    17 – 20 November 2016
    Website

    Venue: Jeddah Centre for Forums and Events.

    Restaurateurs, buyers and foodies mingle at this gastronomic event, the largest in Saudi Arabia. Visitors can nibble samples of Saudi and international cuisine, learn how to cook a five-star meal at home, discover new brands and watch entertaining cookery demos and competitions.

    Saudi International Motor Show

    12 – 24 December 2016

    Venue: Jeddah Centre for Forums and Events.

    Flashy cars are all the rage in Saudi Arabia, and Jeddah’s annual car show is heaven for motor fanatics. The shiniest new models of cars, SUVs and motorbikes are all on show, with major banks on hand to provide immediate financing to eager buyers.

    Jeddah International Trade Fair

    22 – 25 December 2016
    Website

    Venue: Jeddah Centre for Forums and Events.

    An incredible variety of industries show off their latest goods at this massive trade fair. From swanky swimming pools and state-of-the-art kitchens to stylish Arabian textiles and flashy jewellery, there’s an astonishing array of products on display. National pavilions represent countries from Asia, Africa and Europe.

    Saudi International Weddings Fair

    February 2017
    Website

    Venue: Jeddah Hilton.

    Brides and their families plan the day of their dreams at this one-stop shop for wedding planning, with fabulous cakes, designer dresses and extravagant floral arrangements vying for their attention. According to the organisers, the Gulf bridal market is worth around a whopping US$750 million in jewellery alone.

    Jeddah Economic Forum

    February 2017
    Website

    Venue: Jeddah Hilton.

    Business leaders, economists and heads of state from around the world meet at this important forum, dubbed the ‘Davos of the Middle East’. Discussions on growth, job creation and economic diversity and sustainability dominate the event, with big-name keynote speakers providing expertise.

    All information subject to change. Please check the dates on the relevant event organizer’s website.

    Enjoy

    Hotels in Jeddah

    ListMap

    Unlike Riyadh, most of Jeddah’s hotels are designed for recreation, so expect huge swimming pools as standard as well as lavish decoration.

    Budget hotels are virtually non-existent however, so be prepared to pay well for your stay.

    Al-Basmah Coral Resort

    Mohammadia Area, Abhor
    Jeddah
    Saudi-Arabia
    Show on map

    Category: Expensive

    Set in beautiful gardens, Al-Basmah doesn’t do rooms – it’s all vast suites and villas.

    Qasr al Sharq

    Al Kurnaysh Rd, Ash Shati
    North Corniche Road
    Jeddah
    Saudi-Arabia
    Show on map

    Category: Expensive

    Decked out like a sultan’s palace, Qasr al Sharq is one of Jeddah’s most lavish hotels.

    Hotel Al Hamra

    Palestine street
    Jeddah
    Saudi-Arabia
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    White walls and wooden fittings contribute to the Al Hamra’s pleasantly airy feel.

    Jeddah Marriott

    Palestine Rd. Corner PR Fahad Street
    Jeddah
    Saudi-Arabia
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    The décor here is standard modern corporate, but the hotel offers a warm welcome.

    Crowne Plaza Jeddah

    Al Corniche- Al Ma'adi Road
    Jeddah
    Saudi-Arabia
    Show on map

    Category: Cheap

    The interior needs updating, but the Corniche location is unbeatable.

    Good to know

    Best time to visit

    Today: Saturday, 10.12.2016 12:00 UTC

    sunny

    temperature


    30°C


    wind speed

    13.75 mph

    7 days forecast

    Sunday

    11.12.2016

    29°C / 25°C

    Monday

    12.12.2016

    30°C / 25°C

    Tuesday

    13.12.2016

    29°C / 25°C

    Wednesday

    14.12.2016

    28°C / 23°C

    Thursday

    15.12.2016

    27°C / 21°C

    Friday

    16.12.2016

    28°C / 21°C

    Saturday

    17.12.2016

    28°C / 24°C

    Climate & best time to visit Saudi Arabia

    Saudi Arabia has a desert climate. In seaside Jeddah it is warm for most of the year, though winter is probably the most pleasant time for a visit. Riyadh, which is inland, is hotter in summer and colder in winter, when occasional heavy rainstorms occur. Early spring and late autumn are lovely times to visit this desert capital. The Rub al Khali, or “Empty Quarter,” seldom receives rain, making Saudi Arabia one of the driest countries in the world.

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    34 °C

    11 °C

    36 °C

    11 °C

    42 °C

    13 °C

    44 °C

    14 °C

    48 °C

    16 °C

    49 °C

    20 °C

    45 °C

    21 °C

    44 °C

    22 °C

    48 °C

    20 °C

    44 °C

    15 °C

    38 °C

    15 °C

    36 °C

    11 °C

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    14 mm

    7 mm

    1 mm

    5 mm

    1 mm

    0 mm

    0 mm

    0 mm

    0 mm

    0 mm

    12 mm

    10 mm

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    0 h

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    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    66 %

    60 %

    58 %

    57 %

    57 %

    59 %

    56 %

    59 %

    68 %

    67 %

    62 %

    60 %

    absolute maxabsolute minØ absolute minØ absolute minrelative humidityØ precipitationdays with deposit > 1mmsunshine duration
    Jan34 °C11 °C28 °C19 °C66 %14.7 mm10.0 h
    Feb36 °C11 °C29 °C18 °C60 %7.5 mm0.20.0 h
    Mar42 °C13 °C31 °C20 °C58 %1.8 mm0.40.0 h
    Apr44 °C14 °C33 °C22 °C57 %5.7 mm0.30.0 h
    May48 °C16 °C35 °C24 °C57 %1.1 mm0.20.0 h
    Jun49 °C20 °C36 °C25 °C59 %0 mm00.0 h
    Jul45 °C21 °C37 °C26 °C56 %0.1 mm-0.10.0 h
    Aug44 °C22 °C37 °C27 °C59 %0 mm00.0 h
    Sep48 °C20 °C35 °C26 °C68 %-0.1 mm-0.10.0 h
    Oct44 °C15 °C34 °C24 °C67 %0.3 mm0.10.0 h
    Nov38 °C15 °C32 °C22 °C62 %12.2 mm10.0 h
    Dec36 °C11 °C29 °C20 °C60 %10.7 mm0.60.0 h
    year49 °C11 °C33 °C23 °C61 %54 mm40.0 h
    Good to know

    Phone calls & Internet

    Telephone/Mobile Telephone

    Dialing code: +966

    Telephone

    A sophisticated telecommunications network and satellite, microwave and cable systems span the country.

    Mobile Telephone

    Visitors can apply for a mobile telephone number upon arrival at the airport. Prepaid SIM cards, which operate in most handheld devices, are affordable and reliable.

    International roaming agreements exist with some mobile phone companies and coverage is mostly good.

    Hotels and some long-term apartment rentals will include access to a landline, but local and international calls can be much more expensive than calls placed on a landline.

    Internet

    The Ministry of Post, Telegraph and Telephones provides internet facilities in most cities. But email can also be accessed from many hotels and internet cafes.

    Enjoy

    Shopping in Jeddah

    Stadtführer, Lufthansa, Travelguide, Shopping, Einkaufen

    Key Areas

    Despite recent modernisation, Jeddah hasn’t lost sight of its mercantile roots, and commerce continues to dominate the city. Much of the action now happens in the city’s many malls which are numerous and specialise in designer goods and international high-street fashion. Nevertheless, there are plenty of street markets and souks, most of which are located in old Jeddah and Balad. Foremost among them is Souq al-Alawi where you can browse everything from exotic spices to leather slippers and even blocks of gold.

    Markets

    Souq al-Nada in Balad is the main place for gold and silver jewellery while Souq al-Jamia specialises in silk and other textiles. Souq al-Alawi is the largest and sells just about everything imaginable.

    Shopping Centres

    Jeddah has scores of malls, the largest and most impressive of which is Mall of Arabia (An Nuzhah). Other good bets include the Heraa International Mall (Al Madinah Al Munawara Road) and Star’s Avenue (King Abdul Aziz Road), which has a branch of Saks Fifth Avenue.

    Good to know

    Traveller etiquette

    Social Conventions

    Saudi culture is based on Islam and the perfection of the Arabic language. The Saudi form of Islam is conservative and fundamentalist, based on the 18th-century revivalist movement of the Najdi leader Sheikh Muhammad Ibn Abdel-Wahhab. This has had a great effect on Saudi society, especially on the position of women, who are required by law to leave the home covered in abaya, (black robes). Some women also wear a niqab, a black mask that covers the face, and gloves, though there are regional variations of dress. The Najd and other remote areas remain true to Wahhabi tradition, but throughout the country this way of life is being altered by modernisation and rapid development.

    Shaking hands and kissing on the cheek is the customary form of greeting between men. Invitations to private homes are unusual, though not unheard of. Entertaining is usually in hotels or restaurants and although the custom of eating with the right hand persists, it is more likely that knives and forks will be used. A small gift either promoting the company or representing your country will generally be well received.

    Women are expected to dress modestly and it is best to do so to avoid offence.

    Men should not wear shorts in public or go without a shirt. The norms for public behaviour are extremely conservative and religious police, known as muttawa, are charged with enforcing these standards.

    Customs regarding smoking are the same as in Europe and non-smoking areas are indicated. During Ramadan, Muslims are not allowed to eat, smoke or drink during the day and it is illegal for a foreign visitor to do so in public.

    Photography

    Strictly speaking, photography is not permitted. However, many people do still take photos, but are careful to ask permission of the relevant authority before photographing people or any building. In recent years, the spread of small digital cameras and mobile phones with cameras have eased official and unofficial acceptance of photography.

    Good to know

    Health

    Food & Drink

    All water from the tap should be regarded as being potentially contaminated. Water used for drinking, brushing teeth or making ice should have first been boiled or otherwise sterilised. Bottled water is cheap and safe. Fresh milk is pasteurised but powdered or boxed milk is also available as an alternative. Avoid dairy products which are likely to have been made from unboiled milk. Only eat well-cooked meat and fish. Vegetables should be washed and fruit peeled.

    Other Risks

    Avoid swimming and paddling in fresh water; swimming pools which are well chlorinated and maintained are safe.

    Contractual physician of Lufthansa

    Abdulrahim Dr. Bai
    Najd Building
    Tahlia Street/Service Road
    Gari Medical Center
    P.O. Box 10744
    Jeddah 21443
    Saudi-Arabia
    Tel. +966-12-2632099

    Please note that Lufthansa accepts no responsibility for the treatment nor will it bear the cost of any treatment.

    Contractual physician of Lufthansa

    Dr. Bai, Abdulrahim
    Najd Building
    Tahlia Street/Service Road
    Gari Medical Center
    P.O. Box 10744
    Jeddah 21443
    Saudi-Arabia
    Tel. +966-12-2632099

    Please note that Lufthansa accepts no responsibility for the treatment nor will it bear the cost of any treatment.
    Good to know

    Visa & Immigration

    IATA Travel Centre

    The IATA Travel Centre delivers accurate passport, visa and health requirement information at a glance. It is a trusted, centralized source for the latest international travel requirements. The IATA Travel Centre is the most accurate source available because it is based on a comprehensive database used by virtually every airline, and information is gathered from official sources worldwide, such as immigration and police authorities.

    IATA Travel CentreIATA Travel Centre