Riyadh Tourist Places: 10 Places You Must Visit

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The capital city of Saudi Arabia Riyadh is also the largest city in the country. It is a cultural hub that seamlessly presents ancient fortresses with modern glass skyscrapers standing side-by-side. Although Riyadh is a large city spreading over an area of 1,800 square kilometers, it is in its modest historic center or center of the city where most of the interesting attractions are located. There are many incredible places to visit in Riyadh, ranging from several historical and cultural attractions to lovely parks and huge shopping malls to towering skyscrapers and fascinating museums. With so many famous tourist places in Riyadh, the city offers a vibrant glimpse of the country Tourists can choose from a host of historical, cultural, and religious Riyadh tourist places to visit.

Sacred Sites in Riyadh

There are more than 4,000 mosques in Riyadh where the life of the people is concentrated. Most religious places to visit in Riyadh are:

 

1. Al Rajhi Grand Mosque 

Al Rajhi Grand Mosque is the largest mosque in Riyadh. It can accommodate around 180000 people at a time. With its lavish architecture and intricate designs. The mosque is considered an incredible architectural marvel. The mosque offers a place of worship for Muslims as well as a meeting spot for social events and community gatherings. It looks magical when it’s lit up with colorful lights at night. Only the followers of Islam are allowed inside the mosque.

 

2. Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque 

Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque is a significant Islamic institution. It is also popularly known as the Grand Mosque of Riyadh. Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque is listed as one of Saudi Arabia’s largest mosques. Spread across an area of 16,800 sq m, the mosque can accommodate seating 17,000 devotees at a time. There are separate libraries for men and women at the mosque premises. With middle east architecture, the mosque is built with brown Arriyadh limestone and white marble. Lit up at night, it looks illuminated.

3.  Princess Latifa Bint Sultan Bin Abdulaziz Mosque 

With its distinctive Islamic style of architecture, the Princess Latifa bint Sultan bin Abdulaziz Mosque stands distinguished. The design of the mosque gives a feeling of serenity, calm, and comfort that accompanies places of worship. The interiors of the mosque are no less beautiful than its exterior facade, where the walls are adorned with the most beautiful inscriptions, decorations, and verses of the Qur’an. The mosque floors are covered with the finest and most luxurious carpets.

 

4. King Khalid Grand Mosque 

King Khalid Grand Mosque is one of the top religious places in Riyadh. The Mosque has a unique architectural design Featuring striking architecture and a pristine interior. Its embellished stained glass windows showcase the panache of traditional Islamic architecture. The white face of the mosque shines brilliantly against the midday sun. Rising against the cityscape of Riyadh City Mosque has a serene atmosphere that promotes the feeling of peace and unity amongst the worshippers gathered here.

 

Best historical places in Riyadh

 

5. Ad-Diriyah 

One of the most significant historical sites in Riyadh is Ad-Diriyah. It is a historical town that is split into two parts by a valley called Wadi Hanifa and additionally divided into several quarters. It served as the home to the Saudi Royal family initially. Today, one can find the remains of the ancient city that are divided into three districts – Ghusaibah, Bujairi, and Turaif. Identified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the town is situated on the top of hills overlooking the valley. Tourists who wish to witness the Ad-Diriyah culture should not miss visiting the Diriyah Museum and Al-Zawihra Mosque. 

6. Ushaiqer Heritage Village

Located northwest of Riyadh, is one of the oldest villages in the region known as Ushaiger Heritage Village. The village gets its name from the Arabic word ‘Ushaiger’, which translates to ‘little blonde’ referring to the red mountain that stands tall, shadowing the yellow mud houses of the village.

Going down history, the village served as a major stopping point for pilgrims coming from Kuwait because of its freshwater springs, and the clustered olive and palm trees of the region provided great shade. Locals have established a museum, called the Al Salem Museum, which offers a glimpse into the heritage of the village.

 

7. King Abdulaziz Historical Centre 

King Abdulaziz Historical Centre is another famous place, especially among tourists who want to know more about the history of Riyadh. The historical center is situated near the National Museum and is sprawled across a large area. It houses several exhibitions that cover a variety of topics like the history of Islam, the relationship of man with the universe, the modern and ancient Arabian Peninsula, the history of Saudi Arabia, and the history of other Arab civilizations.

8. Heet Cave In Riyadh

Also known as Heet Cave, Ein Heet or Dahl Heet, located about 50 km from Riyadh is a natural cave popular among tourists worldwide. The cave is famous for its limestone rocks and water reservoir.

 

9. The Masmak Palace

Also known as the Masmak Fortress or Masmak Palace, the Masmak Fort is a cultural & heritage site in Riyadh. Constructed of clay and mud-brick, the fort testifies to the birth of a kingdom, it has played a major role in the Unification of Saudi Arabia. The building has served many purposes; earlier it was used to house forces that protected the city, after the raid by King Abdulaziz it was transformed into an ammunition warehouse and then a prison. Now converted into a museum, hosts some fascinating exhibitions including historical maps and photographs, a myriad of historical artifacts, and audiovisual presentations.

 

10. The National Museum 

Opened in Riyadh in 1999, The National Museum of Saudi Arabia is part of the King Abdul-Aziz Historical Center. Several cultural activities are held in the museum that reflects the history of the Arabian Peninsula and helps spread the message of Islam.

To see the best of Riyadh one should visit these incredible places that showcase the transformation of the city over the years while keeping heritage and history at the heart of it.

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