When we think of Saudi Arabia, a country best known for its deserts and arid landscapes, we may not immediately picture a winter wonderland. However, winter in Saudi Arabia offers a unique and captivating experience that's well worth exploring.
The natural phenomena and awe-inspiring landscapes are attracting more and more people to visit the country, while others are adding it to their list. If you're one of those people who have winters in Saudi Arabia on your bucket list, then we suggest you scroll down and stay with us till the end!
Saudi Arabia Winter Temperature
Contrary to the belief, it’s not always hot in Saudi Arabia. The country is infamous for the four different weathers. Chilly winters, easy-breezy autumn, scorching summers, and calm springs.
Winds begin to change in December and last until mid-March, with average winter temperatures in Saudi Arabia ranging from around 8 degrees Celsius to 20 degrees Celsius. The days are balmy while the nights are colder making the weather ideal for exploration in the day and for camping in the night.
Insider Tip: Plan your winter wonderland Saudi Arabia trip during the Riyadh season or MDLBEAST Soundstorm Jeddah that warms the nation during the winter season.
Enjoy the winter sun and explore the Hegra tombs in AlUla, beat the cold by huddling around bonfires and camping or mark your presence at Tantora Festival for concerts and outdoor events.
Winter activities in Saudi Arabia
Winter months in Saudi Arabia is a beautiful time to meet new people and an amazing opportunity to indulge in the seasons’ activities. visiting historical sites, dune bashing, shopping, camel riding are some of the best ways to experience the Saudi culture and have a great time this winter.
Don’t miss out the following activities when in Saudi Arabia!
- Kashta in the dunes
- Sandboarding and Sand sledding
- Stargazing in the desert
- Hiking in Winter Park Saudi Arabia
- Discover Riyadh on a Bike
- Roll on a Skateboard
- Go Farwa Shopping
Kashta in the dunes: Sleep among the dunes and beneath the stars to embrace the traditions this season. We suggest you pack something warm as it can get surprisingly cold. Wake up to the sound of the birds and fuel up on the Arabic coffee and breakfast before you head out to enjoy other activities.
Here’s a list of places to visit in Saudi Arabia for Camping:
Desert camping sites
- Acacia Valley: Located in the Tuwaiq Escarpment, this area has many camping sites.
- Reem Reserve: Located west of Riyadh, this natural attraction offers Bedouin-style camping.
- Rawdhat Khuraim: This reserve preserves its natural beauty.
- Wadi Hanifa: This valley in Riyadh is popular with city dwellers.
- Caravan By Habitas Alula
- Sahary Al Ula Resort
- Rural Tents Naseem Alouzaib
- Ashar Tented Resort
- Madakhil Camp
Other camping sites
- Jabal Al Lawz
- Moon Valley
- Falcon International Camp
- Asir National Park
- Asfar Lake
- Khararah National Park
Sandboarding and Sand sledding: Embrace the thrill of winter sports in Saudi Arabia by conquering the majestic dunes through exhilarating activities. Whether you're into hiking, quad biking, dune bashing, or camping, the Arabian desert has something special to offer. For an extraordinary experience amidst the sweeping dunes, consider sandboarding and sand sledding. These activities bear a resemblance to traditional winter sports like snowboarding and sledding, providing adventurous souls with the chance to ride the sand with boards, unveiling the hidden gems of Saudi's sandy terrain.
When venturing into the thrilling world of winter sports of Saudi Arabia, it's crucial to follow a few safety and comfort guidelines:
- Use sand sleds or sandboards designed for sand terrain.
- Wear loose, long-sleeved clothing to protect you from the sun and injuries.
- Choose closed-toed shoes or sneakers, or even go sock-footed for better comfort and control.
- Always have a hat and sunglasses for sun protection and safety.
Stargazing in the desert: Visit AlUla for a star-studded night. Experience the magic and wonder of a sky filled with stars and perhaps even catch a glimpse of a shooting star. With minimal light pollution, you can easily spot constellations and stars using just your naked eye or a basic telescope. It's a celestial experience you won't want to miss.
Here are some observatories in Saudi Arabia that are open to tourists:
- Fakieh Planetarium: Located in Jeddah, this planetarium offers an educational journey through the universe.
- Saudi Stargazing: This observatory is open to those who want to see celestial bodies.
- Scitech Science Center: Located in Khobar, this center was opened in 2006 to spread cultural and scientific awareness.
Other observatories in Saudi Arabia include:
- The Madinah Urban Observatory Network (MOUN)
- The Eastern Province Development Authority Urban Observatory Center
Hiking in Winter Parks of Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabia's Winter Parks boast a variety of stunning landscapes, from mountains to historic valleys, providing an array of unforgettable hiking experiences. The Kingdom's diverse terrain transforms it into a haven for both local and international trekkers. Enthusiasts from all corners of the world journey to these well-preserved natural hiking sites in Winter Parks, Saudi Arabia. Along these enchanting paths, explorers can relish the picturesque beauty of expansive valleys, vast lava fields, and ancient rock engravings, all while capturing breathtaking photographs. Additionally, some of these trails allow hikers to set up camp at various locations.
Some of the popular hiking trails in Saudi Arabia are:
- Wadi Al Disah
- Edge of The World
- Moon Valley
- Jabal Sawda
- Ash Shafa Red Rock Ridge
Discover Riyadh on Bike: Pedal your way in Riyadh as the Dutch would do. Riyadh offers a range of cycling trails tailored to accommodate riders of varying preferences and fitness levels. The journey involves traffic-free paths, allow you to spin around and round to sightsee the best of the region.
Here are some places to visit in Saudi Arabia to rent bikes from:
Roll on a Skateboard: For all our travelers who are young and young at heart, we suggest try your hand at skateboarding and enjoy the outdoors. Saudi is all about celebrating new memories. Hence enjoy the thrill and satisfaction of the new.
Note: Just make sure to wear all the safety gear if you haven’t done it before!
- Diplomatic Quarters
- Wadi Hanifah
Go Farwa Shopping: Buy a piece of the tradition and pack it on your way back home. Historically Farwa was worn by Bedouin men to protect themselves from the cold weather conditions and it used to often end up mopping the floor. Today, it is an essential part of the closet for men and women in Saudi Arabia as well as for the gulf. Today, different local designers have added their contemporary touch to this local sartorial classic; here are some of them:
- Rana Ismail
- Jino Fashion
As you plan your winter in Saudi Arabia, remember that the country's rich traditions and contemporary touches can be found not only in its landscapes but also in its unique clothing, such as the Farwa. So, whether you're capturing the beauty of the landscape, embracing local traditions, or seeking thrilling outdoor experiences, Saudi Arabia's winter season has something special to offer every traveler.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the winter season like in Saudi Arabia?
Answer: Winter in Saudi Arabia is characterized by milder temperatures, clear skies, and a pleasant climate. Daytime temperatures range from 15°C to 25°C (59°F to 77°F), making it a great time for outdoor activities and exploration.
2. When does winter begin and end in Saudi Arabia?
Answer: Winter typically starts in November and lasts until February. The temperatures are cooler during this period, providing a welcome break from the scorching summer.
3. What should I pack for a trip to Saudi Arabia in winter?
Answer: It's advisable to pack layers, as the temperature can vary during the day and night. Bring comfortable clothing, a jacket, sunscreen, and sunglasses. Don't forget to pack a hat and a reusable water bottle for your outdoor adventures.
4. Are there any specific activities or festivals during Saudi Arabia's winter season?
Answer: Winter is a great time to experience the Riyadh Season, a cultural and entertainment festival featuring concerts, shows, and outdoor events. Additionally, you can explore the Saudi Winter Festival and take part in various outdoor activities.
5. What are the top tourist destinations to visit in Saudi Arabia during winter?
Answer: Some popular winter destinations include Al Ula, Abha, and Taif. You can also explore the historical sites of Diriyah, which are particularly beautiful in the winter months.