What to see in Jeddah
Jeddah is considered the most cosmopolitan city in Saudi Arabia, and the constant expansion of the concrete threatens to engulf the beautiful coral architecture of the Old Town, which is in a sad state of disrepair. However, some buildings like the Naseef House have been restored to their former glory, complete with camel-friendly ramps.
The Souk Al Alawi is a fascinating place, even if you aren't there to buy. The biggest bazaar in Jeddah, the narrow streets are bursting with merchandise, the market is especially busy during hajj. Another market worth seeing is the fish market in Al-Balad, where dozens of species ranging from hammerhead sharks to squid are sold at auction between 5am and 9am.
Another popular place for sightseeing in Jeddah is the 22-mile (35km) Corniche, a busy meeting place where families and friends gather for picnics and other activities on warm summer nights. A number of interesting sculptures line the promenade north of the port.
To learn something about Jeddah's history, visit the Al-Tayibat City Museum for International Civilisation, which has more than 300 rooms filled with fascinating artefacts ranging from beautiful Islamic manuscripts to ancient pottery and furniture.
Travellers wanting to see a different side of Jeddah can explore the abundant sea life in the Red Sea. Scuba diving in Jeddah is a popular activity, with several stunning coral reef systems and shipwrecks in the area. Above the surface is the incredible King Fah's Fountain that sprays seawater over 1,000 feet (312m) into the air. While the fountain is visible throughout the city, visitors can go to Al Andalus pier to get a closer look.
As the birthplace of Muhammad and the site of his first revelation of the Quran, Mecca is the holiest city in the Muslim world and is the direction towards which the world's Muslims pray…
The oldest and most traditional market in Saudi Arabia, the Souq Al Alawi in Jeddah is a wonderful way to immerse oneself into local culture and see how shopping among traders and pilgrims…
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