Landmarks of Saudi Arabia
In Saudi Arabia, according to ebizdir, there are many interesting sights that show the national color and features of the country. Among them, two religious shrines stand out, which are revered not only in Arabia, but throughout the Muslim world. We are talking about the cities of Mecca and Medina, where Islamic shrines are located. Mecca is famous as a place associated with the Prophet Muhammad, a key figure in Islam. It is no coincidence that all Muslims, when praying, turn their faces towards Mecca. Islamic canons even prescribe the need to perform the Hajj, a religious pilgrimage to Mecca. For pilgrims in Mecca, there is even a special tent city of Mina, where they can stay. Mecca is also famous for its Great Mosque (al-Masjid al-Haram), where the Kaaba is located, officially considered the main sanctuary of Islam. With all the desire, European tourists for the most part will not be able to see the Kaaba with their own eyes, since access to Mecca is open only to those foreigners who profess Islam. Another notable city is its capital, Riyadh. There is a significant number of various architectural monuments here, for example, the Masmak fortress, built back in 1865. On the territory of the ancient fortress, you can visit a real medieval hotel “sofa”, where everything corresponds to historical realities. You can get inside the hotel through an old courtyard, corresponding to the canons of medieval architecture. Here, at the Masmak fortress, there is an impressive museum dedicated to the life and work of the founder of the state, King Abdel Aziz. Visiting days for tourists are from Saturday to Wednesday. There is another interesting museum in Riyadh, located in the old part of the city – Al-Baate. The area where the museum is located bears the stamp of antiquity. There are a lot of buildings here, and the layout of the streets itself meets the requirements of antiquity. The museum has a significant collection, the exhibits of which tell about the history and life of Saudi Arabia – from ancient times to the present. Tourists can see various archaeological finds here, some of which date back to the Stone Age, weapons, musical instruments, tools and clothing. Diraya, once the first capital of Saudi Arabia, is located 30 kilometers from the capital. The city was founded in 1446 and reached the height of its power by the end of the eighteenth century. Numerous archaeological excavations are now underway here, which have opened mosques, ruins of palaces and remnants of an ancient urban country. Another interesting city in Saudi Arabia is Al-Taif, which has the unofficial status of the summer capital of the state. The city is distinguished by luxurious gardens, beautiful rose gardens and vineyards. There is a city museum, ancient luxurious palaces, beautiful mosques. Here you can also visit the huge King Fahd Park, whose area is 175 square kilometers. Those who want to see the color of the oasis and the way of life of nomads should visit the city of El Hofuf. Here you can see an old fort, visit a huge market where beautiful and unusual handicrafts of local artisans are sold. Al-Hofuf is also known as the city where the unfortunate lovers Majnun and Leila died, about whom verses and poems were composed throughout the medieval Muslim world.
National cuisine of Saudi Arabia
Features of the national cuisine of Saudi Arabia were formed by its natural and climatic abilities. As in all Arab countries, traditions are very strictly honored here and recipes are passed down from generation to generation. The products used in the preparation of daily and festive dishes are very traditional and are found in almost all Muslim countries. The consumption of pork is strictly forbidden, as it is considered a sinful act. Beef, eggs, various types of poultry and fish are used for food. Fried meat is very popular, which is cooked on hot coals or in a pan with a lot of vegetable oil. One of the traditional dishes is “kultra” – meat on a spit. Usually poultry or lamb meat is used for kultra. The “tika” shish kebab is also very common, and shawarma is often prepared. Fans of juicy and tender meat will certainly enjoy different types of “kebab” – shish kebab made from marinated lamb or beef. Kebab is so popular here that there are at least a hundred recipe options for marinating meat before frying. Meat is one of the favorite and frequently consumed foods here. Meat is an indispensable ingredient in various recipes of local cuisine; it is cooked in chopped form or even whole carcasses. In addition, meat is always added to one of the most beloved dishes in Saudi Arabia – “makbous”, a local variety of pilaf. Very widely used in local cuisine and various types of poultry. There are many recipes where the carcass of a bird is stuffed with vegetables or rice with spices, then grilled or baked in hot coals. As a side dish, rice and various types of vegetables are commonly used – eggplant, zucchini, peppers, beans with spices and seasonings. On the daily and festive table, there are also such salads as “fatush” (fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, lemon, greens, olive oil and spices from cornel or barberry fruits) and “hummus” (crushed peas with sesame sauce). The custom of serving dessert to the table is almost universally widespread. Delicacies such as Turkish delight, sherbet, baklava, candied fruits appeared here, and later, to the delight of the sweet tooth of other countries, became widespread in the world. The main drink here is coffee. The culture of making and drinking coffee in Saudi Arabia is very high, and coffee is consumed here as a drink created for communication and leisurely conversation.
The most developed and widespread mode of transport in the country is aviation. The national carrier Saudi Arabian airlines operates many domestic flights between cities in the country, and many flights operate daily. The level of service on the company’s routes meets European standards. The cost of the flight is approximately 120-150 US dollars. Rail transport is much less developed than aviation. Regular passenger service is available on the route Riyadh – Dammam. The country also has a road network with a total length of about 220,000 square kilometers, of which about one quarter are paved roads. In addition, in the two largest cities of the country – Mecca and Riyadh – there is a built and operating subway.