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Saudi Pioneers Landscapes Adventure

Our 8 night Saudi Landscapes Adventure explores the stunning beauty of this incredible land.  A goldmine for geologists, a paradise for photographers or for those with an adventurous spirit, a playground full of undiscovered cultural and historical treasures. 

 

Saudi has only recently opened up to tourists and few have ventured there. It will be unfamiliar territory for most travellers but Marina and her local guides will navigate you through the historical, cultural and physical landscapes to ensure that you return with a lifetime of treasured memories. 

wadi disah reflectr 2100 x 800
disah 2 2100 x 800
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saudi train 2100x800
lava field 2100 x 800 by neil bruce
volcano with camels 2 2100 x 800
al ula 2100 x 800
wadi disah 2100 x 800
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wadi disah reflectr 2100 x 800
disah 2 2100 x 800
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saudi train 2100x800
lava field 2100 x 800 by neil bruce
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al ula 2100 x 800
wadi disah 2100 x 800
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  • Approx 2000 kms – mainly on backroads with daily offroad forays
  • Estimated 30 hours behind the wheel
  • 2 Nights at a 3 or 4* hotel
  • 1 night “glamping” at a farm (toilet and shower available)
  • 1 nights at hotel apartments
  • 4 nights wild camping
  • No previous offroad driving experience is required.
  • Minimum 4 guest cars
  • Maximum 6 guest cars.

 

Tour Dates

Sunday 30th October – Monday 7th November 2022

Monday 12th December – Tuesday 20th December 2022

 

Meet in Medina before 6pm on Day 1, Arrive back in Medina late afternoon on day 7

 

Travelling to Medina

Our Saudi Pioneers Landscapes Edition starts and finishes in the ancient city of Medina.

Guests who are joining us from overseas can fly from Edinburgh, Manchester, London and also many other European cities with Turkish Airlines, changing flights in Istanbul.  There are also daily flights from Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Muscat.

We will give guests who are travelling from the UAE/Oman with their own vehicles, a recommended route with suggested stops and tried and tested accommodation options.  The main road from the UAE to Medina is predominantly highway with speed limits of 120-140kph.

Day One: Meet in Medina
Day One: Meet in Medina
saudi food

Traditional Saudi Food

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Medina, the second most holy city in Islam,

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Our tour starts in Medina where we’ll welcome you with a coffee.  We would like you to reach the 4* hotel between 1400hrs and 1800hrs, in preparation for our short tour of Medina starting at 1830hrs, and culminating with a welcome dinner and pre-trip briefing in a Saudi Restaurant. 

camel and rocks
Day Two: Yanbu and Umluj
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Umluj Mangroves

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Lawrence of Arabia's House, Old Quarter, Yanbu

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Wadi Area near Al Umluj

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Day Two launches our adventure as we leave behind the city lights. We’re off to Yanbu to pay a visit to the home of Lawrence of Arabia which has now been restored. We’ll discover other century old buildings that are undergoing conservation and get a feel for a bygone time in the old quarter. 

Next, we’ll take an offroad route around the shore of the Red Sea to visit the mangroves just outside the town and enjoy a short refreshment break. 

We’ll setup camp in the wadi close to Jebel Khayshum and enjoy a barbeque supper around the campfire. 

driving thru wadi disah by dawn wadsworth
Day Three: Wadi Disah
wadi disah

Wadi Disah reflections... that puddle's about 35cms deep!

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Slowly wading through Wadi Disah

wadi disah reflection by dawn wadsworth

More Disah reflections

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leafy tunnel in Wadi Disah

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Navigating our way past the wadi oases

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Our journey ventures northwards until we reach the awe-inspiring Wadi Disah, a truly spectacular wadi with high rocky sides, running water, and lush oases.   We will drive approx 7kms up the wadi, through water, up to 40cms deep in some short sections, before setting up a base for our picnic lunch.  For the energetic, there is an hour long walk to explore the upper reaches of the wadi, for which waterproof sandals will be required. Alternatively, you can just sit, relax and enjoy the fantastic scenery.  Mid-afternoon we will move to our campsite, situated on a wide sandy area with acacia trees, and surrounded by huge red rock massifs, before settling down for the night under a dark sky with a cracking campfire.

wadi disah camping
Day Four: Tabuk
road to tabuk

Marvellous mountains on the way to Tabuk

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Stunning roadside landscapes wherever you go

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View near to our Wadi Disah campsite

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Waking up surrounded by imposing red rocks, we will have breakfast then spend some time exploring the rocky outcrops and sandy valleys, before getting back on the tarmac.  If time allows, we’ll stop at a small private Saudi Museum, before continuing on to the area’s major city, Tabuk.  We will overnight in 3* hotel apartments and have dinner at a local restaurant. 

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Day Five: Hejaz Railway
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Viaduct south of Tabuk

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sunset over a grassy lava field

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View near our camping spot during the golden hour

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Camel grazing near our campsite

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Driving over this old railway bridge is still possible

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The first half of today is all about the Hejaz Railway, a relic from the early 20th century.  Moving south from Tabuk on road, after an hour we join a track which takes us to the old railway track and buildings.  From here we will drive  for a few kilometres along the line (making train sound effects is definitely allowed), passing through cuttings, past wadis and over a hundred year old viaduct which could easily still take the weight a train heading to Medina.   After a picnic lunch, we will re-join the road and continue south towards our camp spot, which is accessed via a rough track.  Now at 1200m above sea level, our tents will be pitched on a grassy area on a lava field. The nights here are dark, revealing the spectacular canopy of the night sky. We’ll need a campfire to keep warm as the sun sinks behind the hills and the mercury begins to fall. 

elephant rock by Dawn Wadsworth
Day 6: Al Ula
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Mushroom Rock

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Al Ula Old Town

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Local traffic

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Backroad to Mushroom Rock

elephant rock by Dawn Wadsworth

Elephant Rock, Al Ula

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After a hearty breakfast we will continue on the track, emerging near the village of Abu Rakah.  A visit to Mushroom Rock is an absolute must, marvelling at the natural forces that shaped this rock and its nearby neighbours. Now heading towards  Al Ula,  we will endeavour to do a little off-roading enroute, and hope to be in the city by mid-afternoon, giving you 3-6 hours of leisure time.  We will have dinner down in the Old Town, before retiring for the night at a nearby farmhouse. 

viaduct
Day Seven: Khaybar
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Hudrayamil Viaduct

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Locomotive at Hudrayamil

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More amazing mountains on the back road to Khaybar

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Hudrayamil Viaduct, 100 years after the last train crossed it

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You have the morning at leisure in Al Ula giving you the opportunity to take in the Hegrah Tour, if you wish. 

Our first major stop of the day is for a picnic at the Hudrayamil Railway Yard and Viaduct, where you will see an old locomotive and some rolling stock, as well as our favourite bridge.  Our camp spot for the night is a wadi some 100kms away from here and we will take a road and track to head eastwards to it, ending up near the city of Khaybar. 

 

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Day Eight: White Volcano
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Three camels, three volcanic hills

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"Recent" lava field

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Al Bint (Khaybar) Dam

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White "mountain" hidden behind black volcanoes

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Camels graze near the White Volcano

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Today is the last day of our tour but we stil have some amazing sights to share with you.  Leaving Khaybar early, we will journey to the White Mountain Park, where we will spend some time exploring the black and twisted Lava fields. An easy hike through this amazing volcanic area will give ample opportunity to wonder at the eruption that created such a landscape. 

Before we head back to Medina, we will visit the Al Bint Dam, the best in a series of dams in the Khaybar areal, hinting at a lost land where water flowed and communities thrived. 

Our tour ends in Medina with an overnight in a 4 star hotel, with dinner in a local saudi restaurant. 

Citizens of the following countries are eligible for a tourism e-visa.

Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland. France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, Ukraine, United States

Important:  Not all Nationalities are granted a tourist visa for KSA.  Please check that you carry a passport from one of the above countries. If your country is not on this list, we are sorry you will not be able to enter Saudi for tourism purposes at this time.

Saudi Pioneers Landscapes Accommodation and Catering

Saudi Pioneers Landscapes What's Included

DetailsIncluded
Guide Services by The Desert Diva (Scottish Guide)yes
Guide Services by Saudi Guideyes
Breakfasts, lunch, dinneryes
2 nights hotelyes
four nights wild campingyes
one night hotel apartmentsyes
one night isbah (farmhouse)yes
Campfiresyes
Saudi VisaNo
Flights and transfersNo
SouvenirsNo
PetrolNo
Car HireNo
Snacks outwith mealsNo

Saudi Pioneers Landscapes Edition Prices

DetailsPrice
Two Adults in Own 4x42860 GBP (equivalent to 1430 GBP per person)*
1st Child (aged 6 to 12) - in car with 2 adults354 GBP
2nd child (aged 6 to 12) in car with 2 adultsDependent on room arrangement/availability in hotels - POA
1st Extra Adult708 GBP
2nd Extra Adult524 GBP
Camping gear hire60 GBP per person (adult or child)
*Minimum charge of two adults per car
Payment Options: Mastercard/visa in GBP/EUR/AED Bank Transfer in GBP

Saudi Pioneers Landscapes Edition Prices AED (guide price - on the day of payment request, XE.com GBP:AED mid-market prices will be used)

DetailsPrice
Two Adults in Own 4x412970 AED (equivalent to 6485 AED per person)*
1st Child (aged 6 to 12) - in car with 2 adults1605 AED
2nd child (aged 6 to 12) in car with 2 adultsDependent on room arrangement/availability in hotels - POA
1st Extra Adult3211 AED
2nd Extra Adult2377 AED
*Minimum charge of two adults per car
Payment Options: Mastercard/visa in GBP/EUR/AED Bank Transfer in GBP

Saudi Pioneers Landscapes Edition Prices in EUR (guide price - on the day of payment request, XE.com GBP:EUR mid-market prices will be used)

DetailsPrice
Two Adults in Own Car 3344 EUR (Equivalent to 1672 EUR per person)
1st Child (aged 6 to 12) - in car with 2 adults414 EUR
2nd child (aged 6 to 12) in car with 2 adultsDependent on room arrangement/availability in hotels - POA
1st Extra Adult828 EUR
2nd Extra Adult613 EUR
*Minimum charge of two adults per car
Payment Options: Mastercard/visa in GBP/EUR/AED Bank Transfer in GBP

Empty Quarter Enterprises Ltd T/A Xpedition Arabia, 39/8 Hyvot View, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom, EH17 8PQ

followus@xpeditionarabia.com

Call/whatsapp us +971509478563   UK number +447565570827

copyright Empty Quarter Enterprises Ltd, T/A Xpedition Arabia  2020

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