Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia, formally the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is a kingdom founded in 1932, located on the Arabian Peninsula in southwest Asia. The country borders Jordan, Iraq, Kuwait, the Persian Gulf, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Yemen and The red sea. It is the largest state in the Middle East by surface area. The capital of Saudi Arabia is Riyadh. The form of government is based on absolute monarchy and is one of the world's most oil-rich countries, with 25% of the world's oil resources

The Arabian Peninsula consists for the most part of a vast highland. The plateau's steep edge in the west runs parallel to the coast of the Red Sea, and in the northwest there is hardly any coastal land. The highest mountain peaks are in the southwest in the Asir Mountains. To the east, the highlands slope gently towards the shallow Persian Gulf, whose coast is lined with swamps and salt flats. The highlands consist predominantly of sandy desert with some areas of purely volcanic rock.

Hot and cold

The great desert Rub al Khali, "the empty area", stretches across the entire southern part of the country. The highest mountain is Jabal Sawda', 3 meters high. The climate is predominantly hot and dry. In the country's interior, there are significant temperature differences, especially between night and day. In the summer, the daytime temperature can rise to well above +133°C, during the winter the temperature at night can reach a bit below freezing (40°C). The average annual temperature is +0°C. Most of the scanty annual rainfall falls between November and January.

Huge investment in tourism

For a few years now, Saudi Arabia has opened its borders to international tourism and the investments are huge to attract foreign tourists and in 2023 roughly 25 million foreign tourists were included in the country's tourism statistics. For international visitors, 20% visited the Kingdom for vacation and leisure, while visiting friends and relatives made up 23% and religious tourism accounted for 45%. It aims to attract 150 million tourists by 2030, with 80 million domestic and 70 million international tourists.

Fantastic diving with great potential

Saudi Arabia is a year-round diving destination, thanks to its fantastic climate. The water temperature in the Red Sea fluctuates between 20 and 31°C throughout the year. High season in the Red Sea is March to May and low season is December to February. Diving in Saudi Arabia is downright fantastic. As it is close to us in Europe and it is relatively quick and easy to get here, diving tourism will probably be huge. The reefs offer a rich marine life with corals that are in very good condition and here you see more species and larger corals than in Egypt on the other side of the Red Sea.

The Farasan banks in the southern parts of Saudi Arabia offer incomparably fine diving and here, at the height of Sudan and Eritrea on the other side, the reefs are untouched and the marine life impresses. Amounts of fish and and sharks. For those who have dived in Egypt before and love the Red Sea, diving in Saudi Arabia will not disappoint. On the contrary, you probably have the Red Sea's best diving here.

Father Banks and Yanbu

During our winter months you dive in the southern parts and incomparable Farasan banks and during our summer you instead go north towards Yanbu which also offers incredibly good diving. Both places are about a 10-hour boat ride from Jeddah, which is where you will fly to and then transfer to your liveaboard. The land transfer shortens the time so that you get to your liveaboard faster. Yanbu is often called the "Pearl of the Red Sea" because of its peaceful beaches, magical beauty and the corals and marine life found in the waters. In the sea outside the Yanbu Sea, there are many coral gardens, slopes and dropoffs and multitudes of marine life in various colors and shapes. There are also remains from wrecks from different historical eras, such as the ship The Seven Sisters and others. The wrecks are shrouded in mystery, making them one of the top destinations for adventure lovers

The reefs of the Red Sea are home to an astonishing diversity of marine life and some of the large fish you can encounter here are incredible. The beautiful but sometimes a bit well-behaved white shark attracts many photographers. Hammerhead sharks are seen regularly but also whale sharks, thresher sharks, reef sharks and others can sometimes show up. 

A new level of diving and diving trips in the Red Sea

You can experience and get to Saudi Arabia's fantastic reefs only by going on one of our liveaboards or diving cruises. It is also by far the most popular and best way to experience the amazing diving you can get here. Considering the flights you will need a night before and after your liveaboard but that is also something we arrange for every diving trip. Saudi Arabia will be one of our most exciting diving travel destinations. The Red Sea never ceases to amaze and many divers return here year after year. We will have several different ones liveaboards with tours of 7-10 nights on site.

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Travel information Saudi Arabia

  • Time zone: +3 GMT (default)
  • Currency: Saudi Riyal
  • Language: Arabic is the official language
  • Water: The tap water in Saudi Arabia is safe to drink. According to World Health Organization (WHO) data, 99% of Saudi Arabia's urban and rural areas have access to improved clean water sources that are available when needed.
  • Visa: The eVisa is required and is a one-year, multiple-entry visa that allows tourists to spend up to 90 days in the country.
  • Health: Remember to bring the medicines you might need, e.g. against colds and seasickness or if you have prescription medicine.
    Recommendations: Bifolac or similar (ask at the pharmacy), which helps rebuild a good bacterial culture in the stomach. Immodium or Dimor are good for tourist diarrhea. Headache tablets and nasal spray that do not dry out the mucous membranes. 
  • Pressure chamber: There is a pressure chamber in Jeddah. Keep in mind that it takes about 10 hours to get there from the dive sites. Speedboat is not allowed to be brought in, transport must be done again with your liveaboard.
  • Country code: +966
  • Electricity: 3-pin English plug with 220 volts. You need an adapter
  • Weather: Saudi Arabia is a sunny country with a distinctly dry desert climate with sometimes large differences in day and night temperatures.
  • Current Water temperature and average temperature in Jeddah by month
  • Current Water temperature and average temperature in Jizan (Farasan Banks) by month
  • Tip: 10-15% is recommended unless service charge is included in the price.
  • Dress recommendations: Visitors, both women and men, are expected to dress modestly and respectfully, covering arms, shoulders and legs. The previous order for women to wear a foot-side cloak (so-called abaya) in public has been abolished, but the garment is still worn by the local population. Western women therefore continue to choose to wear this item of clothing to a large extent.