Beaches in Saudi Arabia flaunt the magnificent coastlines along the west of the Red Sea and the Arabian (Persian) Gulf. Tourists seeking adventurous Saudi Arabia beaches experiences should plan a journey to the country’s northernmost destinations, such as Umluj and Haql. On the other hand, the coastal destinations like Dammam, Al Jubail, and Al Khobar provide a more relaxing retreat. Another fantastic place dotted with beautiful beaches is Farasan Islands, which is famous for watersports, diving, and, of course, leisurely days on the beach.
Saudi Arabia has both public and private beaches. When visiting the public beaches, women should wear a burkini or swim in an abaya. When attending a public beach, men should also dress appropriately. Private beaches are usually less stringent and allow only reserved entries. Women cannot wear regular bikinis at some private beaches, and men can’t swim without a shirt.
Best Beaches In Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia has picture-postcard beaches with 2,000 km of stunning coastline, pristine blue waters, and soft white sand. They are not only great for relaxing but also offer fun-filled water sports and diving experiences. People can enjoy a day at Saudi Arabia beaches by simply relaxing and spending time with their families in peace. Here is a list of some of Saudi Arabia’s best beaches for a quick getaway:
1. Umluj Beach, Umluj
Umluj Beach, often known as the ‘Maldives of Saudi Arabia,’ is noted for its brilliant blue waters, silky white sand, and eternal serenity. Visitors at Umluj beach can go scuba diving and snorkeling. With clear, turquoise waters, it is an ideal place to see a variety of marine species in their native habitat. Large ships and ferries are prohibited from entering the area to protect the environment. In addition, many species of migrating birds can be seen making their annual journey here from colder climates.
Key attractions at Umluj Beach: Scuba diving, Snorkeling
2. Al Fanateer Beach, Al Jubail
Al Fanateer Beach, popular among locals and international travelers, is noted for its palm trees stretch. The beach provides visitors with specific routes for strolling and jogging. A scenic boat trip is another favorite activity at this beach. It is a lovely way to enjoy the gorgeous views of the surrounding area. Al Fanateer Beach is categorized into three zones: Traditional Zone, Family Zone, and Youth Zone. The beach has restrooms, showers, and changing rooms, and the Muslim section also offers prayer booths and halal restaurants.
Key attractions at Al Fanateer Beach: Boat trip, Sunset walk
3. Uqair Beach, Dhahran
Uqair Beach overlooks the Arabian Gulf and has fine white sand and lush greenery. It was one of the most important ports during the Ottoman era and has since been converted into a tourist and historical site. Small concrete decorative structures are created along the shore to provide shade and solitude to the visitors. A playground, walkways, street lamps, a toilet, changing zones, and a shower are also available at the Uqair Beach. It is vital to note that, although Uqair beach is a public beach, tourists should stick to stringent dress code according to local standards.
Key attractions at Uqair Beach: Pristine water, Historical fort ruins
4. Silver Sands Beach, Jeddah
It is one of top private Saudi Arabia beaches offering a pristine sandy shore, a picturesque ocean view, and an unparalleled sunset vista. Silver Sands Beach stretches along the Red Sea’s shore and is home to spectacular coral reefs and many exotic and diverse marine life. The beach provides the opportunity for aqua sports such as swimming, snorkeling, and windsurfing.
Key attractions at Silver Sands Beach: Water sports, Adventure activities
5. Farasan Al Kabir Beach, Farasan Islands
Farasan Al Kabir Beach in the Farasan Islands has fossils, coral reefs, tropical islands, and mangrove forests. It is also known as divers’ paradise due to several diving spots. People come here to go boating in the middle of nowhere, take in the landscape, and breathe fresh air. There are no raucous pubs, clubs, tourist shops, or other nuances of globalization. As a result, Farasan Al Kabir Beach is an excellent place to unwind and relax.
Key attractions at Farasan Al Kabir Beach: Diving, Walking in the sand
6. Half Moon Beach, Half Moon Bay, Dhahran Governorate
One of Saudi Arabia’s top public beaches, Half Moon Beach is a long crescent-shaped beach on the Persian Gulf coast popular with local and international travelers. Tourists can relax on the white sands at Half Moon Beach Saudi Arabia, swim in the gulf, sunbathe on the wide sandy beach, or ride a beach buggy on the dunes.
Key attractions at Half Moon Beach: Swimming, Dune buggy rides
7. Indigo Beach, Jeddah
Indigo Beach is a luxury private beach in Jeddah, providing the ideal respite from the city’s hustle and bustle. The crystal-clear waters of the lagoon and the white sandy beach lined with coconut palms add to the charm. Indigo Beach will make one feel like they are in Bali with its magnificent ambiance and scenic charm.
Suggested Read: Thuwal Beach: A Pristine Beach On The Outskirts Of Jeddah
Key attractions at Indigo Beach: White sand, Watersports
8. Haql Shipwreck Beach, Haql
Haql Shipwreck Beach, located 55 kilometers south of Haql city in Saudi Arabia, is nothing short of paradise. Visitors can take in an unrivaled view of a half-submerged ship against a spectacular backdrop of the beautiful Sinai mountains in the distance. The ship was a Greek vessel that sank roughly two decades ago after hitting a reef. The enigmatic sunken ship, in particular, gives the environment at this beach an otherworldly feel. Here, the turquoise waters are home to diverse marine life, vivid reefs, and magnificent white sand beaches at the foot of majestic mountains.
Key attractions at Haql Shipwreck Beach: Coral reef, Sunken ship
Best beach resorts in Saudi Arabia
As the country has numerous beaches, there are plethora of beach resorts offering public and private access to these beaches. These resorts are fully equipped with modern amenities for comforting stay. Most of the resorts provide complete accommodation solution that is from restaurants to entertainment centers. Some the resorts popular among tourists are Radisson Blu Resort, Al Khobar Half Moon Bay, Narcissus Resort & Spa Obhur Jeddah, Golden Tulip Resort Dana Bay, Movenpick Resort Al Nawras Jeddah.
Saudi Arabia beach rules
- One should be wear proper dresses covering the body of an individual such as burkini or abaya for women and t-shirt and shorts for men
- Showing affection on Saudi Arabia beaches or any public place in the kingdom is not allowed
- One should respect the social norms of Saudi Arabia on beaches as well
- Tourists should listen and adhere to the safety guidelines of the beach instructors and life guards
- One should not litter on the beaches and maintain the aesthetics
- Private beaches are governed by their own rules, tourist should read them well before visiting these beaches
Beaches in Saudi Arabia provide a variety of activities and are helping to put the country on the global tourism map. In fact, as part of the Vision 2030 reform plan, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is driving a strategy to promote Saudi Arabia as a top tourist destination. The Red Sea Project, which is part of this plan, will see the entire coastline transformed into luxury resorts with 5-star hotels and high-end beach clubs.
Beaches In Saudi Arabia FAQs
Is there any private beach in Saudi Arabia?
Yes, Silver Sands Beach Jeddah and Indigo Beach are two famous private beaches in Saudi Arabia.
Which is the best time to visit Saudi Arabia?
The best season to visit Saudi Arabia is winter (November to March). During the winter, the weather remains moderate, with daytime temperatures hovering around 20°C and nighttime temperatures dropping to 10°C.
Is swimming allowed on the beaches in Saudi Arabia?
Yes, swimming on Saudi Arabia beaches is permitted. However, the only thing to remember is to follow the dress code.
Which is the best beach in Saudi Arabia for indulging in scuba diving?
Farasan Al Kabir Beach in the Farasan Islands is the best beach in Saudi Arabia for indulging in scuba diving. It is home to numerous diving spots and is popularly known as divers paradise.
Which beach in Saudi Arabia is known as the Maldives of Saudi Arabia?
Umluj Beach in Saudi Arabia is known as the Maldives of Saudi Arabia.
What is Haql Shipwreck Beach known for?
The Haql Shipwreck Beach is famous for hosting a half-submerged ship against a breathtaking backdrop of the Sinai Mountains.
Is there any stipulated dress code for beaches in Saudi Arabia?
On Public beaches, ladies should dress correctly, which means wearing a burkini (a full-body swimsuit) or an abaya (a full-length clothing garment). Men should likewise cover up at the beach; knee-length shorts are usually acceptable but also bring a shirt. On the other hand, since private beaches are enclosed, the rules are usually less tight, resulting in a more relaxed beachwear dress code.