Information for Travellers During COVID-19

Wadi Hanifah: A Natural Wonder And Cultural Landmark In Riyadh


Wadi Hanifah in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia is a stunning natural beauty offering a breathtaking natural scenery. It is a natural outlet for rainwater and floodwaters and is the confluence of over 40 tributaries. The wind and other environmental elements have sculpted the rocks in the valley, providing picturesque views that are genuinely soothing to the soul and the eyes. The wadi is famous for offering numerous tourism activities.

Top activities in Wadi Hanifah, Riyadh

1. Sightseeing

Wadi Hanifah Park is famous for its gorgeous sights. If you want to relax and enjoy nature, you can sit by the lake and watch rare birds swimming in their habitat. The mountains sculpted by the wind, surrounded by palm trees and seasonal plants, offer a great landscape perfect for taking memorable photos. Tourists can visit the valley during sunset time to see a mesmerizing view.

2. Barbecue parties

Thanks to the lush green spaces and vast open areas, many visitors to the valley enjoy having barbecue parties with their families and friends, spending hours relaxing in the fresh air. Eating lunch under the clear sky and cool breeze makes the experience all the more memorable.

3. Children’s play areas

Wadi Hanifah has something for everyone, including children. They can play the inflatable games in one of the open areas, while nearby stalls offer various gift options. Tourists can indulge in organizing picnics while their children are occupied in the games.

4. Cycling races

With the valley’s length and paved paths on either side, cycling enthusiasts have a great opportunity to organize long-distance cycling races. These races provide the thrill of adventure and the feeling of victory. Visitors can even do physical activities like jogging and exercise.

5. Visiting Wadi Hanifah Dam

One of the most alluring activities is visiting the Wadi Hanifah Dam in the middle of the valley. It was built to reserve excess water from the north during floods. Tourists can also enter the Wadi Hanifah Dam park, which includes 27 of the best and most unique sitting areas in the valley, along with a 5.6 km walking path.

Wadi Hanifah location


The Wadi Hanifah (or Hanifah Valley), located in the heart of the Najd Plateau of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is the longest and most crucial valley near Riyadh. It is a natural water drainage course over an area of over 4,000 square kilometers and a remarkable physical feature in this arid region.

Stretching over 80 kilometers, Wadi Hanifah extends from the edge of Thoq Al-Thuqba to the north, passing through the plateau of Najd and ending at Al-Hayer to the south of Riyadh. The valley’s depth varies between 10 to 100 meters, while its width ranges from 100 to 1000 meters, depending on the expanse of the land.

Natural landscapes in Hanifah Valley

The Wadi contains many natural desert trees, shrubs, and herbs suitable for the valley’s environment. Around 30,000 desert trees were planted in the valley. 2,000 trees were transferred from plant-poor areas and carefully distributed with natural plants such as Tamarix, Acacia, and Athel. Additionally, the Wadi contains over 42 shrubs that were cultivated from ready-made seeds.

Wadi Hanifah Park

It encompasses six open parks, including Al-Elb Dam Park. The wadi features 5.5 km of pedestrian walkways, 93 seating areas for park-goers, and parking for up to 200 cars. It also includes a 2 km paved pedestrian pathway surrounded by trees and lighting. Wadi Hanifah Dam Park has a 5.6 km pedestrian pathway and 27 seating areas for park-goers. The Al-Atiqah Wastewater Treatment Plant Park features 1,100 meters of pedestrian walkways and 52 seating areas for park-goers.

Stone Dam Park features a lake with an area of 10,000 square meters and a depth of 2 meters, as well as 4.5 km of pedestrian walkways and several seating areas surrounding the lake. The Al-Musanaa Lake Park includes 4 km of pedestrian walkways, 22 seating areas for park-goers, and a lake with an area of 40,000 square meters and a depth of 10 meters. The Al-Jazeera Lake Park features 5.5 km of pedestrian walkways, 37 seating areas for park-goers, and a lake with an area of 35,000 square meters and a depth of 3 meters.

Suggested Read: Wadi Al Disah: Convergence Of Natural Beauty Amidst Desert

More about Wadi Hanifah

In the past, Wadi Hanifah was called “Wadi Al-Ardh” with a Kasrah under the letter ‘Ain. It was later named Wadi Hanifah after the tribe of Bani Hanifah, who used to inhabit the area. The tribes that settled on the banks of the valley were engaged in agriculture, handicrafts, and trade.

Wadi Hanifah timings: All days of the week

Wadi Hanifah in Riyadh is one of the top tourist destinations in Saudi Arabia and one of the essential Riyadh parks, stretching over 80 kilometers and winning numerous honors, including the Aga Khan International Award for Architecture.

The valley also has innumerable facets of beauty and spectacular views of the green spaces, parks, and the lake, as well as restaurants, cafés, a private parking lot, different walking routes, football fields, service facilities, and chapels. One can unwind and enjoy the serene beauty of nature in the valley.

Suggested Read: Wadi Namar Dam Park: Wonderful Night Sky Near Namar Dam

Wadi Hanifah FAQs

Where is the Wadi Hanifah Located?

The valley is located in the Arid region of Najd, which is in the center of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, specifically in the Riyadh region nowadays.

When is the valley open for visitors?

Wadi is open to visitors 24 hours a day. It is best to visit the valley in the morning when the weather is a bit colder.

Why is it called Wadi Hanifah?

The valley got its name after a tribe of Bani Hanifah that used to live in that area.

What are the main attractions of Wadi Hanifah?

It offers various attractions including parks, wildlife, historical sites, and hiking trails. It is a popular destination for outdoor activities.

Pratyush Srivastava

I think, every human is a beautifully concealed epoch in the making with God to unravel it at the perfect time. Hence, synergizing with distinctive individuals in search of an interesting story is my favorite work as a writer and creator.

Leave a Reply