Getting Around the Red Sea of Saudi Arabia: Know Before You Go
Travel Tips for Exploring the Red Sea
- Modest clothing – Both men and women must adhere to modest clothing respecting the region’s culture. Women should have a scarf on hand if planning to visit any religious site.
- Show respect – It is important to show respect during prayer times, which take place five times a day. Tourists must be aware that many businesses temporarily close their operations during these times in Saudi Arabia.
- Avoid public display of affection – It is important to note that public display of affection is considered inappropriate. Holding hands or hugging is highly discouraged.
- Alcohol is banned – The consumption of alcohol, including its importation and brewing, is strictly prohibited.
- Carry important documents – Make sure to carry your passport or a copy of it while traveling.
- Watch out for climate – Considering Saudi Arabia’s high temperatures, particularly in the summer, it is advisable to plan activities during the more temperate periods of the day.
- Photography limitations – Obtain permission before capturing images of individuals, particularly women. Taking pictures or videos without permission could land you in trouble. Additionally, it is advisable to avoid photographing government buildings, military installations, and palaces.
- Separate sections for genders – In many public places, such as restaurants, malls, beaches, etc., there are separate sections for families and males only. It is important to always be aware of these divisions and respect them.
- Stay connected – Make sure to carry a local SIM to stay connected. Popular telecom providers in the area include STC, Mobily, and Zain.
- Weekend days – The weekend in Saudi Arabia is on Friday and Saturday and most of the major attractions remain closed during the Friday prayers.