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Madain Saleh

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Madain Saleh (مدائن صالح , also Medain Saleh) is a large archaeological site in Saudi Arabia.


A Nabataean city hewed out of rock in the same style as Jordan's far more famous Petra, Madain Saleh is on UNESCO's tentative list for World Heritage inclusion [3] and would be a top tourist draw in any other country than Saudi Arabia. As it is, though, access to the site is fairly difficult and many Muslims refuse to enter the area because it was narrated in Bukhari [4] that when the Prophet Muhammad passed by this area, he told his Companions, "Do not enter the dwelling places of those who wronged themselves, lest there befall you what befell them, unless you are weeping." There is also a section in the Qur'an (Al-Hijr 15:80) that explains the story of these houses.

Pre-Islamic row of tombs from the al-Khuraymat group, Mada'in Saleh.

Get in[edit]

A permit is no longer required for visiting Madain Saleh (however passport or Iqama is being carfully checke at the gate). Only northen entrance gate is open, but area around southen gate (outside fence) makes a good camping spot.

By plane[edit]

Flights from Jeddah and Riyadh to Prince Abdul Majeed bin Abdulaziz Domestic Airport are operated by Saudia. The airport is located 25 kilometres (16 mi) southeast of Al-Ula.

Other airports are in Al Wajh (220 km) and Medina (300 km, and yes, the airport is open to non-Muslims). Until 2004, visitors usually traveled via Hail (400 km), but a new road from Al Wajh now makes that route considerably faster.

By car[edit]

The nearest town of any size is Al-Ula (or Al-Oula), 22 km away from Madain Saleh. Saptco runs direct buses to Al-Ula from major towns including Jeddah (8 hrs) and Riyadh (13.5 hours). It is not possible to rent a car in Al-Ula without guide.

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

  • A restored Hijaz Railway station can be found on the northern side of the city.

Facilities all set up and ready for tourists, but LOCKED tight as a drum! Travel around inside as much as possible, there are many little interesting things to see. Use of steel sleepers stolen from the railway for all sorts of agricultural uses, and so on.

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

During your visit to Madain Saleh Area , you can eat good food in your hotel , (ARAC Al-Ula Hotel 4+ stars or Madain Saleh Hotel also 4 stars category), both hotels offer good and clean food , also if you want to try the local food you can visit to nice and clean resturants in the city of Al-Ula. your tour guide should guide you to the best places to eat.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Staying overnight at Madain Saleh is not allowed, so most visitors use one of the two hotels in Al-Ula.

  • Mada'in Saleh Hotel, [1]. The main hotel in town. Provides airport transfer and sightseeing packages. It is not in Madain Saleh From SR 195.  edit

You can, if so equipped, camp quite close to the south gates of Medain Saleh quite readily. There are organised tours which set up outdoor camps in a very luxurious fashion near the entrance.


Get out[edit]

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