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Saudi Arabia

Kingdom at a Crossroads

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Saudi Arabia

Luxury Group Travel | 13 Days
  • Experience the combination of Saudi Arabian ancient sites, modern cities, mud-brick forts, forests, and red-sand dunes
  • Visit UNESCO-listed Mada’in Saleh (Hegra), known as the Petra of Saudi Arabia
  • Opportunities to dialog with Saudi women, a local family, and up-and-coming artisans
  • Access to private Saudi homes, museum collections, art galleries, and art collectives
  • Explore stunning UNESCO World Heritage Sites across Saudi Arabia

In the last 40 years Saudi Arabia has shifted from a tribal nomadic desert nation to an ultra-modern land of gleaming towns and cities, all the while guarding its conservative way of life founded on strict Islamic principles. Recently, however, there are signs of a new kind of change, including women being given permission to drive and more fully participating in the workforce. Has the plunge in oil prices since 2015 pushed the kingdom to reevaluate itself? Will social reforms usher in further progressive changes? This GeoEx journey will focus on this beguiling country at a crossroads and give us a fascinating look at this ancient land.

Trip Overview

1 – 4

Arrive in Jeddah and explore, visiting the old port of Al Balad, a private museum, and contemporary art studios Flying southwest to Abha, see Jebel Sawdah (Saudi Arabia’s highest peak) and houses painted in geometric patterns according to tradition.

5 – 7

A flight whisks us to Riyadh, capital city and modern metropolis We visit UNESCO-acclaimed Diriyah, family seat of the Al Saud family and former capital of the Emirate.

8 – 9

We discover Hail, a major stop on the trade routes that crisscrossed the Arabian Peninsula, exploring the 18th-century mud-brick A’Arif Fort in the center of town   Exceptional rock art reveals itself at the UNESCO-listed Jubbah cliffs.

10 – 13

Explore the Nabatean tombs at renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site Mada’in Saleh (Hegra)  See Ekma Rock with its Thamudic script and rock carvings, and visit the town of Al Ula Return to Jeddah and depart.

13 – 15

Optional Abu Dhabi Extension:
Fly via Jeddah to Abu Dhabi, where you get to know the capital of the United Arab Emirates, home to stunning modern architecture, the sensational Sheikh Zayed Mosque, and the masterpiece-filled Louvre Abu Dhabi.



Bill Jones

A British-born, Paris-based explorer, raconteur, and widely respected guide, Bill Jones has led countless tours across the globe over the past four decades. He is deeply knowledgeable, experienced, caring, informative, and fun.


Tese Wintz Neighbor

Tese began guiding in the early 1980s and has since led more than 50 trips in Eurasia. As part of the World Affairs Council’s Global Classroom Program, she visited Saudi Arabia with a small study group of teachers. She looks forward to returning to this fascinating new country, heir to a rich old history.

GeoEx Trip Leader Tese Wintz Neighbor at a traditional dance performance in Saudi Arabia

Dates & Prices


11/05/22 – 11/17/22   Led by Bill Jones


Group Trip: From $12,875 per person

Optional Abu Dhabi Extension (3 days): From $2,775 per person

based on double occupancy


  • Expertise of GeoEx’s travel specialists
  • Services of GeoEx’s in-house air reservations team
  • Accommodations and meals as noted in the itinerary
  • All ground transportation, including airport transfers
  • All sightseeing, events, and visits as noted in the itinerary
  • All porterage, entrance fees, service charges, and standard taxes
  • Services of GeoEx trip leader, local guides, drivers, and other staff
  • Some gratuities
  • Bottled water and soft drinks at included meals and while sightseeing
  • Emergency evacuation services and secondary medical expense insurance

A Journey Built Just For You

Take customization to the next level on a journey fully tailored to you. GeoEx's destination specialists will gladly tailor this existing itinerary—or build one completely from scratch—to suit your style, interests, and time frame. Contact us to see what's possible.

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