Special treatment for pilgrims to Islam's holiest city

Courtesy photo
Updated 06 January 2018
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Special treatment for pilgrims to Islam's holiest city

MAKKAH: More than 100 Muslim men and women pilgrims and visitors from Germany, Turkey and Europe yesterday stood in the Makkah Museum for Antiquities and Heritage to watch and listen to the story of this museum.
They were just a small portion of the millions of pilgrims and visitors from all over the world eager to discover the rich heritage of the Kingdom and learn the story of Makkah, Islam’s holiest city, and its most sacred shrine, the Kaaba.
Visitors to Makkah are specially treated under the umbrella of the government, which has exerted all possible efforts to serve the city of Madinah and all its visitors, especially pilgrims.
They can learn how it was built under directions from the late establishing King Abdul Aziz to serve as a palace for the king’s guests; how it was later turned into a museum that preserved Makkah’s heritage; how the message of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) came into life in Makkah to unite the word of Allah; and how the Islamic states (in the past) and Saudi state (until the present) have devoted themselves to serve the Two Holy Mosques and their visitors.
Faisal Al-Sharif, director general of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) in Makkah, stressed that under instructions from the president of the SCTH, Prince Sultan bin Salman, public and private touristic museums will open their doors to the capital’s visitors in coordination with the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, through Umrah companies and organizers of tourist trips.
He added: “The Makkah museum opens its doors to visitors and pilgrims in the morning and at night. Specialists from the SCTH and tourist guides licensed by the SCTH handle the explanations about everything in the museum.”


Jeddah to host first global village in Saudi Arabia

The marketing plan of the village has been put in place to target private and international schools to ensure high attendance. (Shutterstock)
Updated 29 min 9 sec ago
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Jeddah to host first global village in Saudi Arabia

  • “Participants from some 50 countries have so far confirmed their interest in taking part in the festival, which will be held on an area of more than 45,000 square meters,” Suzan Eskander said

JEDDAH: For the first time in Saudi Arabia, Jeddah will host a multicultural festival that takes visitors on a virtual tour of 50 countries.
The global village will be set up inside Atallah Happy Land Park along the city’s famous waterfront every day from 5 p.m. to midnight between Feb. 28 and March 29.
The event is one of many aiming to enhance tourism, as well as the local economy.
Suzan Eskander, director-general of International Image, the organizing company, told Arab News that the village is expected to attract 1 million visitors.
“Participants from some 50 countries have so far confirmed their interest in taking part in the festival, which will be held on an area of more than 45,000 square meters,” she said.
“There will be pavilions for participants from five Gulf Cooperation Council states, 10 Arab countries, 18 African countries, 10 European countries and four countries from the Americas.”
She added that folkloric dances would be performed by bands from each country.
“Performers will be dressed in traditional costumes,” she said. “Visitors can also enjoy dishes and traditional products from different countries.”
Eskander also said paintings portraying heritage and culture in the different countries would be on display.
“In addition, we are hopeful that the children’s zone will wow young visitors,” she said. “Little guests can develop their skills in drawing and games, as well as play zones.”
Eskander said the village was timed to coincide with the city’s good weather season, adding that a marketing plan has been put in place to target private and international schools to ensure high attendance. Eskander expressed her gratitude to the General Entertainment Authority for their continued support and cooperation.
“They have not only provided us instructions for obtaining the festival’s license, but are still following up to ensure that everything is going smoothly,” she said.