Tabuk heritage in the spotlight at Janadriyah

1 / 2
Young children perform at the Tabuk pavilion in Janadriyah Festival. (SPA)
2 / 2
The Janadriyah Festival captures the great history of the Saudi people. (AN photo by Ziyad Alarfaj)
Updated 01 January 2019
0

Tabuk heritage in the spotlight at Janadriyah

  • More than 300 people from across the region, as well as several local companies, have visited the Tabuk exhibition thus far

RIYADH: In perfect timing with the annual Janadriyah Festival, a heritage village showcasing the Tabuk region and its culture was inaugurated by King Salman last week.
The newly constructed area, which was supervised by Tabuk Gov. Prince Fahd bin Sultan, contains comprehensive information on the region and its people, as well as folklore events and cultural music.
Arab News met with Mohammad Saeed, head of a Tabuk delegation, who expressed excitement at the inclusion of his hometown in this year’s festival edition.
“The village includes a makeshift coastal and agricultural desert space,” he said. “We have about 24 local handicraft specialists on set, which includes three makeshift houses. The first symbolizes the region’s desert environment and includes a desert museum, as well as an Arab-style living room called a ‘majlis.’ The second contains a selection of renowned local restaurants and paintings depicting the coastline, while the third represents traditional bedrooms.”
More than 300 people from across the region, as well as several local companies, have visited the Tabuk exhibition thus far. The village took three months to construct.
The Tabuk region is home to coastlines that span five regions, including the province of Taima, and castles that tell tales of the past.
“All the materials used in building the village and its houses were brought in from Tabuk,” said Saeed.

Hadaj Well
The festival has for the first time included a simulation of the historic well of Hadaj, the second most famous well after Zamzam in Makkah.
Hadaj is a landmark in the Tabuk region and is found at the center of Taima.
Almost 12 meters deep and 65 meters wide, it is one of the largest in the Arabian Peninsula and dates back to the 6th century BC.
The well is covered with polished stones and can accommodate about 100 camels at a time during the summer months. Water is transferred from the well through 31 stone-based channels.
The well’s distinct characteristics have been featured in famous poems over the years.

Handicrafts and regional heritage
A total of 45 people took part in producing handicraft art, including embroidery and carpentry, at the festival.
Abdul Aziz Hassan Halawani, a professional caulker, showcased his work at the village. Halawani oversees all the stages of the boat-building process, from determining their size to installing wooden slabs inside them.
Halwani has taken part in several local and international competitions and has won several awards, including one for his distinct craftsmanship.
A heritage dance group, meanwhile, showed visitors what Tabuk weddings were about.


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 21 January 2019
0

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.