RIYADH: The Salam Tree park, one of the 14 zones of the Riyadh Season, began operating at full capacity on Thursday, welcoming more than 12,000 guests.
Founded in 2003, it is one of the largest recreational parks in the Kingdom, with an area of 312,000 square meters.
At the heart of the park, the Salam Tree is a hand-made wooden tree more than 12 meters high, emitting lights in synchronization with music — an icon of peace in the region, one of the organizers told Arab News.
Visitors enjoyed the atmosphere and plentiful activities at the park, which included shows, live music performances, a farmer’s market, an artificial flower garden, an aviary filled with rare and colorful parrots, live cooking shows and shopping booths.
“My kids don’t want to leave, I came all the way from Jizan with plans to tour other cities, but my kids insisted on staying in Riyadh,” said Yaser Nasser. “The park really is something special.”
Mazen Al-Gahtani, one of the organizing team, said that people who have visited the park in the past are amazed by all the new changes, with some saying it resembles Hyde Park, in London.
Passers-by stopped and stared in amazement at some of the acts, including the Ellites, one of the international artists invited to the park who performed live music at the main concert stage, doing covers of mainstream and pop music as people sat down on chairs and on the park’s grass to enjoy the show.
“This is one of my favorite zones in the Riyadh Season,” 14-year old Yousef Muath from Riyadh said, “I love music and really enjoyed watching the band perform.”
The activities of the Salam Tree area extend over an area of 50,000 square meters located in the midst of nature, southwest of Riyadh.
The park has around 1,000 palm trees and a 5-meter deep lake, which has a spectacular fountain show.
The vast lush gardens offer visitors the opportunity to walk or cycle amid the charms of nature.
A very child-friendly zone, it includes activities such as painting, a huge maze, a skating area and a small theater that puts on circus shows to children.
Tickets to the venue are available through the Riyadh Season app or website. All ages are allowed entry from 4 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. on weekdays, and from 2 p.m. until 2 a.m. on weekends.