1. AlUla: Hegra, Dadan, and Ikmah Highlights Tour
Start your tour by visiting the Hegra, also known as Madain Saleh, or Al-Ḥijr is an archaeological site located in the area of AlUla within the Al Madinah Region in the Hejaz, Saudi Arabia. A majority of the remains date from the Nabatean kingdom. The site constitutes the kingdom’s southernmost and largest settlement after Petra, it's capital. The Archaeological Site of Al-Hijr (Madain Saleh) is the first World Heritage property to be inscribed in Saudi Arabia. Formerly known as Hegra it is the largest conserved site of the civilization of the Nabataeans south of Petra in Jordan. Then enjoy Elephant Rock, This spectacular rock formation resembles an elephant with its trunk touching the ground, is one of AlUla’s geomorphological wonders and became one of AlUla's iconic landmarks. Then visit Jabal Ikmah, An open-air library across AlUla’s Valley, lie thousands of inscriptions in Aramaic, Dadanitic, Thamudic, Minaic and Nabataean, features one of the oldest inscriptions of the Islamic era dating back to 24AH (644 CE). Thousands of pre-Arabic inscriptions across numerous sites make AlUla an important location for studying the Arabic language. A mountain north of the AlUla Valley, AlAqra’a, features more than 450 early Arabic inscriptions. Naqsh Zuhayr, to the east, features one of the oldest inscriptions of the Islamic era — dating back to 24AH (644 CE). But no such site is more significant than Jabal Ikmah, home to the highest concentration of and most varied inscriptions in AlUla. In a beautiful desert landscape warmed by the sun, the largest “open library” in Saudi Arabia sits tucked away in a remote canyon valley. Dadan was a caravan way station for many peoples, and one of the clues that AlUla was truly a crossroads of civilisations is Jabal Ikmah, which was visited by those wishing to leave their inscriptions and offerings en route through AlUla. Records kept here — in the form of hundreds of inscriptions and carvings lining the cliff faces and rocks — ensured that Jabal Ikmah would be remembered throughout the ages. A visit to this magnificent site, with its inscriptions, thought to date as far back as the 1st millennium BCE, is a glimpse into the past. Note: sightseeing tours on Herga and Dadan & ikmah will be shared with a local tour guide and a small local group.