Are you a traveller who has been looking for a destination that would welcome you with its heartwarming seascapes and countless adventures throughout the year? If you are the fearless and curious type who will never stop seeking new experiences and loves discovering unique natural phenomenons, then the 200 kilometres of Saudi’s untouched coastline along the mysterious Red Sea should be your next destination.
The crystal clear water of the Red Sea is an abode of countless coral reefs and a multifarious marine life. Whether you enjoy a scintillating sunset by the beach or would want to chase the fastest fish in the world, here is why the Red Sea is a must-have-destination on every adventurer’s bucket list:
1. The mystery of the ‘Red’
There are multiple stories behind how the Red Sea got its name. The most compelling one suggests that the name was derived because of a special algae present in the water called trichodesmium erythraeum. This algae makes the otherwise lucid water appear orange-red. Some also suggest it is called the Red Sea because of the peculiarly red sunsets during the summer months. Apart from these, some scholars believe that ‘red’ refers to the south direction. This theory is based on the fact that some Asiatic languages used colour words to refer to the cardinal direction.
2. Kaleidoscopic coral reefs
Imagine the most colourful landscape you have ever seen. Now imagine it underwater! You will find a vibrant amalgamation of history and natural miracles in the depths of the Red Sea, all thanks to its diverse coral reef ecosystem. These colourful reefs are stretched across the 200 km coastline of Saudi and some of them are up to 7,000 years old.
3. Chasing the world’s fastest fish
The Red Sea is home to solitary sailfish, a fish that can swim at speeds of 110 km per hour and is considered to be the world’s fastest fish. This is the only spot on earth where you can chase the world’s fastest fish!
4. World-class diving spots
It is no wonder that the Red Sea is referred to as ‘the Underwater Garden of Eden’. Considering the thriving underwater ecosystem of the Red Sea, it has become a major hotspot for scuba diving and snorkelling. Here, you can swim along luminously coloured emperor angelfish, clownfish, rusty parrotfish and 1,200 other species of fish. You will be amazed to know that out of these 1,200 species of fish, nearly 200 species are indigenous to this region.
5. Swim with sharks!
In case you are looking for that added rush of adrenaline on your next trip, you can try your luck in Saudi at the Red Sea. There are 44 species of shark inhabiting the reefs of the Red Sea. From grey reef sharks to the enormous whale shark, you will find them all here.
6. Lost shipwrecks
There is a lot more to a Red Sea diving experience than finding flamboyant fishes and colourful corals. Beyond the general experience of scuba and snorkelling, the depths of the Red Sea also offer you the remnants of a few shipwrecks including World War II shipwrecks, tugboats, cargos and tankers.
7. Dynamic seascapes
Did you know that the Red Sea has new islands formed as recently as 2013? Yes, welcome to the world’s youngest oceanic zone. The shrouded mystique of the Red Sea attracts a lot of young and curious travellers because of its ever changing seascapes. It is one of the few places on the earth which still has a group of active volcanoes and most of the islands are just exposed shallow reefs. These active volcanoes continue to change the seascape of this mysterious sea.
8. An all-season destination
Be it winter, summer or spring, you don’t have to pack differently when you are travelling to the Red Sea. With an average temperature of 19 degrees Celsius, this destination welcomes its visitors with a warm embrace throughout the year!
9. Float on the surface
The Red Sea is one of the world’s saltiest seas. You can easily float in here because of its high saline concentration, just like the Dead Sea.
10. A dip of health benefits
In addition to its dazzling beauty, the Red Sea will also treat you with various health benefits while you enjoy your swim. The high salt concentration of the Red Sea helps improve blood circulation in the body. Also, the rich mineral content in the beach sand works as a natural exfoliant and is used for the treatment for various skin infections.
11. Cruise the Red Sea
Surprise! Saudi has recently launched cruises across its Red Sea coastline. Now you can devour in luxury and take home memories of an unmatched experience of discovering hidden treasures along the Red Sea coast. From island hopping to private dining, these cruises are designed and dedicated to offer you the best of Arabian culture.
12. A safe destination
If you are worried about travelling during the pandemic, Saudi assures you a destination safe from COVID-19. Saudi has one of the lowest mortality rates and cases are declining rapidly.
Moreover, the tourism department is continuously working closely with the Ministry of Health on health and safety standards for the development of clear protocols for establishments across the entire tourism ecosystem. Some of the key features of Saudi’s effort to ensure a safe experience to the tourists are:
- Free healthcare is provided to anyone in Saudi Arabia (citizens and visitors alike) affected by COVID-19.
- Tracking and testing apps have been introduced to help people assess their health and manage any quarantine requirements.
- The Saudi tourism e-visa process is 100% digital, ensuring the reduction of touchpoints ahead of travel and upon arrivals.
So if the adventurer in you can’t wait to scratch that travel itch but is worried about the pandemic, Saudi is the answer to all of your questions. Saudi offers a less explored destination of rich culture and heritage, unspoiled natural gems and unparalleled hospitality. Your 2021 bucket list is incomplete without the perfect mix of mystique and magic of the Arabian Red Sea experience!
Eager to go on your own Saudi adventure? Visit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s official website and start planning your travel!
In association with Saudi Tourism Authority.
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