As many of us are dreaming about warmer climates to take our minds of the English winter weather, the tourism industry throughout the world also needs to consider what they have to tempt us. Such subjects were on the agenda this week in the historic Diriyah’s Al-Turaif district, near Riyadh. Here, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was chairing a Tourism Talk with the Council for Economic and Development Affairs and the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage.
The talk like many in Saudi Arabia was under the umbrella of Vision 2030 which is the cohesive thread that they hope will lead to a more successful Kingdom in the future. With regards to Tourism, the talk looked at the strength of the global and national tourism market, the aspirations of the Saudi Tourist industry and what partners could be engaged to achieve the goals.
The meeting not only considered what benefits the Kingdom can gain from tourism as well as what elements are needed to boost the position of Saudi Arabia within the sector. A major factor as well was what economic boost tourism could provide to the economy as well as interest in national heritage leading to tourism within the country.
Diriyah’s Al-Turaif district is the old Royal seat of Saudi Arabia and was the first capital of Saudi Arabia in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, though parts of the site date back to the fourteenth century. Located to the North-West of Riyadh the area was the fifth site in Saudi Arabia to receive World Heritage Site listing which it achieved in 2010. Since the end of the last century, the Commission for Tourism and National Heritage have been working to restore the site, and many others across the country. They aim to make Saudi Arabia one of the top tourist destinations of the Middle East, rivalling the Great Pyramids in Egypt and the places such as Petra.