7 Must-visit Nature Reserves & Resorts in Saudi to Reconnect with Nature this Global Wellness Day

    Global Wellness

    Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea

    This year’s Global Wellness Day theme aims to deepen our connection with nature, emphasising the profound impact of harmonising with our environment on overall well-being. In line with this, Saudi emerges as an unparalleled destination, offering a tapestry of breathtaking landscapes, pristine well-preserved environments, and distinct wildlife. Saudi’s stunning natural landscape spans mountains, deserts, and sea with a 1,800km coastline.

    This Global Wellness Day, immerse yourself in Saudi’s picture-perfect vistas and embrace the transformative power of its nature and reserves. Let Saudi be your sanctuary for holistic well-being, where every moment spent in communion with nature nourishes the mind, body, and soul.

    Nujuma, Ritz-Carlton Reserve, The Red Sea

    The newly opened Nujuma, Ritz-Carlton Reserve is situated on a pristine set of private islands, marking the brand’s debut in the Middle East. Nestled within the captivating Blue Hole cluster, this newly opened resort features thriving coral reefs beneath the surface and an endless tapestry of stars above. Nujuma (inspired by the meaning of ‘stars’ in Arabic) seamlessly blends intuitive and heartfelt service with stunning natural beauty and indigenous design. The resort will feature 63 one-to-four-bedroom water and beach villas, designed to blend seamlessly with the unspoiled natural environment. Guests can indulge in a lavish spa, swimming pools, a range of restaurants, and a retail area.

    Neyrah Spa, a tranquil sanctuary dedicated to holistic wellness, will rejuvenate the mind, body, and spirit through global ceremonies and methods, using regional ingredients like oud and moringa peregrina tree oil. Wellness experts will create bespoke journeys for guests, guiding them through breathing techniques, meditation, lunar yoga, and sound healing therapy. The spa will feature five sea-facing treatment rooms, three outdoor treatment cabins, vitality and lap pools, a hammam, and a fitness centre.

    Additionally, honouring the legacy of nomadic exploration and learning, the on-site Conservation House is an integrated space for creative pursuits to expand knowledge and foster a sense of community. Through hands-on activities hosted by resident sustainability, environmental, and cultural experts, guests of all ages can cultivate a deep connection with the destination.

    Al Ahsa Oasis, Al Hasa

    Surround yourself and your family with the lush greenery, natural springs and lively markets of Al Ahsa. Home to one of the biggest oases in the world and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Al Ahsa boasts tall, beautiful date palms. Take a break and fully immerse yourself in nature as you climb the limestone hills of Al Qarah, reaching the top to digest the spectacular view it offers before exploring the hive of caves and passageways cut into the rock.

    Next, you can make your way to Al Ahsa National Park for a family picnic or go to the King Abdullah Environment Park and enjoy the water fountain light shows as well as the playgrounds, football stadium, mazes and theatre. Don’t leave without experiencing Yellow Lake’s (also known as Asfar Lake) unforgettable captivating view from sitting on golden sand dunes, bonding with your family, and creating lasting memories. Before you leave, you and your family can take a stroll through Souq Al Qaisariya, one of the oldest markets in Saudi, to stock up on spices, traditional scents, and souvenirs to take back.

    You can also book a tour here starting from SAR 700 for a group of 5 people if you’re looking for a guided adventure where you will visit Dar Altorath Museum, Al Qarah Mountain, take a tour of Prince’s School Museum and indulge in a delightful lunch at a local house for a truly authentic experience among other stops.

    Jabal Shada, Al Baha

    Located about an hour and a half from Al Baha by car, the Jabal Shada Nature Reserve is a lesser-explored biodiversity hot spot where unusual rock formations and flora and fauna common to the region are found. It is home to unique geological formations of caves that are engraved with Thamudic writings and drawings that date back 3,000 years.

    To visit Jabal Shada, head out for a short road trip with your family so you can make the most of your time together. To fully immerse yourself in this experience and live amidst the nature and beauty of the caves of some of the world’s oldest geological formations on the planet (dating back 763 million years!), you can book yourself and your family a tour of the cave resort, enjoy the comforts of modern living with fully equipped bedrooms, kitchens, and balconies with breathtaking views, and simultaneously explore Jabal Shada’s natural wonders.

    Sharaan Nature Reserve, AlUla

    Covering 1,500 square kilometres, the beautiful Sharaan Nature Reserve is a treasure trove of natural wonders and one that is the perfect spot for you to explore.

    Book a 4×4 adventure through Safari Sharaan so you and your family can sit back and relax as a professional guide drives you across this protected area of red-rock canyons, broad valleys, open desert areas and rocky outcrops. You will enjoy viewing natural sandstone structures and deciphering ancient symbols and rock carvings while also spotting some red-necked ostriches, Arabian ibex, and Idmi gazelles among many other animals.

    Time out after a day of adventure at sustainable retreat Habitas AlUla, home to Thuraya Wellness, a secluded heaven created to enhance well-being and restore balance. Relax with sunrise yoga, private fitness sessions or treatments from the resident physiotherapist. Cool off in the outdoor pool and pick local essential oils, herbal teas, and body scrubs from the alchemy bar for your personalised treatments. Villa options include Celestial and Alcove Wellness Villas, conveniently located near the wellness centre and additional wellness-focused amenities, such as yoga mats and private in-room massage sessions.

    Alternatively, unwind in elegant, tented villas and the award-winning spa at The Banyan Tree, an enchanted sanctuary suspended in time and space, which offers a unique fitness and wellness-focused getaway. It blends Asian rituals with Saudi traditions, and natural and native ingredients form the essence of each unique treatment. The striking naturally treated rock pool in the mountains provides a secluded setting for swimming and an Instagram worthy moment.

    Nofa Riyadh, A Radisson Collection Resort

    Make the most of your travels and indulge in an unforgettable experience at the Nofa Riyadh, A Radisson Collection Resort where you can relax in secluded luxury villas complete with private gardens and swimming pools, surrounded by green lawns, sand dunes and mountains.

    Connect with nature on a whole new level at the Resort’s incredible Wildlife Park and spot Asian elephants, Grevy’s zebras, Arabian oryx and giraffes.

    Unwind in style with your family at Nofa’s on-site 39-seat theatre, and enjoy daily movie screenings at your leisure, or have a family competition at The Nofa Bowling Alley. Younger children can enjoy the Kids’ Adventure Park, an exciting indoor park with action-packed games and a playground.

    Aseel Resort, Diriyah, Riyadh

    If you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind family experience that merges nature, heritage and luxury, Aseel Resort is the answer. Nestled in Diriyah, the City of Earth, Aseel Resort was created as an ode to Saudi’s history and Najd’s beautiful artistry, making it the perfect location to immerse in heritage and nature.

    Based on the size of your gathering (anywhere from 6 people to 75), Aseel Resort offers you 6 varying farms to choose from, each one decorated with stunning Saudi artistry and ornate craftsmanship made by locals.

    Whether you take a dip in the farm’s private pool or enjoy game nights with your family at the indoor majlis, you are bound to create memories that will last you a lifetime.

    Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea

    Set against the dramatic backdrop of desert plains and the Hijaz Mountains, Six Senses Southern Dunes, The Red Sea Resort, pays homage to Nabataean architectural heritage and majestic desert surroundings.

    The resort offers 36 guest rooms and 40 pool villas, each boasting expansive views of the surrounding dunes and wadi. Treat yourself to the ultimate relaxation with a traditional hammam experience at the world-class Six Senses Spa, where tailored wellness screenings and treatments ensure your complete rejuvenation.  Connect with inner peace and the natural world in a unique and immersive way with meditation and yoga sessions in a desert or oasis setting.

    Savour the flavours of Saudi’s culinary heritage with curated dining experiences. From Al Sarab to Merkaz, Bariya, and beyond, indulge in dishes crafted with ingredients sourced from the Chef’s Garden or local suppliers. Enhance your culinary skills by enrolling in a cooking school, where you’ll master healthy recipes and techniques, immersing yourself in the vibrant tastes of the region.

    Saudi Tourism Authority has recently launched the country’s spectacular summer program for 2024, “Saudi Summer is Next Door”. The summer program will run for four months until the end of September, across seven destinations – Aseer, Al Baha, Taif, the Red Sea – a new destination, Jeddah, Riyadh and AlUla. Offering over 550 exceptional tourism products and more than 150 special offers and packages curated for families and children, it caters to diverse segments including adventure lovers, those looking for luxury retreats and activities, and culture and heritage enthusiasts.

    Visit the ‘VisitSaudi’ website for more information about destinations, products, and offers. You can also contact the Tourist Care Center at 930 or reach out to the @AskVisitSaudi Twitter account, which receives inquiries and feedback in eight languages, around the clock. To learn more and plan your trip, visit 

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