Who could find the desert’s sand and rocks beautiful? Well many opinions are available on this topic and true beauty lies in the eye of the beholder. However, to me, the desert is a serene, magical and peaceful place. It is amazing to discover what all hidden beauties are available in the desert, if only you know where to look. Many different kinds of vegetation and landscape can be found in the desert area surrounding Riyadh. These include the elegant Tuwaiq Mountains, the Red Sands and the desert lakes. So many different sceneries are available outside Riyadh that it makes it more interesting to venture out to explore them.For most people the only thing they get out of going to the desert is just peace and quiet, along with a break from the hustle and bustle of city life. People often go there to meditate or to unwind, as in the desert you are left with only your sounds and nothing else.
Red Sands: At just a short drive from Riyadh are the Red Sands. This is a beautiful place covered with red sand dunes and mountains. People often rent out quad bikes in the area and just freely explore. Women can ride the Quad bikes without their Abaya, and there are a number of lovely picnic spots for the family too.
Acacia Valley and the Thumamah National Park: Next are the Acacia Valley and the Thumamah National Park, which are THE places to go if you absolutely love camping. There are various camping spots spread across the two places and provide a great experience to just gaze at the stars during the peaceful desert nights. The best time, to go for such camping trips, is during the cooler months like October and November. February and March is a good time to go too but it is considered as sandstorm season. In the colder months the temperature drops down to below zero, at night and during the hot months the temperature stays at 40C, even during the night.
Khurais Area: Fossil Hunting is also an interesting activity to engage in. Saudi Arabia used to be at the bottom of the ocean, once upon a time over 50 million years ago. People have found sea shell fossils on numerous occasions. Shark teeth can also be found in the Khurais area, some of which belong to the tiger sharks.
Rawdat Kuraim: Many people do not know this but the desert is filled with flowers and greenery during spring season. Lush green and colorful fields of flowers grow on and around sand dunes, and can be found just 20 minutes outside of Riyadh. The best and largest Rawdat (Garden) is the Rawdat Kuraim which is also known as the King’s Forest
Lake Kharrarah: After heavy rains, large bodies of water also form in the desert. The most famous seasonal lake is called Lake Kharrarah. It forms in the centre of the magnificent Red Sand Dunes, and also contains a small waterfall. We have separately published an article upon this “Lake Kharrarah Park and Hifna Waterfall”
The Riyadh’s Secret Lake: There is another such lake, which is known as the Secret Lake, but many people do not know about this. It is located just outside Riyadh, and turns into beautiful lush meadows during the dry months. We have separately published an article upon this “The Riyadh’s Secret Lake”
Source: Blue Abaya
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