Our Home In Riyadh
From modern malls to ancient cities, and music festivals to urban forests, there’s a lot to see and do here in Riyadh. Not only is it the capital city of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, but it’s also one of the largest cities here in the Middle East. Whether you’re interested in culture and history or fine dining and sports, we’ve rounded up some of the best things to do, both in and around Riyadh - keep reading to find out more.
Riyadh Park Mall
One of Riyadh’s most popular malls, it’s also one of the city’s largest. You’ll find international shops and restaurants like Abercrombie & Fitch, Ralph Lauren and The Cheesecake Factory here, as well as local boutiques. It’s also home to attractions like a cinema, an arcade, and the Museum of Illusions. Find out more here.
Mode Mall is one of the city’s newest malls, with shops from Cartier to Harvey Nichols, as well as fine dining restaurants. With 120 shops, it’s one of Riyadh’s biggest shopping destinations, and there’s also a luxury hotel. Find out more here.
This entertainment and shopping destination has an outdoor fountain area and also regularly hosts cultural events including dance recitals, classical music concerts, and more. Kids will also enjoy Magic Planet, an arcade with video games and rides. Find out more here.
Salt started out as a food truck, and now has branches in the UAE as well as right here in Riyadh. It specialises in burgers, fries, and ice cream and milkshakes, which come in flavours including chocolate brownie and Lotus Biscoff. Find out more here.
The Peruvian restaurant Coya opened up its first Saudi Arabian branch in Riyadh earlier this year, bringing Latin American vibes and cuisine to the country for the first time. As well as dishes including ceviche and grilled meat, you can also enjoy music from Coya Music, the brand’s international music label. Find out more here.
Calling itself the most Instagrammable cafe in the world, this cafe has three outlets across Riyadh - in The Zone, Riyadh Park Mall, and The Alley, Riyadh Boulevard. Inside, you’ll find pastel pink furniture, flower walls, and dishes including smashed avocado toast and baklava cheesecake. Find out more here.
This fine dining restaurant is the place to go for dinner and a show. When it comes to food, you can choose Italian or Asian dishes, from lobster ravioli to scallop ceviche, and you can also sit back and enjoy live music from singers, dancers, DJs, and more. Find out more here.
BB Social Riyadh
This modern Asian restaurant opened its first branch in Saudi Arabia this year. The original venue, in Dubai, has already won awards for its dishes, including bao buns and cauliflower popcorn, but now you can enjoy it all here in Riyadh. Find out more here.
With branches around the world, including New York, Hong Kong, and Dubai, Cipriani is one of the world’s most famous restaurants and has decades of history and heritage. Located in one of the city’s most prestigious districts, it’s elegant and stylish inside, and specialises in gourmet Italian cuisine, from pasta to burrata. Find out more here.
Nozomi RiyadhThe original Nozomi, which opened in London in 2004, is an award-winning Japanese restaurant, and the newest branch opened its doors in Riyadh in February of 2022, serving up contemporary dishes and live music. Find out more here.
Desert X AlUla 2022
This free, open-air art festival took place for the first time earlier in 2022, from February to March, and featured innovative art installations in the breathtaking AlUla desert. 15 artists from around the world showcased their art, while visitors could take guided tours, attend family workshops, watch shows, and more. Find out more here.
Discover art by local artists, as well as emerging artists from across the Middle East, at Mono Gallery. Visitors can also attend regular talks and sessions, and meet some of the artists in person. Find out more here.
The inaugural Noor Riyadh festival took place in 2021. It was a citywide festival of art and light, with immersive public art installations dotted all over the city, as well as a program of events including talks, tours, and workshops. There’s set to be another event this year, too. Find out more here.
Festivals to flock to
Riyadh Season 2021
Riyadh Season is a five-month-long entertainment festival, with events going on all over the city. Last year’s event, Riyadh Season 2021, featured fireworks shows, drone shows, parades, markets, stand-up comedy, and even a Cirque du Soleil show. Find out more here.
Saudi Arabia’s biggest music festival is MDLBeast, which takes place right here in Riyadh. The annual electronic and dance music event took place for the first time in 2019, and has seen big names including David Guetta, Armin van Buuren, and The Chainsmokers take to the stage. Find out more here.
AlUla is home to Saudi Arabia’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hegra. AlUla Moments is a season of artistic and cultural events, which ran for the first time from December 2021 until March 2022. There was a packed calendar of events, from art installations and sports events to live concerts from the likes of Alicia Keys and Lionel Richie. Find out more here.
Winter at Tantora
Part of AlUla Moments, Winter at Tantora celebrates the best in arts, music, fashion and food over the course of six weeks. The latest event saw classical music performances, an outdoor cinema festival, a desert polo tournament, and much more, and it’s set to return later this year. Find out more here.
AlUla Skies is part of AlUla Moments, and gives visitors the chance to see the region’s ancient landmarks from above. Take to the skies in a hot air balloon or go on a helicopter tour, and at night you can gaze at the stars or catch the world's longest drone show. Find out more here.
Connect with nature
Visit Saudi Arabia
See some of the country’s breathtaking treasures, with natural landscapes of beaches and desert dunes, or soak up Saudi Arabian culture and explore historical landmarks. Find out more here.
Ecotourism in Saudi Arabia
Ecotourism is on the rise around the world, and it’s no different in Saudi Arabia - thanks to Vision 2030, there are places to visit in Riyadh and around the country that are sustainable and eco-friendly. Green Riyadh is transforming the city with 7.5 million trees, and the Red Sea Project will create a luxury ecotourism resort on the coast. Find out more here.
Riyadh GreenThe Riyadh Green project has been called one of the most ambitious urban forestation projects in the world. Part of the Vision 2030 project, it aims to make the city more sustainable and eco-friendly, improving air quality by increasing green spaces and parks across the city and planting 7.5 million trees. There are even plans to build one of the world’s largest city parks, King Salman Park, right here in Riyadh, which will cover more than 13 square kilometres. Find out more here.