AlUla Oasis

AlUla's lush green oasis has served as a haven for locals, travellers, flora and fauna for thousands of years.

A stark juxtaposition from the sweeping sand dunes of the Saudi Arabian desert, AlUla’s lush green oasis has served as a haven for locals, travellers, flora and fauna for thousands of years.

Located in the  Wadi AlQura – also known as the Valley of Villages – the oasis is a 20km square agricultural epicentre easily accessed from AlUla Old Town and AlJadidah. Visitors can follow in the footsteps of ancient civilisations as they meander parts or all of the 6km trail under a canopy of over two million date palm and 200,000 citrus trees, day and night, with free entry year-round.

The centre of kingdoms

Civilisations have built their kingdoms around the oasis of AlUla for thousands of years – including the ancient cities of Dadan and Hegra. All along, the oasis has provided a welcoming place for merchants, pilgrims and other travellers to rest — and a source of agricultural wealth for local communities.

Clients can explore the oasis on their own, or book onto one of many daily tours to discover its rich story with an expert storyteller guide, or ‘Rawi’.

There are more than a dozen tombs cut into the red rock cliff faces of Daddan. Hegra, on the other hand, boasts 110 well-preserved tombs. 

For history enthusiasts, the Heritage Oasis Trail tour offers fascinating insights into ancient mudbrick buildings, sustainable farms and water sources.

AN AGRICULTURAL HAVEN

The date palms are the top layer of the oasis ecosystem, shading a layer of citrus trees, which in turn protect a carpet of aromatic herbs such as basil and mint. Visitors will find citrus trees laden with 29 varieties of fruit, from the torounge (a hybrid of a lemon and a pomelo cultivated by the Nabataeans) to oranges, ruby red grapefruit, sweet lemons and kumquats (referred to locally as maliki).

Each year AlUla produces more than 90,000 tonnes of dates. Numerous varieties of the date fruit are grown here, the most famous of which is the barni date.

Oasis Heritage Trail 2
The shade from date palms protects a carpet of aromatic herbs

With this bountiful produce on-hand it is no surprise that local restaurants celebrate nature’s offering. Reccomend clients stop for a bite at Daimumah Café and Daimumah Restaurant, which offer a range of delicious dishes that can be enjoyed amid an enchanting setting. For a more hands-on approach, visitors can tour the farms in the oasis and enjoy numerous ‘oasis to plate’ culinary experiences.

Daimuhmah features art installations by Talin Hazbar and Sofiane Si Merabet, crafted during last year’s eleven-week Oasis Reborn Artist Residency. Botanical gardens, local crops and ancient qanats are on offer, too.

For more information on AlUla’s culinary scene, see: Where to eat in AlUlA

Become an AlUla specialist

Extensive training material is available at alulaspecialist.com, covering historic sights, accommodations, sustainability, experiences and events taking place in AlUla. This one-stop shop for travel agents includes three training modules, a series of seven new short training videos, as well as imagery, agent perks, a directory of product suppliers and more.

alulaspecialist.com