Travel Desert ruins of Al-Ula: Saudis revive forgotten past

01:36  17 april  2018
01:36  17 april  2018 Source:   Relaxnews (AFP)

Dubai in the sky! Photographer captures beautiful aerial shots of Dubai from above

  Dubai in the sky! Photographer captures beautiful aerial shots of Dubai from above By Mikey Jones A photographer has captured stunning aerial shots of the deserts in Dubai from above. Jordan Hammond, 24, was on a trip to the Dubai deserts when he decided to take some aerial shots of his destination.

AL ULA , Saudi Arabia — Trudging up a caramel-hued cliff pocked with ancient tombs, guide Bandar Al Anazi gazed at the stunning view: a windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins at the centre of Saudi-Franco preservation But the project is about reviving the glory of Saudi Arabia’s ancient past .

AL ULA , Saudi Arabia — Trudging up a caramel-hued cliff pocked with ancient tombs, guide Bandar Al Anazi gazed at the stunning view: a windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins at the centre of Saudi-Franco preservation But the project is about reviving the glory of Saudi Arabia’s ancient past .

Tombs at Madain Saleh, a UNESCO World Heritage site, near Saudi Arabia's northwestern town of al-Ula.© Provided by AFPRelaxNews Tombs at Madain Saleh, a UNESCO World Heritage site, near Saudi Arabia's northwestern town of al-Ula.

Trudging up a caramel-hued cliff pocked with ancient tombs, guide Bandar al-Anazi gazed at the stunning view: a windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins at the centre of Saudi-Franco preservation efforts.

Al-Ula, an area rich in archaeological remnants, is seen as a jewel in the crown of future Saudi attractions as the austere kingdom prepares to issue tourist visas for the first time -- opening up one of the last frontiers of global tourism.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is set to sign a landmark agreement with Paris on Tuesday for the touristic and cultural development of the northwestern site, once a crossroads of ancient civilisations.

Fall Asleep Under Millions of Stars at This Bubble Hotel in Northern Ireland

  Fall Asleep Under Millions of Stars at This Bubble Hotel in Northern Ireland <p>The main appeal to these bubble domes <g class="gr_ gr_3 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar multiReplace" data-gr-id="3" id="3">are</g> their 180-degree transparent walls, which promise unhampered views of the surrounding forest, peace, and solitude.</p>In the town of Enniskillen, in Northern Ireland, Finn Lough Resort gives nature-loving glampers the opportunity to book a stay at one of their seven, luxurious Forest Domes.

- 'Pride in our past ' -. Al - Ula is among a hidden trove of Saudi archaeological treasures. Archaeologists last year used Google Maps to find hundreds of stone "gates" built from rock in a remote Saudi desert , which may date back as far But the project is about reviving the glory of Saudi Arabia's ancient past .

A windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins is at the centre of Saudi-Franco preservation efforts: Al - Ula , an area rich in archaeological remnants, is seen as a jewel in the crown of future Saudi attractions as the austere kingdom prepares to issue tourist visas for the first time

"All of Al-Ula is an open air museum," Anazi said during a media tour just days before Prince Mohammed's trip, revealing a patchwork of rock-cut tombs containing niches for burials.

"There is so much history here still waiting to be discovered."

The tombs, some containing pre-Islamic inscriptions and drawings such as hunting scenes, are a legacy of the Nabataean artistic tradition.

The chiseled rock art forms could help unravel the mysteries of millennia-old civilisations on the Arabian Peninsula.

Saudi Arabia pushes back launch of 'entertainment city'

  Saudi Arabia pushes back launch of 'entertainment city' Saudi Arabia on Tuesday said it has delayed by three days the launch of an "entertainment city" near Riyadh.King Salman had been scheduled on Wednesday to launch construction of the 334-square kilometre project in Qiddiya, southwest of Riyadh, touted as the kingdom's answer to Disneyland.

Al Ula , an area rich in archaeological remnants, is seen as a jewel in the crown of future Saudi attractions as the austere kingdom prepares to issue tourist visas for the first time - opening up one of the last frontiers of global tourism.

Al - Ula (Saudi Arabia) (AFP) – Trudging up a caramel-hued cliff pocked with ancient tombs, guide Bandar al-Anazi gazed at the stunning view: a windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins at the centre of Saudi-Franco preservation efforts.

The area, roughly the size of Belgium, served as an important way station and bedouin watering hole on the trade route linking the Arabian Peninsula, North Africa and India.

It is home to the kingdom's first UNESCO World Heritage Site, Madain Saleh, built more than 2,000 years ago by the Nabataeans.

"Every day something new is being discovered," Jamie Quartermaine, an expert from the Britain-based Oxford Archaeology group, told AFP.

"The potential is endless. Look behind you," he said, pointing at ancient animal art depictions engraved on a rocky spur inside an Al-Ula hotel resort.

- 'Gift to the world' -

A helicopter tour of the area revealed a desert landscape that appeared like the top of a foamed latte, dotted with heritage sites and towering maze-like rock formations.

The Saudi-Franco partnership is in part aimed at preserving the site from further erosion and vandalism it has faced.

Going to the Bottom of the World for New Zealand Single Malt Whisky

  Going to the Bottom of the World for New Zealand Single Malt Whisky We visit one of the world’s southernmost distilleries in New Zealand.The pass came and went and the rain kept falling, oblivious to his claims. Not that it mattered to the three Scots in the car. If anything, we felt even more at home: Mist, mountains, summer rain. The fact that New Zealand’s South Island was so familiar seemed an act of typically generous Kiwi hospitality. Flocks of soggy Merino sheep munched their way across the high plateau, the hills in the distance lit Day-Glo green by the recent downpours.

Desert ruins : Saudis revive forgotten past . Finger found in Saudi desert is 90,000 years old. Apr 11, 2018 LivingDesert ruins of Al - Ula : Saudis revive forgotten past .

‘Pride in our past ’ Al - Ula is among a hidden trove of Saudi archaeological treasures. Archaeologists last year used Google Maps to find hundreds of stone “gates” built from rock in a remote Saudi desert , which may date back as far as 7,000 years.

At one archeological site called Al-Khoraiba, Anazi pointed at a bereft cistern.

Photos taken by French explorers Jaussen and Savignac, who visited the area in the early 20th century, showed the same cistern once featured the statue of a deity.

The walled city of Al-Ula, with tightly packed mud-brick and stone houses that were inhabited until modern times, sits decaying under the scorching sun.

But before a preservation plan is launched in collaboration with France, all archaeological treasures need to be accounted for, said Amr al-Madani, head of the Royal Al-Ula Commission.

A massive two-year surveying programme began in March, which includes scanning via helicopters, satellites, drones and a remote sensing technology called Lidar, he told AFP.

"This is a significant undertaking incorporating all levels of survey from aerial survey down to ground checking," said Quartermaine.

A Franco-Saudi deal to develop Al-Ula calls for the creation of a dedicated agency modelled on the lines of the French museums agency, which spearheaded the establishment of the Louvre museum in Abu Dhabi.

Put Up A Dome Tent In A Flash

  Put Up A Dome Tent In A Flash The longevity of any camping holiday is tied to how long it takes to put the tent up and down. Our handy walkthrough takes out the guesswork.We jog your memory with this handy guide to erecting a dome tent.

Al - Ula (Saudi Arabia) (AFP) – Trudging up a caramel-hued cliff pocked with ancient tombs, guide Bandar al-Anazi gazed at the stunning view: a windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins at the centre of Saudi-Franco But the project is about reviving the glory of Saudi Arabia’s ancient past .

Trudging up a caramel-hued cliff pocked with ancient tombs, guide Bandar al -Anazi gazed at the stunning view: a windswept desert landscape of pre-Islamic ruins at the centre of Saudi-Franco preservation efforts.

At least one large museum is planned to be built in Al-Ula.

Gerard Mestrallet, the former CEO of French electric utility company Engie, has been appointed special envoy of French President Emmanuel Macron for Al-Ula.

Al-Ula is expected to fully open up to global tourists within three to five years, launching the site as what Saudi officials describe as "a gift to the world".

- 'Pride in our past' -

Al-Ula is among a hidden trove of Saudi archaeological treasures.

Archaeologists last year used Google Maps to find hundreds of stone "gates" built from rock in a remote Saudi desert, which may date back as far as 7,000 years.

They also discovered evidence of 46 lakes believed to have existed in Saudi Arabia's northern Nefud desert, which experts say has lent credence to the theory that the region swung between periods of desertification and a wetter climate.

Tourism is one of the centrepieces of the blueprint to prepare the biggest Arab economy for the post-oil era.

Al-Ula's hotel infrastructure is currently inadequate, with only two facilities with a capacity of 120 rooms.

But the project is about reviving the glory of Saudi Arabia's ancient past.

There is currently scant information in Saudi history textbooks about Al-Ula.

"This is about national pride in our own past," Anazi said.

Why Elle Macpherson eats chocolate mousse for breakfast: Ageless supermodel, 54, shares the surprising tips and tricks she's adopted to help maintain her incredibly flat stomach .
Australian-born supermodel, Elle Macpherson, shared the flat belly tips and tricks she's adopted since turning 50. These include eating chocolate mousse for breakfast.And so, after turning 54 last month, Elle said she needs to make a 'conscious effort to stay in optimum health'.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!