Saudi Arabia occupies most of the Arabian peninsula and has both Persian Gulf and Red Sea coast lines. It also contains the holy Muslim cities of Mecca and Medina, to which all physically and financially able Muslims are required to make a pilgrimage at least once if possible.
Saudi Arabia is one of three countries named for their royal families, along with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and also Liechtenstein. In the 1930s, the discovery of oil transformed the country. Following Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990, Saudi Arabia accepted the Kuwaiti royal family and 400,000 refugees while allowing Western and Arab troops to deploy on its sand for the liberation of Kuwait the following year. A burgeoning population, unemployment, aquifer depletion, and an economy largely dependent on petroleum output and prices are all major governmental concerns.
Everything in Saudi Arabia is segregated by sex to ensure that unrelated men and women have no possibility of "mingling" (khulwa, a punishable crime).
Top Destinations in Saudi Arabia