Located on the Red Sea, Jeddah is the most important harbour city in Saudi Arabia. With 3.5 million residents, it is the country's second largest city. Every year, Jeddah's harbour and airport function as a gateway for just about 3 million pilgrims on the way to Mecca, the religious centre of Islam. In contrast to Mecca, visitors from all religions arrive in Jeddah all year long. Residents include people from Africa, Persian regions, Turkey, Yemen and India who work in the oil industry or in the service sector.

Although Jeddah is growing dramatically, great efforts are being made to keep the old town intact. Currently, many Ottoman buildings are being restored. A visit to the fish and meat market is especially exciting. The beach promenade invites visitors to take a stroll. The bay where Jeddah is located is a sailing and diving paradise. Most of the hotels and restaurants are international and cosmopolitan. As is the new architecture: at 250 metres, the "Jeddah" tower is the country's tallest television tower. The roof of the Haj Terminal has an overall area of 40.5 hectares (about 100 acres), the largest roof construction in the world. And the highest fountain in the world is currently found in Jeddah: the water in King Fahd's Fountain can reach a height of 312 metres.

Tip for a day trip: the former summer capital of Taif is a popular holiday destination. It is about 170 kilometres from Jeddah in the country's interior on the edge of a plateau at an elevation of 900 metres. In comparison with other parts of the country, Taif's climate is comfortably moderate.

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From the airport to Jeddah

Name: King Abdulaziz International Airport (JED)
Location: approx. 20 km from the city centre of Jeddah

All information is subject to change.