7 of the most scenic places to camp around Riyadh
Sponsored: Camping season is here. Here are some of the best spots around Riyadh that are less than a two-hour drive from the city centre…
The desert is perfect for watching the sunset, off-roading, stargazing, and of course, overnight camping. So, as the weather cools down, it’s time to *pack your Decathlon-approved camping essentials* and head out to these popular camping spots around Riyadh.
1. Al Thumamah National Park
Al Thumamah National Park is one of Riyadh’s most favourite camping destinations. This is the perfect spot for adrenaline junkies, with quad bikes available for rent. There are also camel rides and many fun activities, making it an easy all-in-one spot.
Campsite Coordinates: 25°07’21.9″N 46°40’17.2″E
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2. Khararah National Park
Situated in the outskirts of Riyadh (a mere 45 minutes’ drive away), Kharrarah National Park is home to Khararah Lake, a large oasis, formed only after heavy winter rains, and surrounded by red-hued hills. It’s one of the best spots to camp for families and great for dune bashing.
Campsite Coordinates: 24°24’22.3″N 46°14’49.6″E
3. Nufud & Rawdat Um Al Shuquq
Located near Raghaba town in Thadiq between Qassim and Riyadh, this is one of the most varied dunes in the Kingdom. It is surrounded by the iconic Tuwaiq mountains and extends for more than 800 kilometres from Zulfi dunes to the Empty Quarter and the Qiddiya Giga project. You can see the various mountain ranges from all directions of this campsite, and it’s only a 90-minute drive from Riyadh.
Campsite Coordinates: 25°06’32.5″N 45°45’27.4″E
4. Rawdat Al-Khafs
Rawdat Al-Khafs is one of the closest meadows to the Saudi capital, making it an excellent attraction for Riyadh residents longing for some greenery. It is about 65 minutes from Riyadh city centre, and the meadow’s greenery extends from the sands of Al Dahna desert in the west and al-Urma mountains in the north.
Campsite Coordinates: 25°27’09.1″N 46°26’49.1″E
5. Red Sand Dunes
For a taste of desert dune camping, head out into the vast desolate stretch of desert about an hour drive from the Red Sand Dunes. Known for its dramatic landscape of dunes, the whole area is otherworldly, especially at sunrise and sunset, and there is really not a soul there. Our favourite site is about 8 kilometres from the surface road. Otherwise, keep driving off-road until you find a good spot to explore.
Campsite Coordinates: 24°08’52.6″N 45°59’13.9″E
7. Shuaib Al Shawky
The Shuaib Al Shawky Valley in Najd, located about a two-hour drive from Riyadh city centre, is characterised by picturesque scenery, acacia trees, and rich valleys of shallow water.
Campsite Coordinates: 25°54’59.4″N 46°09’15.0″E
7. Shuaib’s View
More commonly known as the Edge of the World, this popular touristic site – located 90 kilometres north of Riyadh – has majestic views of the Fihrayn Mountain and the Tuwaiq Mountain Range. Just a word of caution, though. The site has a dangerous edge, so be careful when camping near it.
Campsite Coordinates: 24°56’44.5″N 45°59’27.4″E
Decathlon stores are located in Al Hamra Mall (Riyadh), The View Riyadh (coming soon) and Mall of Arabia (Jeddah). Check out more water sports essentials at en.decathlon.com.sa, and follow instagram.com/DecathlonKSA and facebook.com/DecathlonKsa
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