Time: November 08, 2018
JEDDAH: Adventurers of all ages soon will be able to see the spectacular landscapes of Saudi Arabia’s Al-Ula region up close — by rock climbing.
The Royal Commission for Al-Ula (RCU) announced plans to encourage the sport of rock climbing in the province by identifying and developing selected climbing paths, offering climbers of different ages and abilities the best facilities to help them discover the province.
Saudi and overseas climbers will be able to enjoy their sport in Al-Ula against a backdrop of some of the Kingdom’s most dramatic landscapes. The result will be an unforgettable experience in a unique historic and heritage site, with climbers joining the province’s pioneers of adventure and exploration.
With its historic treasures and spectacular landscapes, Al-Ula has the potential to become one of the most important tourist destinations in the world not only for cultural tourism, but also for sports, leisure and adventurous travel.
The RCU will develop the climbing routes through its partnership with the Saudi Climbing Federation (SCF). It seeks to put Al-Ula among the leading international tourist destinations and showcase the province’s adventure attractions, breathtaking natural scenery, and historic and heritage sites.
A group of Saudi climbers embarked on exploratory trips to different sites in Al-Ula from Oct.11-14 to identify climbing paths — the first time a large number of climbers from the SCF came together to enjoy rock and mountain climbing in the region.
The trips were led by SCF President Prince Bandar bin Khalid, who was accompanied by Yasmine Al-Qahtani, director-general of the federation.
The commission’s teams and the SCF will continue to identify climbing tracks, develop the necessary infrastructure and establish plans to ensure climbers’ safety. The partnership will also train Al-Ula residents as climbing guides to protect climbers’ safety as part of the efforts to promote social participation in the province. This will provide more job opportunities for the people of Al-Ula and support its local economy.
“Rock climbing is a sport that everyone can practice without any prior requirements,” Al-Qahtani said. “The tracks that the federation will develop will be suitable for climbers from different age groups. The sense of achievement you get when you reach the top cannot be described and the view from the top will be inspirational.”
The memorandum of understanding signed between the RCU and the SCF will provide a cooperative framework based on discussion, dialogue and communication to develop the sport in accordance with the best sustainable development practices.