Out of Town 1: Jeddah’s Bests
:::This is the first entry in our OUT OF TOWN series.:::
Aside from Riyadh, Jeddah is one of the beautiful cities you can visit in Saudi Arabia. Last October 2008 during the Haj vacation, I had the chance to visit Jeddah for the first time. It took us 12 hours to get there by car, longer than a direct Riyadh-Manila flight which only takes 9 hours! The beautiful scenery on the way helped relieve the boredom.
The l-o-n-g and winding road…
There were several things I loved about the place. Among all else, these were Jeddah’s bests:
(Hennes & Mauritz, a Swedish high-street brand) is one of my favorite brands, it is the main reason why I would succumb to 12 long hours of drive! I was in the store for more than 2 hours, scrutinizing every item and seizing the opportunity. The result was a record-breaking shopping spree only in one store! If not for the prayer time, I would have stayed longer looking at all the nice stuff they had.
At exactly 4:30 PM, I was there waiting patiently for the store to open!
The store has a ladies’ section for make-up and lingerie
Mall of Arabia
is the biggest mall in Jeddah. It opened sometime in August/September 2008. It houses 330 shops of top brands (H&M can be found here). The ladies rooms have lounges with mosaic mirrors made of porcelainish material, very plush! A lot of the shops still did not open. Let’s wait until this mall is in full blast.
The mall’s facade
The plush toilets (where you can pee with glee!)
, the ultimate Pinoy favorite is in Jeddah! I ordered ‘Chicken Joy
’ (as if we haven’t had enough chicken here) with gravy, yum! The prices are very reasonable, almost the same as its peso equivalent when converted to Riyals (2-piece Chicken Joy
with rice was about SAR11). Now Filipinos here can satisfy their cravings for authentic Filipino fast food!
Busy counters at nearly 11PM
Nice photo of a construction worker in Jeddah taking a break
– We don’t have beaches in Riyadh and seeing any body of water is quite rejuvenating. Going to beaches for picnics and swimming is one of the best ways to de-stress without spending. Perfect alternative to spend time and bond with your family aside from malling. Jeddah is also famous for the high fountain which is visible whilst in the city.
A rocky yet serene beach
Famous fountain located in the heart of the city
– A famous fast food which serves the best broasted chicken in the Kingdom. Broasting
is a form of cooking which uses a special machine and combines pressure cooking and deep-frying chicken. This method of cooking is not common in the Philippines. This results to a less greasy meat, making it ‘healthier’ than regular fried chicken. Their broasted chicken is served with garlic mayonnaise and fries. Perfect to gulp down with cola (Bebsi), Al-Baik
is exclusive to this city.
One of the many Al-Baik branches in Jeddah
– the ‘Abaya
’ is the black robe which women have to wear everytime they go out and about in Saudi Arabia. It is paired with (of course, named after our blogsite) a tarha or hijab
. Abayas are cheaper in Jeddah. I got one for SAR60, and found exactly the same design in Dirah (famous souk/market in Riyadh) for SAR100. I guess they’re probably importing Riyadh abayas from there.
Jeddah keeps its warm climate even in winter. We left Riyadh wearing jackets and warmers and we took all off as we approached Jeddah. The climate is very much like the Philippines, not too humid, warm and pleasant.
Curly clouds of Jeddah skies bidding us goodbye
Planning for your next trip within the Kingdom? Try Jeddah, a must-see place. But still, Riyadh will always be first in my heart. Nothing beats the bustle, famous landmarks and wide roads of my beloved city.
*Thanks to Noemi N. and Victor V. for their contribution to the photos*
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