Neighborhood Guide: Little Manila/Little Batha

You’ll think I must be pretty crazy for doing this. Hey, I’d accept that. I’m pretty but I’m anything but crazy. Haha! Kidding! Yes, I’m crazy. I think it would take crazy people like we are to write The Pink Tarha, but crazy smart if you ask me. Again with the just kidding part. So I made a map. And it’s not your ordinary map. It’s a map showing the various restaurants, stores, and shops in a certain part of Riyadh. Why? Just because I’d like to be able to find something easier and faster. I don’t want going round and round looking for something that I won’t be able to find. That will tip me over the edge. It will also drive my driver angry. So you see, we’ve been asked by many readers where is the location of this and that and I’ve made maps before. (You can check them out in some of our restaurant features.) But those are simple maps. These maps that we’re introducing right now are pretty unique if you ask me. We’re even introducing a whole new section for it called “NEIGHBORHOOD GUIDES.” This is where we take one popular neighborhood or street and make them into a map complete with icons and labels and arrows.

On every entry in this section, you’ll see a larger map with a magnifying glass on it. I attempt to make the place where the magnifying glass lies bigger and more specific and colorful. So the next time you go to that area, you already know where to look. And if in you’re that area, you’ll know that there’s this certain store in between these stores where you can get specific stuff. I really hope this maps will help you in your life in Riyadh. It will be confusing for a while. Trust me, I showed this to the other Pink Tarhas and some friends and for a moment they weren’t sure what they were looking at. But I tell you, once you get the hang of it, you’ll understand. Hopefully.

I start with the neighborhood I know best. Mine. I mean I don’t own it, of course. It’s just that I’ve lived in the place since I got here since I started working. This street in between the government hospitals King Fahd Medical City and Prince Sultan Military Medical City (or RKH) is small but it packs a lot of very important shops for the expat communities, particularly for us Filipinos and also Indians. As a matter of fact, it is known as Little Manila after the fact that you will see a Filipino (kabayan) everywhere you look. You might even see a friend here once in a while. It is also known as Litle Batha, named after the famous place somewhere South of the city where Filipinos, Indians, and Pakistanis converge every weekend (or every day). I like this neighborhood because everything I need is here. Filipino restaurants? Check. Remittance centers? Check. Grocery Stores? Check. It’s a one-stop destination and it’s called ABU BAKR AR RAZI STREET.

Taking this area to the next level!

Taking this area to the next level!

Click to see bigger image.

Click to see bigger image.

Dizzy with all the icons yet? Sorry! Haha! I will provide a more zoomed in version later. (Check back when I update this entry.) It’s my first time to do this kind of thing and I can honestly say that it’s one of the hardest things I did for the blog. Seriously, why did I even do this in the first place?!? Hahaha! It takes a lot of patience and discipline so I want to salute my graphic artists friends. I cannot do this for a living. I will lose my mind. Or maybe, I just didn’t know what I was doing because I took the long cuts not having enough knowledge in Photoshop. Anyway, you see the icons there? Got that from the Internet but Reina did a few edits. I was meant to make a legend for the icons I used but it’s pretty obvious what you’re seeing. Right?! (Please say yes!) If not, I’ll do the legends pronto so please, comment and give me feedback.

Some important notes that you I couldn’t insert in there anymore:

  • There are a lot of uniform shops in this street. Let’s owe it to the fact that it’s sandwiched between two major hospitals. So you know where to look for your lab coats and scrubs now.
  • There are small lodges dotting this street. If you’re looking for affordable lodging to stay in, this is where you’ll find them.
  • Aramex and Skyfreight are also located in this street; in the stores between Brands For Less and Albukhary Restaurant. 
  • The map shows buildings in groups that’s why you can’t see the smaller streets that divide them.
  • Most of the buildings are devoted to shops and stores on the ground floor and residential units above. 

So here’s the thing, we’ve been hearing rumors that this street, or the half near the King Fahd Medical City has been bought by the hospital and will soon be made into its parking lot. I hope not because I like this place. And seriously, I don’t want my efforts in making this map go to waste! Hahaha!

Watch out for the maps on Tahlia Street, Oruba Street, and King Fahd Road. Oh, and how can I forget? Batha. You will no longer get lost and your husband will no longer complain that you’re taking him round and round and round in a pointless, directionless trip around town. Hey, you’ll never know what you’ll find.


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The Editor-in-Chief speaks 7 languages: Filipino, English, Wit, Sarcasm, Truth, Creativity, and The Pink Tarha.

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