50+ Interesting Facts About Saudi Arabia

  1. The current Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is the third Saudi state, founded in September 1932 in the Arabian Peninsula by the House of Saud. 
  2. pact between the House of Saud and religious scholar Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab played a vital role in establishing the first Saudi state (1744-1818). This pact is still in place, and the Al ash-Sheikh (descendants of the religious scholar) control religious affairs, education, and judiciary in Saudi Arabia. (Source)
  3. Al-Ahsa Oasis in the Al-Ahsa region of Saudi Arabia is the largest self-contained oasis. More than 2.5 million palm trees in this oasis span over 85 sq. km (nearly 33 sq. miles). Over 280 artesian springs from an underground aquifer provide water to this oasis. (Source)
  4. Saudi Arabia fulfills 50% requirement of its drinking water from seawater desalination. It is the world’s largest producer of desalinated water. (Source)
  5. Saudi Arabia is the world’s 12th largest country and the 4th largest in Asia. It is also the largest country in the Middle East and Western Asia. Saudi Arabia is also the 2nd largest Arabic-speaking country (after Algeria)
  6. Highway 10 in Saudi Arabia is the longest straight road in the worldThe length of this road is 256 km. (Source)
  7. The King Fahd Fountain is the world’s tallest continually-functioning water fountain. It started functioning in 1985.
  8. In 1985, Saudi Prince Sultan bin Salman Al Saud became the first Muslim to travel to space. He achieved this milestone as a crew member of the American STS-51-G Space Shuttle mission. 
  9. Saudi Arabia has the second-largest oil reserves in the world, while the kingdom is the largest producer and exporter of petroleum.
  10. Saudi Arabia has the world’s 5th largest natural gas reserves. This Middle Eastern country is also the 8th largest natural gas producer.
  11. Ghawar Field in Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest conventional oilfield. It is owned and operated by Saudi Aramco. (Source)
  12. Saudi Arabia also owns the largest offshore oil fields. Marjan Complex and Safaniya field are the two largest offshore oil fields in the world. Moreover, Zuluf in Saudi Arabia is the 4th largest offshore oil field. (Source)
  13. King Fahad International Airport in Dammam is the world’s 2nd largest airport. It covers 750 sq. km with a terminal area of 3.52 million sq. ft. (Source)
  14. Saudi Arabia’s Shaheen II supercomputer is in the top 10 list of the world’s most powerful computers. (Source)
  15. In October 2017, Saudi Arabia became the world’s first country to grant citizenship to a robot. However, some believe it is only a publicity stunt. (Source)
  16. Saudi Arabia has an extremely high rate of road accidents. Between 1971 and 1997, its rate of road accidents was one death and four injuries every hour. (Source)
  17. Saudi Arabia was the last country to allow women to drive. No law in Saudi Arabia prevents women from driving, but the ban was mainly due to tradition and social customs.
  18. The border between Saudi Arabia and Jordan is in a zigzag shape. Former British PM Winston Churchill drew these borderlines in 1921 while under the influence of alcohol. The incident is known as Winston’s Hiccup(Source)
    Saudi Arabia political map
    Saudi Arabia and Jordan have a strange border

  19. House of Saud is the richest royal family in the world. This family has 15,000 members, and their collective wealth is estimated to be worth $1.4 trillion. (Source)
  20. Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal is one of the world’s wealthiest men. His company (King Holding Company) had shares in famous multinational corporations, including Amazon, Apple Inc, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Ford, eBay, McDonald's, Walt Disney, Twitter, and others. 
  21. Saudi Arabia spends 10% of its GDP on defense, the second highest in the world after Oman (16.7% of GDP).
  22. Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest arms importer. The country imported arms worth $3.81bn in 2018. Major weapon suppliers of Saudi Arabia are the USA, the UK, and France. (Source)
  23. The two most expensive buildings are in Saudi Arabia. Masjid Al-Haram in Makkah is the most expensive building in the world. Abraj Al-Bait Towers is the second-most expensive building and also the world’s 3rd tallest building, possessing the world’s largest clock face. (Source)
  24. The world’s largest camel market is in the al-Qassim region of Saudi Arabia. People purchase numerous camels, goats and sheep daily from the Al Qassim Camel Market in Buraidah. 
  25. Despite the presence of numerous camels and a large amount of sand, Saudi Arabia imports camels and sand from Australia. The camels are for meat, while the Australian sand is ideal for sandblasting. (Source)
  26. In 1962, Saudi Arabia officially abolished slavery. At that time, there were around 300,000 slaves in the kingdom.
  27. Citizenship in Saudi Arabia is only allowed for Muslims. Residential non-Muslims cannot build their worship places anywhere in this Muslim country.
  28. The title of the Saudi king is the “Custodian of the Two Holy Places.” This title was adopted in 1986.
  29. Currently, the Abraj Al-Bait Clock Tower in Makkah is the tallest building in Saudi Arabia and the world’s 3rd tallest building, with an elevation of 601 m (1,971 feet). Saudi Arabia is constructing the Jeddah Tower, with a 1,008 m (3,307 ft.) altitude. After its planned completion, it can replace Burj Khalifa (2,722 feet height) in Dubai (UAE) as the world’s tallest building.
  30. Jubail Industrial City is the world's largest industrial area, covering 920 sq. km. It also has the largest IWPP (independent water and power project) in the world. Two other Saudi locations (Yanbu Industrial City and KAEC Industrial Valley) are the world's 4th and 5th largest industrial areas. (Source)
  31. Saudi Arabia has bought farmland in California and Arizona states of the USA to grow food for its cattle. (Source)
  32. Public education is free in Saudi Arabia. There are separate classrooms for boys and girls, but their curriculum is same. (Source)
  33. Rub al Khali (part of the Arabian Desert with a large portion in Saudi Arabia) is the world’s largest sandy desert.
  34. Saudi Arabia provides free healthcare to Saudi citizens and expatriates working in the public sector. (Source)
  35. Saudi Arabia is one of several Gulf countries affected by Shamal winds. The speed of these winds is 45 to 65 km/h, which can continue for days. (Source)
  36. In 2019, Saudi Aramco became the world’s first company worth $2 trillion. The Saudi government owns more than 98% shares of this oil company. (Source)
    Core area of Saudi Aramco
    Saudi Aramco achieved $2 trillion worth in 2019

  37. The tallest unsupported flagpole in the world is in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. This flagpole is 171 m high and was erected in 2014. (Source)
  38. Saudi Arabia is the top producer of yogurt in the world. Saudi yogurt production is several times higher than any other country. (Source)
  39. Saudi Arabia is the 2nd largest date producer in the world after Egypt. It produced nearly 1.6 million tons of dates in 2021.
  40. The world’s largest burger restaurant is in Saudi Arabia. The “I’M Hungry” restaurant in Jeddah covers an area of 2,860 m2. (Source)
  41. The camel beauty pageant is held every year in Saudi Arabia. More than 30,000 camels take part in this contest. (Source)
  42. Saudi Arabia is the largest country without a river. It fulfills water requirements of its population through several oases and desalination plants. (Source)
  43. There are six UNESCO world heritage sites in Saudi Arabia. All these are cultural sites in various parts of the country. (Source)
  44. Saudi Arabia is an ultraconservative Sunni Muslim majority country. However, it has a sizable Shia population in two provinces: Eastern Province (rich in oil reserves) and Najran (a province in the south bordering Yemen).
  45. The 9/11 attacks in the USA are the deadliest terrorist attacks worldwide since 1970. 15 of the 19 hijackers of this incident were citizens of Saudi Arabia.
  46. Saudi Arabia is the only Muslim country where malls and shopping centers are closed during prayers. This rule has been in place since 1987, but now few commercial activities have been given exemption from this law. (Source)
  47. Saudi Arabia is one of few countries having Religious police. But their power and authority have reduced after 2016. (Source)
  48. Saudi Arabia has one of the world’s highest execution rates. The kingdom executed record 184 people in 2019. (Source)
  49. More than 75% of the labor force in Saudi Arabia is composed of foreign workers. More than 10 million expats work and live in the kingdom. (Source)
  50. Saudi Arabia has one of the lowest female labor force participation in the world. Just over 22% of women in Saudi Arabia are part of its labor force. (Source)
  51. Saudi Arabia banned smoking in government offices and public places in 2012. The country is the world’s 4th largest importer of tobacco. (Source)
  52. Birth control is illegal in Saudi Arabia. Abortion is only allowed on medical grounds, usually within 40 days of a pregnancy. (Source)
  53. Men and women have separate venues during wedding ceremonies in Saudi Arabia. Therefore, some couples prefer to arrange their marriages abroad with less strict rules. (Source)

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