A Travellerspoint blog

March 2012

End of the World, Riyadh

A journey through the wadis to the End of the World

sunny 25 °C

Out into the desert again, this time to the End of the World - although there seems to be three or four places called this around Riyadh.

About half an hour north west of Riyadh we turned of into the desert. It seems that the area we wanted to visit was closed due to people cutting down the trees for firewood, however a kind gentleman from the Ministry of Interior let us through the gate. We took an hour long route on a rough off-road track following a dried up river bed. The whole valley was a series of wadis where flood water runs, judging by the size of the valley and dam that had been built to hold back flood water there must be some serious rain from time to time. Would be a great place for a picnic or camp-out with all the trees and picturesque valley. We did at one point even come across a desert fox - a Rüppell’s sand fox (possibly); sadly it was too fast for the camera - some more info here >>CLICK<<...

We encountered several camels, some being herded, some left to roam. It seems their staple diet in the valley was a viciously thorny bush, the size of the thorns were a serious couple of inches and very strong, the leaves must be pretty tasty for them to attack this bush.

A few wrong turns and a hour later we arrived at our destination - the End of the World. It's a marvelous cleft in the rock face with a drop of 200m or so. After climbing further up some rocks we were treated to some fantastic views of the escarpment; in some parts maybe 300m high at a guess. We walked on climbing up to the peaks on the face. Hope you enjoy some photos here.

Many thanks to my friend Amr for taking us to one of his favourite places.

You can see the river bed in this photo running past the hills in the valley
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Believe it or not the camels love this
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Yes these camels...
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Lizard of the week :-)
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Went for a walk - it was a dead end...
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Visitors arrive just after us
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Some marvelous views were to be had from the top of the rockface.
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A view from the edge...

Posted by Gavin Lee 20:41 Archived in Saudi Arabia Comments (1)

Faisal's Finger, Riyadh

sunny 25 °C


Click on Satellite View

Off out into the desert again, this time to Faisal's Point (or Finger). A well known attraction just south of Riyadh. Failsal's Finger is part of the escarpment, often called the End of the World, about a 30min off road drive. Failsal's Point is, at a guess, 200m high and a very impressive sight. We decided to see the point from the top of the escarpment, you can drive round at see it from the base as well and it seems a popular picnic and camping spot.

5 of us set out, 3 Saudis and 2 expats and stopped at several point along the way.

Another Saudi Lizard was found despite the impressive camoflage
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We found our very own crystal cave, a strange find, looked like some animal had burrowed it out. Spread out outside of it was a load of quartz crystals - often called Saudi Diamonds I think - they can be cut and polished and certainly look impressive on jewellery.

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First sighting of the finger, it's hard to do it justice with a picture. Not easy to get a sense of scale with the photos. The point is approximately 200m high. Often people think it's blue skies all the way in Saudi but in reality it's more often very Hazy and this makes photography a little difficult.
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You can see the cars down at the bottom left of this photo to give a sense of the massive scale.
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Here's a panoramic video I took showing the marvelous vista we had.

Many, many thanks to Wail, Amr, Fahad and John for a memorable trip. Expect to see some shots from the bottom in future.

Posted by Gavin Lee 11:51 Archived in Saudi Arabia Tagged desert riyadh saudi_arabia Comments (0)

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