About Alula

About Alula

This magical place holds secrets to be discovered.

AlUla is a place of extraordinary human and natural heritage.

We invite you to come journey through a living museum of preserved tombs, sandstone outcrops, historic dwellings and monuments, both natural and human-made, that hold 200,000 years of largely unexplored human history. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has long been a crossroads of ancient civilisations — a place of deep history, but one that is constantly evolving. AlUla is an extraordinary example of this and you can soon help write the next pages of its history.






For thousands of years, northwest Saudi Arabia attracted people who came to take advantage of the abundant resources offered by its fertile oases.

AlUla was one of them, and became a vital crossroads along the famous incense-trading routes running from southern Arabia, north into Egypt, and beyond. With oases dotting the area, it offered a much-needed respite for weary travellers, becoming a popular place to rest, commune and recharge.

AlUla was also capital of the ancient kingdoms of Dadan and Lihyan, which controlled the caravan trade. Hegra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was the principal southern city of the Nabataean kingdom, famed for its spectacular monumental tombs. Today, Old Town AlUla is an abandoned labyrinth of streets tightly packed to create a defensive wall, and seemingly built over an ancient settlement.

This largely undiscovered expanse holds a timeless mystery that has been carried through its complex history. Layer upon layer of human history and a wealth of natural wonders are waiting to be explored, from dramatic rock formations and sand-swept dunes to archaeological ruins that trace the lives of the ancient cultures who built cities here.

Come and see the World's Masterpiece.

AlUla is home to a series of fascinating historical and archaeological sites such as Ancient Dadan, the capital of the Dadan and Lihyan Kingdoms.


AlUla's Past Spans from Prehistoric Times to the Present

200,000 BCE


Stone Tools

3,000 - 2,000 BCE

Bronze Age

Burials and funerary monuments evident throughout the landscape

600c. BCE - 3c. BCE

Ancient North Arabian Kingdoms (Dadan)

Capital city of Dadan and Lihyan Kingdoms. Water management and development of intensive agriculture in the AlUla Valley. Prosperity from incense trade to Mesopotamia, Egypt and beyond. Ancient North Arabian scripts and languages (best seen at nearby Jabal ‘Ikmah).

100 BCE - 106 CE

Nabataean Kingdom (Hegra)

Functioned as the southern capital of the Nabataean Kingdom, with Nabataean culture continuing for centuries after the kingdom’s fall. Spectacular carved tomb facades. Water management and development of agriculture in the Hegra Plain. Prosperity from incense trade to the Mediterranean.

106 - c. 300 CE

Roman presence in northwest Arabia

Fort at Hegra Southernmost limit of the Roman presence in Arabia

at least 600 - 1200 CE

Early Islamic period (Qurh)

Prosperity from trade and pilgrimage. Water management and development of agriculture in the southern part of the AlUla Valley.

1200 - 1980s CE

Later Islamic period (AlUla Old Town)

Prosperity from trade and pilgrimage. Water management and intensive agriculture again in the AlUla Valley core.

Travel Partners and Booking Information

Take the effort out of organising your trip to AlUla and let one of these destination management companies do the work. With in-depth destination knowledge, carefully curated itineraries and exclusive packages, these trusted travel experts can arrange your perfect AlUla experience, from start-to-finish and hassle-free.

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