Seven beautiful beaches you’ve never heard about

There’s nothing like escaping to the beach to relax, restore and revitalise. In Saudi, you can discover a wealth of secret shores and beautiful bays perfect for every type of traveller. Here’s our guide to seven must-seas...

<p>The white beaches and crystalline waters of Saudi are a travel paradise </p>

The white beaches and crystalline waters of Saudi are a travel paradise

With the Persian Gulf on one side and the Red Sea coast on the other, Saudi has an enviable choice of beaches to suit everyone, whether it’s barefoot luxury, exotic underwater experiences or somewhere to immerse yourself in nature.

These secluded resorts feel wonderfully restorative – imagine the gentle waters of the Persian Gulf gently lapping pristine white sand, and remote sun-kissed islands. Here are seven must-experience shores to work round during your stay…

Best for nature: Shipwreck Beach, Haql

Enjoy incredible views and immerse yourself in nature at Shipwreck Beach in Haql

Just across the Gulf of Aqaba from Egypt’s busy Red Sea resorts lies quiet, untouched Haql beach, a glorious curve of golden sand with just a smattering of accommodation and little else.

Arriving in the bay, the first thing you see is an eerie, half-sunk ship against the backdrop of majestic mountains tumbling to the coast in the distance, creating an other-worldly vibe.

Wade into the warm turquoise waters and you’ll see coral reefs alive with marine life, including lion-fish that can be spotted just off the shore. Swim out to the wreck and you could be swimming with eels, barracudas and sand tiger sharks.

Best for families: Half Moon Beach, Al Khobar

With calm waters, an amusement park and beach buggies for hire, Half Moon beach is perfect for families

The shallow, calm waters of the Persian Gulf, stunning scenery, white sands and a local amusement park with rides, blow-up slides and a bouncy castle make Half Moon Beach a perennial family favourite.

Only a short drive from Dammam in the Eastern Province, the crescent-shaped beach stretches for miles, the sand is pristine and the water gentle and clear, so it’s perfect for swimming and playing on the shore and in the sea.

Fixed shelters provide welcome shade, and there are showers too. Teens will enjoy hiring a beach buggy to ride on the dunes.

Best for wellness: Naxos Bay, Jeddah

Jeddah’s white sands and turquoise waters make for the perfect restorative, relaxing beach trip

Naxos Bay has a private beach where you can swim and sunbathe in totally chilled surroundings and unwind with a relaxing massage. There are sun-loungers, showers, toilets, changing rooms and lockers, plus a café serving light refreshments.

Stay till dusk to witness the beautiful sunset, and if you’re feeling like a post-beach night out, check out the website naxosbaybeach.com for various concerts and DJ parties.

Best for watersports: Silver Sands, Jeddah

If watersports are your bag, head to Silver Sands to get your adventure on

Windsurfing, sailing, fishing and scuba-diving are all available at the Caribbean-inspired Silver Sands on the Red Sea, which is ideal for couples.

Accessible from Jeddah by public or private transport, this private resort has a palm-fringed white sandy beach and access to coral reefs full of marine life. Private yachts are available to hire for Red Sea cruises, and fishing trips can also be arranged.

There’s an entry fee of SAR100 (about £22) per person, Sunday to Thursday, and SAR150 (£32) on Friday and Saturday.

Best for pure paradise: Uqair Beach, Eastern Province

Go off-grid in the soothing surrounds of Uqair Beach where you can truly relax and unwind

For the ultimate escape, head to Uqair Beach and immerse yourself in the soothing serenity of nature. There are no cafes, no restaurants, no hotels – just a wonderfully peaceful stretch of powder-white sand far from the crowds. So pack a coolbox and prepare to go off-grid for the day, the gentle turquoise waves lapping at the shore providing true respite and relaxation.

The sea is shallow and calm, ideal for swimming or fishing, and there are privacy pods for changing. There’s also a palm-dotted grassy children’s play area, plus a designated spot for barbecues, perfect at sunset.

Best for luxury: Narcissus Resort & Spa, Obhur

Enjoy a luxe beach break at Obhur, via the idyllic surrounds of Narcissus Resort & Spa

For a truly luxurious seaside break, opt for a stay in this unforgettable beach hotel in North Obhur.

Situated on an idyllic white sandy beach that boasts incredible views of the Red Sea, the resort boasts luxurious accommodation in 60 villas, the largest spa in Jeddah, three pools and a choice of three restaurants. By day, relax on sun loungers, beach pods and four poster beach beds, or if you’re feeling active, have a game of beach volleyball. In the evening, enjoy walks along the shore and stargaze from the pretty pier.

Best for solo travellers: Pure Beach, KAEC

For serious fun in the sun, solo travellers should head to Pure Beach, KAEC

Pure Beach in King Abdullah Economic City costs SAR300 (about £86) to enter, but there you can enjoy music, dancing and even a floating water park.

There are plenty of loungers as well as four-poster day beds on the pristine sands to sunbathe in style, and activities include volleyball and kayaking in the turquoise waters.

From its diverse terrain to its thriving art and music scene, Insta-worthy food and natural wonders to travel for, Saudi is ready and waiting for you to discover. For more incredible, off-the-beaten track ideas for sites to see, experiences to try, and places to stay, check out Visit Saudi

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