A road trip from Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, to Dubai, arguably the most popular tourist destination in the United Arab Emirates, is a journey that offers a unique blend of culture, history, and natural beauty.
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Table of contents
- The Route
- Experience and Sights
- Visa rules
- Road trip hacks
The distance between Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, and Dubai, one of the largest cities in the United Arab Emirates, is approximately 990 kilometers (615 miles).
The most direct route between the two famous cities would likely involve taking Highway 40 and E11, a major highway that runs through the desert.
Along the way, you would pass through several small towns and cities, including Al Ain, known for its beautiful gardens and parks.
Experience and Sights
Driving in the desert is a unique experience, as the vast expanses of sand and rock can differ from a usual affair. The road is generally in good condition.
However, it’s essential to be aware of the weather and road conditions, as sandstorms and high winds can make visibility poor, and sudden rain can cause flash flooding.
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It would certainly pay to be aware of the local driving laws and customs, as they can vary from what you’re used to. The trip takes around 7-8 hrs., including the immigration process, if the traffic is regular and there are no stoppages.
Bus and train options are available between the two cities if you prefer to avoid driving. However, they are less convenient than taking a car, and they also take longer time.
It’s worth mentioning that UAE and Saudi have different visa and entry requirements rules, so checking the visa requirements before planning the trip is advisable.
Overall, a road trip from Riyadh to Dubai can be a great way to see the Arabian Peninsula’s beautiful desert landscape and experience the region’s culture and history.
It’s an opportunity to see the contrast between the two major cities and how they offer different experiences and entertainment.
Road trip hacks
Following these road trip hacks can make your journey from Riyadh to Dubai more comfortable and enjoyable. Remember to stay safe, stay alert, and have fun!
1- Plan your route:
Use online maps or navigation apps to find the best route and estimate the travel time. This planning will help you avoid traffic and reach your destination on time.
2- Check your vehicle:
Before going on a road trip, ensuring it is in good condition is crucial. Check your car’s tire pressure, oil levels, brakes, and other essential parts to ensure everything functions correctly.
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3- Pack snacks and drinks:
Bring plenty of snacks and drinks for the journey. This will save you money and time, as you will only have to stop as often for food and beverages.
Pack non-perishable items such as nuts, granola bars, and dried fruits. Make sure to bring enough water and other drinks to stay hydrated.
4- Bring entertainment:
A long road trip can get boring, so make sure to bring some entertainment for the journey. Bring books, music, or a portable DVD player. You can also bring portable chargers or a car charger to keep your devices charged.
5- Take breaks:
Long road trips can be tiring, so taking breaks every few hours is essential. Get out of the car, stretch your legs, and take the opportunity to use the restroom and grab a snack.
6- Get your car insurance and documents ready:
Before hitting the road, ensure your car insurance is up to date and you have all the necessary documents like car registration, driver’s license, etc.
7- Use the rest stops:
Rest stops along the route can be a great place to get some fresh air, stretch your legs, and grab a snack or a drink. Many rest stops also have restrooms, picnic tables, and other amenities.
8- Follow traffic laws:
Make sure to follow all traffic laws and regulations while on the road, including speed limits, traffic signals, and any other road signs.
9- Check weather conditions:
Before leaving Riyadh, check weather conditions in Dubai and along the way. Pack accordingly, and bring warm clothes if the forecasted temperature is low. Keep an eye on the forecasts for the duration of the trip.
10- Have a backup plan:
Make sure you have a backup plan for any emergency or unexpected delays. Keep emergency contact numbers like rental car service, road assistance, police, etc., handy.
A road trip from Riyadh to Dubai offers a unique blend of culture, history, and natural beauty.
The journey takes you through the modern metropolis of Riyadh. The historical town of Hofuf, the beautiful oasis of Al Ain, and the modern and luxurious cities of Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
With many stops along the way, you will take in the rich history and culture of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, beautiful natural landscapes, and the marvels of modern architecture.
Road trips may only be possible for some as the border between Saudi Arabia and UAE is closed to the general public. And it would require a special permit and clearance to cross the border.