Dammam — A recent report states that there are 11,623 open spaces available for cultural event activities in Saudi Arabia.
These include urban centers, festival grounds, children’s playgrounds, public parks, and municipal squares.
Also available are spaces at heritage markets and 48 popular markets. These markets boast large public courtyards open for holding local cultural festivals.
They represent an urban environment that communicates with the community and connects its various segments.
The survey report says that the number of trips for domestic tourists, including cultural activities, has broken previous records.
A total of 10.5 million tourist visits were recorded during the first ten months of 2021. These figures show 24 percent growth since 2019.
There has been a growing tendency of domestic tourists to participate in cultural activities. The survey recorded an increase of 18-20 percent. In other words, one of each five tourist trips includes visiting one or more cultural activities.
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This tendency is a positive indicator of the growing interest in cultural activities. It shows in the people’s attendance at festivals and cultural events and the tourists at heritage and archaeological sites.
Embracing culture is not limited to classical cultural events only. It is also manifested by visiting mobile libraries and literature events and enjoying various exhibitions of murals and arts in galleries and at street exhibitions.
The report highlighted the availability of various cultural shows and their availability to the non-wealthy members of the society.
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Culture is not an elite affair, nor is it enjoyed only by specific age groups dominated by elders. Today it also caters to the interests of the youth.
In the past, there was an evident discrepancy in attendance at cultural activities between different segments of society.
The participation of individuals from the well-to-do economic segment was much higher than their counterparts from the lower economic strata.
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According to a Cultural Participation Survey in 2021, most survey participants said they attended a cultural event even if it was at a 40 minutes car drive. A quarter of the participants could reach these events in public places in less than 20 minutes.