Welcome to AlUla
For this second edition of Winter at Tantora, the Riyadh-AlUla flight of the day is sold out, with Arabic, English, French, Chinese, and Spanish spoken as well, proof that the country’s opening to tourism has had a certain resonance in the world. Prince Abdul Majeed bin Abdulaziz’s domestic airport at AlUla is probably not yet designed to handle the hordes of tourists that are storming the region. But the structure, planned for 100,000 passengers per year and out of the ground in 2011, still smells new. As we pass through the entrance gates, a smiling and somewhat excited man greets us. His name is Sultan and he will be our driver and guide during our stay. Our journey can begin…
"People are very warm here. I feel at home, even though the culture is very different."
A fertile desert
Shoes covered in sand, but a full belly… After the first day’s bustle, the question on our minds is: “Where does everything we ate yesterday grow?” “Certainly not in the desert,” you would say. Well, think again. Today, Sultan is taking us on a voyage of discovery to green land. Because there’s more to Alula than just sand, pebbles and a few bimillennial relics. It is also an oasis with fertile soil, rich vegetation and a variety of plantations.
"People don't know it, but our land is very fertile".