Jeddah is an old and captivating city. The old part, al-Balad, is easily reached by car and rewards the visitor with teetering multi-storey buildings made from the traditional Arab building material, coral. The Islam city of Mecca is of great holy significance and Muslims are instructed to make the pilgrimage to it at least one time in their lives. Jeddah is the main city that accesses Mecca. As the city gets very busy, roads have been built to accommodate the number of visitors. The city has main highways run through the city connecting different areas and many have eight lanes to cope with the traffic volume. However, driving in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, offers both opportunities and challenges. Jeddah is a bustling and cosmopolitan city with a growing road infrastructure, but it's essential to be aware of local driving customs, regulations, and road conditions.
Here's an overview of driving in Jeddah and the nearest airport:
Driving in Jeddah:
Driving License: To drive in Saudi Arabia, you must have a valid Saudi driving license or an international driving permit (IDP). Check the specific requirements with the car rental agency. You will find these detailed under `Important Information for the hire car of your choice, including details about excess, insurance coverage and options to upgrade along with deposit and payment card information. Breakdown Assistance is automatically included.
Traffic Congestion: Jeddah experiences heavy traffic congestion, especially during peak hours. Plan your journeys accordingly to avoid rush hour.
Roundabouts: Be cautious at roundabouts, as traffic can be hectic. In Saudi Arabia, drivers often use their car horns to communicate with other drivers.
Nearest Airport to Jeddah:
Route from King Abdulaziz International Airport to Jeddah:
The main route from King Abdulaziz International Airport to Jeddah's city center is via the Airport Road, also known as the Sari Street or Al-Madinah Road. This road connects the airport to various parts of Jeddah, including the downtown area and major commercial districts.
The drive from the airport to central Jeddah typically takes around 20 to 30 minutes, depending on traffic conditions.
Jeddah is a diverse and vibrant city with much to explore, from historic sites to modern shopping districts. Renting a car can be a convenient way to get around, but it's essential to drive cautiously, adhere to local traffic rules, and be aware of the unique driving culture in Saudi Arabia. Familiarize yourself with the city's major landmarks and destinations to make the most of your visit to Jeddah.