Jeddah is known as the Bride of the Red Sea and is considered the economic and tourism capital of Saudi Arabia. It came to prominence as the port gateway to the two Holy Mosques. Jeddah today remains an international gateway into the Kingdom, welcoming more than 10 million international and domestic visitors annually. Its population is estimated around 3.5 million and is the second largest city in the Kingdom after Riyadh.
Capitalizing on its unique position as the Gateway of the Two Holy cities, Jeddah aspires to be a world-class Islamic cultural center and a global commercial and tourist destination that enjoys distinctive environmental and human character within the context of sustainable urban development and brings a responsibility that extends beyond the city to the entire Muslim world.
Much of Jeddah’s tourism traffic comes from its role as a gateway to the Two Holy Cities. Expansion of King Abdulaziz airport has enabled three million pilgrims a year to travel to Makkah while the Al Haramain High Speed Rail will further improve the ability of Jeddah to provide efficient movement of pilgrims to Makkah.
Jeddah’s tourism potential remains untapped as most religious tourists pass through on the way to Makkah or Madinah. The Municipality has launched the redesign and upgrade of major streets and public realm areas within the city the first of which is Tahlia Street. Jeddah’s main retail street will be upgraded to improve pedestrian movement, increase access to shops, provide public transport, improve legibility and signage and improve connections to surrounding streets and spaces.