Ibn Saud, King Abdul Aziz (1902-1953) from Nejd in the west regained his family’s home (Riyadh) in 1932. It took him around 30 years to conquer this region. He was the rulers of Nejd since the early 1900s. The forces managed to take control of the most central parts of the Arabic region and hence they changed the name after his family name, Saudi Arabia – The House of Saud.
History of Saudi National Day
Before we proceed let uncover history about the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia briefly;
- Nomadic Tribes – Since pre-Islamic this Arabian peninsula was occupied by these tribes
- Islamic prophet, Muhammad – United these tribes and created a single Islamic religious state.
- Spain & Pakistan – After 632, this territory expanded from Spain & Modern-day Pakistan covering all the middle east.
- The Ottoman Empire – This region was also controlled various sultanates until the collapse of the mighty Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I that modern Saudi Arabia emerged.
- Ibn Saud – In 1921, he became the Sultan of Najd(the central region of Arabia)
- Hejaz – In 1925, the Hejaz (western Arabia ), Ibn Saud conquered this region also was declared King of the Hejaz on 10 January 1926. He also became the king on both regions.
- 1932 – After suppressing all the campaigns successfully, he unified and renamed the kingdoms of the Hejaz and Nejd to Kingdome of Saudi Arabia
- Till now, the Saudi family is ruling the Kindom. The crown prince Mohammad bin Salman is also a grandson of King Abdul Aziz.
- Saudi National Day somehow was announced in 2005 as 75th National day
- A public holiday on Saudi National Day was only a public holiday in 2007 for this first time. Quite recent though 🙂
Saudi Arabia Flag
Saudi Arabian government first used the current flag on 15 March 1973.
The important symbol to celebrate Saudi National Day is the Saudi Flag. Let see what are the Saudi Arabia flag represents for;
- Color – Green & white Arabic inscription and a sword. The green is believed to be the Prophet Mohammed’s favourite colour. Hence, it is primarily for Islam.
- Inscription – The inscription is ‘There is no god but Allah; Muhammad is the Messenger of God’. The must believe to be a Muslim.
- Sword – It is used to symbolize King Abdul Aziz, the ruler who is the man behind the unification of the Kingdom of Nejd and Hejaz to create the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Activities and Celebrations | Saudi National Day
As the National day is announced as a holiday recently and the celebrations across the Kingdom are also started in recent years. Thanks to the late King Abdul Aziz who declared it as a public holiday. Normally, the celebrations are 4 days to one week long 🙂
Following are the major activities on a national day but not limited to;
- Major Announcement from Saudi Government like in the year 2009 on the National day occasion the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology was launched
- All roads in big cities like Jeddah, Riyadh, Dammam, Khobar, et. are plastered with a Green flag like they are bleeding green.
- Vehicles on road are also installed Saudi National Flag (Don’t try any other countries flag on your car even with Saudi Flag)
- Fireworks, light shows are held in major cities like Riyadh
- Malls and other shopping channels announce huge discounted offer
- People are waving flags, wearing green shirts, homes and streets are decorated
- Musical concerts, film events, folk dances, festivals and other cultural activities are held.
- Entertainment Programs in major cities
- Aerobatics shows
- Plays like Dramas
- Cultural tours
- School activities in all regions
More than that the below are the major activities are being held in recent years.
Our green path (King Khalid Cultural Center), Watan Altomouh (Al Hamra cornice), Hot Air Balloons (Al Hasa), The national daylight Festival (Jeddah),
Hopefully, Saudi Nationa Day 2019 will bring more and more offers and opportunities, happiness for the national and on expat’s faces.
What Does Expatriate Do
Yes, being an expatriate here in Saudi Arabia you may think that this is just a holiday. No, you can;
- Avail Offers from Malls and other shopping channels – my favorite 🙂
- Number of gatherings are held and delicious food is served
- Take part in celebrations across KSA & learn about this rich culture like to visit a public library that has rare photographs of the King Abdulaziz
- Promote their cultural pride and show the world through social media
We are 10 million that is 1/3 of the total population of Saudi Arabia. By promoting the positive image we can pay our regards to this Holy land.
Celebrations Points City Wise
If you visit different countries across Saudi Arabia then you can feel the environments around. They celebrate this national day with full passion. Kids are wearing colorful clothes with a green touch.
Cars are with flags on with families on roads, roaming around and making cheerful sounds.
Here is a list of major points in each city.
Riyadh is the capital of Saudi Arabia. Here most of the officially organized. All the city is well decorated. The roads & major buildings are full of flags & lights.
Kingdom Center – It is in the centre & hub of all major events. See this beautiful image of this tower. If you are ever been in Riyadh then you must have seen this as it on the major road of the city.
King Abdullah Park Fountain
Here, new trendy water dancing water fountain displays on a daily basis but on Saudi national Day you are going to observe a very special display.
General Entertainment Authority has announced celebrations from 19th to 23rd on Saudi National Day in Riyadh at Tahlia Street, Riyadh.
A street parade will be held and anyone can join including expats.
Al Faisaliyah Center
The Al-Faisaliyah Centre is a skyscraper. To date, this one is the fourth ( after Kingdom Centre, Burj Rafal, and Abraj Al-Bait ) tallest building across Saudi Arabia.
Al Baik is also available in Riyadh after a long long wait as it was only available in Jeddah, Makkah & Madina for ages. Once you are hungry do visit to fuel your tank and celebrate again.
Best area if you are single and want to enjoy peace. You will enjoy discounted offers for many events. Go there and have more fun.
If you are staying in Jeddah then you can visit the following places on National day to take part in Saudi National Day.
- Jeddah Corniche (Old & New)
- KidZania Jeddah
- Jeddah Water Front Park
- Elephant Rock (Al Ula – you can drive there)
- Al-Taif & Al Shifa (A hill station to roam & enjoy vocations)
- You can have fun around Malls like Red-Sea Mall, Mall of Arabia Madina Road, Haifaa Mall etc.
- King Fahd’s Fountain
- Al-Balad area you can go for shopping and can enjoy Al-Baik food there.
All of these areas will be jam-packed and make sure to have patience while driving especially back home. Good luck 🙂
Dammam is quite near to AlKhober and Jubail Industrial City. The major benefits are that you can go to Bahrain if you are an expatriate on the very next day after celebrating Saudi National Day.
- Dammam, Alkhober & Jubail Corniche
- Museum of Archaeology & Ethnography
- Al Marjan Island
- The Heritage Village
- Half Moon Bay at Al Khobar
Saudi Arabia is about to celebrate its 89th National Day and many more to come. The national day is on the first day of Libra, corresponding to 23rd of September each year. Keep in mind, it is on September 23rd 2019 and Monday. It is normally 4 days of holidays to a week long.
If you are a resident or a Saudi National, make sure to get out of your bed and be a part of celebrations to say thanks to the authorities running this beautiful country. It’s due to us though!