14 tourist places to visit in Al Ahsa and Hofuf

Al Ahsa, the world’s largest oasis and its major city Hofuf adds significantly to Saudi tourism with numerous things to do and tourist places to visit. Hofuf is around 150km from Dammam and almost in the center of the Eastern Province.

Ibrahim Palace

While visiting Al Ahsa, tourists love to visit the 500 years old Ibrahim Palace and its related museum constructed by an Ottoman Governor. The center of this palace was built in 963 Hijri which is Al Qubba Mosque.

King Abdulaziz al-Saud رحمة الله عليه entered the castle to announce the annexation of Al Ahsa in 1331 Hijri.

Ibrahim Palace - places to visit in al ahsa

Judas Cave or Jabal Qarah

Jabal Qarah, also known as Judas Caves or Hofuf caves is the best tourist place to visit in Al Ahsa. This was originally first an island but over the centuries the wind and water waves played with the clay and gave it the look that you may see today.  

Outside Judas caves, the climate is very hot but as you enter them, you will surely be cooled by the effect.

Judas Cave or Jabal Qarah - tourist places to visit in Hofuf

Jawatha Masjid

Jawatha Masjid was first built in 628 A.D is the first mosque of Islam in the Eastern province. It is said that the first Juma Prayer outside Madina was prayed here and therefore, people love to visit this place in Al Ahsa.

Jawatha Masjid - tourist places to visit in Al Ahsa

Uqair Fort

Facing the beautiful Uqair beach, there is a beautiful old fort built by the ottoman empire around 300 years ago. As you can see from the picture below, Uqair fort has a mesmerizing view due to which tourists love to visit this place in Al Ahsa.

  • Uqair Fort Location.
  • Uqair Fort Timings: 10 am to 5 pm.
  • Uqair Fort Ticket: Free.

Uqair Fort - tourist places to visit in Al Ahsa

Uqair Beach

Uqair beach is a beautiful, serene, neat and clean beach in Al Ahsa where you can come with your entire family. If you are interested to spend a peaceful evening in Al Ahsa, do visit this place.

Uqair Beach - tourist places to visit in Al Ahsa

Khuzam Palace

Khuzam Palace was built in 1793 A.D at the place where previously Bedouins came in the summer season to exchange goods available in Al-Ahsa with the goods they brought from the desert. As a result, the castle was built on the main road that acted as the gateway to Al-Ahsa from the western side.

Note: If you are planning to visit this tourist place in Hofuf, make sure that it is not closed for renovation.

Khuzam Palace - a tourist place to visit in Hofuf

Hofuf Camel Market

If you are a rough and tough tourist, you should visit the Hofuf Camel Market. It is at the place where buying and selling of camels are conducted through auction. It is often heard that there are races conducted but that happens on very rare occasions.

  • Hofuf Camel Market Location.
  • Hofuf Camel Market TimingL 6:30 am to 5 pm.

Camel Market - tourist places to visit in Hofuf

‎Qaisariah Souq

If you want to buy souvenirs or some traditional stuff from Al Ahsa, you should visit this place called Qaisariah Souq in Hofuf. The place had caught fire a long time ago and burnt into ashes, but now it is rebuilt again.

  • Qaisariah Souq Location.
  • Qaisariah Souq Timing: 8 am to 10 pm.

Qaisariyah Souq: tourist places to visit in Hofuf

Asfar Lake

To reach Afsar lake you will need a four-wheeler because of the bumpy ride and distance. Asfar lake, also called Yellow Lake provides an ideal location to capture natural views, and therefore, tourists coming from all over the Kingdom love to visit this place in Al Ahsa.

Asfar Lake - tourist places to visit in Al Ahsa

King Abdullah Environmental Park

Tourists coming to Hofuf with their children love to visit King Abdullah Environmental Park as this is a fantastic place with huge fountain, laser show, play area, restaurants and many more.

  • Fountain Show Timing: 7 pm to 9 pm.
  • Park Timing: 4 pm to 11 pm.
  • King Abullah Environmental Park Ticket: Free.
  • King Abullah Environmental Park Location.

King Abdullah Environment Park - tourist places to visit in Hofuf

Dougha Handmade Pottery Factory

Dougha Handmade Pottery Factory located in Al Ahsa is one of the oldest pottery centers in Saudi Arabia with a history of 150 years.

Potters will give you a guide around the factory, share its history, and let you try your hand at the potter’s wheel. The prices are very reasonable.

  • Dougha Handmade Pottery Factory Location.
  • Timing: 7 am to 6 pm.

Al Ahsa Mall

If you are interested in some shopping, visit Al Ahsa Mall in Hofuf that is the biggest mall of Al Ahsa oasis. There is a MUVI cinema there which is great if you want to have a fun night after shopping.

Al Ahsa Mall Location.

Al Ahsa Mall - tourist places to visit in Hofuf

Floating Rock

You might have heard some stories about the floating rock in Al Ahsa region of Saudi Arabia. If you want to see from your eyes that there is nothing like floating rock, visit this place in Al Ahsa.

Floating Rock - tourist places to visit in Al Ahsa

Al Taraf Model Zoo

If you are traveling to Hofuf with children, you can visit this small zoo. Before you make up your mind, keep in mind that the zoo is quite small and the cleanliness work is also not up to the mark.

  • Al Taraf Model Zoo Location.
  • Al Taraf Model Zoo Entry Ticket: SR 15. 
  • Al Taraf Model Zoo Timing: 3:30 pm to 9 pm.

Al Taraf Model Zoo - Tourist place to visit in Hofuf

Other Cities in Eastern Region

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Steve has been living in Saudi Arabia since 2013 and writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures since then.