King Abdul Aziz International Conference Center

To really immerse yourself in Ithra, it’s worth taking the Ithra Journey Tour: a 30-minute guided visit through all parts of the centre, as well as some of the art installations. Your guide will give you an overview of the building while relaying the story of its creation. It’s a great way to get your bearings and to help you decide which parts of Ithra you would like to delve into further.

When the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture, known as ‘Ithra’ (‘enrichment’ in Arabic), opened in 2017, it became an instant icon; not only because of its jaw-dropping design, which represents a throng of oil-bearing rocks smoothed by desert winds, all wrapped in a 350km-long steel pipe; but also its ambitious vision as Saudi Arabia’s first all-cultural destination. Quite simply, it’s a structure that must be seen to be believed.
Inside, you will find a staggering 85,000m2 of space, housing a museum, theatre, library, cinema, exhibition galleries, ideas lab and knowledge tower. Such is the scale of its halls, and spectacular architecture that it may take you a full day to appreciate Ithra’s wonders. Here’s a sample of the highlights on offer (coffee stop included).

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