British explorer arrives in Saudi Shoubra Palace after a 13-day journey on foot

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A British explorer and his team arrived at the Shoubra Palace in Saudi Arabia’s Taif after a 13-day journey on foot, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Saturday.

The stop is part of the Heart of Arabia expedition, a 1,300 kilometers journey across the Kingdom.

Created and led by Mark Evans, the expedition, which is inspired by late British explorer Harry St John (Abdullah) Philby kicked off on November 15, 2022 from al-Uqair in al-Ahsa governorate of the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia.

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The expedition started on the same day Philby and his companions arrived ashore from Basra.

Evan and his team are embarking on the journey on foot, by camel and by 4x4 vehicles, according to the expedition’s website.

Built in 1323 Hijri (1905), Shoubra Palace is one of the first buildings that Philby had visited.

The palace’s design combines the Islamic and Roman styles, and it’s made up of around 150 rooms.

It used to be the seat of the Kingdom’s government when it moved to Taif in the summer during the reign of late King Abdulaziz.

The palace, however, later became the seat of Ministry and Defense and Aviation and was turned into a museum of antiquities and heritage in 1987.

After touring the palace, Evans and his team headed toward the Hejaz mountains.

The expedition, now in its second leg, will conclude when the team arrives in Jeddah.

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