‘Tourism’ time for Saudis as snow blankets Tabouk
Weather predictions indicate that large areas of the Kingdom will be affected with successive unstable weather conditions
A number of Saudis have driven to the northwestern region of Tabouk to enjoy some snow and some local tourism after snowstorm “Jenna” hit the Middle East earlier this week.
“Everyone is smiling,” Abu Murthi, who drove to Tabouk to build a snowman with his family, said.
“We were lucky, it snowed twice this year,” he added. Before Jenna, snowstorm Huda hit the region early this year.
Saleem al-Omrani, another visitor, said “this is considered like tourism for us. When it is snowing, everybody is out, the youth and people with their families.”
While he said that the road leading to Tabouk needed to be “developed further,” he said that he thoroughly relished the experience.
“This is wintery tourism season for us,” Hamid al-Anzi said. “Some Saudis travel abroad just to see snow, but this is the second time this year it snowed. We are enjoying our time,” he added.
While it is fun time for Saudis, the Civil Defense is remaining vigilant.
Khaled Murthi al-Anzi, spokesman for the Red Crescent in Tabouk, said preparations had been taken several days prior and at the start of the Civil Defense issued a warning about the weather.
Anzi said the heavy snow did not lead to any causalities.
“We have six ambulances all ready and five centers all fully equipped with emergency aid,” he added.
Tabouk has continental weather with hot summers and mild winters.
Temperatures in the summer range between 26 degrees Celsius and 46 degrees Celsius, while in winter they are between −4 degrees Celsius and 18 degrees Celsius.
On Friday, parts of the Middle East continued to grapple with blizzards as Jenna broke a chilling new record in Istanbul and a third snowstorm in Lebanon prompted the education minister to order all schools in mountainous areas to shut.
In the westernmost region of greater Istanbul, snow reached on Thursday as high as 75 cm.