Destination: Saudi Arabia
by Jim Benning | 11.02.11 | 12:40 PM ET
Jim Benning asks the musician about his new book of photographs and how travel has humbled him
by Eva Holland | 11.16.10 | 2:12 PM ET
The annual pilgrimage to Mecca kicked off this week. The Big Picture has an absolutely stunning photo essay from the event.
by Eva Holland | 07.07.10 | 1:41 PM ET
In the latest issue of Vanity Fair, the longtime New York Times columnist heads to Saudi Arabia to explore the country’s slowly growing tourism scene from a woman’s perspective. The story’s not online, but this VF Daily preview described it as “one part travel romp and one part history lesson—with a healthy dash of moxie thrown in.”
It’s already stirring up criticism—the comments on the preview are uniformly negative, questioning everything from the story’s tone to its accuracy regarding legal restrictions on women in Saudi Arabia. Dowd spoke to NPR about the experience earlier this week. A slideshow from the trip is also available online.
by World Hum | 11.24.09 | 12:13 PM ET
Muslim pilgrims circle the Kaaba inside the Grand Mosque in the holy city of Mecca after morning prayers, and before the start of this year’s hajj pilgrimage.
by Eva Holland | 09.16.09 | 12:02 PM ET
Writer Jason Rezaian has spent time in five different Muslim-majority countries—Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Iran and Turkey—during the annual month of fasting, and in a short essay he reflects on the subtle (and not-so-subtle) differences in the ways each one celebrates their shared holy month.
by Eva Holland | 07.09.09 | 10:59 AM ET
Bookings from pilgrims are “way down” in the Muslim holy city, according to Reuters. Local hoteliers also blame the swine flu panic alongside the global economic crisis.
by Eva Holland | 03.23.09 | 4:09 PM ET
Remember Rajaa Alsanea? Her debut novel stirred up acclaim and controversy, and opened a window into the romantic lives of Saudi Arabia’s young women (being dubbed “Sex and the City, Saudi-style” as a result) a couple years back. The National caught up with the author to see what she’s been up to since, and it turns out Alsanea is studying endodontics, a dentistry specialty, in Chicago—and working on a second novel in her spare time.
She says of that project: “People will definitely have the feeling that I have grown up and matured. I have lived outside my country and experienced a different culture and all of this reflects on the person that I am today.” The thoughtful interview is worth a read in full. (Via The Book Bench)
by Eva Holland | 03.16.09 | 2:50 PM ET
Brazilian officials who were in Riyadh for a festival intended to honor their country’s literary heritage found themselves fielding more questions about the beautiful game than about books, the Arab News reports. In fact, the Brazilian delegation wound up caving to demand and redecorating with football banners and photos of famous players.
Said one visitor: “The book fair has almost come to an end and I haven’t received any questions about Brazilian literature, or even the country’s general culture.” Hmm. Maybe it’s time for a rebranding campaign? (Via The Book Bench)
by Michael Yessis | 02.03.09 | 8:24 AM ET
- Marketplace looks at U.S. efforts to lure Chinese travelers.
- More than one million people have already played Flight 1549: The online game.
- Flight 1549 pilot Chesley B. Sullenberger III won’t have to pay fees on the library book that’s still in the plane’s cargo hold.
- At the Window Seat, World Hum contributor Rolf Potts recommends five travel experiences in his home state, Kansas.
- AP Travel Editor Beth Harpaz has a new book out about parenting teenagers, 13 Is the New 18.
- Now we know what the penalty is for smoking on a no smoking flight in Saudi Arabia: 30 lashes.
- Rome’s traditional delis are facing extinction.
- More and more, Mexican singers of narco corridos are becoming victims of the drug-related violence that’s the subject of their songs.
- The Telegraph’s slideshow of the world’s weirdest hotels includes Idaho’s Dog Bark Park Inn.
- It’s the 50th anniversary of the plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper, and fans are paying tribute in Holly’s hometown of Lubbock, Texas and elsewhere. Eva
will havehas more in her blog.
- Video: Overzealous Amtrak police arrested a man for taking pictures of trains for an Amtrak photography contest. Stephen Colbert has the hilarious story.
by Jason Daley | 12.30.08 | 10:25 AM ET
Jason Daley explains how to avoid getting bitten, slapped or shoved by an ornery primate.
by Eva Holland | 12.01.08 | 1:36 PM ET
A shortlist of 18 possible architects has been drawn up for the daunting task of redesigning the mosque complex at Mecca, the Independent reports. Brits Norman Foster and Zaha Hadid are reportedly among the finalists. The planned redevelopment would more than triple capacity at the site, from the current 900,000 to a mind-boggling 3 million, making it the world’s highest-occupancy building.
by Eva Holland | 05.19.08 | 12:07 PM ET
In January, we wrote that Saudi Arabia had lifted restrictions on women staying alone in hotels; previously, women had been required to stay with, or to carry a letter of permission from, a male “guardian.” So what’s come of it? The change has opened the way for a new niche hotel: the Luthan Hotel & Spa, which the executive director boasts is “women-owned, women-managed, and women-run.” But as the Christian Science Monitor’s Caryle Murphy asks, is this a sign of progress or of deepening gender segregation?
by Jim Benning | 02.07.08 | 2:51 PM ET
Her “crime,” according to the Times of London: sitting with a man who was not her husband. She was hauled away by a member of Saudi Arabia’s Commission for Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice. The woman works for a company in Saudi Arabia and visited the Starbucks with male colleagues to use the Internet after their Riyadh office suffered an outage.
by Michael Yessis | 01.23.08 | 11:02 AM ET
Facing criticism for its restrictions on women, the Saudi Arabian government said this week that individual Saudi women no longer need a male guardian to stay in a hotel or a furnished apartment within the Kingdom. However, hotels must send information about the traveler to local police, according to the AP.
by Terry Ward | 11.15.07 | 11:54 AM ET
Oh, to travel like a Saudi prince. Or the wife of India’s richest man. I was driving home from Orlando’s airport a few days ago, having just booked a long haul flight in coach and already dreading the knees-in-my-teeth-feeling to come, when I heard an NPR segment about Prince Alwaleed bin Talal’s purchase of his own personal A380 superjumbo jet (like the one pictured) to the tune of just over $300 million. According to an envy-inducing piece in the International Herald Tribune, the prince, worth an estimated $20 billion and the world’s 13th richest man, regularly travels with an entourage of around 50 people.
- « Prev Page
- Next Page »