Vision 2030 Turns Saudi Arabia’s First Capital, At-Turaif, Into a Lifestyle and Cultural Destination

At-Turaif District in Saudi Arabia is getting a makeover. It’s about to gain another title. In addition to being a significant heritage site of the Kingdom, it’s going to be a cultural center! The history of At-Turaif goes way back to the 15th century, and now it’s going into the 2030 vision as the cultural capital of the Middle East.

At-Turaif District

At-Turaif is recognized by UNESCO as one of six heritage sites in Saudi Arabia. The district is the foundation of the Kingdom and it is the first capital of the Saudi Dynasty. It was founded in the 15th century; however, the 18th century is when it started playing a political and religious role. It was the home of the Saudi royal family, making the citadel of At-Turaif a house of power.

The district has diverse architecture; it has many palaces made of mud-brick structures in different architecture styles. However, being where Saudi culture started, At-Turaif is going to be transformed to tell stories of how people lived there.

The reinvention of At-Turaif

The Diriyah Gate Development Authority (DGDA) in cooperation with the Ministry of Culture and Diriyah Biennale Foundation is going to turn the district into the cultural capital of the Middle East. The DGDA director of culture, Dalia Mousa, said, “Culture plays a vital role in our lives. It reflects our identity and shapes our future. Our mission is to create a best-in-class culture platform that connects Diriyah’s past with its present and future.” She also spoke about the mission to shed light on the culture, history, and heritage at At-Turaif.

The DGDA has so many new projects of development set in place, as well as multidisciplinary cultural programs. Six museums are going to be created, in addition to an art district, galleries, and ancient palaces. The future key cultural sites are ought to make At-Turaif a lifestyle and cultural destination.

It’s going to be a lifestyle destination in the sense that there will be resorts and boutique hotels. Visitors from all over the world are welcome to stay and take in the cultural experience. There will be shops and restaurants for them as well.

The cultural side of the district revolves around having cultural academies, visual art, art commissions, performances, traditional arts, digital libraries, and art collections. It’s all in the master plan. Another thing that will be in At-Turaif is craft schools, six academies, new public schools, and King Salman University, representing world-class education.

Don’t expect to stop hearing about Saudi Vision 2030 anytime soon. They’re only getting started.

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