Al Ḩillah, Saudi Arabia

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Al Ḩillah, Saudi Arabia

Region: Babylon


Geographic Coordinates: 23.489500, 46.756400
Temperature Range: 10.0°C to 45.0°C (50°F to 113°F)
Climate: Hot and dry weather dominates Al Ḩillah, Saudi Arabia throughout the year with occasional rainfall during winter months.
Population: 594605
Language: Arabic

Al Ḩillah, Also known as Hail, Is a city located in north-central Saudi Arabia. It is the capital of the Hail Province and is situated at an elevation of 1, 000 meters above sea level. The city has a population of approximately 500, 000 people and covers an area of over 103 square kilometers. The history of Al Ḩillah dates back to ancient times when it was known as Qaryat al-Faw. The city was once part of the Nabataean Kingdom and later became a center for Islamic learning during the Abbasid era.

Today, Visitors can still see remnants from these periods including ancient ruins and mosques. One of the most famous landmarks in Al Ḩillah is the Qishlah Palace which was built in 1944 by King Abdulaziz Al Saud. The palace served as a residence for Saudi royals visiting the region until it was converted into a museum in 2002. Visitors can explore exhibits showcasing local culture and history including traditional costumes, Weapons, Handicrafts, And archaeological artifacts. Another popular attraction in Al Ḩillah is Jabal Salma or Salma Mountain.

This natural wonder features stunning rock formations that have been shaped by wind erosion over thousands of years. Visitors can hike to the top for panoramic views of the surrounding landscape or explore its many caves which were once used as dwellings by prehistoric humans. The city also offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation including camping, Hiking, And off-roading through its vast desert terrain. One popular destination for adventure seekers is Umm Jarsan Cave which features underground lakes and unique rock formations that are illuminated by natural light filtering through cracks in its ceiling.

In addition to its rich cultural heritage and natural beauty, Al Ḩillah boasts modern amenities such as shopping malls, Restaurants serving traditional Saudi cuisine like kabsa (a rice dish with meat), And international cuisine, And luxury hotels. The city’s strategic location also makes it a hub for regional trade and commerce. Overall, Al Ḩillah is a fascinating destination that offers visitors a unique blend of ancient history, Natural wonders, Modern amenities, And outdoor adventure. Whether you’re interested in exploring its rich cultural heritage or simply enjoying its scenic beauty, This Saudi Arabian city has something to offer everyone.



Noteable History

  1. The town is renowned for its agricultural production, particularly date palms.
  2. Al Ḩillah was formerly part of the Ottoman Empire until it became part of Saudi Arabia in the early 20th century.
  3. During World War I, Bedouin fighters from Al Ḩillah joined forces with T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) to fight against the Ottomans as part of the Arab Revolt.
  4. In 2015, Houthi rebels from Yemen launched a missile attack on Al Ḩillah.
  5. Sheikh Abdulaziz bin Abdullah bin Baz is one of the most prominent Islamic scholars from Al Ḩillah who served as Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia from 1993 until his death in 1999.
  6. Another notable person from Al Ḩillah is Sheikh Abdullah bin Hamad Al Khalifa who served as Prime Minister of Bahrain twice – first between 1971 to 1975 and then again from 1999 to 2010 – born in this town in1937.
  7. Recently, new housing projects and infrastructure improvements have been built to support the growing population and economy in this town which has seen some development over time.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Babylon ruins: The ancient city of Babylon is located near Al Hillah and has several ruins such as the Ishtar Gate and the Hanging Gardens.
  2. Imam Ali Mosque: This mosque is one of the most important Shia Muslim pilgrimage sites.
  3. Babil Governorate Museum: This museum showcases artifacts from the Babylonian period and other eras.
  4. Shrine of Shaykh ‘Adi ibn Musafir: This shrine is dedicated to a Kurdish Sufi saint and attracts many visitors every year.
  5. Qishla of Hilla: A historic Ottoman-era fortress located within the city limits.
  6. Tomb of Ezekiel: A tomb believed by Muslims, Jews, and Christians to be that of prophet Ezekiel.
  7. Shatt al-Hillah Canal: A canal that runs through the city offering scenic views for tourists who enjoy boat rides or walks along its banks.
  8. Hilla Grand Mosque (Al-Jami’a Al-Kabir): One of the largest mosques in Iraq with impressive architecture and beautiful interior design.
  9. Al-Mansur University College: One of Iraq’s leading universities with a beautiful campus featuring modern buildings surrounded by green spaces.


Sports Teams

  1. I don’t have any information or data regarding sports teams and their histories in Al Ḩillah, Saudi Arabia.
  2. However, football (soccer) is the most popular sport in Saudi Arabia.
  3. Many cities have their own local football teams.
  4. It’s possible that Al Ḩillah has a local team as well.


Cultural Events

  1. Janadriyah Festival: A two-week-long festival held annually in Riyadh to celebrate the country’s heritage and culture through activities such as traditional music and dance performances, camel races, handicraft exhibitions, and more.
  2. Eid al-Fitr: One of the most important Muslim holidays celebrated throughout Saudi Arabia to mark the end of Ramadan. People gather with their families to feast on traditional foods and exchange gifts.
  3. Al-Qatt Al-Asiri Art Festival: This festival showcases the traditional art form known as Al-Qatt Al-Asiri which involves painting intricate designs on walls using natural pigments.
  4. Jeddah International Book Fair: An annual book fair held in Jeddah featuring local and international authors showcasing their works along with seminars and workshops for literature enthusiasts.
  5. Taif Rose Festival: A month-long event occurring every year in Taif to celebrate the blooming of roses during springtime with activities such as flower exhibitions, parades, concerts featuring local artists etc.

These are just a few examples; there are many other cultural events taking place throughout Saudi Arabia throughout the year that showcase its rich history and traditions.


Cuisine

  • Kabsa – A traditional rice dish that is usually served with chicken or lamb and seasoned with spices such as saffron, cardamom, and cinnamon.
  • Shawarma – A Middle Eastern sandwich made with shaved meat (usually chicken or beef) wrapped in pita bread and served with vegetables and sauces.
  • Falafel – A deep-fried ball made from ground chickpeas or fava beans that are typically served as a snack or appetizer.
  • Hummus – A dip made from mashed chickpeas mixed with tahini (sesame seed paste), lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil.

If you happen to be in Al Ḩillah, some popular restaurants include:

  • Al-Sultan Restaurant
  • Al-Bashir Restaurant
  • Bait al-Shawarma Restaurant
  • Abu Firas Al-Hamdani Restaurant

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Al-Hillah Park: A public park located in the heart of Al-Hillah city featuring green spaces, walking paths, benches and playgrounds for children.
    2. Wadi Hanifa: A scenic valley with hiking trails and picnic areas for visitors to enjoy nature.
    3. Bani Malik Park: A popular park with a large lake where visitors can rent paddle boats or enjoy a picnic on the grassy areas.
    4. Al-Majaz Waterfront: An outdoor recreational area with a variety of water sports activities such as jet skiing and kayaking.
    5. King Abdullah Sports City: A modern sports complex offering various sporting facilities including football fields, basketball courts and swimming pools.
    6. Taif Zoo: Located about 2 hours away from Al Ḩillah city is Taif Zoo which features a wide range of animals including lions, tigers, giraffes and more for families to visit.

    Note that this list may not be exhaustive or up-to-date as it is solely based on research conducted at the time it was written.


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