Exploring Major Cities in Saudi Arabia and Their Specialties

Saudi Arabia, a country rich in history and culture, boasts several major cities that serve as modern hubs in the Middle East. Apart from their stunning natural beauty, these cities also offer a diverse range of unique local cuisines that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. In this article, we will delve into some major cities in Saudi Arabia and their must-try traditional dishes.


As the capital of Saudi Arabia, Riyadh is a prosperous and modern city. Behind its towering skyscrapers and luxurious shopping centers, Riyadh also harbors a rich culinary heritage. One of the signature dishes you must try here is “Kabsa.” Kabsa is a rice-based dish served with meat, typically lamb or poultry, and flavored with spices like curry, turmeric, and cinnamon. Its delicious taste and distinct aroma make Kabsa a favorite among the locals.


Located on the Red Sea coast, Jeddah is a port city with a long history as the gateway to Makkah. In Jeddah, you will find an abundance of fresh seafood. One of the most famous dishes is “Sammak Meshwi,” which is grilled fish seasoned with spices and cooked over charcoal. The tender fish and flavorful spices make this dish a favorite among the seaside restaurants in Jeddah.


Dammam is a major coastal city in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. Here, you will discover “Mandi,” a traditional dish consisting of slow-cooked spiced lamb or goat served with aromatic rice. Mandi is a popular dish throughout Saudi Arabia, but Dammam is its place of origin. If you visit Dammam, don’t miss the opportunity to savor an authentic and delicious Mandi.


Madinah is the second holiest city for Muslims after Makkah. Besides its historical and religious sites, Madinah also offers unique local specialties. One of the famous dishes in Madinah is “Madfoon.” Madfoon is a meat dish cooked traditionally using heated stones. This process imparts a distinctive flavor and results in tender and juicy meat. Trying Madfoon is an experience not to miss when visiting Madinah.


The major cities in Saudi Arabia not only offer modern landscapes but also tantalizing local cuisines. From Kabsa in Riyadh to Madfoon in Madinah, each city has its own signature dishes that reflect their culture and traditions. So, if you’re planning a visit to Saudi Arabia, be sure to indulge in these delicious foods and make your experience even more memorable.