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About Dammam

Dammam takes you on a surreal journey into the pulsating heart of Saudi Arabia. Once a humble fishing and pearl hunting village, the city is now a burgeoning hub of science, commerce and industry, and home to more than 1.5 million people. Attractions include Coral Island, The Heritage Village and Half Moon Bay and Dammam Corniche.

Feel the scintillating caress of Arabian allure with cheap flights to Dammam. Dammam is home to King Fahd International Airport (DMM), which is a 25-minute drive from the city centre.

Why visit Dammam

dammam traditional markets

Traditional Markets

Sprawling souqs and colourful street-side market houses offer a unique shopping experience. From traditional clothing and artisanal gold jewellery to aromatic spices and exotic perfumes, authentic Saudi goods abound.

dammam surreal landscape

Surreal Landscape

Dammam is a gleaming urban oasis lost between the glowing manila sand of the Arabian Desert and twinkling teal water of the Persian Gulf. Experience the unique surrealism of Dammam.

dammam saudi arabian cuisine

Saudi Arabian Cuisine

Dammam is a culinary paradise. Be seduced by the artfully spiced margoog and mathlotha, indulge in the crisp warmth of mutabbaq or savour the sweet and tender flavours of hainini.

General information

Essential details you need to know before your trip

Country Saudi Arabia
Currency Saudi Riyal
Exchange Rate 1 ZAR = 0.28 Saudi Riyal
Language Arabic
Hub Airport King Fahd International Airport
Airline SaudiGulf Airlines
Time Zone GMT + 3
Travel Adaptor Standard type A, B, C & G

Best time to visit Dammam

Dammam is located in one of the driest countries in the world. It experiences a hot desert climate, with temperatures reaching blistering highs of 45 degrees Celsius and very little rainfall. Autumn (September to November) sees clear skies and temperatures between 20 and 30 degrees Celsius settle over the city. Sand and dust storms remain elusive and the landscape seems to burst open with brilliant hues. Temperatures begin to rise in spring (March to May) and fierce sandstorms sweep over the city. November to March (winter) is the best time to visit Dammam as temperatures have waned, leaving pleasant and cool temperatures. July to October is a great time to visit if you want to experience the Eid Celebrations bring the city streets to life.

Weather & Climate in Dammam

Average temperature (°C) & rainfall (mm) per month

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Low °C 11°C 12°C 15°C 20°C 25°C 28°C 30°C 30°C 27°C 23°C 17°C 13°C
High °C 19°C 21°C 25°C 30°C 35°C 38°C 39°C 38°C 37°C 32°C 27°C 22°C
Rainfall (mm) 17 18 17 8 0 0 0 0 0 0 8 9

Although it is one of the most difficult cities to travel to, a journey to Dammam is an unforgettable experience that never fails to awe and inspire those who are fortunate enough to get within its borders. A trip to Dammam gives you a chance to explore a veritable oasis of culture and surreal landscapes.

Once a thriving fishing and pearl hunting village, it is now home to one of the richest oil fields in the world, thus forming an important part of the Saudi oil industry.

From the mystical water of the surrounding Persian Gulf and soft sands of Half Moon Bay, to the porcelain and biscotti hues of the city centre and surrounding desert, surreal landscapes abound.

Search for weird and wonderful Arabian trinkets at a bustling souq; witness dazzling desert sunsets along the famed corniche; laze beneath the balmy sun on Al-Marjan Island; or explore the ancient remains of Tarout Castle and Old Town. Dammam waits to be discovered.

Compare several airlines, and book your cheap flights to Dammam online at Travelstart.

South African passport holders do require a visa when travelling to Dammam, or anywhere else in Saudi Arabia. Ensure your passport has two blank pages for entry stamps and has a validity of at least six months. You will also need to leave ample time for processing.

The Embassy of Saudi Arabia is situated in Pretoria. 711 Jan Shoba Street, Hatfield, Pretoria. Phone: +27 12 362 4230.

Although Dammam is considered a safe city, crime happens everywhere. There are a number of precautions that apply when travelling to an unfamiliar place.

• Travel insurance to cover theft and medical expenses is highly recommended.

• Avoid public demonstrations and political rallies.

• Leave any important documents or valuable items in the hotel safe. Keep a photocopy of your passport or identification on you.

• Be vigilant of pickpockets and purse snatchers in crowded areas and at holy sites.

• Dammam follows strict Sharia laws and Islamic customs and etiquette. Familiarise yourself with these before you arrive.

• A number of laws and traditions are in place that affect women in particular. Considerable research should be done on these before embarking on a trip to Dammam.

• Although Dammam is largely unaffected by terrorism, it is an ever-present threat.

• Proof of yellow fever vaccination is required if you are travelling from a yellow fever endemic area.

• Other routine and recommended vaccinations include hepatitis A & B, typhoid, rabies, malaria and meningitis.

Item Cape Town Johannesburg Dammam
Meal inexpensive restaurant R 100.00 R 105.00 R 69.53
Domestic Beer (0.5 litre draught) R 25.00 R 25.00 R 10.43
Cappuccino (regular) R 22.46 R 22.34 R 33.02
Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff) R 10.00 R 10.00 R 34.76
Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro) R 38.00 R 38.00 R 41.72

Accommodation in Dammam offers you a chance to experience the trademark sophistication and regal elegance of Saudi Arabia.

A sensational selection of boutique and 4-star hotels flaunt palatial sprawls draped in sumptuous fabrics, luxurious furniture and sophisticated hues of ivory, hazel wood and gleaming gold. Mid-range and family accommodation ranges from hotels to fully equipped apartments. Budget accommodation comprises simply designed and furnished motels and inns.

Whether you opt for an indulgent stay at one of the lavish hotels or one of the apartment suites, you will be greeted with the trademark Arabian opulence of Eastern accommodation. Expect sumptuous velvet spreads trimmed with gold, magnificent oriental rugs, beautiful marble walls, dark wood surfaces and curious splashes of bold colour.

Although the city of Dammam does not boast an extensive public transportation system, there are several options that are straight-forward and reliable.

Car rental is the easiest way to get around the city. A number of well-known car rental agencies are located in the city centre and at the airport. Women are not allowed to drive a car in Saudi Arabia.

Public buses operate regularly within the city, and throughout the country. These are mostly used by foreign workers within the city, but are an easy and inexpensive way to get around.

For those not wanting to hire a car or use buses, taxis are available in abundance. These are clearly marked and can be flagged on the street or pre-booked by telephone. Women should always be accompanied by a male companion when taking taxis.

Main attractions in Dammam

Half Moon Bay

Half Moon Bay

The Heritage Village

The Heritage Village

Tarout Island & Old Town

Tarout Island & Old Town

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