Hima Cultural Area in Saudi Arabia is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Hayley Kadrou
Jul 25, 2021

The area in the southwest of Saudi Arabia known for its rock art imagery has been officially recognised by UNESCO this week.

On July 24, Hima Cultural Area in the mountainous region of Saudi Arabia was officially recognised as a World Heritage Site during the UNESCO’s 44th session.

Located between Najran and Wadi Addawasir, Hima boasts one of the largest rock art complexes in the world, with 34 separate sites to visit.

Most notable is the inscriptions on the ancient rock formations depicting historic life in the region – such as hunting rituals and local habitat – thought to be 7,000 years old.

Taking to Twitter to announce the news, UNESCO – an acronym for United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization – wrote: “New site inscribed on the Unesco World Heritage List: cultural area of Hima, Saudi Arabia. Mabrouk!”

Unesco shared this image to its Twitter page to announce the news. Image credit | Twitter: @UNESCO

With the latest addition included, there are now six areas in Saudi Arabia recognised by UNESCO as a site of historical and cultural significance.

Now, the list is as follows:

  • Al-Hijr Archaeological Site (Madain Salih) (2008)
  • At-Turaif District in ad-Dir’iyah (2010)
  • Historic Jeddah, the Gate to Makkah (2014)
  • Rock Art in the Hail Region of Saudi Arabia (2015)
  • Al-Ahsa Oasis, an Evolving Cultural Landscape (2018)
  • Hima Cultural Area (2021)

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