Dammam's new corniche stretches along 4 kilometres of sublime coast, providing the city and its people with wonderful stretches of walkways, running paths, relaxed park seating and green areas. It is the perfect place for a picnic and some people watching, especially in the early evenings, when the weather is best.
Just east of the area of Al Qatif is Tarout, a small island containing a number of fascinating historical sights. Chief among them is beautiful Tarout Castle, which dates back to the 16th century. Interestingly, no one is sure whether it was built by locals to defend themselves from Portuguese attacks, or whether it was the Portuguese who built it to defend themselves from Turkish attacks.
King Fahd Park is one of the largest and lushest parks in the Eastern Province, and its beautiful waterways and lakes, including numerous waterfalls and bridges, makes this one of the most serene places in Dammam. It also houses some amusement rides and restaurants, making it a great place for the whole family to spend an afternoon.
Coral Island is an artificial island connected to Dammam by a bridge. The tiny island contains a wonderful park, where locals and tourists enjoy spending time, taking advantage of the top-class facilities, green areas and children's playgrounds. Ferry rides, which include a meal, can be taken to and from the island.
Another great place to take young visitors, this park offers entertainment for all ages. The biggest draw to this fun-packed amusement park is without a doubt the go-karting facilities, which keep adventure-seeking visitors returning time and time again in search of thrills.
Heritage Village is located in a building meant to resemble a traditional Saudi castle, fit with different sized rooms for families within. It serves traditional Saudi delicacies prepared fresh. There is a museum attached to the restaurant which can be visited after your meal.
A true international delight in Dammam, Brasa de Brasil Churrascaria is a Brazilian style barbecue with a dizzying variety of cuts of tender and delicious meat. They even have vegetarian options, a gourmet salad bar, and a fantastic selection of cheeses and breads.
This lovely cafe can be a bit difficult to find, as it is located on the second floor of Desert Designs, without a sign to guide you. But once inside visitors are in for a unique experience, as they can enjoy a typical Arabian cafe experience and even shop for souvenirs from the shop.
Cacao Sampaka is definitely one of the top cafes in the city. Famed for its relaxed vibe, great coffee drinks and unbeatable desserts (be sure to try the cookie lava with vanilla ice cream), it keeps locals coming back time and time again, and never fails to impress visitors.
This traditional style market houses countless stalls and vendors peddling their colourful products. From clothing and perfumes to gold and jewelry, all the products found here are authentic Saudi goods and make for some of the most memorable souvenirs and gifts available.
This great mall suffered a divastating fire a few years back, but it is back in full swing now, offering great shopping opportunities. Shops here carry traditional Saudi items, as well as the latest Western fashion and gadgets. There are several music and video game shops, as well.
This enormous mall has everything an avid shopper could possibly want. It boasts a wide selection of the world's leading brands, as well as books, sports and leisure equipment, home furnishings and entertainment. There are also countless options for food and refreshments to break up a day of shopping.
Some of Saudi Arabia's cultural norms dictate the certain establishments be gender-segregated, usually meaning men-only establishments. In contrast, this mall is an important place just for women, where they can come to find personal hygiene items, as well as clothing and jewelry.
For an authentic local shopping experience, be sure to check out the Central Vegetable Market. With more than 1,100 shops and stalls selling fresh fruit, vegetables and meat, as well as wholesale foodstuffs. You can find the best and freshest produce here at the best prices.
The King Fahd International Airport (DMM) is located about 40 km northwest of the city of Dammam. Taxis from the airport to central Dammam or Khobar take about 30-45 minutes, depending on traffic. Since they are seldom metered, drivers tend to charge way more than the ride is worth, so be sure to try to negotiate a better price before getting in. Alternatively, visitors can take a much more economical bus to the city, but this can take longer.
When strolling and exploring the city please make sure you wear the appropriate attire. Women should be covered from neck to ankle and in certain areas scarves are used to cover the face and head. Shorts and tank tops should not be worn outside of your accommodation by women. For men, loose clothing is recommended and shorts are prohibited. When visiting, please make sure you respect and abide by the laws and culture of the country.