It is interesting and a good idea to go out to the smaller local communities and do some shopping. Most people are real friendly and you find things you can't find in the big cities of Dammam and Khobar. Hofuf is a neat little town that you can easily walk around in a morning. An old fort is a site to see but it is the shopping that draws people to the town. All kinds of curios to get in the market.
Going to the beach is a popular pastime. The beaches have soft light-tan sand with no rocks and very little waves. Perfect weather for sailing and motorboating.
A popular location is Half Moon Bay: South and East of Khobar and East of Dhahran and Dammam. There are numerous private and public beaches.
There is not good visibility in the Arabian Gulf-you need to go to the Red Sea for good diving and snorkeling.
Aramco has provided the Hobby Farm for Aramco Employees, where you will find a lot of really beautiful horses owned by the employees here. Some of our children have been lucky enough to ride on a couple of them during school field trips. They haven't been able to talk my husband into buying one..........................yet. :-)
There are a few different swimming pools here to choose from. They also offer swimming lessons for various levels of swimming.
There is also pools with swim lanes to stay fit, while enjoying the cool water.
The Aramco Community in Dhahran has numerous parks. Our favorite is Dhahran Hills Park. It has been recently redone and is beautiful! We have spent a lot of fun family time at several of the parks here and will continue to do so. There are numerous smaller parks throught the community as well, and they are all very nice.
We now have two duck ponds in the Aramco Community in Dhahran. One is located in Dhahran Hills par, and the other by the golf course. They are both very beautiful and are home to numerous ducks. A great place to have a picnic, or take a walk.
The Aramco Community in Dhahran has a nice bowling alley. They even have bumper's on some of the lanes so the kids can come along. They have shoes to rent as well as balls to borrow, or you can bring your own. This is a fun activity, especially during the summer heat when it is nice to have something indoors to do!
Picnic's are a lot of fun. It is a way to relax and enjoy yourself and your surroundings. We have had several in the parks here in Dhahran, as well as out in the desert while looking for sand roses. I reccomend only doing a desert picnic in cooler weather though, not in the summer heat!
Instead of statues, Dhahran has planes on concrete plinths. There is a row of three of them at the old airport, which is now the Air Base, and two more at KFUPM. The planes are old Saudi Air force jets, including a Hunter and a Lightning.
There are all kinds of sports here. Soccer, baseball, softball, track, swimming, tennis, and many more. Sports for children as well as for adults. There is always a place for another coach as well. :-)
There are many jebels in Saudi Arabia, and some are close right here in Dhahran. Including in the Armanco community here. They are fun to climb and explore. They also make for a nice view when you get to the top!
Many locals go out to the beach in the late afternoon and drive their cars up and down the dunes. Normally these are SUVs but sometimes you see old Chevy Caprice's going up and sometimes coming down in reverse!
I wouldn't recommend getting too close as you don't know exactly where these cars are going to come down.
The Aramco Community in Dhahran has an area for BMX and skateboarding. It looks to be done up prettty well, although I have not personally participated in this activity and neither has my children. They have the dirt hills and jumping ramps.
Sunset beach is an exclusive residence and resort community. Inside there is a big waterpark, a bowling alley, arcade, pool hall and dining facilities. The water park is fun with numous slides, a lazy river, paddle boats and a nice beach by the lagoon. There is an entrance fee and it is only for families.
Go out to Half Moon Bay and rent an ATV and cruise up and down the dunes. Negotiate a price and then take off. No silly things like helmets, gloves or protective clothing (so bring your own if you need to). You can cruise all around for an hour and drive through the desert. Be careful going down the dunes.