Cairo: Around 120,000 people have visited the region of Al Baha, dubbed the "pearl of resorts" in south-western Saudi Arabia since the kingdom has eased some restrictions imposed due to the new coronavirus, local tourism sources have said.
On June 21, Saudi authorities restarted domestic tourism as part of efforts to revitalise the sector, which is a major component of the country's ambitious plan to diversify its oil-reliant economy.
Al Baha, a famed holiday spot, is noted for its pleasant climate, forests and green plateaus. Summer temperatures in the region range between 22-27 degrees Celsius.
"Elements of visitor attractions in Al Baha include the diverse geographical features, the moderate weather, rich verdure and seasonal fruits," the mayor of the region Ali Al Suwat told Saudi newspaper Okaz.
He added that the region's lush valleys and forests are prime attractions for nature lovers.
"Municipal teams work round the clock to keep clean 140 parks and forests to welcome thousands of daily visitors," he added. The official expected the numbers of holidaymakers in the region to reach 1.5 million, citing visitors' positive feedback.
Last week,Saudi authorities fully lifted a months-long curfew across the country and allowed all economic activities to resume according to a phased plan for returning to normal life. On May 31, Saudi Arabia reinstated domestic flights.
However, restrictions on international air travel, the Umrah journeys and gatherings of over 50 persons remain in place as part of measures to stem COVID-19.