Jeddah is the second largest city in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East’s second-largest seaport. It’s a popular visitor destination, owing to its location on the Red Sea and its role as principal gateway to Mecca, the holiest city in Islam, 65 km to the east. The best running in Jeddah is the area of the city’s 30 km Corniche area. There are also some designated ‘walkways’ that are popular with runners.
The signature run in Jeddah is along the Jeddah Corniche, an attractive, 11 km seafront promenade along the Red Sea. There’s also the shorter Middle Corniche Park in the area of the Conference Palace. The other decent places to run in Jeddah are a series of designated ‘walkways’ in different part of the city: the Prince Faisal Bin Fahad Walkway (can be combined with the Corniche route), Al Rehab/Al Wahah Walkway (with its nearby running track), and the Tahlia/Serafi Walkway. Those looking for a running adventure should head to the desert — best to go with a guide outfit.
Important Notes: Given the extreme heat in Jeddah, it’s wise to hydrate, wear sun protection, and run early or late to avoid the extreme temperatures. Also, air pollution can be bad. Visitors should also respect cultural norms in regards to modest attire — men should wear tops (not vests) and shorts that go down to the knees. This Runner’s World article is a helpful guide for women running in Saudi Arabia, though the regulations continue to change. Also, having your ID with you at all times is a must in Saudi Arabia. Finally, Jeddah is a car-centric city, with notorious traffic. There is currently no public transportation system in Jeddah, though a metro system is planned.