04 December 2009

A Journey Across Saudi Arabia

Buildings/Monuments in Riyadh & Jubail
If during the Eid Fitri, we were on the trip to Abha, the southwestern region of Asir, the recent Eid Haj break we were on the trip to the eastern part of the kingdom, to Riyadh (the capital of Saudi Arabia), Dammam/Al-Khobar and Jubail

It was the wukuf day that we started our journey at 9 am from Yanbu heading toward but bypassing Madinah before taking Madinah-Riyadh Expressway. There's nothing much to see along the expressway.

Sepanjang perjalanan cuma nampak padang pasir je dengan satu dua tempat nampaklah kebun-kebun kurma serta kawasan penanaman rumput. We safely reached Riyadh around 7 pm and met Haji Fauzi (a friend of a friend) who helped us in making a reservation at one of many service apartments in Riyadh.

Bergambar kenangan dengan sebahagian rakyat Malaysia di perjumpaan Aidil Adha.

So, we found ourselves to be praying solat Aidil Adha in the nearby mosque. Around 10 am, we were invited to join fellow Malaysians residing in Riyadh for the Eid gathering at Haji Zainal's house. Syukran jazakallah for their hospitality.

After two nights in Riyadh, we decided to cut short the stay and moved to Al-Khobar, about 400 km to the most eastern part of the kingdom. Dammam/Al-Khobar and Dhahran are the three adjoining cities known as triplet city making up the greater Damman area.
It was raining heavily all the way from Riyadh to Khobar, felt like driving in Malaysia. We reached Al-Khobar four hours later. It was quite tiring and frustrating when you were stucked in heavy traffic jam while looking your way to find an apartment or hotel to stay at. Finally we managed to find a decent service apartment near to a popular and well known Al-Rashid Mall.

Di hadapan rumah Haji Zulkiflee, Aramco compound, Dhahran

In the morning of the 1st day in Al-Khobar we went to Dhahran (about 10 minutes drive) visiting Ghazali's friend, Haji Zulkiflee at Aramco compound. A totally new environment as if you were not in Saudi Arabia but in America. There you can see women were jogging and without their abaya. Kat dalam tu jugak ada panggung wayang serta padang golf. Perempuan pun boleh memandu asalkan ada lesen memandu dari negara asal.

Back from Dhahran, we went sighseeing the city of Al-Khobar. We even went up to the Bahrain checkpoint at the middle of the Khobar-Bahrain causeway. Kalau lah senang nak keluar masuk saudi, memang dah sampai Bahrain tu. It is well known that people as far as from Riyadh like to come to Al-Khobar as the city is very lively and 'happening'.

Bersama Mokhtar dan Haji Shafiee di Jubail.

The following day we went further up to Jubail, the city of petrochemicals, visiting my friends. We also took the time to tour Jubail Industrial City before heading back to Riyadh again. We spent another night in Riyadh before continuing our journey back home to Yanbu.

Tuan Haji Zainudin Ismail aka Che Din. Kawan sekuliah... datang mengerjakan haji dari Doha, Qatar.
We reached Madinah after 8 hour drive from Riyadh. We purposely stopped by at Masjid Nabawi just to visit my old friend who performed the haj. Alhamdullillah we reached home safely after completing 3500 km journey.

16 November 2009


Need info related to Yanbu, Saudi Arabia or info related to Malaysians living in Yanbu?
Looking for bloggers who are living and staying and working here in Yanbu?

Now you can visit our newly launched website .......

01 November 2009

Berhujung Minggu di Makkah

Alhamdullillah, last weekend our family managed to visit the Holy City of Makkah Al-Mukkarramah. It was just a visit to spend the weekend there as we didn't perform the Umrah. However, the best thing happened as there was a heavy rain together with the thunderstorm and lightnings. It was the first heavy rain we have ever experienced in Saudi Arabia after being here for more than 1 and half year. So 'jakun' to see the rain here, especially right at the Kaabah.

Here are some of the latest photos of Masjidil Haram.

Views of the MasjidilHaram from the hotel.

Kelihatan para jemaah haji yang mula membanjiri kota suci ini menyambut panggilan Ilahi.

Zam Zam Tower menjulang tinggi ke langit. Boleh dilihat jauh dari luar Kota Makkah.

Lautan manusia melakukan tawaf selepas solat subuhKelihatan istana raja yang tersergam 'megah'.

Pekerja masjid sedang membentangkan permaidani sebelum waktu solat Jumaat di tingkat satu.

Hujan lebat beserta kilat dan guruh membersihkan debu-debu di Kota Makkah selama satu jam selepas Maghrib.

Dataran luar MasjidilHaram di genangi air hujan.

Pintu No. 1 - King AbdulAziz

23 October 2009

Koleksi Dari Laut Merah

These are some of my favourites collection of photos during our scuba diving trips for the last one year here in Red Sea off Yanbu, Saudi Arabia. Since then, the number of Malaysians taking up this hobby has been increasing. Currently, they are 9 Malaysian licensed divers in Yanbu including my 2 girls. So far, we have not ventured any other site but around Yanbu. There are still lot of dive sites yet to be explored by us. Since getting my diving license in Tioman, it has been a dream to dive in Red Sea where some people refer it as a diving haven. Underwater photography is one of the module offered in the advance course for open water scuba diving which some of us are planning to enroll soon. So, enjoy the photos ...
Suka tengok nemo ni... macam tau-tau je aku nak amik gambar dia.

Ikan cantik ni termasuk dalam kumpulan ikan 'butterflyfish'. Ada macam-macam jenis...

Antara coral laut merah

Ini pulak dipanggil Regal Angelfish

Berbagai jenis coral/karang di Laut Merah. Aku masih belajar untuk mengenali jenis-jenisnya.

These are my girls ... most probably they are the youngest Malaysian girls ever to dive in Red Sea off Saudi Arabia...

15 October 2009

Tentang SABIC

SABIC has 18 manufacturing affiliates in Saudi Arabia. Some affiliates are fully owned by SABIC, while others are joint ventures with internationally reputed companies. Most of the affiliates are located in Jubail and Yanbu.
The affiliates are:

Saudi Methanol Co. (AR-RAZI)
Located in Jubail, AR-RAZI was established in 1979 and began production in 1983. It is equally shared by SABIC and a group of Japanese companies led by Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Company. It produces chemical methanol. AR-RAZI began production in 1983, and exports most of it. Part of the production is used by the affiliates, IBN ZAHR and SADAF, to produce methyl tertiary butyl ether.

Saudi Petrochemical Company (SADAF)
Located in Jubail, SADAF was established in 1980, and began production in 1985. It is equally owned by SABIC and Shell Chemicals Arabia, LLC (an affiliate of Royal Dutch Shell). SADAF produces ethylene, ethylene di-chloride, styrene, crude industrial ethanol, caustic soda and MTBE. It provides KEMYA with ethylene and PETROKEMYA with ethylene di-chloride.

National Methanol Company (IBN SINA)
Located in Jubail, IBN SINA was established in 1981, and began production in 1985. It is equally owned by SABIC and CTE (owned 25% by Elwood Insurance Ltd., and 25% by Texas Eastern Arabian Ltd.) IBN SINA produces chemical methanol and methyl tertiary butyl ether for export.

Saudi Yanbu Petrochemicals Company (YANPET)
Located in Yanbu, YANPET was established in 1980, and began production in 1985. It is equally owned by SABIC and Mobil Yanbu Petrochemical Company (Exon Mobil), USA. It produces ethylene, polyethylene and ethylene glycol.

Arabian Petrochemical Company (PETROKEMYA)
Located in Jubail, PETROKEMYA was established in 1981, and began production in 1985. It is fully owned by SABIC. PETROKEMYA produces ethylene, polyethylene, polystyrene, butane-s, propylene, butadiene and benzene. It uses ethane, styrene, propane, butane and natural gasoline as feedstock.

Al-Jubail Petrochemical Company (KEMYA)
Located in Jubail, KEMYA was established in 1980, and began production in 1985. It is equally owned by SABIC and Exon Mobil. It produces ethylene and polyethylene.

Eastern Petrochemical Company (SHARQ)
Located in Jubail, SHARQ was established in 1981, and began production in 1985. It is equally owned by SABIC and a group of Japanese companies led by Mitsubishi company. SHARQ produces low density polyethylene and ethylene glycol.

Saudi European Petrochemical Company (IBN ZAHR)
Located in Jubail, IBN ZAHR was established in 1984, and began production in 1988. It is owned by SABIC (80%), Echofuel-Italy (10%) and Arab Petroleum Investment Corporation (APICORP) (10%). IBN ZAHR produces polypropylene and MTBE.

Arabian Industrial Fiber Company (IBN RUSHD)
Located in Yanbu, IBN RUSHD was established in 1993, and began production in 1995. It is owned by SABIC (47.26%), PIF (33.51%) and the rest regional private sector partners. IBN RUSHD produces aromatics, pure terephthalic acid, polyester fibers and polyethylene terephthalate.

United Jubail Petrochemical Companies (UNITED)
Located in Jubail, UNITED was established in 2001, and started production in the second half of 2004. It is owned by SABIC (75%), Pension Fund (15%) and General Organization of Social Insurance (10%). UNITED produces ethylene, ethylene glycol, polyethylene and linear alpha olefins.

Yanbu National Petrochemical Company (YANSAB)
Located in Yanbu, YANSAB was established in 2006, and is scheduled to begin production in 2008. It is owned by SABIC (55%), private shareholders (35%) and other companies in the Gulf region (10%). YANSAB shall produce ethylene, propylene, linear low density polyethylene, high density polypropylene, butane-1, butane-2, benzene, toluene, xylene mixture and MTBE.

Jubail Fertilizer Company (AL-BAYRONI)
Located in Jubail, AL-BAYRONI was established in 1979, and began production in 1983. It is equally owned by SABIC and Taiwan Fertilizer Company. AL-BAYRONI produces ammonia, urea; 2-ethyl hexanol and DOP.

Saudi Arabian Fertilizer Company (SAFCO)
SAFCO was established in Dammam in 1965 as a joint venture, and began production in 1969. In 1993 its second compound in Jubail began operations. SAFCO produces ammonia, urea, melamine, sulfuric acid and urea formaldehyde. SABIC owns 42.99% of SAFCO and the rest by the private sector.

National Chemical Fertilizers Company (IBN AL-BAYTAR)
It was established in 1985 and began production in 1987. It is equally owned by SABIC and SAFCO. IBN AL-BAYTAR produces urea, ammonia, compound fertilizer, phosphate and liquid fertilizer.

Saudi Iron and Steel Company (HADEED)
Located in Jubail, HADEED was established in 1979, and began production in 1983. It is fully owned by SABIC. HADEED produces steel rebar, wire rod hot rolled coils, cold rolled coils, galvanized cold, color-coated coils.

National Industrial Gas Company (GAS)
Located in Jubail, GAS was established in 1983, and began production in 1984. It is owned by SABIC (70%) and a group of national industrial gas companies (30%). It produces oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen. GAS has another complex in Yanbu industrial city.

Ibn Hayyan plastic Products Company (TAYF)
Located in Jubail, TAYF was established in 1996, and began production in 1999. It is owned by SABIC (77.73%), Industrial and Commercial Agencies Company – Bin Ladin (16.82%) and Saudi Industrial Development Company (TATWEER, 5.45%). It produces plastic sheets, wallpaper, synthetic leather and book binding material.

Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Company (SAUDI KAYAN)
Located in Jubail, SAUDI KAYAN was established in 2007, and is scheduled to start production by the end of 2009. It is owned by SABIC (35%), Al-Kayan Petrochemical Company (20%) and public share (45%). SAUDI KAYAN will produce ethylene, propylene, ethylene, propylene, polypropylene, LDPE, HDPE, ethylene glycol, acetone, polycarbonate (PC), ethanolamines (EOA).

03 October 2009

Take A Break!

Peace be upon u...Have a nice day!!!
Treating people with respect makes your world a nicer place
to live in..whether it's at home, at school or at work
And it's easy.. all you have to do is treat people the way
like to have them treat you..

Here are few Ideas...
* Don't insult people or make fun of them...
* Listen to others when they speak...
* Value other peoples opinions...

* Be considerate of people's likes and dislikes...
* Don't mock or tease people...
* Don't talk about people behind their backs...
* Be sensitive to other people's feelings...
* Don't pressure some one to do something, he or she doesn't want to do...

Source: Taman2 Syurga

29 September 2009

September 2009 - Trip to Abha

The second day of Eid holiday, together with another two families (Ghazali & Zaki), we started our journey to Taif and Abha. It has been planned way before the month of Ramadhan. The city of Abha is located on the southwestern part of Arabian peninsula under the Asir region.

The attractions?
The city is located on top of the mountain region having very moderate climate, a lot greens and fertile plains and astounding panoramic views of the surrounding areas.

On the way up to Al-Hada. The cable car seen was from Ramada Hotel at Al-Hada down to a theme park on Makkah side.

We left Yanbu at 10 am and reached Taif around 2pm via Jeddah, taking the newly opened road from Makkah to Al-Hada, Taif. Actually it was nothing much we did in Taif as it was meant only for stopover before the long journey to Abha (~550 km from Taif to Abha). This is not the only road to Abha but this road from Taif to Abha will give the spectacular views of mountain ranges and western desert of Saudi Arabia.

Early in the morning, somewhere around 8 AM, we left Taif for Abha. It was never expected that the journey took us 11 hours with short few stops along the way. The views, the roads along the journey was so spectacular and beautiful. It was amazing to find out of so many towns and villages along the road. Maybe due to its climate which is relatively cool compared to the other parts of this country that attract people to settle down on top of this mountainous region.

A stop right after a town called Al-Bahar. Later we realized that we should have made the stopover in this town instead of Taif.

Finally at 7 PM we reached the hotel in Abha. We stayed at Al-Nuzhah Resort Hotel which is fronting a lake. It is not a five star resort but is very spacious and the rate was relatively cheaper than in Taif.

A part of As Sad lake view from our apartment; Al-Nuzhah Resort, Abha

The following day, early in the morning we went to Abha Visitor Center just to find out that it was still closed. So, we just headed to Mount Sodah, 2800 m from sea level and it is believed to be the highest peak in Saudi Arabia. It took us about 30 minutes to reach Al Sodah Resort where there is a cable car service to the village down the mountain.

At a Mt Sodah Cable Car Station. The climate was so cool even though it was still summer in Saudi

A view of the valley from top of Mr Sodah. So far, it was the steepest cable car ride for me at least. The ride took us about 15 minutes to reach the valley.

At the valley, we met Mr. Ali Ibraheem Moghawi, an author of "Rujal the Chief Urban Town" and supervisor at Rijal Alma Museum. It was interesting to listen to Mr. Ali about the history of the region and later he and his assistant drove us down to Rijal Alma (a town further down) which took us another 20 minutes drive.

In front of Aseeri House at Rijal Alma with Mr. Ali Ibraheem. These houses were the traditional house which is now a museum.

At night we went for dinner on top of Green Mountain. Having seen the clouds waving thru them made the kids so excited. The restaurant? Nice view but service and food still need a lot of improvement.

On the day back to Yanbu, we went to Open Souq @ Tuesday Market at the downtown of Abha. Most of the shops there basically were selling traditional items. I ended bought 2 traditional swords which are used in their traditional dance.

We took different road for back home. We made an exit to a town called Mukhail. The unique thing about this road was that it has 11 tunnels and it is very winding and dangereous. However, it was compensated with the magnificent view of the mountain range which the road cut through. It was really worthwhile! One advise though, never take this road at night.

One of the bridges connecting the cliff.

I guessed this one was the third of the many tunnels.

We safely reached home after 14 hours of journey. There are still a lot places that we didn't manage to visit such as 'Hanging Village" at Habalah, old palace at Al-Qura, 'Grand Canyon' at Khamis Mushayat and or course exploring many of its natural parks such as Aseer National Park, Al-Souda Park, Al-Jarrah and many others. InsyaAllah, its worth to plan coming again this region.

More photos can be seen at My Photo - Trip to Abha

27 September 2009

Hari Raya 2009 Di Yanbu

Selesai sudah solat aidil fitri di Yanbu RC - KJ, Iman, Hj Shah, Hj Sabri & Hj Ghazali
Tahun ini sekali lagi kami sekeluarga beraya di Arab Saudi. Kalau tahun lepas menyambut dan bersolat Aidil Fitri di Makkah, tapi tahun ini kami menyambut di Yanbu. Buat pertama kali merasai pengalaman bersolat aidil fitri di tengah-tengah padang pasir. Di bandar Yanbu RC, tak de masjid yang mengadakan solat sunat hari raya. Semuanya berkumpul di satu kawasan untuk bersolat selepas je tamat waktu syuruk. Tak de takbir beramai-ramai. Sebaik saje imam sampai, terus buat solat, khutbah dan balik. Kawasan perjiranan aku pula memang lengang kerana masing-masing balik kampung. Dari 12 buah rumah di lorong aku tu, cuma aku dan satu keluarga arab yang tinggal.

Suasana di Madkhal 4 (lorong rumah kami)

Kawasan kedai Al-Semairi di belakang rumah aku yang lengang sehari sebelum hari raya. Yang nampak kotak berwarna biru ialah drive thru ATM machine. Kat sini memang banyak drive thru ATM machine.

Kemudian jam 10 pagi, sebagaimana yang telah dirancangkan, beberapa keluarga berkumpul di rumah Hj Zaki untuk program ziarah raya dari rumah ke rumah. Memang meriah, apatah lagi beberapa keluarga dari Jubail pun ada join sekali.

25 September 2009

Walangkopo Dalam Kenangan

Al-Fatihah .... semoga beliau di masukkan dikalangan orang-orang yang beriman. Takziah kepada keluarga beliau dan bersabar menghadapi ketentuan Allah...
Setiap yang hidup pasti akan pergi, tiada yang kekal kecuali Yang Maha Esa.
Moga rohnya sentiasa dicucuri rahmat Allah... amin...

17 September 2009

Eid Mubarak

Eid Mubarak, "Taqabbal Allahu minnaa wa minkum" - Semoga Allah menerima amalan baik dari kami dan dari kamu

To all of you, Happy Eid ... May our life is always blessed by Him.

Posted by Picasa

13 September 2009

Ramadhan in Yanbu

Sedar tak sedar, puasa tahun ni dah di penghujungnya. Dan tahun ni, tahun kedua aku dan keluarga berpuasa jauh dari suasana di tanah air. Kalau di tanahairku, suasana raya tu dah cukup terasa. Masing-masing sibuk dengan persiapan nak beraya. Shoppingnya lah, kuih muihnya lah, duit rayanya lah, baju rayanya lah, jualan murahnya dan macam-macam lagi sehingga ramai yang lupa yang Allah pun sedang buat jualan murahnya (bak kata Ustaz abdul Rahman). Alhamdullillah, suasana itu tidak terasa sangat di sini. Aku tak sibuk-sibuk nak pikir cari baju raya, bini aku tak sibuk-sibuk nak beli kuih raya. Pusat-pusat beli-belah pun macam biasa je... Part yang ini buat aku suka berpuasa dan menyambut raya di sini.

Waktu Iftar di dalam Masjid Nabawi
Walau macam mana pun, kami rakyat-rakyat Malaysia di Yanbu dah berpakat nak buat Marhaban di sini. Sekurang-kurangnya acara ziarah menziarahi ini dapat mengeratkan lagi silaturrahim sesama kita dan juga menghidupkan suasana hari raya di sini terutama untuk anak-anak.

Juadah berbuka di Masjid Nabawi

Suasana menanti waktu iftar di dataran Masjid Nabawi.

Suasana selepas Asar di dataran Masjidil Haram

Lautan manusia mengerjakan tawaf.

Menanti waktu iftar di D'Saji