Makkah & Riyadh: Views of Saudi Arabia from space

Makkah & Riyadh: Views of Saudi Arabia from space

Two Saudi astronauts have shared unbeatable views of our capital city and Makkah
29 May 23
Riyadh from Above. Space. Image source: Shutterstock: Hairem

The International Space Station (ISS) orbits around the earth at a a distance of 400 kilometres above sea-level, and is currently home to two Saudi Arabian astronauts.

These space travellers are currently participating in a privately funded ten-day space mission, with the aim of operating experiments and micro-gravity projects that will advance our learning of space, in order to potentially make space a viable living location and option for humans in the future.


Making history for women in space travel, and the nation, Axiom-2 Mission Specialist, Rayyanah Barnawi became the first Saudi woman in history to adventure to space.

As they serve as Mission Specialists for AX-2 mission on board the ISS, Barnawi and fellow Saudi space traveller Ali Al-Qarni have shared photographs and videos of the Kingdom, and they are magnificent.

The ISS floats and orbits approximately 400 kilometres above earth, and Al-Qarni shared a rare view of the Kingdom's capital city from this stand-point.

Sharing a night image of Riyadh: the grid-lines of the city are visible, and the city is lit up by a seemingly endless stream of sparkling lights. Can you see your area of Riyadh?

Alongside this aerial image of the capital, Al-Qarni also shared an image of the Saudi flag floating above the earth.

Sharing more views of the Kingdom from space to Twitter, Barnawi shared a video of Makkah by night. And, the history-making astronaut even points out the Holy Mosque in the city.

According to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Makkah is set to receive almost two million visitors during this year's Hajj pilgrimage.

These images and videos are some of the first to be shared by Saudi Arabian astronauts, live from space.