Thesiger's Journeys in Arabia - Hejaz and Nejd, Saudi Arabia 1945

2004_130_31499_1-O2004_130_31499_1-OJourney dates: April 22 – May 18, 1945

Wilfred Thesiger started his first major Arabian journey in 1945, when he accepted a position as a researcher with the British Middle East Anti-Locust Unit (MEALU). Based near the port city of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Thesiger undertook three locust-monitoring expeditions across the Arabian Peninsula between April and June 1945. In his first journey of the spring, Thesiger started out with the MEALU party near Jeddah on April 22, heading inland towards the Hejaz Mountains and Saudi Arabia's dry central Nejd region. Travelling by motorcar, Thesiger was able to travel quickly in this cross-country journey to Kuwait and Bahrain. During this expedition Thesiger stopped at a number of rural watercourses and wells in Saudi Arabia, including the Al Qaiyah and Rumah wells, on his way to Al Qatif, Kuwait, and Bahrain. During his return to Jeddah, Thesiger visited the city of Al Hofuf in Al Ahsa Region, and visited a number of interior Bedouin wells, including Ar Rumhiya, and stopped at rural villages such as Marat and Ad Dafinah. Thesiger's party finished this trip at Buraiman, near Jeddah, on May 18, 1945.

Locations: Al Qaiyah, Rumah wells, Kuwait City, Ar Rumhiya wells, Al Hofuf, Al Hasa Oasis, Nejd, Marat, Ad Dafinah.

Named Individuals: None

Represented Cultural Groups: Utaybah Bedouin, Sahul Bedouin, Awazim Bedouin, Ajman Bedouin


Wilfred Thesiger, 1946. 'Rub' al Khali 1945-46', Personal Diary (Collection of Eton College Library).

Wilfred Thesiger, 1960. Arabian Sands, Longmans, Green and Co Ltd: London.