It is true that you wouldn’t think of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia when one thinks of winter and snow, however, Saudi Arabia does have both.
The Kingdom has a variety of malls and shopping places such as flea markets as well as international brands within its borders.
For Saudis, when the weather goes below 25 degrees Celsius, the winter officially begins. Many of our western friends would see this as a pleasant summer day but for a desert country such as Saudi Arabia, it is the start of a whole different season.
The people of Saudi Arabia traditionally wear winter coats which are referred to as the “Farwa” and the “Bisht.” These come in handy in the country as the temperature is prone to drop suddenly with the setting sun.
A Bisht is a formal winter coat which can be worn over an outfit when one goes to a wedding or a celebration. The formal ones are very thin and made of sheer material but there are thicker versions for the changing seasons.
The Farwa is a warmer and thicker winter coat than the Bisht. It is perfect to wear when one goes for camping trips in the desert.
The cloth used for Farwas are soft and cosy, whereas the Bisht is mostly rough to touch. However, Farwas are extremely thick and are a must-have if you’re into trekking and camping through the desert.
The prices range of the coats, depending on where they were made, whether in the Kingdom or abroad and what materials have gone in making them.
However, the best place to buy these winter coats is to go to any local Souq and get it from there. Keep in mind that you will have to bargain a lot and you simply can’t agree to the first price that you’ve been quoted. Ask where the coat has been made and what’s used in it so that you can support the local market and make sure that you’re not going to get an allergic reaction!
The Farwa and Bisht are very loose so don’t buy something that’s exactly your size because that would be very small in style.
The winters are truly wonderful in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. You can go trekking on the snowy mountaintops or even go camping in the Empty Quarter!
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