Graffiti Rocks

Petroglyphs are very prominent as you set to trek in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia. These ancient rock carvings provide us very interesting information about the lives of people inhabited in the area in ancient times.

An about 110 Km drive from Riyadh City Center along the Makkah Road, you can come across ancient graffiti. Here, a good number of mixed up petroglyphs like hunters, a family of ostrich, ibex and other animals provide us clues of the life around the area when most of the deserts were covered in vegetation as recorded. These petroglyphs are said to be of neolithic period, after 3000 BC.

 

The Location

The Graffiti rock near Musayqirah is on an inselberg (isolated hill) and so not difficult to find. It stands out in the desert with a vast area of plain land surrounding it. Southwestern part of this huge rock has a good collection of petroglyphs (prehistoric rock drawing) as well as its northeastern side where a less number of it could be found.

 

A Rock Canvas

This large rock is a wide canvas with a mixed up petroglyphs of the ancient artists

 

Camel and horse riders

Petroglyphs of camels were found very few at these rocks that could mean rare sights these animals in the area during the time.

 

Horse riders

 

Family of Ostrich

One of the very impressive images among the collection is the family of ostrich.

Hyena-like creatures, animals with long horns including ibexes, human figures and more could be found on the flat surface of these reddish black rocks.

 

The plain below the rock was a vast grassland during the Neolithic period that began when humankind first developed agriculture and settled in permanent enclaves.

Over the escarpment that runs at a distance of around 200 meters from these rocks, you can find tumuli (ancient burial mounds).
A little bit of additional effort to get to the top of the escarpment could worth your visit to Graffiti Rocks.

Tumuli are common sights in Najd on rocky platforms. A very good example of circular tumuli can be found just around 8km away from Riyadh Checkpoint on the western part of Tuwaiqescarpment.

 

It is quite amazing to see isolated rocks with scripts and drawings of the ancients which transmit information to the following generations.

Petroglyphs found at the ancient archeological sites of Al Ukhdood in Najran has been described in the section dedicated for Najran Province.