According to CNN, the upcoming attraction inspired by offshore oil platforms is being devised in line with the long-term Saudi Vision 2030’s strategy, which aims to reposition Saudi Arabia as a top international tourism destination and diversify its economy. But the country is determined to reposition itself as an alluring global hotspot that can compete with the likes of nearby Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Oman. It aims to attract 100 million tourists each year by the close of the decade.
Saudi Arabia may be trying to reduce its dependency on oil, but that hasn’t stopped the Arabic kingdom from using its petroleum industry as an inspiration for a brand new tourist attraction. The Middle Eastern country has announced plans to convert an oil rig into a 150,000 square meter floating theme park on an oil rig, with rollercoasters, extreme sports, and waterslides across interconnected platforms in its latest extravagant tourism drive.
Digital renderings of the ambitious engineering feat were released this month, showing a large pier for access by cruise ship, a concert venue, gondolas running between the platforms over the sea, and an underwater restaurant.
#PIF announces “THE RIG.” Project.
The world’s first tourism destination inspired by offshore oil platforms.
— Public Investment Fund (@PIF_en) October 16, 2021
The rig is funded by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF). The colossal project will be comprised of three hotels and 11 restaurants spread over a number of connected platforms, as well as roller coaster rides and adrenaline-rush activities like bungee jumping and skydiving, swimming pools, a Ferris wheel, and white-knuckle rides high above the glittering Persian Gulf.
“This project is a unique tourism attraction, expected to attract tourists from around the world,” said a statement from the PIF. It said it was expected to be particularly popular with visitors from the Arabian Gulf region.