Fabulous Bahrain: What to see, what to try
Bahrain is a small kingdom. People come to this country not just for a swim in the Arabian Gulf, but also to dive for pearls, ride camels, play golf, fly in an aerotube and drive a professional go-kart track!
Bahrain is a constitutional kingdom ruled by Sheikh Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa, the Emir until 2002. There are portraits of the king (center), prince and prime minister hanging everywhere, and not by regulation, but simply because Bahrainis love their king. And how can they not, if it is almost the only country in the world where there are no taxes! Medicine and education are free for the locals. And if a Bahraini can prove that his monthly income is less than 300 Bahraini dinars, he will get a house from the king. So much for the real fairyland!
Historical and Cultural Treasures of Bahrain
Muharraq is the third largest city in Bahrain and was its capital until 1923, after which the capital moved to Manama. The name Muharraq translates from Arabic as “the place of ashes” and Manama as “the city of dreams”.
The home of the Bahraini royal family is a monument of 19th-century architecture. The complex includes palace rooms and four courtyards. The former living and working quarters are open to tourists, where you can get an idea of royal life at that time. Be sure to check out the wind tower: you can see how it works and get a literal sense of the “whiff” of antiquity.
The Palace of Sheikh Isa Bin Ali Al Khalifa in the Old City of Muharraq
The House of Sheikh Ibrahim bin Mohammed Al Khalifa (Center for Culture and Research) . On the outside, it is a traditional old house built in the mid-19th century. Inside is a modern center for culture and research with a large hall for 300 people where cultural, sociological, and political forums are held.
Center for Culture and Research. Sheikh Ibrahim bin Mohammed Al Khalifa was born in the mid-19th century. He is one of Bahrain’s most famous poets whose work is still popular throughout the Arab world.
House of Qurar, House of Golden Thread Embroidery . A museum created to preserve the unique Bahraini art of Qurar embroidery. It is not just a museum, but a place where artisans can pass on the art of Kurar to the younger generation. The center helps artisans to produce and market their finished products.
The art of Kurar is a type of embroidery using gold thread. In Kurar, the thread is woven by four women at the same time. Three of them hold the threads and guide them, the fourth weaves them into a single precious thing. After the Kurar embroidery is finished, it is sewn onto clothing and polished to give the gold a distinctive luster.
- Abdullah Al-Zayed House . Home of the founder of the first weekly newspaper in Bahrain and the Arabian Gulf. Dedicated to preserving the heritage of Bahrain’s press while at the same time preserving some of the country’s unique architectural traditions.
A two-storey building with an inner courtyard, a fine example of national architecture. It was built in 1905.
Muharraq is known for its traditional market, the souq, as the locals call it. If you are serious about not coming out of Bahrain without pearls, the souq is the place to go. Here you will find quite a few stores with traditional and modern jewelry.
Bahrain’s Golden Souk lives up to its name: gold and pearls are the mainstay, silver is not recognized.
Most of the inhabitants of Bahrain are Muslims. The first mosque in Bahrain, which was opened to tourists – Al Fateh Mosque. It is also the largest on the island: it can accommodate up to 7,000 people at a time.
Al-Fateh Mosque, also known as Al-Fateh Islamic Center.
The House of the Koran (Beit al-Quran) is a museum dedicated entirely to the Muslim religion. The museum holds ancient manuscripts and early printed editions of the Quran from all over the world: from India, Iran, Turkey, China and Europe. Some of them date back to the 7th century. In the museum they will tell you that the very first printed Koran was printed at a printing house in France. Very interesting is the miniature display of grains of peas and rice with surahs of the Quran written on them.
The big glass dome of the mosque at the House of the Koran
Riffa Port was built as a fort in 1812. It offers a magnificent view of the Hunanai Valley.
The Tree of Life
In the middle of the desert, surrounded by oil rigs, the “Tree of Life” reaches for the sky! It is a very old acacia tree which grows almost in the middle of the desert on Jebel Ad Dukhan (Smoke Mountain). It is over 400 years old! It used to have a “sister” that grew in the south-central Sahara, but in 1973, a truck and its drunk driver crashed into the loneliest tree in the world (there was no vegetation within a radius of 400 kilometers). Let’s hope its distant sister is luckier, its habitat is protected. People from all over the world come here to get an energy boost and just to make their best wishes.
King Fahd Bridge
King Fahd Bridge, the 14th longest bridge in the world, a landmark of both Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. It was built with money from the king of Saudi Arabia and is named after him. The border between Saudi Arabia and Bahrain is on an island, with towers on both sides where you can get a bird’s-eye view of the neighboring state and have a cup of coffee in a small cafe. Unfortunately, the tower on the Bahraini side is now under restoration.
King Fahd Bridge
Activities in Bahrain
Formula 1 and go-kart track.
The Bahrain Grand Prix is one of the stages of Formula 1. The race was first held in 2004. By the way they were won by Michael Schumacher, he was the first to test and open the track.
The track of the Formula 1 in Bahrain: the length of the lap – 5,412 meters.
Holding a stage of the Formula 1 championship attracts a huge number of tourists from all over the world. Interestingly, the track is quite close to the University of Bahrain, and during the racing period classes are canceled due to noise.
Not far from the main ring of the Bahrain International Circuit is the go-kart track. International karting competitions are held there. The best results are within 1 second!
Al Aryn Reserve
Al-Areen Wildlife Park & Reserve, an island of wildlife, is located 27 km from Manama. Here, gazelles, antelopes, giant tortoises, camels, ostriches, flamingos, wild ducks, falcons and vultures live under near-natural conditions.
Camel farm is a must-see for families with children. It belongs to the Bahraini royal family and is home to about five hundred camels of different ages. Unfortunately you cannot buy camel milk from the farm but you can ride, feed, and pet the camels.
In addition to camel rides, pearl diving, and go-karting, Bahrain has prepared a wind tunnel flight for thrill-seekers. The Gravity Club has professional instructors not only for adults, but also for kids over 4 years old!
The height of the tube is 12 meters!
Bahrain’s White and Black Gold: Oil and Pearls
The first oil well started in Bahrain in 1932, and now there’s a monument on the spot. Before the discovery of oil, Bahrain’s main “gold” reserve was pearls, which are still one of the main sources of income. It is forbidden to grow artificial pearls in Bahrain; all the pearls sold in the country are of natural origin, so they are very expensive. On the island you can take part in a pearl trek: you will be taken by boat to Amwaj Island, where professionals extract oysters with pearls. There you will be taught how to get the oysters and you can try your hand at being a treasure hunter.
Oysters and pearls
Bahrain’s Cuisine: A must-try
Bahrain has been setting the tone for gastronomy in the Middle East for a few years now. Fresh fish and seafood are an important part of the Bahraini diet. Dishes made with crayfish, crabs, shrimp, lobster, tuna, and bass are the most popular among locals. They are served mostly with rice. The most famous dish is Hamour, a dish of grilled perch. Qoozi – this delicacy is made of grilled lamb stuffed with rice, boiled eggs, onions, with the addition of traditional spices. Samboosa – traditional snack – triangular or semicircular crispy pies stuffed with meat, cheese, potato or sweet filling (sugar and nuts).
Sweet sambusikis are served with Arabian coffee.
Khubz – Bahrain’s traditional flatbread. Baked in a special oven and served with sauces.
For dessert in Bahrain they serve sweet brown rice with sugar or dates – Muhammar or cold milk dessert Mahalabiya.
Very interesting Bahraini halwa, not halwa, but halwa. It is a sticky jelly-like sweet. It is made from sugar, starch, nuts and spices, usually saffron. It is served warm with Arabian coffee.
Variations of Bahraini khalwa include saffron, fig, milk and royal khalwa.
Arabic coffee, Qahwah, is not just coffee, it is a special ritual and even art. Very popular is coffee with cardamom. The ritual includes a special serving method: coffee is brewed “on the spot”, served in a special coffee pot, and then poured into small bowls, called finjan and handed out to the guests. If you’ve had your coffee and are holding it outstretched, you get another drink. If you’re not thirsty, though, you shake the bowl gently, rocking it from side to side. This will be seen as the end of the ceremony and they will take away your finjan.
The island’s many bazaars sell many spices whose names you have never heard. Pictured is a “mountain” made up of 15 different kinds of spices.
Bahrain’s Traditional Lunch and Breakfast
A traditional Bahraini breakfast is mezze, a set of appetizers usually consisting of hummus; tabouleh (a type of appetizer consisting of cereals and herbs), baba ganoush or baba ganouj (an appetizer consisting of eggplant with spices), olives, beans, and bread.
The main dinner dish usually consists of fish, chicken or meat, usually served with rice and salad.
A distinctive feature of Bahrain as a Muslim country is that you can freely buy alcoholic beverages here.
5 most popular questions about Bahrain
What is the best way to fly to Bahrain?
The easiest way to get to Bahrain is by direct flight, the travel time from Moscow to Bahrain is about 5 hours. Flights are regularly scheduled by Gulf Air.
How do I get a Bahraini visa?
You get a visa for the Kingdom of Bahrain upon arrival by filling out a simple form. The stamp in your passport entitles you to stay in the country for 2-4 weeks. You can also get a visa in Moscow, at the Embassy of Bahrain or on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bahrain.
What language to communicate in Bahrain?
Bahrain has long been a multinational state; of the 1.5 million people living on the island, only half of the native Bahrainis are native Bahrainis. So even though Arabic is the official language, all Bahrainis speak English fluently.
What to pay with or what currency to take with you?
Bahrain uses its own currency. One Bahraini dinar (consisting of 1,000 fils) equals approximately 2.66 US dollars or 166 rubles. You can exchange dollars or euros at a hotel or bank, the best rate in exchange offices on the “souk”.
You can pay in dollars, but the rate will be the least favorable for you, however, you must always bargain in the market, Bahrainis love and respect it. You always have a chance to reduce the price by 10-20%.
Where to stay in Bahrain?
The island is constantly built up with hotels and artificial islands. That’s right! From Saudi Arabia they bring the sand and step by step the territory is taken away from the sea. New islands are built fancy shapes, they build houses on them: a car is parked on one side of the house, and the other – the yacht!
If you want to spend a few days or a couple of weeks on the island, it is better to stay in a hotel. There are many five-star hotels in Bahrain, belonging to the global chains Four Seasons, Sofitel, etc. Most hotels and restaurants offer excellent value for money, with even five-star hotels being offered for quite reasonable money. You’ll remember them for a long time because you won’t find another magical little country like them anywhere else in the world!
Hotel Sofitel Bahrain Zallaq Thalassa Sea & Spa is a 5-star hotel overlooking the Arabian Gulf. Located on the west coast of Bahrain
Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay is located in the city of Manama, 2 km from the financial district and 6 km from Bahrain International Airport
We thank At Bahrain Tour Operator and the Bahrain Tourist Office (AVIAREPS in Russia) for arranging the trip
BAHRAIN is an Arab state (hereditary emirate) in Asia. It consists of 33 islands (of which only 5 are inhabited) located in the Gulf of Bahrain, which is part of the Persian Gulf, west of the Peninsula of Qatar about 24 km from the coast of Saudi Arabia.
Bahrain. The capital is Manama. Population: 578 thousand (1998). Population density: 873 inhabitants per sq km. Area: 662 sq.km. The highest point is Mount Jebel Dukan (134 m above sea level). State language: Arabic. Main religion: Islam. Currency: Bahraini dinar = 1000 Fils. National holiday: August 15. National Anthem: “Long live the Emir!”
Flag of Bahrain.
On the map of Arabian Peninsula
General Information. The islands are mostly sandy and flat, with few oases at freshwater springs. The largest island Bahrain stretches 48 km long and 15 km wide; other islands are Muharraq, Sitra, Hawar and several smaller ones. Total area 663 sq. km (data from different sources vary considerably). The capital, Manama (109.2 thousand residents in 1998), is located on the Island of Bahrain, is the commercial center of the country and one of three free-trade zones in the Persian Gulf. The currency unit is the Bahrain dinar. Population. In 1998 there are about 578 thousand people in the country. There are 578 thousand inhabitants, 452 thousand of them are native Bahrainis. The rest are immigrant workers and their families who arrived mainly from Iran; there are many natives of Europe and South Asia. About 85% of the population professes the state religion – Islam, almost 70% of them are Shiites and 30% are Sunnis (members of the ruling family belong to them). The remaining 15% includes Christians, Jews, Baha’is, Hindus, Buddhists, and Parsis. State structure. The Al-Khalifa dynasty, headed by the Emir, has been in power in Bahrain since 1783. The current Emir Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa ascended the throne in 1999 after the death of his father, Emir Isa bin Salman al-Khalifa, who had ruled the country since 1961. In 1973 a constitution was adopted and a parliament (National Assembly) was formed. However, in 1975, the Emir dissolved parliament and began to rule the country with the help of the Cabinet appointed by him, the leading positions in which were taken by his close relatives. In December 1992, a 30-member advisory council was formed in order to increase the responsibility of the executive and promote a clearer division of responsibilities at the highest level. The council was increased to 40 members in mid-1996, and its powers were expanded. Bahrain is a member of the United Nations, the League of Arab States, the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Persian Gulf, the Organization of the Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries and the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Economy. Bahrain has been known as a center of trade since ancient times. In the oases, farmers grew date palm and other fruits as well as fodder crops and vegetables, raised sheep, goats, cattle and chickens. The construction of single-masted Arabian ships and the extraction of pearls were established. However, all these economic activities fell by the wayside after the discovery of oil in Bahrain in 1932. Oil fields have been exploited since 1934, and in 1935 the first refinery was built. Peak production came in 1970-1972, and by the early 1980s oil reserves are severely depleted and are now no more than 27 million tons. In the mid-1990s, the second most productive refinery in the Middle East was put into operation, receiving crude oil primarily from Saudi Arabia. Bahrain has vast reserves of natural gas, which is used as a feedstock for the petrochemical industry and for the production of butane and propane. Gas also serves as fuel for an aluminum smelter with a capacity of 450.7 thousand tons (1996). Raw materials are delivered from Australia. Bahrain is the largest producer of aluminum in the Middle East. After 1975 Bahrain became an international banking center. In 1998 there were 80 branches of foreign banks, which conducted financial operations in the region. The revenues from these operations account for approx. 20% OF GDP. Foreign tourism is of great importance.
Only 4% of Bahrain’s land is suitable for agriculture. Vegetables, date palm, citrus fruits, and grapes are currently grown. Self-sufficiency in dairy products reaches 50%. Pearl mining and fishing is conducted. Large islands of the archipelago are connected by dykes, on which the roads are laid. Since 1986, such a highway connects Bahrain with Saudi Arabia. Bahrain has a large international airport, dry docks suitable for repairing even supertankers, as well as a seaport and several storage complexes. History. As far back as in the III millennium B.C. Bahrain had a rich civilization and was known to the Sumerians as the Paradise Island of Dilmun. The first Europeans to occupy Bahrain were the Portuguese. They possessed it for most of the 16th century. The British first came to Bahrain in 1820, and from 1861 to 1971 the islands were under British protectorate, which in 1892 was signed the relevant treaty. Bahrain gained full independence in 1971. In the early 1980s, Bahrain was threatened by Iran, which renewed its old claim to sovereignty over the archipelago, although it formally renounced it in 1970. In response to Iranian, as well as Iraqi, attempts to establish its hegemony in the Persian Gulf, Bahrain, along with Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar, formed the Gulf Cooperation Council in 1981. Despite generally good neighborly relations with the Arabian Peninsula states, Bahrain inherited a border dispute with Qatar. Both countries lay claim to Khowar Island, located near Qatar’s west coast. It was given to Bahrain by decision of England when both sides were under its protectorate. In November 1994, Qatar unilaterally petitioned the International Court of Justice about the conflict, but the issue remains unresolved and is generating political tension. Bahrain has endorsed the presence of U.S. forces in the Persian Gulf region since 1949, as expressed in the establishment of the Middle East Naval Task Force. Although relations along these lines have not been smooth at times (and were even interrupted in the 1970s, but previous agreements have not been canceled), the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet uses Bahrain as its main base in the Persian Gulf. After the invasion and occupation of Kuwait by the Iraqi army in August 1990, the government of Bahrain allowed the U.S. Air Force to base itself in its territory. In October 1991 Bahrain and the U.S. signed a 10-year interstate defense cooperation treaty. Under the terms of the treaty, they planned to conduct joint exercises, deepen other forms of military cooperation and ensure the supply of U.S. weapons in cases of sharp deterioration of the situation in the region.
MANAMA’S MASTERSHIP OF THE POTTERSHIP
Collier’s Encyclopedia. – Open Society . 2000 .
See what “BAHRAIN” is in other dictionaries:
Bahrain – The state of Bahrain, in Southwest Asia, in the Persian Gulf. It is located on more than 20 islands and is called Bahrain, the largest of them. The name reflects the island’s position among the sea: arab, bahr sea , bahari sea, seaside …. … Geographic Encyclopedia
Bahrain – (State of Bahrain), in Southwest Asia, on the islands of Bahrain, in the Persian Gulf. The total area is about 0.69 thousand sq.km. The population is 531 thousand people, mainly Bahraini Arabs. The official language is Arabic. The state religion is Islam. …. … The Illustrated Encyclopaedic Dictionary
BAHRAIN – The State of Bahrain (Daulat al. Bahrain), a state (emirate) in Southeast Asia, on the island of Bahrain, in the Persian Gulf. Population – 486,000 (1993), mainly Bahrainis (Arabs of Bahrain). Urban population 83% (1990)…. … Great Encyclopedic Dictionary
BAHRAIN – BAHRAIN, State of Bahrain (Daulat Al Bahrain), a state (emirate) in Southwest Asia, on the archipelago of the same name in the Persian Gulf. There are a total of 33 chapters, the largest of which are Bahrain, Muharraq, Sitra, Umm Naassan, and Hawar. Area. 598.3 sq km. The pop. 370 (1982) …. … Encyclop. Demographic Dictionary
Bahrain – noun, number of synonyms: 1 – country (281) ASIS Dictionary of Synonyms. V. N. Trishin. 2013 … Dictionary of Synonyms
Bahrain, an emirate located on an island in the Persian Gulf. The Persians, who ruled B. from 1602 to 1783, expelled the Arab Shah of the Al Khalifa family, whose representatives still rule the emirate. From 1802, Great Britain established control over B….. … World History
BAHRAIN – Area of 600 sq.km, population 280 thousand people. The economy of the country is based on oil-producing and oil-refining industries. Agriculture is dependent on artificial irrigation. Over 2/3 of the cultivated area is under date plantations … World Sheep Breeding
Bahrain – Kingdom of Bahrain مملكة البحرين Mamlaka al Bahrain … Wikipedia
Bahrain – State of Bahrain (Daulat al Bahrain), a state (emirate) in Southwest Asia, on the islands of Bahrain, in the Persian Gulf. The area of the country is about 0.69 thousand sq.km. Population is 598 thousand (1996), mainly Bahrainis (Arabs of Bahrain). The urban population is 90.3%…..