Tourism in Bahrain

Bahrain offers great potential as both a regional and a world tourist destination, blessed with 33 islands, a cosmopolitan capital city; an attractive, liberal lifestyle; and a rich history and culture.

Bahrain’s national airline, Gulf Air, flies from over 40 destinations worldwide. Although most tourists visit Bahrain by air, the island is also linked to the mainland by the King Fahad Causeway. It is possible to drive halfway to Saudi Arabia, and admire engineering behind the 25km, four-lane causeway with its 12,430m viaducts, from the Causeway tower.

Bahrain offers a wide variety of tourist attractions; from historic monuments such as the Al Khamis Mosque, dating back to 629 A.D, to one of the most modern Formula One racetracks on the Grand Prix circuit.

Climate

Bahrain’s climate is hot during the summer and pleasant during the winter. Temperatures are coolest between December and March when northerly winds prevail. From July to September the average temperature is 36 degrees, and annual average rainfall is close to 77mm.

In the past we have mostly focused on niche and boutique tourism, as well as the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) sector. In 2006, we attracted 4.5 million business and leisure visitors. Because of its location, competitive prices, state-of-the-art technology and services, Bahrain is an ideal place for MICE. Find out how.

Bahrain Exhibition & Convention Authority (BECA) is the country’s flagship organisation dedicated to delivering quality business-to-business events aimed at promoting Bahrain as the business tourism destination of choice in the region. More on BECA.

New developments

Bahrain Bay, City Centre Mall, Al Areen, Amwaj Islands and Durrat Al Bahrain are now opening up Bahrain to a wider market.

The unique 2 billion-dollars Al Areen development furthers Bahrain's reputation as a friendly destination for family and health-oriented tourists. Phase one is already complete, including the Al Areen place and Spa, the largest spa in the Middle East, and the state-of-the-art 'The Lost Paradise of Dilmun' Water Park. The development will include five-star hotels, residential villages, entertainment and recreational facilities, shopping centres and overlooking Al Areen Wildlife Sanctuary.

Amwaj Islands is the first freehold development in Bahrain. Costing US$1.5 billion, the project is a series of man-made islands, including four main residential islands and a theme park island, 30 office towers, a waterfront shopping mall, five star hotels, an amusement park, entertainment facilities and a marina.

Durrat Al Bahrain is the Kingdom’s largest luxury residential, commercial and tourist resort development. Costing $6 billion, it consists of The Islands, six ‘Atolls’ and five ‘Petals’, with 1800 luxury residential villas; and The Crescent, which will offer dining, shopping and entertainment. There will also be an 18-hole golf course designed by Ernie Els, and one of the region’s largest marinas, with 400 berths across three islands.

Attracted by the potential of projects like these, more and more international names are now coming to Bahrain, such as Four Seasons, Kempinski and Renaissance, who join leading hotel groups already established here like Ritz-Carlton, Sheraton, Radisson, Novotel, Marriott and Banyan Tree.

Growth in the region is set to see a 6.7% increase in international tourists by 2010.

Some of the Kingdoms must see sites:

Play golf at the Royal Golf Club:

Designed by Colin Montgomerie, the championship course at Riffa's Royal Golf Club.

Visit Al Fateh Grand Mosque:

The Al-Fateh Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the world, encompassing 6,500 square meters and having the capacity to accommodate over 7,000 worshippers at a time. The mosque is the largest place of worship in Bahrain. Wikipedia

Visit to Bahrain International Circuit:

The Bahrain International Circuit is a motorsport venue opened in 2004 and used for drag racing, GP2 and the annual Bahrain Grand Prix. The 2004 Grand Prix was the first held in the Middle East.

Shop at Souq Bab Al Bahrain:

Located in the heart of old Manama, the capital of Bahrain, the Bab-al-Bahrain seeks to revitalize the commercial and tourism market of the old Souq, making it one of  Souq Bahrain’s most important construction projects.

From a traditional Arab coffee to a contemporary western cappuccino, the Souq offers a mixture of both traditional and modern product by the best local names.

Here you may shop for unique product such as traditional perfumes, jewelry and sweets, local handicrafts, antiques, handmade carpets, local spices, teas and much more.

Tree of Life:

The Tree of Life (Shajarat-al-Hayat) in Bahrain is approximately 400 year-old, 32 feet or 9.75 m high Prosopis cineraria[1] tree located 1.2 miles or 2 kilometers from Jebel Dukhan. The tree stands on top of a 25-foot or 7.6-m high sandy hill.

The tree is a local tourist attraction, as it is the only major tree growing in the area. The tree is visited by approximately 50,000 tourists every year.

Bahrain Museum:

One of the first museums in the Gulf, the Bahrain National Museum opened in 1988. The site itself, on the edge of the sea, is a tremendous attraction, adding to its contemporary ambience which is influenced by the white travertine façade and dramatic courtyard decorated with contemporary sculptures

Suq al Qaisariya

One of the oldest sections of the Muharraq Suq, Suq al Qaisariya offers a charming shopping experience. Currently undergoing extensive restoration work by the Ministry of Culture, the first phase of the project, which has been completed, features a number of renovated shops, selling a variety of products ranging from pearls to spices and tea, as well as a traditional café - café Zaafaran – arranged around a number of historic madbassahs.

Old Houses of Muharraq

Muharraq, the former capital of Bahrain, is known for its cultural splendour and traditional Bahraini houses litter the town's narrow lanes. The Shaikh Isa bin Ali house is Bahrain's most impressive example of Gulf Islamic architecture featuring four courtyards and beautiful carved wooden doors and perforated gypsum panels.

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