I have recently been back to Bahrain and can report that despite some trouble, Bahrain is still a safe a fun place to visit. I spent just over 5 weeks living in Al Manama and during my stay I did not witness any trouble at all! Yes if you look for it then you can find trouble but then you can do that with most countries!
I have always felt safe in this part of the world and I naturally was very apprehensive when I flew out to Bahrain because of negative news reports, however within a few days I was relaxed and enjoying the hospitality and great weather of Bahrain.
Bahrain is one of the freest countries in the Middle East and has suffered from the financial damage that has been created by a small minority. Yet despite this trouble Bahrain still holds huge opportunities for people looking to find a better life.
The standard of living is high and of course the cost of fuel is low. 13pence per liter! It never stops amazing me that you can fill up a large car for less then £7 and what a huge difference that makes to your living expenses.
Internet access is available in almost all major malls and most cafes. You can freely surf most of the web however they do clamp down on adult websites.
Alcohol is available at almost all major hotels and there is a varied and exciting night scene in Bahrain which caters for most peoples tastes.
I highly recommend Friday Brunch. A lot of the restaurants / hotels offer this and prices range from 7 dinar to 30 dinar. The meal is normally a buffet and you can eat as much as you want. If you take Brunch at an establishment which offers alcohol then this is also included in the price and is a great way to drink without having to spend a fortune. The Ritz Carlton was my favorite with a stunning buffet and delicious food.
Bahrain Shopping Malls are modern, friendly and contain indoor theme parks, water slides and cinemas. There is a huge selection of food and almost all of the major designers have shops in the Malls. Thursday and Fridays are very busy especially during the hot season because these malls act as social meeting places and relief from the heat.
There is great fishing along the coast especially near the bridges and it is safe to fish at any time of day or night. I would suggest fishing with other people just to be on the safe side but I can say that I have never felt intimidated when I have gone fishing.
You can hire Jet Skis and spend a day racing along the coast or visit one of the many private beaches run by the hotels and relax in comfort and style.
As with all Muslim countries the key to having a safe and fun time is to respect their laws. This means:-
- Do not walk round in public drunk, making a noise or causing a scene. This is a sure fire way to attract attention and get yourself arrested!
- Dress appropriately – There are plenty of private beaches to flaunt your latest swim suit and loads of night clubs to show off your latest sexy dress however during the day I would suggest that you dress in respectable clothes i.e. Long dress or jeans. Same goes for men. Walking round without a top is frowned on.
- Never drink and drive – Taxis are cheap. If you have a crash and the police discover that you have had even just one drink then you are in big trouble regardless of whose fault it was.
Bahrain may be a small country but each area of Bahrain has its own very distinct character. A lot of Bahrain island is barren desert, as the surface is lime stone covered with saline salt, although with a surprisingly varied wildlife. Bahrain also has a fertile strip along the north
Much of the oil industry in Bahrain is concentrated near the highest point of the main Bahrain island, Jebel ad-Dukhan. The entire country
of Bahrain covers an area of only 48km long by 16km wide. Although there are another 32 islands that help to make up Bahrain.
The King Fahad causeway connects Bahrain to Saudi Arabia which is only 25km away from Bahrain. Bahrain is home to more then 600,000 people, about which 30 percent are non-Bahraini immigrants.
Manama, Bahrain’s capital is an extremely cosmopolitan city. The official language of Bahrain is Arabic although most people speak English.
Due to an oil boom in the region, Bahrain has become the world’s fastest growing financial center by the City of London’s Global Financial Centres Index. The Index of Economic Freedom published by the Heritage Foundation / Wall Street Journal, also stated in 2006 that Bahrain has the freest economy in the Middle East and is the 25th freest economy in the world.
60% of export receipts come from petroleum production and processing and between them they also accounts for 60% of government revenues, and 30% of GDP.
The economy of Bahrain has fluctuated and is very dependent on oil prices as not only does Bahrain produce oil, but it also a major tourist attraction for neighboring Arab countries and when these countries boom, so does Bahrain.
Bahrain has a highly developed communication net work with virtually unrestricted Internet access and broad band readily available in most 5 star & 4 star hotels.
Chance of Rain72°/61°
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