As I mentioned before on my Dubai Trip , I had plans to go visit my brother and his wife while they are stationed in Bahrain during my two-week Christmas school break. Now, I have to admit the Kingdom of Bahrain was not in my sights to travel to during my time in Japan. However, I was feeling a bit homesick in Japan and didn’t want to spend Christmas alone so it worked out well for me to take a break from riding the jam-packed morning trains and change scenery for a short while.
Bahrain is officially known as the Kingdom of Bahrain and it’s located in the Persian Gulf. It is the third smallest nation in Asia but that doesn’t hinder this country from offering its guest some enjoyable sites to see and experience. I had a great time visiting family and I am really glad I was able to visit the Kingdom of Bahrain!
We came out to the Royal Camel Farm for one of our first outings and had a good time. I’ve never seen so many camels in one place and was surprised at how much the entrance fee costs: free. The only downside to this place was perhaps the lack of hand-wash stations. As you can imagine, after feeding and petting the friendly camels, your hands can get a bit smelly. The highlight for me was getting to see 3 day old baby camels up close, they were very cute! It can get a bit muddy too so it’s best to bring an extra pair of shoes or bags to cover the shoes you are wearing. All in all this place is well maintained and a good spot to check out if you happen to be in the area.
I love animals and going to the zoo, so I was very excited to go to the Al-Areen Wildlife Park and Reserve. The entrance fee was about 1 BD ($3) , but you have to pay separately ($3-5)for a few of the extra activities like handling the macaw’s, hawk and driving safari. The park features four main attractions: Water Birds Park, Wild Birds Park, Wild Animal’s Complex and Desert Flora Garden. The safari ride gives you a chance to see monkeys, birds and ostrich in large open spaces. This place is well worth the visit if you are an animal lover like me.
After the Wildlife Park and Reserve my brother and I went to the Tree of Life. This one is a freebie and a must for any Bahrain traveler. The tree is about 400 years old and it thrives in the middle of the desert. It’s not too tall but it is pretty wide. The information gallery on site is a great addition for any visitor wanting to learn more about this unique tree in the middle of nowhere.
A few days after Christmas we checked out this really cool place called Delmon Pottery. The potters here are very friendly and of course skilled as you can see. If you appreciate this craft too and want to see some nice quality pottery then this is your place. Many of the pieces here are made from refined mud and clay and it’s great to see the potters in action. This is a great place to buy some souvenirs and get a glimpse into this beautiful craft.
It would be a shame to travel to the middle east and not check out a bazaar. We went to Bab el-Bahrain Souk, arabic for The Gateway, located in the Customs Square in Manama. This is the old Bahrain central business district and now a tourist attraction and great place to do some souvenir shopping. I really enjoyed strolling through these narrow streets and feasting my eyes on all the cultural goodies being offered. Haggling for bargains is the name of the game here, so don’t be shy. I was blown away to see my younger brother haggle away with the store merchants and get his way. I bought a few neat souvenirs here at some good prices thanks to my bro!!
Food, I love food! And I was treated to some very tasty food during my visit. My brother and sister-in-law know all the good eateries around Bahrain and I was loving it. I love trying out new foods and I absolutely love Indian food, Bahrain has some great food options. We were even taken by full surprise to find a Pollo Campero in Bahrain of all places!! Pollo Campero is a Guatemalan restaurant chain that specializes on Latin American fried chicken recipes. It had been a long time since I last had some and it brought back a lot of childhood memories. I also got to try some homemade camel burgers and they were much better than I thought they’d be!
Qal’at al-Bahrain, Arabic for Bahrain Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. My brother and I visited this fort on one of my last few days here and it was a very nice experience. There have been many historical findings regarding this fort dating back to the 18th century. Entrance is free and there is a museum next door where you can get an audio guide. The fort has been rebuilt and a lot of effort has been made to make this place attract visitors. It’s well worth the visit and a highlight to my trip.
On my last full day my brother and I checked out the Bahrain National Museum and I got a chance to learn a bit of Middle Eastern history. The building itself is an architectural master piece. You will leave with a good impression of the Bahrain of yesteryear. There is also a really nice cafe facing the sea towards the end of the tour worth checking out. The entrance fee is 1 BD ($3). It’s worth the visit if you enjoy learning of other countries’ customs and history.
My trip to Bahrain was awesome. It was all thanks to my brother and sister-in-law, they showed me a great time and really made this trip a memorable one! The Kingdom of Bahrain is small in size but it has a lot to offer its guest. I am happy to have had the chance to visit this place. Happy travels!