In the next few days, we visited various other tourist spots in and around Bahrain.
I really liked the calm and serene ambience/atmosphere over there. Although there was a bit of traffic, it was not too much.
These are the places we visited in the last few days of our visit:
- Bahrain National Museum
This museum is located in the capital of Bahrain, Manama and is the oldest public museum in the country. In the museum, there were different features of the Dilmun Civilization. There was separate hall called the Hall of Dilmun which showcased the most important archaeological sites in Bahrain and their discoveries as well as how Bahrain changed from the Neolithic Period to the Late Dilmun Period. There also was a separate Hall for Dilmun Mounds. In the other halls there were arrays displaying the culture and tradition of Bahrain.
I liked the way they exhibited their heritage especially in the Hall of Traditional Trades and Crafts as it recreates a traditional Bahraini souq (local market). It gives you the feeling of a busy marketplace full of energetic people.
2. Qal’at al-Bahrain / Bahrain Fort
Qal’at al-Bahrain: The Ancient Harbour and Capital of Dilmun, became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007. This archaeological site was the capital of one of the most important civilizations of the region- The Dilmun Civilization. The site comprises four main elements: an archaeological tell (an artificial hill formed over time by successive occupations); a sea tower about 1600m North-West of the tell; a sea channel and palm-groves. https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1192
I liked the idea of the traditional agricultural gardens surrounding the site and also the palm-groves as it gives the place a nice greenery look and a soothing sensation to the eyes.
The view of the fort in the evening, during sunset was really nice.
3. Al Khamis Mosque
The Al Khamis Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in the Arab world. It is believed to be the first and oldest extant mosque in Bahrain. There is also a Visitor’s Centre next to the Mosque where you can see artefacts.
Archaeological artefacts at the Visitor’s Centre:
4. Barbar Temple
The Barbar Temple consists of three consecutive temples (Temple I, Temple II & Temple III). Being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Barbar Temple is among the most remarkable architectural survivals of the ancient world. This temple is located in the village of Barbar.
5. Bahraini Halwa!
Having a sweet tooth, I was excited for this one as we were to get a live demonstration on how to prepare Halwa and also get to taste it! Traditional Bahraini Halwa is a prominent element in Bahraini culture. The Showaiter family in Bahrain has been known for this from a very long time. When you travel in Bahrain, especially in Manama you would come across a number of Showaiter Halwa Shops, which belong to the Showaiter family. We were able to have a live demonstration on how to prepare the Halwa in the kitchen of the Showaiter Halwa Factory. This reminded me of the Thoothukudi Halwa eaten in the South Indian state of Tamilnadu.
Do read this write up about, Workshop on Bahrain Halwa: The Exclusive Bahraini Halwa – A Workshop at the Showaiter’s
These were all the places we visited on the last few days of our trip to Bahrain.
As this is my last post about Bahrain, I would like to tell you a few of my thoughts about our trip:
- Once I came to know about the Dilmun Civilisation, I was keen to know more about it. Visiting the museum benefited me.
- Before this, I had only eaten halwa, but having a live demonstration was a new and enjoyable experience for me.
- Our visit to the Al Jasra Handicrafts Centre gave me a new perspective about arts and crafts.