Why Bahrain is the Ultimate Getaway
Why Bahrain is the Ultimate Winter Getaway
With sea, sand, surf and old-school habits, discover what makes this beautiful archipelago 2019’s go-to sunshine squeeze



Dusk on Muharraq Island and the orange sun lingers high above the Suq Al-Qaisariya, a warren of wind towers and ochre-coloured alleyways. It shadows the fishing fleet on the harbour, where earlier in the day sailors-turned-dive-instructors floated in a submarine world on a hunt for pearls, à la 007. The scent of grilled seafood from a traditional barbecue and the sugar-sweet smell of shisha wafts through the air, and the night is wonderfully warm, as it always is. For the briefest of moments, it could be 100 years ago.
Muharraq is one of 33 islands in the Bahraini archipelago, a khanjar-shaped landscape of golden beaches, gently-lapping shores and whisper-quiet wildlife north of capital Manama.
The Arabian Gulf waters are home to reefs and wrecks, dugongs and whale sharks, the shores the haunt of beach-lovers who have no problem finding footprint-free sands. Water sports outfits – scuba divers, wakeboarders and water skiers – scoot past alongside. This is Bahrain in a nutshell: fun-loving, footloose and fancy-free.

A beach for every day

With winter on its way, there’s never been a better time to visit Bahrain.
To begin with, there’s the beaches. Bahrain knows its place and its appeal, and local pride in the islands and coastline is more than justifiable.
Unseasonably warm weather year round and an array of water-based activities means there's a beach for every occasion. Sand-between-your-toes barbecues are standard from Jazair Beach and Karbabad Beach to Jarada Island, as is salt-licked skin and just-landed hammour for the grill.
From the Bahrain Yacht Club in Sitra, you can kayak across a lagoon or jet-ski, while on the Amwaj Islands you can buckle-up to join kiteboarders jolting into the sky. Small wonder Bahrainis rarely look elsewhere for a beach holiday.


Delightful dining...

Shuttling from beach to beach is just the beginning. The prospect of joining like-minded souls for al fresco dining continues the good vibes. Block 338 in Manama’s Adliya neighbourhood is packed with cafés and restaurants, including Attic, a retro Greek kouzina with a soul-stirring roof terrace overlooking the Al-Fateh Grand Mosque.
A shortcut to blending in also begins over a strawberry labneh salad and peach ice tea in the courtyard at Coco’s, or at the Orangery Tearoom and Patisserie within the grounds of the Palace Boutique Hotel. Equally compelling is storied poolside tiki lounge Trader Vic’s at The Ritz-Carlton in Seef. Here, terrific Filipino cover bands make you feel like a local.
Times have changed in Bahrain since the days of the first pearl divers, of course, but the age-old pleasures of sun, sea, sand and seafood — thankfully — remain admirably the same.
Whatever you want from a holiday, discover the warmth of Bahrain.

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