The imposing interior of the Grand Mosque


Get overawed by the magnificence of the Grand Mosque.

Set against the backdrop of palm trees and the sea, the Grand Mosque strikes a beautiful picture. With its exquisite Bahraini architecture, crowned by the world's largest fibreglass dome and blessed with a tranquillity reserved for the holiest of holy places, the Grand Mosque truly lives up to its name.

Though non-Moslem visitors are welcome, it is important that you dress modestly, cover your head and take your shoes off before entering.


See why the Beit Al Quran is more than just a museum.

Beit Al Quran (House of the Quran) is a rather unique museum. It is dedicated solely to the Quran and to works of art inspired by the Moslem holy book.

The museum has a distinctively Islamic architecture, with the walls inscribed with Arabic calligraphy. Many of the copies of the Quran you will see here are works of art in themselves - ranging from an ornamented 12th century Persian masterpiece, to a gold-lettered, eight-sided 16th century edition.


After the fast: Partake of 'iftar' at a Ramadan tent.

If you happen to be visiting Bahrain during the Moslem holy month of Ramadan, make it a point to visit one of the Ramadan 'tents' set up by hotels.

During the Holy Month, devout Moslems do not eat during the day, breaking the fast only at sundown with a modest meal called 'iftar'.

The hotels' Ramadan tents capture the spirit of the season, serving up Arabic refreshments, entertainment and games.

Non-Moslems are welcome to the tents which are open until 2 or 3 in the morning.


Watch history and religion converge at the Khamis Mosque.

This is one of the oldest mosques in the Arab world. Believed to be built in 692 AD, it was restored in the 11th century.

The Kufic inscriptions on its walls and the ancient arches which frame its twin minarets make the Khamis Mosque popular with photographers, historians and religious alike.

Restoration work has recently been completed at the monument, which ceased to be used as a mosque in the Sixties.


When in Bahrain, speak as the Arabs do ...

Though English-speaking visitors should have no problems making themselves understood in Bahrain, it is always nice to learn a few oft-spoken Arabic words and phrases. If nothing else, it will help you haggle for better deals at the souk! There are several English-Arabic dictionaries available in bookstores, or check the Helpline section of this guide for a list of commonly used words and phrases.


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If you've never been inside a mosque, you should visit the impressive Grand Mosque. The architecture and setting is simply awe-inspiring. It is, I believe, one of the very few mosques which non-Muslims can enter. Remember to dress appropriately when visiting and try to avoid going during prayer times.