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Did You Know?

The name Bahrain means ‘Two Seas’ in Arabic. It derives its name from the fact that in Bahrain, sweet water springs from the middle of the salty sea.
 
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Getting around in Bahrain PDF Print E-mail
By Rebecca Torr   »   Just days after first arriving in Bahrain my husband presented me with a map, a set of keys and a hired car and with a grin told me to “go and explore!”
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A world of great taste PDF Print E-mail
By Roy Kietzman   »   Where in the world can you stroll down a lane and have the choice of continental, Far Eastern, Indian, Irish, Japanese or Thai cooking? Amble farther into the area, and all sorts of restaurants and cafés are founds in the back streets.
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Weaving magic at the Craft Centre PDF Print E-mail
By Roy Kietzman   »   The Craft Centre, run entirely by Bahraini women, is becoming an increasingly popular stop for visitors to Bahrain, and it's no surprise why.
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Birth of Islam in Bahrain PDF Print E-mail
Bahrain's history had opened it to a multitude of cultural influences, and when the first Moslems arrived in the seventh century, there were already a number of other faiths, including Christians, Jews and Zoroastrians.
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Ten most used gestures in the Gulf PDF Print E-mail
By Kate Mitchell   »   It's often hard to communicate when two people don't speak the same language, which is why it helps to understand what an Arab is trying to say when he communicates with his hands. Here are 10 of the most commonly used gestures in the Middle East:
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Bahrain F1 season-opener is a thriller PDF Print E-mail
Some 40,000 race fans roared their approval, with millions more watching around the world, as Renault's reigning world champion Fernando Alonso staved off seven-time champion Michael Schumacher to win the 2006 Bahrain Grand Prix.
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Arabic coffee, anyone? PDF Print E-mail
By Ghada Alansari   »   If you are one of those people who enjoys a good cup of coffee, then you have come to the right place. Cafés – both traditional Arabic and Western – are scattered all over the island and the choices are fabulous.
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Rent-a-car best way to explore PDF Print E-mail
The best option by far if you would like to go to places quickly and easily is to rent a car. Rental charges are very reasonable.
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Koheji brilliance brings past to life PDF Print E-mail
By Roy Kietzman   »   When it's time to say farewell to Bahrain, visitors and long-time residents can pretty much count on - if they're lucky - getting a Koheji painting from well wishers as a remembrance of their favourite island. The swashes of pastel spotted hues often make up scenes of bygone Bahrain that have made their way into hundreds of homes and offices, both here and overseas.
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The Al Khalifas: Bahrain's First Family PDF Print E-mail
The history of Bahrain's ruling Al Khalifa family goes back more than two centuries. Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Khalifa, who conquered Bahrain in 1783, was the first member of the Al Khalifa dynasty, which which has ruled ever since.
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Understanding Arabs: A westerner's guide PDF Print E-mail
By Kate Mitchell   »   Most people, especially in the West, have a pre-conceived idea of what constitutes an Arab. These ideas usually fall into the 1970s western image of the urban Arab as excessively wealthy, or the more romantic desert Arab portrayed by Omar Sharif in Lawrence of Arabia. These images may be mixed with those of religious fanaticism, often rendering the visitor nervous or anxious about what he is to behold.
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Bahrain to flag off 2006 F1 season PDF Print E-mail
Bahrain, which made history in 2004 by becoming the first Middle Eastern country to host a Formula One Grand Prix, will have the honour of kicking off the 2006 F1 season on March 12.
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Rules of the road PDF Print E-mail
Here are some rules to follow when driving in Bahrain. Some are common-sense, others are regulations you need to be aware of.
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The way it used to be PDF Print E-mail
By Lynn Collins   »   When I arrived in Bahrain from Scotland with my parents and my younger brother in August 1951 I immediately felt very much at home - a feeling that is still with me more than 50 years later. I am sure it is more to do with the warmth of the Bahraini people than the fact that the sun shines more in Bahrain than in Scotland.
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Coffee etiquette: What you should know PDF Print E-mail
By Ghada Alansari   »   Serving or partaking of Arabic coffee in this region has its own customs and knowing them can be helpful.
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A picture of success PDF Print E-mail
By Roy Kietzman   »   Riffa Elementary School art teacher Karim Al Bosta knew talent when he saw it. And he did see it in one of his pupils, Shaikh Rashid bin Khalifa Al Khalifa. Al Bosta encouraged the youngster, attempting to bring out the creativeness he demonstrated in his class work. And so it was that Shaikh Rashid, at the age of 14, produced his first oil: a landscape.
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Bahrain revs up its winning Formula PDF Print E-mail
By Roy Kietzman   »  When a small Middle Eastern island of 650,000 people was awarded a Formula-1 race in 2004, motor racing fans might have been forgiven for their scepticism. This was, after all, not just any sporting event. This was the world’s greatest motor race, with a decades-long history and television viewership of over 300 million fans in 172 countries.
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Bahrain: The last 100 years PDF Print E-mail
By Kate Mitchell   »   “The golden-dusted roads which cross it are broad and shaded on either side by long forests of date palms, deepening into an impenetrable greenness, cool with the sound of wind among the great leaves and the tinkling water.” Written by Aubrey Herbert, of Bahrain in 1905, this description illustrates immediately why Bahrain was an important island within the Gulf.
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Taxi fare guide PDF Print E-mail
Here is approximately what it will cost you to take a taxi from city centre Manama to these destinations:
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Jewels from the sea PDF Print E-mail
By Heather Anderson   »   There is perhaps no more beautiful gem than the natural pearl, and for centuries Bahrain was the place to go if you wanted the world’s finest pearls. Even today, despite cheaper cultured (artificially created) pearls being widely available, Bahrain’s exquisite natural gems are highly prized for their beauty, near perfection and brilliant lustre.
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Drawn by a love for Bahrain PDF Print E-mail
By Roy Kietzman   »   Being a legend in his own time hasn't slowed Abdulla Al Muharraqi form his harried working pace of sketching two cartoons daily for the press, preparing for local and overseas art exhibitions, continuing on his latest canvas of a scene from the Arabia of bygone days or welcoming guests into his own gallery. The name Muharraqi is arguably the most well known among the far over a hundred artists in Bahrain and has become virtually a household word.
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Life in the times before air-conditioning PDF Print E-mail
By Mika Michael   »   Considering the very difficult climate it is hard to believe how anyone could have survived in Bahrain before the advent of electricity and air-conditioning. But still there have been people living in the country for over 5,000 years. How did they do it?
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Painting the past PDF Print E-mail
By Valerie Franchi   »  Even before she could read and write, Nawal Ahmed Kamal was painting. She had a love of art and creativity long before she knew what it meant to be an artist.
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Extreme makeover: Home edition PDF Print E-mail
By Heather Anderson   »   Talk about extreme makeovers. There have been a number of restorations of ancient Bahraini homes and buildings over the last few years, but perhaps few if any can match the dramatic facelift given to the Muharraq home of late Abdullah Al Zayed, a pioneer writer and editor.
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Blind artist's unique vision PDF Print E-mail
By Valerie Franchi   »   Bahraini artist Nasser Al Yousif has participated in countless exhibitions, has been honored by art societies and praised by critics both in Bahrain and abroad. His work has won numerous awards including the Al Dana Prize, the country's top arts honour. These are significant accomplishments in any artist’s career, but they are even more impressive when you consider that Al Yousif will never see the work that has received such acclaim: he is totally blind.
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Reviving Bahrain's architectural past PDF Print E-mail
Much of Bahrain’s architectural heritage was destroyed as modern cookie-cutter homes replaced traditional buildings. Now, there is a growing trend to reclaim past glories.
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The language of art PDF Print E-mail
By Valerie Franchi   »   Bahraini artist Balquees Fakhroo’s home in Jurdab is decorated with abstract paintings from the Middle East and Africa – she particularly likes the works of artists from Iraq and Sudan. But the art that stands out the most in her American-style ranch house is her own.
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The story behind Arab names PDF Print E-mail
By Amira Al Hussaini   »   “Does your name mean anything?” I am often asked. Well, yes, actually it does. In fact, most Arab names have a little story behind them; to know mine, you’ll just have to read on…
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Traditional skills still alive in Bahrain PDF Print E-mail
By Heather Anderson   »  There has always been a rich tradition of arts and crafts in Bahrain, going back many thousands of years to the Dilmun era.  Bahrain’s position at the crossroads of an important trade route in the Gulf linking Arabia with Asia and beyond made it a meeting place throughout history for many different cultural influences.  There has been a cross fertilisation and sharing of ideas, which have enriched the local culture and art.
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Feats of clay PDF Print E-mail
By Archie D’Cruz   »   Deep in the heart of Bahrain, amidst 4,000-year-old burial mounds, seven family units in the village of A’ali practice a craft that is just as ancient.
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