Fly To Muharraq, Bahrain
Bahrain is the smallest of the independent Persian Gulf states, but it’s also one of the most liberal and Western-friendly. It has a distinctly Arab vibe, without the limitations of Islamic Law being imposed on foreign visitors. This unusual tolerance, combined with its flourishing petroleum-based economy and cosmopolitan middle-class has made Bahrain a popular destination.
Like most Gulf countries, Bahrain can be pricey, especially if you’re travelling around the same time as the Bahrain Grand Prix. Thankfully, Travelstart can find you the cheapest flights to Bahrain in an instant, saving you not just money, but time as well.
Visa Requirements and SA Embassy Details
- South African Passport holders do need a Visa to visit Bahrain. Leave plenty of time for Visa processing, and remember to check that your passport is valid for 6 months after your return date, and that you have 3 blank pages available for entry stamps.
- The South African Consular Office in Bahrain is situated in Manama. Hannover Retakaful B.S.C., Al Zamil Tower, 17th Floor, Government Avenue, Manama. Phone: + 973 17 576 664.
See and do
The biggest event of the Bahraini year is undoubtedly the Formula 1 Grand Prix. April sees thousands of visitors flocking to the city, and prices soar with increasing demand.
If you’re not into cars or crowds, don’t worry, there’s plenty more to Bahrain than just its race-track. In fact, it’s most popular activities aren’t even land-based - the water is the place to be. Sailing and scuba diving are particularly popular, and luxury yachts dot the surrounding waters. Sadly, if you’re hoping for beaches from which to enjoy the warm waters, you’ll be disappointed. The only beaches in Bahrain are man-made, and tied to expensive resorts along the coastline.
If you’re brave enough to handle the desert heat ashore, pay a visit to one of Bahrain’s forts. The Qala’at al-Bahrain is the largest, and has a great museum next door, showcasing artefacts dating back 5000 years.
The remarkable prehistoric burial grounds at A’ali are also worth a visit. It’s the largest cemetery of its kind in the world. While you’re there, pay a visit to A’ali Village Pottery, where you’ll find some wonderful, traditional Arabic souvenirs.
Bahrain isn’t cheap, but its shopping is world-class, with an abundance of luxury labels and boutiques. Don’t miss out on the fun to be had haggling at one of the local markets, or souqs, however. You can get nearly anything, and it’s an experience not to be missed.
Public transport in Bahrain isn’t extensive, and most visitors choose to simply rent a car. If you are considering using the local bus system, it’ll certainly be affordable, but maps and schedules are hard to come by, and can be confusing to the uninitiated. Taxis are available as well, but tend to be very expensive and can be tricky to find.
Bahrain International Airport – BAH
Food and beverage: Starbucks, Costa Coffee, Caribou Coffee and Gloria Jean’s.
Currency Exchange: Travelex and the Bahrain Financing Company both offer foreign exchange services at Bahrain International Airport.
Lost Luggage: Lost hold luggage should be handled by your individual airline’s help desk. Report items lost or found within the airport terminal to security, or call the Lost and Found Department on +973 1732 1429.
Airport Hotels: None on site. Nearby: Movenpick, The Dragon Hotel and Resort, Elite Resort & Spa, Novotel Al Dana Resort and Sea Loft Boutique Chalets.
Car Hire: Hanco, National, Avis, I Drive, Bahrain Limo, Al Kobaisi, Elite, Enterprise, Montreal, U Drive, Royal, Europcar, Limousina W.L.L., Sixt, Oscar, Gulf, Budget and Hertz.
Airport Hub: Bahrain International Airport (code BAH) is a hub for Gulf Air.