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City in Late Afternoon Manama, Al Manamah, Bahrain
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Living in Bahrain

Bahrain, officially the Kingdom of Bahrain, is a borderless island country in the Persian Gulf and is the smallest Arab nation. Saudi Arabia lies to the west and is connected to Bahrain by the King Fahd Causeway (officially opened on November 25, 1986), and Qatar is to the south across the Persian Gulf. The Qatar–Bahrain Friendship Bridge currently being planned will link Bahrain to Qatar as the longest fixed link in the world.

Bahrain is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Middle East with over two million tourists a year. Most of the visitors are from the Arab, Persian Gulf states but there is an increasing number of tourists from outside the region thanks to a growing awareness of the Kingdom’s rich heritage and its higher profile with regards to the Bahrain Formula One Race Track.  The Lonely Planet describes Bahrain as "an excellent introduction to the Persian Gulf" because of its authentic Arab heritage and reputation as relatively liberal and modern. The Kingdom combines authentic Arab culture, contemporary Gulf glitz and the archaeological legacy of five thousand years of civilisation. The ancient civilisation of Dilmun, which dominated trade between Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley Civilization, was centred in Bahrain.
Carving in Doors of Old High Court Building, Now Heritage Centre Manama, Al Manamah, Bahrain
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 The inhabitants of Dilmun left behind settlements and temples and tens of thousands of burial mounds which dot the landscape.  Dilmun prospered because it had fresh water, and it is this resource which has meant that Bahrain has long fought over by regional powers in a predominantly arid region. As a result, the island is home to many castles including the impressive Qalat Al Bahrain which was recently listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. The Bahrain National Museum has a wide-varied collection of artifacts from the Kingdom's history dating back to the island's first human inhabitation 9000 years ago....  Read more

Travel Reading on Bahrain:

Living in Bahrain   by Rhiannon Williamson

The Kingdom of Bahrain basks in the warm, clear and calm waters of the Persian Gulf and is an incredibly prosperous and multi cultural country becoming increasingly popular with professional expatriates seeking well paying employment in a low taxation country where the standard of living in Bahrain is incredibly high and the local people are liberal and tolerant towards other cultures.
Sheikh Isa Bin Sulman Causeway Manama, Al Manamah, Bahrain
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Bahrain manages to maintain a relatively neutral foreign policy and because of its general liberalism it's a great place for Western expatriates to experience a totally new life abroad. These facts mean that the number of international citizens living in Bahrain has increased substantially in recent years and directly contributed to the fact that Bahrain now has the fastest growing economy in the Arab world.

For anyone considering living in Bahrain this article is an introduction to the country, the entry requirements and to living and working in Bahrain.

Citizens of all nations other than Gulf Cooperation Council countries require a visa to enter Bahrain with the majority of those moving to live in the Kingdom being sponsored for their visa by their employer. 

The range of visas available is vast with much depending on whether the applicant has a job offer, is a spouse or dependent of an employed person in Bahrain, the country the individual heralds from etc., and therefore those considering travelling to Bahrain should initially contact their nearest Bahraini embassy or visit the Kingdom of Bahrain's Ministry of Interior website to find out which visa they should apply for and how to go about the application process.
The capital city of the Kingdom of Bahrain is Manama and most expatriates live in and around the capital and work in one of the Kingdom's main industries which are petroleum production and processing, IT, telecommunications, hospitality, medicine or banking. As a result of the popularity of the location, property for sale and rent in Manama is offered at a premium and those moving to work in Bahrain on a firm job offer should try and negotiate some money towards their housing as part of their overall remuneration package.

Unlike in some other Arab nations foreigners are permitted to own property in Bahrain and because the economy of the nation is so strong many see investment into property in Bahrain as a solid move to make. 

Aerial View over the Diplomatic Quarter, Bahrain, Middle East
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However for those keen on living in Bahrain the first step to take is to secure a job offer and then to rent housing while settling into the Kingdom and ensuring it is right for them before committing to the purchase of immovable property assets that can be slow to liquidate should the individual in question decide to leave the Kingdom.

Finally it's worth noting that the standard of living enjoyed by westerners living in Bahrain is incredibly high. As stated Bahrain is a prosperous country and one offering residents and visitors alike a cosmopolitan destination with exciting nightlife and incredible shopping! Hence it is of no surprise whatsoever that the number of international expatriates moving to the Kingdom ever year is on the increase.

About the Author: Rhiannon Williamson writes guides and articles about planning a new life in Asia and the Arabic World on her site visit the site for further specialist advice about working, education and living in Bahrain.


Search for more hotels in Manama
Al Safir Hotel and Apartments, Manama
Al Safir Tower, adjacent to the Hotel, offers both lodging and leisure, equipping residential apartments with hotel facilities. The Tower boasts 71 sumptuous hotel apartments, comprising 22 studios, 28 two-bedroom apartments (with an option to merge the two to form a three-bedroom accommodation), 16 executive apartments, four VIP suites and one imperial suite. Each of the hotel and tower residences boasts vibrant décor, combining luxurious furnishings with innovative technology to radiate contemporary elegance. Come, make your occasion special at Al Safir Hotel & Tower in Manama in Bahrain with our warm welcome.
Best Western Juffair Hotel, Manama, Bahrain
A 4-star boutique hotel with spacious rooms offering free in-room amenities like: Internet access, coffee/tea maker, mineral water bottles, and newspaper. A gym, rooftop swimming pool, free iron and iron board in every room are added advantages. The Bet Western Juffair Hotel sets new standards in hospitality offering five excellent gourmet outlets for dining and entertainment right at your fingertips, including the Wranglers - the hippest hangout in town. 
The Ritz-Carlton, Bahrain Hotel and Spa, Manama
A hotel with a truly unique elegance. It's the only hotel on the island to own a private beach, lagoon, island, Marina and Spa facilities. This is the most exclusive hotel in Bahrain. The modern building is surrounded of gardens. At the back of the building is the landscaped pool and the white sandy beach. The whole area is extremely attractive and exclusive. Lobby: An extremely impressive large foyer welcomes the visitor into the comfortable luxury of the hotel. The exposed glass lifts on a backdrop of black marble look over one of the most stunning lobbies in the whole of the Middle East.
The Gulf Hotel, Manama
Gulf Hotel a landmark in Manama stands tall in the commercial district of Adliya. It is in the city centre and only 15 minutes away from Bahrain International Airport. Just 3 minutes drive to the NSA US base and walking distance to the shopping area. It overlooks the grand mosque and the enchanting guest palace. It is one of the best loactions for corporate/business and leisure guests.
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