This past weekend hubster and I ended up in Bahrain, so I thought I'd share some travel tips even though this is a Riyadh blog, because let's face it - Bahrain is where everyone ends up when they need to take a quick break from Saudi.
We flew Bahrain Air, a discount airline, instead of driving this time. The schedule is definitely not as flexible as the other major carriers, and the planes are not new, but we ended up paying about $300USD for two roundtrip tickets. For that suspiciously low price, as long as we didn't crash, we couldn't really complain. Both flights took off and landed on time, so we were happy with that and actually expected more to go wrong.
We have always stayed in the Juffair area because that is where all the action is. And by action, I do not specifically mean filipino singers, alcoholics, prostitutes, and alcoholic filipino singer/prostitutes. Yes, they are there, but I am referring more to the restaurants popular with the expat community and many of the decent hotels.
We visited Bambu, an asian restaurant, in the Adliya area for the second time and were really happy with the all-you-can-eat-and-drink meal for 15BD. We were so happy, in fact, that one of us may have ended up babbling and giggling hysterically all the way home after a very modest (pitiful?) amount of wine. You know you're drunk when you suddenly genuinely believe you are the world's funniest person. Other restos to mention are Ric's Kountry Kitchen and Jim's for brunch. Ric's being a local dive of a watering hole that serves up greasy spoon American food in the morning, and Jim's being its polite British cousin minus the bar and band. For something more lavish check out the Friday brunch at the Gulf Hotel or the Banyan Tree. And if you truly want to be fleeced and knitted into a sweater, there's always the Ritz Carlton. Trader Vic's on the Ritz resort is a popular spot to sit and have a drink outside.
Other mentionables: this past weekend our friends introduced us to City Center, and it's the nicest mall we've been to in Bahrain. It even boasts an indoor waterpark.
City Center has a slew of nice restaurants on their upper floors and has a cinema as well. Seef and Dana mall also have movie theatres for those inclined. We rented a car while we were there at the airport. Traffic was a mess at certain times of the day. We only got lost once when hubster thought he saw a guy with a cane riding a donkey down the road and took an "alternate route" to prove to me he wasn't hallucinating. With all the traffic restrictions on U Turns and stuff like that we ended up in some shanty town somewhere, but got out pretty quick.
And yes, he was right, there were in fact donkeys on the road.....
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