While I was living in Kuwait, I was able to travel to Bahrain for a long weekend. Bahrain and Kuwait have been connected for a long time, as Bahrain was the center of the Dilmun civilization, which was present on Failaka Island in modern-day Kuwait as well. Here are some of the historical sites I visited while staying in Bahrain:

Beit Sheikh Isa Bin Ali: built around 1800, long before the discovery of oil. At this time, Bahrain’s main industry was pearl diving.

Al Khamis Mosque: believed by many to date from the Umayyad era during the 8th century, evidence shows it is more likely to have been built between the 12th and 13th. Up until the 1970s, there was an active weekly market that took place around the archaeological site.

Qal’at al Bahrain: an early modern Portuguese fortress built atop a much older, Dilmunite settlement stretching back to 2300 BCE. The Dilmun Civilization served as an important trading center between the city states of Mesopotamia and the Indus River Valley. It later was Hellenized under the Seleucid Empire, one of the four divisions of Alexander the Great’s massive conquered territory. The stele above date from that period and are located in the museum on site. Their use is not entirely known, although most marked graves.

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