Car Hire Search is an independent company that offers car hire in Bahrain. Our quote system compares the rates of most international and local car hire agencies in Bahrain, Bahrain and let's you make an informed decision on whom to rent from.
Car Hire Search wants to ensure you find the cheapest car hire in Bahrain.
Use our comparison system now and start saving on your next car rental!
It's an oasis of social liberalism – or at least Western-friendly moderation – among the Muslim countries of the region. It's popular with travelers for its authentic "Arabness" but without the strict application of Islamic law upon its non-Muslim minority.
The country has few oil reserves, but it has established itself as a hub for refining as well as international banking, while also achieving a socially liberal (by Gulf standards at least) monarchy.
Officially 220V 50Hz. Most outlets are the British standard BS-1363 type. Generally speaking, U.S., Canadian and Continental European travelers should pack adapters for these outlets if they plan to use their electrical equipment in Bahrain.
Winters in Bahrain are dry and average daytime temperatures in the low 70sF, night time lows in the 50sF. Spring and fall are pleasant, with dry weather and nights cooling off into the 60sF after days of around 85F. Late winter and spring are known for dust storms which, while not as severe as those found elsewhere in the Gulf, are still rather unpleasant. Summertime is very hot and muggy in Bahrain, with daytime temperatures being from 100-120F, and nights cooling down to anywhere from 75-90F.
Citizens of all other European unnion nations, Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China (PRC), Columbia, Ecuador, Guyana, Hong Kong (SAR passport holders), Iceland, Japan, Kazakhstan, Liechtenstein, Malaysia, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, Norway, Paraguay, Peru, Russia, San Marino, Singapore, South Korea, Suriname, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, United States, Uruguay, Vatican City and Venezuela may obtain a visa on arrival or online for stays of up to fourteen days.
Citizens of Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Cuba, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Jordan, Pakistan, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, South Africa, Taiwan and Trinidad and Tobago, in addition to persons holding British National (Overseas) passports may obtain an eVisa for stays of up to fourteen days.
Many residents of eastern Saudi Arabia choose to fly out via Bahrain, and Gulf Air offers shuttle services to Khobar and Dammam to cater to this market; inquire when booking.
The low cost carrier Air Arabia (www.airarabia.com) offers daily flights from the Sharjah Airport (IATA: SHJ) north of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
The service uses aircon minibuses with a trailer for luggage. Tickets cost SR60 (SR50 when you buy two-way) and can be purchased in advance, although they'll squeeze you in without a reservation if there is space. As crossing the Causeway involves two passport checks and one customs checks, figure on 2 hours for the trip, plus any traffic delays at busy times like Thursday evenings. At congested times, buses may actually be slightly faster than private cars, as they can use separate lanes at immigration and customs.
Rental vehicles cannot usually be taken through the border. To cross in a Saudi rental car, you need extra paperwork and insurance from the rental company, Saudi residency (Iqama) and a Saudi driving license (not just a home country license). If the car is booked to a company account, you also need a letter from your company (or standing arrangement with the rental company if it is a regular request).
Unofficial taxis (private cars) can be found hanging around bus stations at both ends, Dammam train station, and on the Saudi side of the causeway border post. The going rate from the Saudi side of the border to Manama is 20 BHD/200 SAR, but you may be able to negotiate this down when there are no queues at the border (i.e. a quick turnaround for the driver). Take the mobile number of the driver to arrange pick-up and shuttle back through the border for your return.
Obviously this is a ridiculous situation, as it means (unofficial) taxi drivers have to queue to cross the border in both directions, just to pick up a one-way fare. It would be much more efficient for everyone if they had pick-up and drop-off places on both sides, and let people walk through the immigration and customs facilities already provided for bus passengers, who have to leave the bus and enter the buildings to be processed.
English is widely spoken by Bahrainis of all ages, and is a compulsory second language at all schools.
What to see
Museums. Bahrain has a number of musueums - Al Oraifi Museum in Muharraq (Dilmun era artifacts), Beit al Quran in Hoora (rare collection of Islamic manuscripts), Bahrain National Museum on the Al Fateh Corniche, Manama, Currency Museum in the Diplomatic Area (Bahraini coinage) and the Oil Museum in Sakhir (history of the local oil industry). For example, this museum exhibits how to get oil in Bahrain and so on.
Beaches. The year-round warm climate means that the water is very warm, even in wintertime, when cooler temperatures may occur. The water is known for being very calm and clear.
Tree of Life. Although trees grow in Bahrain, this one is special because of its location in the middle of the desert amidst the oil wells and other infrastructure of the petroleum industry. You need a car to reach the tree, as it is far from the main roads and not on any public transportation route.
To reach the tree, take the Zallaq Highway heading east, which becomes the Al-Muaskar Highway. You will eventually see a sign for the Tree of Life indicating a right turn. (Although the sign seems to point you to turn onto a dirt road which actually goes nowhere, do not do so, instead wait until the next intersection which is several metres ahead). There are no signs as you travel down this road, but pay attention to a scrap metal yard on your right. Before you reach a hill which warns you of a steep 10% incline, take a right. As you continue straight down this road (including roundabouts), you will begin to see Tree of Life signs again. The signs will lead you down a road which will then be devoid of these signs, but you will eventually see the tree in the distance on the right (it is large and wide, not to be mistaken for other smaller trees along the way). You turn onto a dirt path at Gas Well #371. You can drive up to just outside of the tree, but make sure you stay on the vehicle-worn path, as turning off of it is likely to get your car stuck in the softer sand.
Although it seems like a chore to reach, the Tree of Life is worth the visit for the oddity of it. The tree is covered in graffiti, although this is not visible until you get up close. Try to make your arrival near sunset for a picturesque view of the tree and the surrounding desert.
What to do
Bahrain's biggest yearly event is the Bahrain Grand Prix F1 race, held each April at the Bahrain International Circuit. Plan well in advance, as flights sell out and hotel prices triple.
The high temperatures in Bahrain make sea activities seem extra tempting and water sports are extremely popular in Bahrain, with tourists and locals indulging in their sport of choice all year round in the warm waters of the Arabic Gulf. Sailing and scuba diving are particularly popular.
The dinar is a fully convertible currency, and there are currently no restrictions on its import or export. Denominations for coins are 5 fils, 10 fils, 25 fils, 50 fils and 100 fils. Denominations for banknotes are 500 fils (BD 1/2), BD 1, BD 5, BD 10 and BD 20.
Drink plenty of water. April through August can be very hot (up to 50 ºC) and humid. Use an umbrella to protect you from the harsh sun. It is important to stay hydrated, especially if you are outdoors during the day. Bottled water is sold practically everywhere in the city from "Cold Stores" and small restaurants at very reasonable prices. In the souk, walking vendors offer small chilled bottles but you may end up paying more than the bottle is really worth. If you are living in Bahrain for an extended period of time, you can set up an arrangement for a neighborhood Cold Store to deliver bottled water to your flat, or sign up for water delivery through several companies on the island. Water on the island is barely potable, but not recommended for drinking due to amount of bacteria and heavy mineral content.