Bahrain is a cute little island tucked away in the middle of the Arabian Gulf. Much larger and much more powerful neighbours surround Bahrain from all sides: the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar and, of course, Saudi Arabia. But contrary to what you might expect from a Muslim country, Bahrain is very modern and very open to foreign cultures, and that can also be seen reflected in the nightlife entertainment options.
You can always organise a party just the way you like it in your apartment, in your house or by your private pool, but if you want to spend a night out in the town, these are some of your options:
Bahrain Nightlife – Night clubs
Bahrain is a country with a very diverse population, and the nightlife had to offer something to every demographic. You can find night clubs where they play Western music (a mix of dance, pop, hip-hop and so on), clubs with Arabic music (where they also serve sheesha), hip-hop clubs, Indian clubs, and many others. Most of the night clubs in Bahrain are part of a hotel and are known in connection to the hotel where they are located. Some of the best-known clubs in Bahrain are:
- The One: located in an area called Al Juffair, The One caters to the Western and American demographic. The owners do a great job organising frequent parties featuring international musical guests (Inna, Lil Jon and Fatty Wap are just three of the artists who performed here).
- Klub 360: also located in Al Juffair, Klub 360 has been around for quite a long time now and has managed to build a faithful crowd. The club plays mostly western music.
Bahrain Nightlife – Bars and lounges
There is a large number of bars and lounges on the island. They become full during weekends, from Thursday to Saturday, when Bahrain receives a lot of visitors coming from the neighbouring countries.
Most bars and lounges serve alcoholic drinks and some even have happy hours. One of the most popular bars in Bahrain is called JJ’s. It is an Irish pub serving pub food and a large variety of drinks (including, of course, Guinness beer).
Some of the most crowded places in Bahrain will be those that offer outdoor sitting and that also have good outdoor cooling systems. Block 338 in Adliya is the area to go to in search of good bars and good crowds. Places like Lanterns (nice mixed crowd, good AC and good drinks), Iris (high-end lounge and terrace for the fancier crowd) and Meisei (outdoor rooftop lounge with good views) are only some of the many entertainment options Block 338 has to offer.
A lot of bars and lounges can also be found in hotels, and the access is open to everyone. Ritz Carlton Hotel, for instance, is famous for its bars and lounges. Go to Trader Vic’s (indoor bar with Polynesian theme) or to May Tai (relaxing outdoor lounge) to taste some of the tasty (but also very strong) cocktails on the menu.
The atmosphere in many of the bars and lounges in Bahrain becomes ‘heated’ after 11pm. That’s when the music becomes a little bit louder and the party a little bit more lively. Such a place is Coda Jazz Lounge in Al Juffair, where you can listen to live jazz music in the first half of the night, and dance to modern DJ rhythms in the second half.
Pool Parties and Beach Parties
Once the weather starts to cool down in October, and all the way until it starts to get hot again in May-June, Bahrain hosts a large number of pool and beach parties. Some of the usual places where these parties happen are:
- ART Rotana in Amwaj (the hotel has a beach that is perfect for parties),
- Coral Bay (a beach club that has a restaurant, a swimming pool, water sports, a health club and, of course, a beach),
- Ritz Carlton (for the most exclusive parties)
- Jumeirah Royal Saray (a luxury hotel with a beautiful, long beach that organises high-end parties).
If you happen to be in Bahrain for Halloween, Christmas or New Years Eve, you don’t need to worry. You’ll find a party that fits your taste.
But when we talk about special events, we cannot forget the three days of the Formula One Bahrain Grand Prix. This is a time when Bahrain gets flooded by tourists, car lovers from everywhere, and fun-loving people. This is also a time when a lot of parties take place in Bahrain. Whether you want to attend a classy Fashion TV party, enjoy chilled Cafe Del Mar vibes on the beach, or see some of your favourite DJ’s and artists performing live, everything is available when the Formula One race comes to Bahrain.
So if you go to Bahrain, there are plenty of ways in which you can spend your evenings and nights. And, if you are a woman, I have two words for you: ladies night. What I am saying is that most clubs, bars and lounges in Bahrain have a certain day in the week when they serve women free drinks. Every night in Bahrain is ladies night. Enjoy the Bahrain nightlife!
You might also be interested in this guide for expatriates Bahrain.
What to pack for the Middle East
Consider packing conservative clothing and a shawl or headscarf for women if you would like to visit religious places. Some comfortable sandals work well in the Middle East as it can be hot so they will let your feet breathe. It can get extremely hot in some parts of the Middle East and so sun cream is essential.
It’s a good idea to pack conservative clothing for the Middle East. Avoid short skirts and low cut tops or spaghetti straps. Comfortable trousers and linen tops are great. Long skirts and Maxi dresses also work really well and are comfortable with the hear. Don’t forget your sunglasses, and pack your prescription sunnies if you have those!