Essential Info for Bahrain

Population: 1.5 million

Capital city: Manama (also largest city)

Neighbouring countries: Bahrain is a small set of islands in the Persian Gulf. The King Fahd Causeway is a series of bridges to the west of Bahrain, connecting it to its closest neighbour, Saudi Arabia. Across the Gulf, a short distance to the southeast, is Qatar, while Iran is further away on the northeastern side of the Gulf.

Geography: Bahrain is an archipelago, with a primarily flat and arid desert landscape. The smallest country in Asia, the total length of the coastline of the Kingdom's main island is approximately 100 miles (161km).

Political system: Unitary constitutional monarchy

Major religions: Islam with a Christian minority

Main languages: Arabic is Bahrain's official language but English is widely spoken

Money: The Bahraini Dinar (BHD), divided into 1,000 fils. Expats will be able to open a local bank account, but the process is stringent and requires extensive documentation and paperwork. ATMs are widely available in most parts of Bahrain.

Tipping: Restaurants in Bahrain generally include service charges in the bill. Additional tipping is not expected but will nonetheless be appreciated. Ten percent is usually appropriate.

Time: GMT +3

Electricity: 230V, 50Hz. UK-style plugs with three flat blades are used.

International dialling code: +973

Emergency contacts: 999 for police, ambulance and fire services

Internet domain: .bh

Transport and driving: Cars drive on the right-hand side of the road in Bahrain. Public transport is limited to buses and taxis as there are no rail services available.

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