So you’ve already arranged for a car rental in Manama? Don’t take your car out for a spin just yet. Brush up on the following tips and tricks to help you navigate the streets of Bahrain’s capital city.
You drive on the right-hand side of the road. Most of the traffic lights on major highways and main roads are equipped with road sensors that lie just behind the white line. What this means is that if yours is the only car in a four-way intersection and you’re driving in the wee hours, you should stop your car just behind that white line to get the traffic light to change to green.
Flaunting the speed limit does not pay, especially in Manama where speed cameras abound. Expect a traffic light and a speed camera at the very end of long roadways, and on intersections. Areas where you should be on the lookout for speed cameras include: south of the Fateh Avenue north of the Fateh Avenue west of the Sheikh Khalifa Road the Tubli intersection (just past the embassy of the U.S stationed there) the hotel Diplomat Raddison intersection the mosque Al-Fateh intersection.
Renting a vehicle is very inexpensive in Manama. Because the city is quite small, you do not have to worry about wasting gas. Don’t forget to get a map. A map typically costs anywhere from 0.50 to 1 Dinar. That’s roughly $2 to $3, depending on the prevailing exchange rate. Good luck!
Manama follows the Middle Eastern system of kerb markings, specifically:
black and yellow – this means no parking
black and white – this points out parking areas
red and white – in some areas, this also points out parking spaces
There are many restaurants in the city, from dirt-cheap shawarma standies to five-star joints. If you’re on a tight budget, try the cheap restaurants in the Adliya district. The Al-Abraaj should get you accustomed to Middle Eastern cuisine, while the Habara Snacks & Fish is a great diner that serves affordable fish, chips, and other snacks. If you don’t mind paying more for your meal, check out the long-time Bahrain classic Upstairs Downstairs, as well as Cafe Lilou’s which is frequented by locals and ex-pats alike.