Shopping in Bahrain
There is no shortage of shopping destinations in Bahrain. Anyone can buy whatever they want in the myriad malls spread across the country all vying to give the best possible retail and lifestyle experience. Visitors and Bahrainis alike can head to their mall of choice depending on shopping and entertainment requirements. That shopping is alive and well in Bahrain is borne out by rising retail sales. As new international brands continue to be introduced in the country fashion and accessories occupy the largest store space in malls followed by jewellery, foodstuffs and other commodities.
Among the many different malls that offer sophisticated leisure, shopping and entertainment experiences is Bahrain City Centre the largest mall by far boasting 450,000 sq meters of retail and family entertainment space among which are a 20 screen cinema, outdoor / indoor water park, food courts and hypermarkets and a parking area for 5,500 vehicles.
If however a more traditional and rather more interesting shopping experiences are required Bahrain has several colourful souks. Shoppers can walk down narrow lanes with tiny and sometimes shabby open air stalls to absorb that special atmosphere of a bygone time when this was the only way to shop. Offerings are considerably cheaper here and include clothing, bolts of fabric, tailors who will turn out garments in a trice, electronics, tobacco, Bahraini incense bakhoor, antiques, carpets, aromatic coffees, herbal medicines, shisha bottles, nuts and spices, household items, traditional sweets and even second hand items. Muharaqq Souk is one of the best places to get a feel of the old Bahrain. Unlike in the malls customers can indulge in haggling over wares in the souks and come away with coveted possessions won after hard bargaining. Those looking for something essentially Bahraini can head to the Crafts Centre Gallery & Workshop and the Bahrain Arts Society shop. The famous gold souk is the destination of shoppers looking for gold items. The 18 to 24 carat gold items sold here bear the country’s gold hallmark assuring quality and origin. Certificates of authenticity also come with purchases of natural Bahraini pearls. Any other type of pearl is not allowed into the country. Another popular destination for gold shoppers is Gold City a shopping complex devoted to gold items. In short, if it is shopping, Bahrain can accommodate most people’s shopping tastes.
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