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Getting a Visa

Getting a Visa to visit the Kingdom of Bahrain

Getting a visa to enter the Kingdom of Bahrain is relatively simple and hassle-free if all documents are in order, then the visa is issued within 3 to 5 working days. In urgent cases, visas are also issued within a day based on the policy of the Nationality, Passport and Residence Affairs .

Visa on Arrival

​There are 67 countries (PDF, 505KB, 2 pages) eligible to receive Visa on arrival to the Bahrain International Airport . All visas require a fee to be paid  for the initial grant, and then for subsequent extensions (if any extension is permitted).

Visa for other Nationalities

Visa is available online for 114 countries (PDF, 8.0MB, 1 page), a visa must be applied before the visitor enters the country either through their respective embassy , a local Bahraini sponsor or an organization on their behalf.

The following visas for tourists are issued depending on the duration of stay requested:

  • Single entry visa valid for 2 weeks per stay (can be extended for 2 weeks)
  • Multiple entry visa which is valid for 3 months, 1 month for each stay (can be extended for 2 weeks).
  • Multiple entry visa which is valid for 1 year, 3 month for each stay (can be extended for 2 weeks).
  • Sponsored visa (Single entry) valid for 1 week per stay (can be extended for 1 week).
  • Sponsored visa (Single entry) valid for 2 weeks per stay (can be extended for 2 weeks).
  • Sponsored visa (Single entry) valid for 1 month per stay (can be extended for 1 month).
  • Sponsored visa (Multiple entry) valid for 1 month and 2 weeks per stay (can be extended for 2 weeks).

Visitors Resident in GCC Countries

All GCC nationals (Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, UAE and Saudi Arabia) do not need a visa to enter the Kingdom of Bahrain. However visitors who have been resident in the GCC for a minimum of three months, and who possess a return visa for the country of GCC residency valid for at least 3 months can enter and this varies between different nationalities. Regulations should be checked before travelling.

You can know more about your eligibility for a visa and apply for it  via:

Nationality, Passport and Residence Affairs .

Where to Stay

Hotels in the Kingdom of Bahrain

The Kingdom has a wide variety of hotels throughout all the areas in the country. They range from luxurious five-star hotels to boutique, budget and resort hotels. In addition, there are a large number of attractively furnished flats, guesthouses as well as serviced apartments.
Apart from the hotels in Bahrain which are fully equipped to handle all kinds of functions, events and business meetings; most top-class hotels have business centres, swimming pools and health centres.

All hotels apply a service charge of 15% and a government levy of 5% and the major international currencies could be used in most of the hotels.
Find out more about the list of hotels & resorts in Bahrain by downloading the ‘Bahrain Tour Guide’ app (available for Apple and Android devices).

Where to Visit

The Kingdom of Bahrain has a vast number of sights to visit as well as locations to explore. The Kingdom is rich with its own heritage and history making its archaeological sites and museums worth the visit. 

History & Archaeology

The Kingdom is wealthy in culture and was home to a number of civilizations earning its museums and archaeological sites worth the visit. Every antique, fort and burial site, which are well-preserved, have a unique story to tell. The first museum, the ‘Bahrain National Museum’ was inaugurated in 1988 - exhibiting historical artifacts, manuscripts and more history of Bahrain; visitors may also take a Virtual Tour around the museum as well.
Other museums can also be found on some historical sites such as which holds the ancient historic features and artifacts discovered on the site itself, telling the story of past events from the fort. Another is Sheikh Salman Bin Ahmed Al Fateh Museum (Arad Fort’s museum - take a Virtual Tour) which showcases the history and tradition of the ruling AlKhalifa family.
Other archaeological and historical sites in the Kingdom can be found on www.btea.bh/forts and www.btea.bh/mosques/at/6

Handicrafts

Prior to verbal communication, humankind relied on symbols and body language in which the hand was a fundamental source of communication and interaction. The hand has been a tool for creating objects using surrounding natural elements, where human began making primitive items to assist in daily life routine and then evolved to innovate handicrafts.
The traditional crafts and industries are regarded as a product of the live interaction processes between the local communities. Hence, these traditional crafts and industries are not only a manifestation of civilization but tools for the expression of the society’s culture and authenticity, not to mention the significant role of promoting tourism, highlighting humanitarian legacy in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
Despite Bahrain’s limited area, each village or town in the island has become known for a particular craft such as the textile industry in Bani Jamrah’s village, basket weaving in Karbabad’s village, pottery in Aali village and AlSaffah in  Jassrah’s village, while Manama and Muharraq cities are famous for vessel industry and related tools.
For more information, please visit www.btea.bh/bah-handcrafts

Entertainment & Leisure

If you are looking for a time out or like to do something different for a change, Bahrain has various fun activities catered for different age groups, families, or friends to enjoy. You can visit www.btea.bh/entertainments to view the wide range of entertainment options available in Bahrain.
Moreover, there are several festivals, shows and performances available for each season which includes arts, business, culture, entertainment, families, sports and more. You can visit Bahrain Calendar for more information.

Shopping

The Kingdom has a number of local markets (Souqs) in which a variety of items are sold. The biggest and most popular is Bab AlBahrain (Manama Souq). Other Souqs that are worth a visit include the Muharraq Souq, the Isa Town Local Market (second-hand goods, low-cost household items and the bird’s market), Souq Waqif in Hamad Town (fresh fruits and vegetables), and of course Manama Central Market and the Fish Market which provide fascinating insights into local trading and products.

On the other hand, modern shopping malls are on the rise as there are countless malls located across the country. Most malls include international clothing lines, electronics, play areas together with international and local restaurants, while some of them also include a Cineplex.
For more details on shopping destinations in Bahrain, visit www.btea.bh/shopping

Transportation

Getting to the Kingdom of Bahrain

More than 35 international airlines operate flights to and from the Kingdom of Bahrain. Bahrain’s national carrier is Gulf Air Gulf Air , which has the biggest network in the Middle East and numerous daily flights to Europe, Asia and the region.

Bahrain’s international airport has a handling capacity of more than 100,000 passengers a week. The airport is situated in Muharraq Island, a 10 minute drive from the center of the capital, Manama. Departing passengers are levied a BHD 3 (USD 8) airport tax. On the other hand, arriving passengers are exempt from this tax and maybe required to pay customs duty on all items imported into the country with the exception of those that are intended for personal use.

A 25 km causeway links Bahrain with the Arabian Peninsula through Saudi Arabia. Ferries and steamers operate between Bahrain and other Gulf ports.

Getting Around

The easiest way to get around the Kingdom of Bahrain is by car. Vehicles can be hired from any number of car hire companies. Gasoline price in Bahrain is cheaper than in most other parts of the world. Travel by road within Bahrain is safe. Highways and major roads are four to six lanes wide and well maintained; however, roads in villages and older parts of Manama and Muharraq may be narrow and twisting. Driving in Bahrain is on the right hand side, in keeping with the majority of traffic world-wide.

Taxis are plentiful and can be hailed up from the street. It is compulsory for taxis to use tariff meters.
Public transportation  is provided by Bahrain Public Transport Company (BUS) . It offers around 25 bus routes that serve most of the suitably populated areas in Bahrain, linking the governorates together.

The driving age is 18. Requirements for those who wish to apply for a Bahraini driving license include an eye test. The General Directorate for Traffic provides a comprehensive list of driving instructors. The use of seat belts is compulsory.

Driving license renewals, vehicle registration and Payment of traffic contraventions can be done online via the General Directorate of Traffic services


Page Last Updated: 11 Sep, 2017