While everywhere in Bahrain is within an hour’s drive, you really feel you are away from the city once you head south. Although it can seem pretty remote in the centre, there’s plenty to see around Sakhir.
The rather poetically-named Jebel Dukhan means ‘Mountain of Smoke’ and is derived from the hill’s appearance on humid days, when its peak becomes surrounded by a smokey haze. It’s home to a number of mysterious caves and, at just 134 metres above sea level, it is also the highest point in Bahrain. Despite its relatively modest size, the views from the top of Jebel Dukhan are still rather impressive, and it’s a popular spot for picnicking when the weather is pleasant.
Tree of Life
The famed Tree of Life is just a short distance south-east of Jebel Dukhan. Also known as Sharayat Al Hayat, this famous acacia plant takes its name from its ability to thrive in the middle of the otherwise barren desert landscape, despite the apparent lack of an obvious water source. What’s more, in contrast to the typical acacia tree lifespan of 150 years, the Tree of Life is estimated to be at least 400 years old. It’s worth going to see what all the fuss is about, but be warned that it has borne the brunt of some graffiti over the years.
Bahrain International Circuit
On the other side of Jebel Dukhan, you’ll find a completely different, thoroughly modern Bahrain attraction: the Bahrain International Circuit. This stunning track is a must-see for any motorsport fan, having played host to a number of high profile events. Not only was it the setting for the first ever Grand Prix to be held in the Middle East, it is also the home of the Formula BMW Race Professional Course, which aims to help Bahraini drivers pursue their dreams of becoming international Formula 1 drivers.
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