The first thing you want to do when you step off a plane in a new country is try the food (or at least, it is for us).
With so many tourist traps trying to capitalise off this craving for authentic foodie experiences, it can be difficult to know where to go.
Here, we’ve rounded up seven restaurants where you can try traditional dishes across Bahrain.
Al Ameer Restaurant
If you’re looking for a quiet place to enjoy a traditional Bahraini breakfast head to Al Ameer. Wash down your meal with a cup of tea or coffee, and be pleasantly surprised by how cheap everything is.
Daily 7am-11pm. Jid Al Haj Highway, Jannusan (1740 0117).
Emmawash Traditional Restaurant
Two friends opened up Emmawash Traditional Restaurant in 2012 after realising there was a gap in the market for cheap traditional food. The name comes from the famous emmawash dish which is rick with dried shrimp and green mung beans. The kids will love this restaurant as anyone is free to write or draw all over the walls.
Daily 6am-1pm. Road 6905, Abu Saiba (1730 9030).
Freej Bin Al Rashdan
The traditional interior of Freej Bin Al Rashdan is beautiful, but you won’t want to spend much time inside when the seats on the terrace offer incredible sea views. The dishes on the menu are great for sharing, and you’ll love the khubz served here.
Daily, 7am-11.30pm. Road 2403, Muharraq (6635 5288).
There’s no place more authentic than this hole in the wall inside Manama Souq, where there’s no menu and you’ll be surrounded by locals. Be warned – this spot can get very busy and you might struggle to get a seat.
Daily, 5.30am-9pm. Manama Souq (1721 0647).
Saffron by Jena
It’s not difficult to understand why Saffron by Jena won the Time Out award for best Bahraini food two years running. Owner Narise Qambar has put a contemporary twist on traditional dishes that leaves locals coming back for more. Make sure you order the breakfast platter which you will struggle to finish as it’s absolutely massive.
Daily, 8am-10pm. Souq Al Qaseriya, Maher Avenue, Muharraq (1362 3191).
Fish is understandably a vital part of a traditional Bahraini diet, and there’s no better place for a huge range of fresh seafood than Tabreez Restaurant. Choose one of the machboos dishes and you won’t be disappointed.
Sat-Thu 11am-midnight; Fri 12.30pm-midnight. Adhari Avenue, South Sehla (1740 6206).
Roaya Saleh set up Villa Mamas in the hopes of promoting Bahraini food across the globe. It uses local, seasonal ingredients to ensure everything is perfect, and recently opened a branch in London, with plans to extend elsewhere in the future.
Daily, 8am-11.30pm. Road 3374, Saar (1730 5031).