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Published: August 19th 2013
Central Kuwait City
My first destination will be Dubai where I have a brief stop over before continuing on the Persian Gulf state of Kuwait. Kuwait gained independence from the British in 1961 and was invaded by Saddam in 1990 triggering the first Gulf War. Accommodation expensive here but comes with various luxuries including free Wifi and importantly airconditioning because the heat here is extreme.
After leaving Adelaide just before 10 pm I finally arrived after 19 uncomfortable hours, I then had to go get a visa which was annoying before passing through customs and stepping out into the furnace. I decided to take a taxi and was surprised when my driver was an Arab, I was expecting an Indian of Pakistani. The man was very pleasant and friendly but drove way to fast relying heavily on his breaks, soon we arrived at the Oasis hotel which is comfortable, clean and opposite the Souk Marbarakia.
I decided to visit the souk and Kuwait's largest mosque immediately after dropping my bag in my room, the souk was reasonably quiet because most people here have more sense than to venture out in the heat of the day. The Grand Mosque is a large modern
The souk is s hodgpodge of buildings covering a large area of central Kuwait City
building designed in a traditional fashion in the mid 1980's it has a seventy metre high minaret and cost almost 60 million to build.
There are hundreds of mosques in Kuwait City literally one every 50 metres so the muzzin's call to prayer is both loud and memorable. After an hour in the heat I was already looking for some food in a cool location and McDonalds was all I could find so it was a McRoyal and bubblegum sprite. I headed back to my room planning to take a brief nap while I waited for the museums to open at 4 pm but ended up sleeping till after 2 am. I will have to start early in the morning.
Went down for breakfast at 7am, the buffet featured a strange mix of Arab, Indian and Western foods including beef bacon and chicken sausage, I ate as much as I could before setting off into the souk. I could often smell which sections I was entering, eventually I exited the other side and found the National Museum, the cultural display was worthwhile as was the replica of the al-Hashemi that was destroyed by the Iraqi's during the first
Gulf war, the rest was disappointing. I then visited the al-Badr weaving museum where I had tea with a Kuwaiti man before walking up Arabian Gulf Street past the Sief Palace and the Dhow Harbour before getting out of the heat at the Sharq Souk Mall which has its own marina.
I then visited the new and modern maritime museum which celebrates the nations maritime history with excellent displays which include a number of scale models of various types of dhows and three full sized examples out the front. I then continued down the road looking for Beit Dickson Cultural Centre wandering into a three century old seafarers club originally owned by a dhow captain. I did find Beit Dickson but it was not very interesting. With the temperature rising into the high 40's I headed back to my room to cool off.
I must either be getting old had another nana nap but now awake and full of beans unfortunately not a lot happening in Kuwait city at midnight no cars on the road or people, back to bed then. After breakfast I am off to the airport for my flight to Beirut Lebanon.
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