If you tell your travel agent to recommend a travel destination in the Middle East they’ll most likely mention Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Jordan, Egypt, Qatar or Israel.
Kuwait will not make it to their list of destinations and if it does it will be at the very end.
But I think Kuwait has a lot to offer tourists and it should be one of the top destinations you plan to visit in the Middle East.
This tiny oil-rich country has some of the world’s best historical sites, beautiful beaches, lots of art galleries, museums, amazing restaurants and some of the most welcoming people I have ever met.
Should you decide to travel to Kuwait here are some things you should know before you make your trip.
You'll Need to Get a Visa
Kuwait requires visitors to the country to apply for a visa. For example, if you’re traveling from the UK you will need to apply for a Kuwait visa for British citizens.
The application process can be done quickly online and once you make your application you should get an email response in 24 hours. The visa application fee is about $10 the equivalent of 3 Kuwaiti Dinar for a 90-day single entry visa.
You could also apply for a visa when you arrive at the airport. This, however, may take a lot of your time as you’ll have to queue for a while to get your visa. It's, therefore, best that you apply for a visa before traveling.
To enter Kuwait your passport should also be valid for a minimum of six months. If you don’t want any hitches during your trip ensure all your travel documents are in order because Kuwaiti immigration authorities are very strict.
Avoid Driving in Kuwait
You may be considering hiring a car to drive yourself around in Kuwait. That is a bad idea! The traffic in Kuwait is crazy and am sure you don’t want to spend hours on the road that will just suck the fun out of your trip.
The roads in Kuwait also have a poor safety record. Drivers over speed, tailgate, and text while driving so the number of car accidents is high.
To move around I suggest you use a taxi, Kuwait public transport or hire a driver. These options will be much more convenient for you then driving yourself around.
You’ll have to Dress Conservatively
Kuwait is in a desert and temperatures can get extreme. Because of the heat, you might want to completely dress down into tiny shorts and sleeves shirts. Dressing that way is not recommend if you don’t want to receive stares of disgust as you move around.
Being a Muslim country you should adhere to local laws on dressing. For example, women should not wear tight fitting or revealing clothes. For men avoid shorts that are above the knees and sleeveless tops.
Homosexuality Is Illegal in Kuwait
LGBT behavior will land you in prison in Kuwait. So if you’re gay and traveling to this country be sure to avoid public displays of affection or engaging in discussions about your sexual orientation.
Heterosexuals also should not engage in public display of affection as this is also frowned upon.
Possession of Alcohol Could Get You Serious Jail Time
If you love to unwind with a couple of beers after a day of sightseeing during your vacation that will not be possible in Kuwait. The country doesn’t allow alcohol to be sold or consumed, this is totally prohibited.
Maybe Kuwait could be the perfect detox destination for you.
Other things that are prohibited in Kuwait include pornographic material, drugs, and pork. Being in possession of any of this could again land you into serious trouble.
These are some of the major things you should keep in mind when you travel to Kuwait. Abiding by them will make you stay in Kuwait drama free which is what we all hope for when we go on holiday.
So what are some of the places to visit when in Kuwait?
Top Kuwait Tourist Attractions You Should Include in Your Travel Itinerary
These towers are located in Kuwait City, which is the capital of Kuwait. Constructed in the late 70’s this towers offer an amazing aerial view of Kuwait. While at the towers you can sample Kuwaiti dishes in the restaurants and cafes there.
The Grand Mosque
As I mentioned earlier Kuwait is a Muslim nation. If you want to learn more about their religion visit the Grand Mosque which is the largest mosque in the country. Daily tours are offered at the mosques.
This island is located 20 km east of Kuwait City. It was once inhabited but after the 1990 Gulf War, it was deserted. A tour of this island will show you the effects of war. You’ll get to see hospitals, schools, offices destroyed by the war.
The island also has archaeological sites that date back to the Bronze Age.
Visit the desert
You cannot go to Kuwait and not venture into the desert. In the desert, you can do camels rides or ride quad bikes if you prefer.
Local guides can also organize for you to camp in the desert for a night, which should be fun.
Go to the races
Am not talking about horse racing but camel racing which is a big sport in Kuwait. The Kuwait Camel Club in Kabd offers you an opportunity to see camels race at speeds of up to 60km/h.
One thing you’ll be interested to see is how the camels are controlled not by human jockeys but by robot jockeys mounted on the camel's backs.
Lounge at Kuwait Beaches
A holiday is incomplete if you don’t spend some time just chilling on the beach. Kuwait has beautiful beaches which you can relax and get a tan. Some of the beaches you can visit are Al Kout, the Hilton Kuwait Resort, Al Corniche Club, Messila beach, Aqua Park, and the Regency hotel.
Visit Al Hamra which is Kuwait's tallest building.
Go to the Old Souk/ Mubarakiya for some authentic Arabic dishes.
Shop for souvenirs for your trip at the Haraj- the Friday market.
There many more places you can visit in Kuwait. I recommend getting a guide who can take you around for you to truly enjoy Kuwait.