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Kuwait City Travel Guide

About Kuwait City

Perched on the northern end of the Arabian Gulf, Kuwait City is blessed with a beautiful coastline, some seriously impressive architecture and a plethora of top notch places to eat.

Sadly, it has been cursed with some very bad neighbours. Thanks to Iraq invading the country in 1990, and the orgy of looting that followed, the city still lacks some of the confident grandeur it once called its own.

Nevertheless, a quick glance at the mighty Kuwait Towers stretching 187m (614 ft) above the glittering waters of the Gulf, are enough to show visitors that this is a city with big ambitions.

While not quite as wealthy as its oil rich neighbours, Kuwait is no slouch in the bling stakes, something the opulent rooms inside the Arab Fund Building and the sports cars racing through the traffic attest to.

For all that, the slow pace of life and the slightly more introspective character of the Kuwaitis makes it an easy-going destination – one that is rich in fascinating cultural attractions, perfect for whiling away a few hours.

Among the best is the National Museum, which contains more than 2,000 works of Islamic art, much of it recovered following the end of the Gulf War. More poignant is the Memorial Museum, which recreates the dark days of 1990 in harrowing detail.

Kuwaitis, however, are not ones to fixate on the past and are currently occupied with making everything in their city (from the magnificent aquarium to the hotchpotch of themed restaurants) bigger and better than anywhere else.

Who, but a Kuwaiti, would conclude that what supper lacks is the chance to eat it in a dhow the size of an ocean liner? While Kuwait might not have the bling of Abu Dhabi or the history of Muscat, this eccentric little city has plenty to dispel preconceptions.

Key facts

Population:
637000
Latitude:
29.330561
Longitude:
47.976080

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City Highlight: Kuwait City

With its stunning skyline, a plethora of fabulous restaurants and cultural hotspots, Kuwait City is definitely a top contender within the Arabian Gulf

Featured Hotels

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JW Marriott Hotel Kuwait City

The JW Marriot is a 5 star hotel situated in the centre of Kuwait with over 300 rooms. Their best facilities include; a pool, a spa, a fitness centre and a bar/ lounge area. The hotel also offers airport transportation and conference facilities.

Mövenpick Hotel and Resort Al Bida'a Kuwait

An elegant, contemporary hotel just 2km (1.2 miles) from the city centre, this lively chain stay provides the perfect antidote to a hot day downtown. With an excellent spa, five swimming pools, two restaurants, landscaped gardens and a private beach, it's a relaxing place to unwind in 5-star indulgence.

Le Méridien Kuwait

With views of the Arabic Gulf as well as the iconic Kuwait Towers, this hotel has a flavour of the French Riviera about it, including rococo furniture and brass-rimmed mirrors. Rooms are sleek and modern, with huge luxury bathrooms, and the service is excellent. The onsite restaurant is decent and free Wi-Fi is available throughout.

Luxury Jumeirah Messilah Beach Hotel and Spa

With the utmost luxury in mind, this beautifully refurbished 5-star hotel feels like an Arabian palace. Its spa has hydrotherapy baths, plus drift and salt rooms, while palm trees line the swimming pool. Other perks include yoga, pilates and reiki classes, its seven stylish restaurants and its private beach.

Marina Hotel

For this price, don't expect the Ritz. Overlooking Mutrah fish market, this is a simple, harbourside hotel offering great views of Muscat's famous corniche. It's basic, and its basement bar can be a little noisy, but its location is within walking distance of Mutrah Souk, making it convenient for sightseeing.

Ghani Palace Hotel

It could do with a bit of a facelift, but the Ghani Palace is one of the few hotels in the city where you don't have to check the address to remember you're in the Middle East. The quirky Arabian-style hotel sports Syrian furniture, Moroccan lanterns and local stucco, plus local-style hospitality to match.