After getting my Bahrain Visa on arrival, I headed straight to my home for the next few days – the Hotel Ibis Seef Manama. This is the only Ibis Hotel in Bahrain, and as a fan of Ibis Hotels, I was really excited about this one. I also stayed at Ibis Hotels in Sharq Kuwait City and Salmiya. Bahrain is not an easy country to backpack through and it is not geared for backpackers or tourists, which is why it was nice to have a decent base here.
The Middle East conjures up crazy memories in my mind and I swerve vivaciously between them all. The first night I stayed with a local family in Iran, the Palestinian beer festival, that young backpacker that landed in Qatar. It was all crazy. The older Jonny Blair grew to love the Middle East. Kuwait was a test for my backpacking brain. It was bus routes I couldn’t negotiate, visas I didn’t want to afford but enlightenment I knew would enhance my life. Bahrain offered me the same as I got my visa in Manama and headed to the true budget location for every traveller to Bahrain – the Ibis Hotel.
Not content with your day trip to “fake backpacking to Saudi Arabia”, here is where I relaxed. I chilled out. I breathed in that Bahrain air and I remembered what it is that I love – I love travel. I love the madness of it all. A country some of my friends had never heard of? (yes really!) Count me in! Ten times over. The hotel is a charming, pristine and welcoming home when backpacking in Bahrain, here are five key features of the hotel that I loved about my stay here at the Ibis Seef Manama in Bahrain.
After touring all the sights I wanted to see in Manama and around Bahrain, I took time to relax here in the Swimming Pool at the Ibis Seef Manama. It was sheer bliss. A heated, clean pool to relax by, and in the afternoon it’s in the shade too – away from the hot rays of the sun.
What was great was that it was not too busy by the pool and I could relax here on the sunbeds.
The pool is open from 9am to 8pm, best to go late afternoon when the pool is in the shade and the hot sun has died down.
Bahrain does well on internet. WiFi is fast – a perfect hotel room for me, which had a desk for my computer and full use of WiFi. WiFi also works by the pool, in the cafe. Perfect!
3.All You Can Eat Breakfast
Bahrain doesn’t seem to have a national dish as such and the streets of downtown Manama have a mix of cuisines. The breakfast at the Ibis Hotel (as ever) was fantastic and included a local Bahrainian bean dish which was great.
I also indulged in lots of good cheese and hummus and loved the idea of “beef bacon” in the absence of pork. What’s even cooler is that the breakfast is served from 4 am until 12 noon, so over an 8 hour period you can enjoy this all you can eat buffet. This is perfect for those on quick stopovers and with unusual check in times and early flights – it means nobody misses their breakfast.
When it got too hot outside, I retired to my hotel room and took in the glorious views. I was in room 1906 with a cool view over the harbour and the City Centre Shopping Mall.
5. Massive, Cosy Hotel Room
My room at the Ibis Seef Manama was massive, it was cosy. It had tea and coffee, a fridge with a bottle of water, clean bathroom, air conditioning, a safe. I loved it. Also bear in mind I had just arrived from backpacking in Bangladesh which can be dusty, dirty and chaotic so this place was a great way to recover from that madness.
As well as these five features, there is also a gym, a superb restaurant (I ordered room service one night) and a free car park for guests. I hired a car in Bahrain and could park it here.
Here are the details for booking the Hotel Ibis Seef Manama in Bahrain:
Ibis Seef Hotel Manama Bahrain,
I Building 456, Road 1010, Sanabia 410
TEL : (+973)17386020
Here are some videos from my time staying at the Ibis Seef Manama: