Item description for Bahrain Complete Residents' Guide by Explorer Publishing...
The Bahrain Explorer is the number one lifestyle guide for Bahrain. Comprehensive, fun and easy to use, this new guidebook repeats the winning formula of the bestselling Dubai Explorer, which to date has sold over 130,000 copies. Ideal for residents, short-term visitors, business people and tourists, the Bahrain Explorer provides in-depth information on everything there is to see, do and experience in Bahrain. Produced by a resident team of writers, photographers and lovers of life, this is the ultimate insider guide to the fascinating and surprising state of Bahrain.
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Studio: Explorer Publishing & Distribution
Publisher Explorer Publishing
ISBN 9948033167 ISBN13 9789948033165
Reviews - What do customers think about Bahrain Complete Residents' Guide?
Good...for what it is. Nov 30, 2007
The Explorer series books ( Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Qatar, Kuwait, and Bahrain) are pretty useful for their intended purpose. But this is what you must understand--these are NOT travel guides like Lonely Planet books. These books are made for primarily British and U.S. expats that are living in these locations. Having lived in a couple of the Gulf states, my family made frequent use of these books for everything from finding restaurants to dentists and vets. Essentially these books are a really nice versions of the yellow pages--helping you find what you want, organized by category.
avoid it May 5, 2007
The "Lonely Planet" series doesn't have a stand-alone guide for Bahrain. Instead, the closest they offer is one called "Lonely Planet Bahrain, Kuwait & Qatar" (ISBN-13: 978-1864501322).
Nevertheless, I would recommend that you get that one. The thing is, you'd better do it before you go to Bahrain, because -- a little shockingly -- that triptych Lonely Planet guide is evidently banned in Bahrain (it's never carried in any of the island's handful of bookshops). This might be because that version clarifies certain unsavory details about the royal family, but who knows.
Which leaves us with the one you see on this page, the "Complete Explorer's Guide to Bahrain."
I should warn you that this book was evidently made with cooperation from the government of Bahrain (the precise extent of official assistance is murky), so it contains not a single negative statement about Bahrain or Bahraini culture. And as for sections such as, "What to do if you're caught with drugs," or "Gay Bahrain," you can totally forget it.
In other words, we learn that everything is great in Bahrain, according to this guide. There are millions of things to do, everybody's friendly, nothing untoward ever happens, and the rulers are munificient and benign. The only thing left is to give you -- on slick, colorful pages -- the phone numbers of and directions to the many hotels and restaurants on the island.
For this latter purpose, however, even I must admit the guide is quite serviceable.
Something else which is sure to annoy you: the book's self-references seem all slightly off. It'll refer you to page 185, say, and you'll find that the information you're looking for is two or three pages either side of that. Same thing with the index: the references are mispaginated in slight but irregular ways. The whole thing smells of having been rushed to press.
As a final irritant, the entire volume is interlarded with advertisements from various restaurants, hotels, car dealerships, etc.