Kuwait City Travel Guide

One of the more modern cities of the Middle East, this oil-rich metropolis is lined with modern high-rises and glamorous hotels. Kuwait is still very much traditionally Muslim though, warm with Arabian characteristics. Everything that was destroyed during Iraq’s invasion in the 1990s has been rebuilt, and only the Kuwait Museum serves as a reminder.

Kuwait City is known for its spectacular shopping and modern conveniences. Along with the stunning presentations of gold and designer wares, the shopping malls offer Western eateries like McDonald’s, which fondly touts the McArabian. If you’re looking for more traditional cuisine, it’s never far to find a delicious sampling of Persian, Indian, Bedouin or Eastern Mediterranean food. Alcohol’s not allowed in Kuwait, but you won’t feel bored with entertainment venues encompassing theaters and cinemas.

The city really came to light in the 1990s when it was invaded by Iraq, but you won’t see any tell-tale signs of that time these days apart from at the local museum. Kuwait City is now prized for its glitzy high-rises and expensive five-star hotels.


Al-Ahmadi: located 12 miles to the south, this is the namesake of Shaikh Ahmed who was the emir in the 1940s and ‘50s. It is now the private preserve of the Kuwait Oil Company and home to the Oil Display Centre where visitors are introduced to the oil business and can walk around the public garden.

Failaka Island: is where you can explore Kuwait’s main archaeological site. Turned into a fortified base and filled with mines by Iraq, the highlight of the now regenerated island is the temple.

The National Museum: used to be the highlight of the city with its Al-Sabah collection of Islamic art before the Iraqis looted the exhibits and set some on fire. However, you can still view a private collection of Islamic art at the Tareq Rajab Museum, in the basement of a large villa.

Sadu House: near to the National Museum, this is a good place to see Bedouin arts and crafts, and buy Bedouin goods. Made of gypsum and coral, the house itself is worth seeing.

Grand Mosque: is a modern mosque opened in 1986. There’s enough space inside for more than 5,000 people.

Kuwait Towers: is the main landmark of Kuwait. The tallest tower is 615 feet and boasts an upper globe with a two-tier observation deck that provides views over the emir’s Sief Palace. There’s also a restaurant and coffee shop here.