Category Archives: Living in Kuwait

Places to Visit in Kuwait

The charms of Kuwait do not end with attraction within the city. In this small desert country about the size of New Jersey, the traveler with time on his hands will find a startling range of natural beauty spots and ancient cultural treasures. Some of the best places to visit in Kuwait are listed below.

Aqua Park

Aqua Park was inaugurated in 1995, in Kuwait city. It is located on the Gulf road adjacent to the famous Kuwait Towers. It is the first and the biggest water park in the Arab Gulf Region. The park spreads over an area of 60,000 square meters. If you cannot take your kids to the beach then take them to Aqua Park. The main attraction of this park is Kiddy Pool Area and The Middle Area. The Park offers unlimited entertainment for the whole family.

Entertainment City

Entertainment City is one of the largest utilities in Kuwait. The place provides unlimited fun, entertainment and adventure. It was established in the 12th of March, 1984 and located in Doha on the outskirts of Kuwait.This amusement park is one of the biggest attractions of Kuwait city. It provides a complete range of amusements based on the theme of ‘Arab World’, ‘Future World’, and the ‘International World’, with a variety of rides and entertainment options. The entrance fee to this amusement park is KD 3.500 per person. The area is fully equipped with a police station, ambulance service and a car parking area.

The Kuwait Towers

The Kuwait Towers is the most famous landmark of Kuwait. The Kuwait Towers are located on the Arabian Gulf Street in Dasman, promontory to east of City Center. The views from the topmost sphere of the largest tower are great, has a revolving observation area and a restaurant with access to high speed lifts.

The Scientific Center

The Scientific Center of Kuwait, located in Salmiya, Kuwait, serves as a center for environmental education of the gulf region. This is the largest Aquarium to be built by the Kuwait Foundation in the Middle East for Advancement of Sciences (KFAS). The mission of The Scientific Center can offer you the advancement of the natural sea habitats, the coastal edges and desert of Arabian Peninsula, the motion picture of IMAX Theatre, and explore childhood skills in the Discovery Place, visit the Dhow Harbour, and relax at the Scientific Centre restaurant.

Municipal Gardens

The Municipality maintains various public gardens around the country. One of the most popular is in Fahd Al-Salem Street. Kuwait Municipal Gardens are one among the many Kuwait attractions, which are also good places for an outing after the sunset. Moreover people can relax and watch the beauty of the setting sun. The most popular among them is in the Fahd Al-Salem Street.

Dhow Harbour

The Dhow Harbour is situated right behind the Scientific Complex.Visitors of the Dhow Harbor can view the old sailing ships and dhows used for coastal trading, fishing and pearl diving in the past. The name of the ship is “Fateh El-Kheir”, which means Bringer of Good Fortune. Before the discovery of oil, this was one of the main trade activities in Kuwait.

Doha Village

Doha was the site of one of Kuwait’s major construction areas for dhows and booms. Some boats, including miniatures, are still there, but few are built today. Take Gamal Abdul Nasser Street from Kuwait city, and pass through Sulaibikhat. At the junction, turn right into Doha. Some miniature dhows and traditional drills are still sold to tourists and collectors.

Failaka Island

Failaka Island is located in the northern part of the Persian Gulf. In springtime, Failaka Island is regarded as particularly special by Kuwaitis. It has quite a different ecosystem to mainland Kuwait, and its budding flowers and changing temperatures are much appreciated. Failaka is beginning to develop a local tourist industry; it provides fishing, boating, swimming, sailing and water sports. You can also take a boat to visit several other remarkable islands.

Green Island

Green Island is the best place for families and kids to spend time together. It is a man made island in Kuwait, with an area of 785 thousand square meters and diameter of 3140 meters is linked to the sea by a passage, which is 134 meters long. Basically, its more of a picnic spot where you need to bring your own food or have barbeques out there. It’s a long walk to Green Island entrance and also very windy here. So it is not a favorable place to go in winter evenings. Green Island is located off the waterfront spanning 21 kilometers of coastline from Al-Shiwaikh to Ras Al-Ardh.

Ice Skating Rink

Ice Skating Rink was established in March 1980. It is a major landmark and great sport facility. If you are searching for a place to spend a hot summer day in Kuwait, the Ice Skating Rink in Kuwait City is the perfect place to be. The Rink consists of two main rinks. The first is an Olympic rink that has 1800 square meters surface of ice. The arena included can accommodate up to 1600 viewers and provides shoe-changing room, skating equipment store and first aid facility. The other rink is smaller, it has 800 square meters surface of ice with an arena accommodating up to 600 viewers. It is provided with a cafeteria for fast drinks and snacks.

Ahmadi

Ahmadi is an orderly and lovely town containing small houses with large gardens, and avenues. A large, well-tended park and little traffic make this an attractive site for visitors. It was originally built as an oil town in 1948, and so is organized much like a British or American town, with streets clearly marked. It was named after the late Amir Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.The Kuwait oil company has a fine Display Center in Ahmadi. This is a museum devoted to the history of oil, from geological formation through exploration, drilling and recovery. It was destroyed in the Iraqi invasion in 1990, but has been reconstructed with additional exhibits. Call for current information (Tel:398-9111). KOC can also arrange for groups to tour the oil fields themselves. Call their Information Office for details (Tel: 398-1678).

Mutlaa Ridge

Made famous by Desert Storm battles, these sandstone hills, some 60 meters high, offer a break in the flat topography of Kuwait. Situated on the northern rim of the bay, they provide grazing land for domestic herds of sheep, goat, and camels. Wild flowers abound in the spring, and you will find many people picnicking there. As always, be careful and check with authorities about safety procedures.

Khiran

Located about 90 kilometere south of Kuwait city, Khiran is a resort area on the clear blue water of the Gulf. It has very high gulf tides and very low ones, which allow it to be used easily by small boats. In 1981 the sandy coast was leveled and the resort was constructed as part of the Touristic Enterprise Company facilities. It features acres and acres of green grass, an amusement complex, a modern marina, water sport facilities, recreation rooms, restaurants, and all amenities – just the place to break the monotony of dry, dusty, brown Kuwait City. Reservations for chalets and studio flats are necessary well in advance (Tel: 562-9493),as the resort is nearly always fully booked.

Wafra Farms

Wafra is home to 200 privately-owned farms and an experimental farm founded by the government. They raise dairy cattle, poultry, a variety of grains, tomatoes, radishes, melons, cucumber…etc. You can visit from Saturday through Thursday. On Friday, an open market sells many locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables. Take the Wafra exit past Ahmadi, and drive 30 kilometers south. Turn left at the Wafra farms exit and go ten more kilometers.

Swimming Pool Complex

The Swimming Pool Complex was established by the Touristic Enterprises Company in April 1988, on the Arabian Gulf Road over an area of 9472 square meters. The complex has five superior swimming pools with different measures, including a kid’s pool and an Olympic pool. The Olympic Pool that is well-equipped to hold out tournaments and championships. The cold winter weather need not stop you from diving right in; there is heating system to take care of your comfort.

Family visa in kuwait

For obtaining a family visa to Kuwait one has to follow some procedures and steps in Kuwait. The family visa is valid for 90 days before entry, otherwise automatically canceled. A minimum of KD250 is required as the salary. The family visa can be applied for direct relatives such as parents, spouse, and children. As long as you have a proof of relationship, you can definitely come and visit. No eligibility or criteria is required. A working wife cannot sponsor her husband as dependent. Son’s age over 21 years cannot be sponsored as dependents, even if parents may sponsor their daughters up to marriage.

Documents required for applying a family visa

  • Proof of relationship or kinship
  • Sponsor’s salary certificate
  • Copy of the civil ID of the sponsor
  • Copy of the visitor’s valid passport
  • Recent salary certificate for foreign sponsor

The procedures for obtaining a family visa

  • Go to the Kuwait Embassy in your country and submit the required documents for a family visa.
  • Fill the visa application form.
  • Pay the fees due.

The family visa fees are:

*For Private sector employees:

100KD/person: during the first year for wife and the 2 first children and KD200 each for subsequent children.

*For Public sector employees:

10KD/person: during the first year for wife and the 2 first children and KD100 each for subsequent children.

Filipinos in Kuwait

The foreign population of Kuwait mainly consists of Egyptians followed by Indian, Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Filipino and SriLankan residents. In short, 3 – 5% of the people in Kuwait are Filipino. No doubt they have come here for promised jobs and a crack at a better life for themselves and their families.

OVERSEAS EMPLOYMENT

Kuwait is one of the most popular destinations for overseas Filipino workers. However before accepting a job offer in Kuwait or to any other foreign countries, there are things that should be considered to ensure that the job offer would be truly beneficial.

What OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) should know before working in Kuwait

1. Learn and understand the host country’s language
2. Respect culture, traditions and practices
3. Abide by their laws
4. Abide by your contract
5. Never carry drugs and illegal substances
6. Don’t accept hand carried packages
7. Avoid wearing of shorts or tight-fitting clothes for women.
8. Avoid illegal activities

You should also be aware that foreign workers in Kuwait are entitled to 30 days vacation leave with pay every year.

PHILIPPINE EMBASSY IN KUWAIT

 

 

 

 

The Contact Details of Philippine Embassy in Kuwait are listed below

Address:
Block 6, Villa 153
Nouman Bin Basher St.
corner Damascus St.
Faiha, State of Kuwait

Postal Address:
P.O. Box 26288 Safat 13123
State of Kuwait
Tel. Nos.: (965) 2252-8422 , 2251-1806

Office Hours: Sunday to Thursday, 8:00 am – 2:00 pm.

FILIPINO FOOD IN KUWAIT

Don’t worry about your favorite food. It doesn’t really matter where you are from. In Kuwait there is abundance of options for you.

Kuwait offers you many Filippino Restaurants. Filipinos have a lot of deliciously authentic pinoy cuisine. Most of the shops that sell special Filipino food can be found in this city. Some of them are listed here.

Chicken Inasal

The Chicken Inasal is a popular dish from the City of Bacolod, Philippines. Chicken inasal is now available in Kuwait. You definitely have to visit Chicken Inasal Restaurant at Kuwait City, if you want to taste the best inasal.

 

Adobo

No list of Filipino food would be complete without adobo. It is the national dish of the Philippines. That involves meat, seafood, or vegetables marinated in a sauce of vinegar and garlic, browned in oil, and simmered in the marinade.

 

Bulalo
Bulalo is one of the top boiled dishes in the Philippines due to its rich taste.If you have any diet restrictions, Bulalo or Beef Shank is not the healthiest food. Bulalo can be found in most upscale restaurants for the reason being that it is not the cheapest choice of meat in the Philippines. Bulalohan Filipino Restaurant is one of the best Filipino foods served in Kuwait.

Pansit

This Chinese dish has become so popular in the Philippines that it is not uncommon to find it in expensive restaurants. It is a tasty fried rice-noodle dish. Many Philippine restaurants in Kuwait can offer you pansit in different flavour.

 

Buko Pandan

One word to describe about Buko Pandan is…. AWESOME!! I tried looking for alternatives and the flavoring was the best that I can find. Buko Pandan is a favorite dessert in most parties. If you have Buko pandan in summer heat, it will definitely lift your spirit up and cools you down.

 

 

FILIPINO ORGANIZATIONS IN KUWAIT

There are many Filipino organizations /groups are working in Kuwait. They are listed below.

Filipino Badminton Association of Ahmadi (FBAA): It is considered one of the best badminton organization in the state of Kuwait. The main purpose is to promote the game of badminton and to encourage the spirit of sportsmanship and fellowship among the fellow expatriate members in Kuwait. It is absolutely a non- profit, non-cultural and non-political organization. The Club is growing and currently boasts more than 200 Members.

Filipino Tennis Association in Kuwait (FTAK): It will lead and take pro-active role to provide a total physical healthy solution while promoting sportsmanship, camaraderie and friendship amongst Filipino community and other expatriates who are in Kuwait.

Legacy of Integrated Filipino Employees (LIFE): It was recognized by the Philippine Embassy and Philippine Labor Office last 30th October 2008. The main purpose of creating activities that promotes unity growth and development and contributes to the community through outreach programs. LIFE is a non-political, non-sectorian and non-profit organization in Kuwait.

Philippine Basketball Club In Kuwait (PhilBaCK): The main aim is to unify all Filipino Basketball Enthusiast in Kuwait under one roof, and also giving the best facility, services, and a healthy lifestyle. The Filipino Basketball/Volleyball Referees Group in Kuwait is a non-profit and less funded sports organization holding a basketball tournament.

Philippine Catsclaw Martial Arts Association: The Philippine Catsclaw Martial Arts Association is a non-sectarian, non-profitable, and non-political association. It was formed to promote motivate discipline and self-control. It help the individuals to build self-confidence, physical fitness and mental alertness through martial arts.

Triskelion International State of Kuwait (TISOK): This is a non-profit organization in the State of Kuwait, they provide quality services that protect the life and dignity especially of the distressed Filipinos in vulnerable situations.

Pinoy Digital Photographers in Kuwait (PINDOT): The PINDOT is a group of Filipino workers and residents of Kuwait. The main aim is to learn, sharing and respect of photography skills / common passion in Digital Photography. We can also learn through the sharing of images and discussing about photography related subjects. It is not only a place to learn about photography but as well to earn friendship and camaraderie.

Philippine Bodybuilders And Fitness Association in Kuwait (PBBFAK): The PBBFAK aims to expand the Filipino competitors raising the level of competitiveness in bodybuilding. It is a non-religious and non-political group composed of Filipino bodybuilders and fitness trainers who are residing in kuwait.

Kuwait Filipino Practical Shooting Club in Kuwait (FPSC): The FPSC is a practical shooting club in the state of Kuwait. FPSC aims to excel in practical shooting accuracy, power and speed. It exercises the practical shooting sports at NRC Shooting Complex. The prime objective is that safety at all times.

Alcohol in Kuwait

Alcohol and pork are illegal in Kuwait. No restaurants, hotels or any other places are allowed to sell or serve pork. Import of pork and alcohol are prohibited as well. All entry ports of Kuwait has mechanisms implemented to detect the import of alcohol or pork. Being illegal alcohol consumption, keeping the custody or production are prohibited and punishable by law.

Driving under the influence of alcohol is punishable to the extend of 500 KD and up to one year imprisonment

You should avoid bringing or using  alcohol in Kuwait

Museums in Kuwait

Kuwait has various Museums across the country. Some of them are Islamic Museums and others are history Museums related to the country.

Dar al Islamiya

The Dar Al-Athar Al-Islamiyyah, (House of Islamic Antiquities), is located inside the Kuwait National Museum complex. This is one of the most comprehensive collections of Islamic art in the world – covering all geographic regions and historic periods from the eighth to the eighteenth century. This extraordinary collection was formed by Sheikh Nasser Al-Sabah and his wife, Sheikha Hussa Al-Sabah who started collecting Islamic art in order to bring objects back ‘home’ – near to where they had originally been made. When the Dar Al-Athar Al-Islmaiyyah first exhibited, the collection was comprised of 1,200 objects – but now numbers over 20,000. It also contains a specialised library of several thousand books in different languages on Islamic history and heritage. The collection is a tribute to the patient endeavours of Sheikh Nasser and Sheikha Hussa who have created one of the most spectacular collections of Islamic art in existence. The British Museum has previously staged a major exhibition of Islamic art with a very significant number of works from the Dar Al-Athar Al-Islamiyyah collection.

Educational Science Museum

Located downtown Kuwait City near the Liberation Tower, the Educational Science Museum was Kuwait’s first museum, and it contains displays about the history of the petroleum industry in Kuwait, natural history, electronics, space and aviation, and zoology subjects, as well as a planetarium. It also boasts an 18 meter whale skeleton. Tel – 2421268/2466973. Open from 9am to 12am and 4:30-7:30 Saturday to Wednesday.

Kuwait House of National Memorial Museum

There is an entry fee of KD1. Once you go inside you get a personal guide. The museum is divided into various sections, the first section talks about Kuwait’s origins and how they discovered oil and how Kuwait gained its independence. Then they show you images from the last meeting on August 1st 1990 in Jeddah with Saddam Hussain who says that everything is cool and they won’t invade Kuwait, then you move to the next section. The second section is where they talk about the invasion of Kuwait, all done using models and special effects. They have a huge model of Kuwait City and the streets are littered with model tanks, other vehicles and soldiers. This section is a long dark corridor with displays on both sides of the room all in the dark. Then as the story is being narrated through speakers in the room, the different sets light up to show the story. These sets with the models have strategically located lights and smoke machines, very cool stuff plus there were a lot of sound effects of machine gun fire, people shouting and things exploding. They open in the morning and in the evenings. With the KD1 entrance you get a guided tour, 2 movies you watch about the war, and souvenirs which involve posters, a cool brochure with nice pictures, and another brochure on the museum. To find out where exactly they are located and when they are open you can call 4845335 or 4846336. It is located in Shuwaikh near the Arab Fund Building and the Kuwait Red Crescent Society.

Kuwait Oil Company (KOC) Display

The Kuwait Oil Company has an ultra-modern audio-visual museum of Kuwait’s oil industry, past and present. This is a museum devoted to the history of oil, from geological formation through exploration, drilling, and recovery. It was destroyed in the Iraqi invasion in 1990, but has been reconstructed with additional exhibits. These include notably how the Iraqi occupation forces set fire to most of Kuwait’s oil wells, and the subsequent well-capping and fire-fighting operations. In Ahmadi area, it is open by appointment, tel 398 2393 / 398 9111 / 398 1678. KOC can also arrange for groups to tour the oil fields themselves.

Al-Hashemi Maritime Museum

Located at the SAS Hotel, the Al-Hashemi Maritime Museum is housed in the Al Hashemi II, which is the world’s largest wooden Arabic dhow (It’s in the Guinness Book of World Records!). The museum showcases traditional shipbuilding and seafaring in Kuwait and features large models of different traditional dhows, sea tools and accessories highlighting Kuwait’s long maritime and trading traditions. The large dhow also has a Grand Ball Room and several other reception areas that are used for weddings, conferences, dinners, etc. The museum is free.

The National Museum

The National Museum (Tel : 2451195/4) is located on the Gulf Road just south of the Parliament / National Assembly downtown. It was opened in December 1957. Looted and burned by the former Iraqi regime during the invasion, the museum is now restored and has been re-opened to the public – with many, but not all, artifacts having been returned from Iraq. In 1997, Muhallab II, the replacement for (and replica of) the magnificent trading dhow from the 1930s that graced the front yard of the museum before it was burned by the former Iraqi regime, was constructed on site and is now open to visitors.

Qurain Martyr’s House

This destroyed private house (tel 543 0343) was the site of the bloody battle between the Messilah Resistance Group and the Iraqi occupiers. A solemn monument to the martyrs of Kuwait (In Qurain area, on road 208 between Fahaheel and Magreb Expressways – there should be signs).

The Taraq Rajab Museum

(Tel : 5317358) is a private museum located in Jabriya. The museum specializes in Islamic Arts and Crafts and is open daily from 9.00am – 12.00, 4.00pm – 8.00pm, closed Friday afternoons. Open to the public since 1980, the museum houses a host of Islamic art and artefacts, ranging from pottery and glass work, to musical instruments and jewellery. Entrance to the museum is free. It is located in Jabriya (Area 12, Street 5 – down the street from the Iranian School and near the New English School and the Hadi Clinic).

Modern Art Museum (Sharqeya School)

This is a lovely new museum of modern painting and sculpture by Kuwaiti and Arab artists. Originally opened as a boys’ school in 1935, then a girls’ school in 1938, the National Council for Culture Arts and Letters reopened it as a museum in 2003. It is located directly across the Gulf Road from Souq Sharq near a large dhow. It is free and open Saturday to Wednesday 0900-1300 and 1700-2100. Very informed and friendly tour guides who speak English are available. 2468348 / 2468354 / 2468401 ex 105 or 115.

Bedbugs everywhere, in Kuwait too…

Recently, I was told by a friend of mine about the bed bugs he found in his new home. Some other day BBC news talked about the spike in the Bed Bugs in Newyork. It seems the bed bugs are on increase everywhere. In a recent seminar in one of the popular hotels in Kuwait City, I found a bed bug on my table, we had to leave the table immediately.

It will become an epidemic in Kuwait as well just like in Newyork. A recent survey and the recent reports from Newyork has found that there are thousands of bed bugs roaming around the city and that they are invading many types of premise, it is not just limited to residential areas. The pop singer Lauren Hildebrandt is out with word she’s been attacked by the tiny bloodsuckers and it’s no fun.

Wikipedia says “Although bedbugs can live for a year without feeding, they normally try to feed every five to ten days. In cold weather, bedbugs can live for about a year; at temperatures more conducive to activity and feeding, about 5 months”

Bed bugs are being reported in many parts of Kuwait by many people. Does these advertised pest controllers can actually eradicate bed bugs at least from individual houses?