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Most interesting attractions and landmarks in

Gatis Pvils, 18 May 2012 No.24.

Image: Skyline of Manam, Bahrain. Allan Donque, Flickr, CC BY 2.0

Wondermondo is unique project: it aims to describe the most interesting man made and natural attractions /
landmarks in the whole world. Author of website and each article in it is Gatis Pvils. Visit the site to find a lot more information!

he most surprising landmarks in this small island

country are the monuments left by a Dilmun culture prehistoric or ancient culture which sometimes is seen as a civilization. This culture flourished circa 3200 1600 BC and has left some of the largest necropolises (such as Hamad and A'ali) in the world with some 170,000 graves. It is well possible that people from far away were buried here. Unfortunately this unique heritage is endangered covered with city. Today Bahrain is fast developing country with very impressive construction projects such as Bahrain World Trade Center.

Tree Of Life, Bahrain. crwjdt, Flickr, CC BY 2.0

May be the mystery status of the Tree of Life in

Bahrain is somewhat exagerated but this vivid, majestic mesquite tree looks magnificent in the harsh desert. This lonely tree can provide valuable teachings about the ways to make Bahrain more beautiful.

Tree of Life Southern Governorate. Approximately 400 years old mesquite (Prosopis cineraria (L.) Druce) growing in a place devoid of water.

Al-Hajar burial complex Northern Governorate. Group of more than 150 sub-terranean tombs cut in rock and covered with capstones. Barbar Temples Northern Governorate. Three temples of Dilmun civilization, built atop each other. First was built circa 3000 BC, second circa 2500 BC and the third sometimes between 2100-2000 BC. Temple had two altars and natural spring. Diraz Northern Governorate. Ancient settlement, temple and fortified Umm Al Sajoor spring of Dilmun civilization. Spring was landfilled in 7th century AD by Ummayad caliph, but cleaned again by the villagers. Hamad (Karszakkan) burial mounds , A'ali burial mounds and other sites Northern Governorate. Very impressive sets of many thousands of burial mounds tumulus. Burials have been shaped by the people of Dilmun civilization and other cultures. There are 9 more burial fields.
Ruins of Barbar Temples,. stepnout, Flickr, CC BY 2.0

Jannusan burial mounds (Royal Mounds) Northern Governorate. 8 enormous burial mounds from the Bronze Age, more than 10 m high. Saar Northern Governorate. Ruins of some 15 ha large prehistoric town of Dilmun civilization from the Bronze Age (circa 2000 BC). Research has provided some insight into this little known civilization. Qal'at al-Bahrain (Bahrain Fort) Capital. The former centre of Dilmun civilization. Artificial mound with an impressive fort on it. The 12 m high mound consists of 7 stratfied layers and was created by constant habitation from 2300 BC to 18th century. The 15 ha large area was fortified since the ancient times. Portuguese fort was built in 16th century.

Al Fateh Grand Mosque Capital. One of the largest mosques in the world which can accomodate more than 7,000 worshippers at a time. Built in 1988. Significant detail is the largest fibreglass dome (diameter 24 m) in the world. Khamis Mosque Capital Governorate. The first mosque in Bahrain. It is believed that the foundation of this building was laid in 692 AD, current building is from the 11th century and much rebuilt in later times.

Al Fateh Grand Mosque, Bahrain. Jacobs Creative Bees, Flickr, CC BY 2.0

Arad Fort Muharraq. 15th century fort, built by Arabs. Compact structure with four cylindric towers on corners.

Riffa Fort Southern Governorate. Persian built fort from 17th century, converted into palace in the 18th century.

Al-Sakhir Palace Southern Governorate. Imposing palace complex, built in the desert in 1870 1901. Isa Bin Ali House Muharraq. One of the best examples of historical Bahraini architecture, a house of Shaikh Isa Bin Ali with massive windtower. Siyadi House Muharraq. 19th century city house with detailed ornamentation and finely carved doors.

There are numerous and very diverse caves in Bahamas, many still waiting for their explorers. It is speculated that below the sea level here can be found very extensive cave systems. Many of these caves have impressive dropstone formations (also below the sea level) and some contain artefacts and petroglyphs left by the extinct Lucayan people. Many caves with valuable finds are kept secret from tourism industry to prevent damage to ancient artefacts and dripstone formations. Dunmore's Cave Long Island, near Deadman's Cay. Cave with 2 tunnels, one unexplored tunnel leads to the sea. Contains Lucayan petroglyphs. Hamilton's Cave Long Island, near Deadman's Cay. One of the most impressive cave systems in Bahamas, 460 m long, contains beautiful dripstone formations and ancient Lucayan artefacts. Hartford Cave Rum Cay. Seaside cave with the carvings, possibly even writings of Lucayans.

Mystery Cave Stoking Island, Exuma. Underwater cave system with three known entrances Mystery Cave, Angelfish Cave (both in the ocean) and the Bottomley's Blue Hole on the island, total explored length exceeds 3 km, some tunnels are very large. Contains large amount of endemic species of sea organisms. Preacher's Cave North Eleuthera. Large niche burial site of early Lucayans from 8th century AD with few petroglyphs. First home of European settlers in Bahamas in 1640.

Bimini Road Bimini. Unusual natural monument some 0.8 km long geological formation which resembles ancient man-made linear structure, located in 5.5 m depth. For a while it was considered to be a unique megalithic structure. There are several more similar sites in the Bahamas f.e. Andros Temple. East Plana Cays Acklins. The only island where survived Bahamian Hutia (Geocapromys ingrahami (J.A.Allen, 1891)). Population of these large rodents on this narrow, 10 km long island could reach 12,000. Later hutia has been introduced to several more islands of Bahamas. The Healing Hole Bimini. Unusual, mineralised spring coming up from the cave in the salt marshes of North Bimini. Considered to have unique healing powers, although this seems to be largely exaggerated.

St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church Long Island. Beautiful Art Deco style church built after 1946 by Father Jerome Hawes. Grey Lady of Great Isaac Cay Bimini. Small island site of legends, reputedly haunted by a spirit of mother deceased in shipwreck nearby and looking for her child. Rich with other stories as well. Atlantis Paradise Island New Providence. Enormous resort complex with the first highrise building in Bahamas, which in many respects symbolises contemporary Bahamas. Built in 1997 2007, impressive Postmodern architecture.
Atlantis Paradise Island. Fotodawg, Flickr / CC BY 2.0

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