This weekend was our first full one here in Kuwait (as last weekend was spent travelling, sleeping and visiting Ikea for some apartment essentials). We didn’t really plan a whole lot as the kids are still adjusting to a new routine, country and climate. On Friday however, a new local friend (also a UK expat) offered to show us a few sights, and took us down the coast to a lovely little part of Kuwait called Fahaheel.
Fahaheel is about 30 mins south of where we live in Salmiya. It is also on the coast, and is home to a great local fish market, meat market, fruit and veg market, marina and the Al-Kout Mall. As it was lunchtime when we arrived, we headed straight into the Mall for some lunch. The food court has everything you would expect for an array of fast food, rice dishes and noodles – it was a good stop off with air conditioning. We were also able to pick up a swimming cap for Megs here as she has swimming this term at school (and they are all required to wear swimming caps).
Following our lunch, we were excited to head over to the markets to have look at what was on offer. It is good here to note that meat markets over here are a little more exposed than your local butchers shops in the UK, and while offering a great insight into culture and obviously halal fresh meat for meals, they can be a little too eye opening for younger members of the fam! I think after our brief walk through, the whole family were leaning towards becoming veggies!
The fish markets were really interesting, and it was cool to see so many shrimps, crabs, fish (including local Zubaidi fish which is common here) all caught fresh by the fishermen and brought straight to the market to sell. While we didn’t buy anything (they will prepare it for you I believe), it was very insightful and educational. We did however buy some tomatoes, bananas and giant spring onions from the fruit and veg markets.
Along the side of the markets are some spectacular fountains (that the kids were hoping were swimming pools). The fountains move to music, and apparently in cooler months on an evening, it makes for a wonderful place to sit on an evening – eating, having a bevvy and socialising! It was a beautiful place and something we definitely want to go back and do in the cooler season.
To the other side of the markets is the marina. We have a Marina not far from us; filled with yatchs and fancy boats, but what we noticed immediately at Fahaheel marina was the vast amount of traditional Arab sailing vessels (which we found out are called Dhows). We didn’t get to it but across from the mall, there are lots of shops that give a sooq vibe, and these are also fun to look round when the weather cools.
While only a small corner of Kuwait, Fahaheel was a lovely place to visit on the weekend, and offered us some great insights into life here. I love it when you are somewhere in the world that feels and looks so very different to home, and driving down to/walking around Fahaheel markets and marina really offered that. We look forward to exploring more – especially on our weekends.