Failaka Island, Kuwait
Failaka Island is the only archaeological site in Kuwait and is one of its major tourist attractions. It is an important historical land home to some of the most significant archaeological sites in the Arab Gulf, with a history dating from the Bronze age, evidence of Dilmun and Greek settlements, a classical heritage where the Greeks called it "Ikaros", and a strategic location along the northern part of the Arab Gulf at the mouth of one of its best natural harbors. The name "Failaka" is thought to be derived from the ancient Greek "Fylakio" which means "outpost". The archeological remains of the past, in the form of coins, temples and seals are still found here, which could be a treasure trove for history buffs!
This 24 square kilometers island is 20 kilometers east of Kuwait City and can be reached either by private boats or ferry boats. For the ferry boats, visitors have two options. They can sail onboard of the ferry of the Kuwait Public Transport Company departing from Kuwait bay which allows them to transport their vehicles. This ferry trip usually takes about 90 minutes and costs KD 5 roundtrip per person and KD 30 per vehicle. A second option is the ferry boats of a private company which sails from the Marina Crescent, takes around 30 to 40 minutes, and costs KD 15 per person.
Failaka Island has been much developed as a tourist spot, as it offers fishing, boating, sailing, swimming and water sports. Visitors can enjoy many activities here like visiting the petting zoo, renting paddle boats in the lake, visiting historical areas including the cemetery, the traditional village, historic ruins, as well as camel riding or renting ATV vehicles. Visitors could also hang out at the beach and get a tan, play pool, smoke shisha or have a picnic at the beach.
The spring season is the best time to visit the Island due to the gentle breeze, budding flowers, vibrant flora, changing temperature, and pleasant weather conditions.
Failaka Heritage Village
Visitors here get to enjoy and spend some time staying in spacious and comfortable houses, resembling the old life style in Kuwait. There are Arabian horses and camels in Failaka Stables, and visitors can spend some time riding them. There are barbecues being offered under moonlight.
One of the special establishments of the Heritage Village is Qa'at Al Khair with capacity to seat 450 guests, and Sheikh Abdulla Al-Salim Al-Sabah Palace museum which houses replicas of old Kuwaiti rooms including: bridal room, living room, kitchen, and weapons room.
Failaka Heritage Beach which is called Wanasa beach is located just 400 meters away from the village. There are jet skis, water skis, fishing cruises, banana boat rides and more. There are private areas for families with showers, and also a supermarket and burger restaurant.