I’ll be honest, upon visiting Bahrain there wasn’t a whole lot to see/do there for tourists. Bahrain is a very wealthy oil country but unlike its counterparts in the region, it has not yet developed the tourist hub of attractions like places such as Dubai have. However, one of the most fun experiences I had here and of a lot of places was Karting at a formula one racetrack!
Outside the city of Manama in Bahrain lies the Bahrain International Circuit, a massive Formula One track. At this track they have also built a Go Karting racetrack with 9 HP or 13 HP karts. We caught an Uber from Manama to the track which is half way across the country (Bahrain is tiny!). When you are driving up to the track and enter the grounds you will see a large sign in front of you with a Karting sign to the Go Kart track. The Karting track is open from 10AM daily and you can just show up and drive.
Pricing can be found here but for 2 x 15 minute drives it was 27 BD for a 13HP kart (21 BD for a 9 HP kart) but definitely get the 13 HP kart!! There is also a registration fee of 1 BD and a membership card fee of 1 BD so all total we paid 29 BD (~77 USD). A bit pricey for 30 minutes of fun but its not every day you get to ride karts at a formula one track in Bahrain and the thrill of racing around the track was awesome!
After registration and payment you’ll head down to the track where they’ll have you suit up and get ready. Then there’s a 5 minute informational/training video before they put you in a kart and let you start racing. You’ll take your first 15 minute session and then, if there are others there like when we went, they’ll have you come off for 15 minutes as the others take their session and then you do the second 15 minute run.
As you finish a lap there is a scoreboard that shows you the time to completion for that lap. It’s great because it really pushes you to improve as you ride. When I started I was around 1 minute, 28 seconds and by the end of my first 15 minutes I got down to 1 minute, 23 seconds. By the end of the second 15 minute session I was able to really get a feel for the track and got the time down to 1 minute, 18 seconds!
If you ever find yourself in Bahrain and looking for something fun to do for an hour, head down to the Bahrain international circuit and take a kart for a spin!