Failaka Island in Kuwait

Failaka is a Kuwaiti island in the Persian Gulf (Arabian Gulf). The Island is 20 KM off the coast of Kuwait City in the Persian Gulf. It’s known for the 1950s traditional houses of Heritage Village. The Museum Palace of Sheikh Abdullah Al Salim Al Sabah shows life in the 1900s. Camels and Arabian horses are kept at Failaka Stables. Once an outpost of Alexander the Great’s army, Failaka has Mesopotamian-era ruins, including the remains of a citadel. Jet skis are popular at Wanasa Beach.

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Prior to the Iraqi Invasion, the island had over two thousand residents and several schools. The village of Al-Zawr is situated near the middle of the northwest side of the island. It was the longest continuously inhabited location in Kuwait. During 1990 and 1991, the invading Iraqis depopulated the island, expelling all of its residents to the mainland. The Iraqi military mined the beaches and used the island’s facilities and buildings for target practice. In 1991, the allied forces forced the Iraqi army forces occupying the island to surrender through bombing and psywar operations.The sewage system was destroyed and has yet to be fully repaired. Also, many old homes continue to sit empty and decaying; bullet holes can still be seen.

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war site in Failaka Island
 Abandoned branch of the National Bank of Kuwait

After the war, Failaka was cleared of mines, but it remains under military use. Nevertheless, Failaka Island is becoming a popular holiday destination from Kuwait City. The ferry Ikarus takes passengers out to the island. Currently, the ferry terminal is located in Salmiya’s Marina.

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Failaka War Museum

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Failaka School

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Kuwait Finance House

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Failaka Beach

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Categories: KUWAIT

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