Five thousands years ago, the Sumerians called it the paradise of Dilmun. Discovered ancient manuscripts not only link the name with a small archipelago in the middle of the Persian Gulf, but also with great Mesopotamian myths.
Describing the nature of the land, the Sumerian epic “Enki and Ninhursag” tells that Enki, the lord of fresh water, blessed Dilmun with springs, and so it became the land of water, crops, infinite health and therefore the world’s harbor.
Today, it is known as Bahrain ("two seas" in Arabic), another indication to the land’s great natural resources. One of the theories on the origin of the name says that Bahrain’s first sea is the salty Persian Gulf, and that the second one is the natural fresh water. Divers used to resupply their ships with fresh water there, during the long distance pearl hunting missions that were conducted regularly in the pre-oil era.
Despite the fact that the countryside is tragically shrinking in a country that seeks more modernization and business, you can still notice the remains of Dilmun’s paradise and valuable legacy.
“Bahrain is the home of million palm trees,” a very famous saying. Million palm trees on a land as small as 750 square kilometers means that a palm tree is in sight no matter where you look.
The pearls collected in the waters of Bahrain are very unique. They tend to have a special lustre which many argue comes from the mixture of salt and fresh water around the island due to fresh water springs on the sea bed. Pearls are also unique in Bahrain largely due to the fact that Bahrain does not allow cultured pearls. They will not circulate them If they are brought into the country and they will pay special attention to any pearls that come from traders of regions outside of the island. This is done to preserve the natural creation of the pearl.
Some 200 different species of desert plants grow in the bare, arid portions of the archipelago, while the irrigated and cultivated areas of the islands support fruit trees, fodder crops, and vegetables. The variety of animals is limited by the desert conditions. Gazelle and hares are not yet extinct, and lizards and jerboas (desert rodents) are common; the mongoose—probably imported from India—is found in the irrigated areas. Birdlife is sparse except in spring and autumn, when many varieties of migratory birds rest temporarily in Bahrain while traveling to and from higher temperate latitudes.