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MUHARRAQ

Muharraq, on Muharraq Island, is Bahrain's third-largest city and former capital. It was taken by the Portuguese in 1521 and the Persians in 1602, then passed to the control of the Āl Khalīfah dynasty in 1783 with the rest of Bahrain. It has retained its character as a Middle Eastern town with its winding narrow alleyways and traditional Bahraini houses and marketplaces. Dominating these is the Sheikh Isa Bin Ali House, with its ornate paneling and carved doors. Next to Siyadi Mosque is another traditional building, Siyadi House, which once belonged to a 19th-century pearl merchant. The Arad Fort, which sits on the waterfront, dates from the 15th century.

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