Culture of the Arab States of the Persian Gulf

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Men wearing thobe (dishdashas) in Oman

There is a rich and ancient culture in the Arab states of the Persian Gulf. While being Arab at its core, it has been influenced by the cultures of Persia, Horn of Africa, and India, because of extensive trade links.


Cultures in the region include those of Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and Bahrain.

Music and dance[edit]

A variety of music and dance forms are practised in the region, including Ardha, Sawt, Fijiri, Yowla, M'alayah, Khaliji, Samri, Fann At-Tanbura, and Liwa.

Musical instruments[edit]

Traditional instruments include the Tanbūra lyre, along with a variety of drums and the manjur, made of goat hooves wrapped around the performer's waist.

Language and literature[edit]


A number of types of Arabic are spoken in the region, including Gulf Arabic, Bahrani Arabic, and Najdi Arabic. In addition, immigrants from South Asia speak languages including Punjabi and Bengali.[citation needed]



The cuisine of the region includes Mahyawa, Harees and Biryani.


The dress of the region includes long Thobe (also called Dishdasha) for men, Bisht, Ghutra, Agal, Gahfia, and Msar.


Traditional transport in the region includes boats such as Abras and Dhows.


A badgeer wind tower in Muharraq, Bahrain

Other cultural features of the region include Mabkhara, Bukhoor, Dewaniya (also known as majlis), Badgeer wind towers, and Qarqe'an.


Cultural institutions of the region include the television network Al Jazeera.[1]


  1. ^ Zayani, 2007