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  • Western-friendly moderation – among the Muslim countries of the region. It's popular with travelers for its authentic "Arabness" but without the strict application of Islamic law upon its non-Muslim minority.

    Bahrain is the smallest country in GCC, and has often had to walk a diplomatic tightrope in relation to its larger neighbors. The country has few oil reserves, but it has established itself as a hub for refining as well as international banking, while also achieving a socially liberal (by Gulf standards at least) monarchy. Its economy depends to a small extent on Saudis interested in a little entertainment, not available in the strictly Islamic Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.