Manama's history combines opulence and curiosity, excess and heritage. With all the prestige that comes from a 5,000-year history, this port city enthralls enthusiasts of modern and ancient architecture. Its modern skyscrapers reaching up to clear skies, like the sumptuous twin towers of the Bahrain Financial Harbor, will make you feel dizzy. The thousands of burial mounds that form the oldest cemetery in the world, in the heart of the village of A'Aali, send a shiver down your spine. It's a window into the ancient times that you can trace at the National Museum of Bahrain in Manama, where you can admire a tomb from 2800 B.C. Be sure to visit the Al Fateh Grand Mosque to find out a little about the Muslim faith, glorified by this incredible monument. A spirituality that you will discover as soon as you walk into Beit Al Quran museum, dedicated to Islamic art and its many Qur'anic manuscripts. So it is that time stands still in Manama, and with the desert landscapes lending a helping hand you are transported back to the time of the mythical Gilgamesh or that of the mysterious Dilmun civilization, dating from the 3rd millennium BC. When you arrive back in the present day, how about treating yourself to a shopping trip? Head for Seef Mall, the island's second largest shopping center, and discover all the abundance that's characteristic of Manama, and more broadly, Bahrain. And if it's your greed that inspires you, maybe you should try the national dish, so loved by all the island's grandmothers: machbous.