Red Palace

Parimita Barooah Bora
Wednesday, November 10, 2010

While some call it Red Palace, others call it Red Fort. The locals call it Qasr Al Ahmar. But the very name reminds us of our very own Red Fort at Delhi. So one weekend we decided to check it out ourselves. We read it that it’s at the outskirts of the city, somewhere in Jahra. It was our first visit to the area. A long drive from our place, but we enjoyed it. First time we started it was late afternoon…we were new to the place and it took us some time finding out the Red Fort/Palace. It was dark by the time we reached. Also it was Ramadan time and we found the doors closed, so we left after taking some pictures from outside. We drove again another day in the morning and enjoyed our drive and the visit. Qasr Al Ahmar is an old mud fortress which today stands as a source of Kuwaiti pride and patriotism.

From the name it is obvious that this is a red structure. Located near the highway, the Qasr al Ahmar or Red Palace lies about 32 kilometres west of Kuwait City. It was built around 1895, under orders from Amir Sheikh Mubarak Al-Sabah, better known today as Mubarak Al-Kabir. Folklore has it that it's red color comes from the bloodshed by those who fought and died in the Battle for Jahra in 1920. The building, which was used primarily as a strategically located fort to protect the agricultural village of Jahra from invasion, occupies 60,000 plus square kilometers of land.
The Red Palace boasts four towers - one on each corner of the rectangular structure. It encompasses 33 rooms and six courtyards including a large main courtyard which contains a water well which was dug during the siege of Jahra (Battle of Jahra, 1920). There are three large wooden gates, the longest of which is located to the east, while a smaller gate on the north side connects to a courtyard which was said to have been 'the women's courtyard'. Master builders known as Estad worked on the palaces construction and many are remembered today by name. Estad Suleiman Al-Salem and Muhamed Al-Ali Al-Said are two such master builders who led the many men who worked to construct the fortress. Estad Ibrahim Al-Maana used mud mixed with local

desert shrubs to form the bricks which were used to build the fort's four towers. On October 10, 1920, Jahra was attacked by an Ikhwan army which was led by Faisal Al-Daweesh of Saudi Arabia. The Ikhwan army of around 400 men took over Jahra, besieging the fort. The Kuwaiti fighters numbering around 2,000, were led by the Amir Sheikh Salem Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah, son of fort builder Mubarak the Great. While the Amir Sheikh Salem was in Jahra, he left Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber (who later became Amir himself and is the father of the current Amir, HH Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah) in charge of Kuwait proper. On October 11, Sheikh Ahmad sent 600 armed fighters on boats to help those besieged at the Red Palace. Not long after the battle, Al-Daweesh and his men left Jahra. Legends have it that its red color came from the blood of those martyred in the battle. Today the Qasr has been restored and is a museum displaying various artifacts from Kuwait's history.
Al Jahra is one the six governorates of Kuwait. It is located to the northwest of the other governorates and houses the city of Jahra among others. It includes the island of Bubiyan and is by far the largest governorate in Kuwait. It also contains most of Kuwait’s arable land. The Red Palace is the most important historical landmark here and a center for exhibitions and festivals.
Entry is FREE
Address: Marzouk al-Mat'aab Street, Jahra, Kuwait
Phone No: 24772559
Time:
Sunday to Thursday from 08:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Sunday to Thursday from 04:30 PM to 07:30 PM

Friday n Saturday from 08:30 AM to 11:00 AM
Friday n Saturday from 04.30 PM to 07.30 PM

Google map link http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=red+fort+jahra+kuwait&sll
=29.310351,47.48291&sspn=2.346955,4.795532&ie=UTF8&hq=red+fort+jahra+kuwait&hnear=&z=8
Another link which might be of help if you plan your visit to Red Palace
http://www.millenniumhotels.com/kw/aljahrahcopthornekuwait/attractions/index.html

 

Parimita Barooah Bora is a onetime lecturer and currently she is a stay-at-home mom. Having done her post graduation in English, Education and Travel n Tourism, she taught for few years until her relocation to Kuwait. She likes to share the experiences of her life as a freelance contributor to various newspapers, magazines and websites. Now, as a freelance writer and teaching children in the evenings at home keeps her busy. Member of IWIK Team.
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Express your comment on this article

 
varughese
Posted on Saturday, August 18, 2012

It is very near to Jahra fire station road 607

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varughese
Posted on Saturday, August 18, 2012

It is very near to Jahra fire station road 607

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Meso
Posted on Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Can you please provide a route map to help me reach this place???

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Parimita
Posted on Sunday, April 3, 2011

Sorry,I dont have any other number.

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expat
Posted on Saturday, November 20, 2010

The number you have provided for Red Palace doesn't seem to be working. Is there another number?

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Sabumulavana
Posted on Sunday, November 14, 2010

Thanks for valid informations for enjoying holidays

Parimita
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

You are welcome Mr Suresh Kumar.

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Banerjee
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

Such a edifying new information to all of us. After reading this article, we are preparing to go in the near future. Keep giving such interesting information.

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S.Dsouza
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

Kuwait has really preserve itz history well.

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Suresh Kumar
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

I am staying in front of this fort for the last 5 years but i never get inside and not known its historical importance, After reading this article i did a tour inside and enjoyed much. Inreally thanks to Parimita for helping me to take an initiation which was pending in mind for the last 5 years.

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Parimita
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

"Thank you" to all the readers of IndiansInKuwait for your encouraging comments.

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Mathew
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

Interesting history.

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Priyalaxhmi.B
Posted on Friday, November 12, 2010

Kuwait has lot of places of interest to offer its visitors.But we hardly know about such places.Really admire your enthusiasm of visiting all such places and sharing with readers of IIK.

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neetu
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2010

enjyd reading the history.

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khalid ahmed
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2010

Informative.Nice reading.

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Ragini.K
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2010

Read about Red Palace in Kuwait Pocket Guide but had never visited it.But after reading about it here,it seems we will try to visit it in the coming weekend.

gulzar
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Good to know the history.

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Trilokesh
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2010

We have been living in KUWAIT for sometime but hardly visited so many places that you have been writting about.

Thanx for sharing about such nice historical place.

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