At the crossroads of trade routes since ancient times, Manama, the capital of Bahrain, still bears traces of what were, for centuries, the pillars of the economy in the Persian Gulf: pearl harvesting, and the construction of traditional sailing vessels called dhows. But the major draw of this small island in Bahrain is undeniably the vestiges of human presence dating back nearly 5,000 years. The ancient harbour and capital of Dilmun, Qal'at al-Bahrain, is, along with the Dilmun Burial Mounds scattered across the island, an essential relic of this Mesopotamian civilisation. Both are listed as UNESCO World Heritage. Ancient colonisations would come later, by the Assyrians, the Achaemenids, the Macedonians, then the Arabs in the Middle Ages, before the more contemporary invasions by the Portuguese, the Persians and the Ottomans. This tumultuous history now gives this small territory rich influences.