Failaka, archaeological survey

Failaka, archaeological survey

  • Project name:

    Archaeological Survey of the Kuwaiti-Polish Archaeological Mission

  • Type of site:

    Settlements, harbor


    Failaka Island


    – Islamic period (from the 8th–9th century to modern times)

Most interesting finds:

– Identification and determination of the extent of the traditional fishing villages (Boult, Ad-Dakhan, Kharaib el-Desht, El Saad El-Aly, Matitah, Mourghy)
– Remains of stone structures connected with the harbor on Failaka
– Relics of an extensive settlement-farm As-Sabahiya

History of research:

Dates of PCMA mission’s work:


Type of research:

Archaeological prospection


Piotr Bieliński – director of the Kuwaiti–Polish Archaeological Mission (KPAM)
Franciszek Pawlicki – project director

Co-operating institutions:

– Polish Centre of Mediterranean Archaeology, University of Warsaw
– National Council of Culture, Arts and Letters of the State of Kuwait

Additional information:

In 2011, a field reconnaissance was carried out, and the general aim and scope of the survey were established.

Description of the site and research:

The team conducted an extensive archaeological prospection of a 300–400-m-wide belt running for more than 19 km along the whole coast of the island (except the inaccessible areas). The surveyed area covered approximately 10,7 km².

Over 900 pottery fragments were collected, including Red/Orange Ware (Bronze Age), Black Ware (7th–9th century), Gritty Ware (19th century). More than 180 sites, stone clusters, relics of installations and structures associated with settlements, farms, fences, and walls were recorded and documented.

Other resources about the mission:
Research results:

Season by season – “PCMA Newsletter”:

Associated events:

2016-12 10th anniversary of Kuwaiti–Polish Archaeological Mission: exhibition in the National Museum in Kuwait
2012 Press conference organized after the completion of the project in the Polish Embassy in Kuwait City


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