Reviewed on 6 Apr,2021
Reviewed on 14 Mar,2020
Shop souks, discover beautiful Islamic art, go dune-bashing in a four-wheel drive on a desert safari or relax with a massage and a day on pristine beaches. Qatar is a small and petroleum-rich Arabic nation almost entirely encircled by the waters of the Persian Gulf. Visit this modern centre for luxury, shopping and incredible futuristic architecture.
The glittering skyline of the capital, Doha, is the jewel in Qatar’s crown. The view of Doha at night when lights of ultramodern towers reflect in the waters of the Persian Gulf provides great photography opportunities. Take a dhow ride to see the skyline from the water or charter a fishing trip.
Shopping is one of the nation’s great entertainments, with everything from ritzy shopping malls to souk markets where you can find incredible street food from all over the world as well as Arabic lanterns, decorative arts, silks, jewellery and shoes.
Enjoy artworks, both ancient and modern, in the Museum of Islamic Art and the Mathaf - Arab Museum of Modern Art. Tour the Katara Cultural Village where you’ll find museums, galleries and traditional architecture and cultural heritage. Visit the UNESCO-listed archaeological site of Al Zubarah and wander through a historic pearling town and fortress. Drive to Al Jassasiya to see ancient rock carvings.
Travel from Doha to the deep blue waters and golden beaches of Qatar’s coastline. Camp on the sand or spend a few nights at a beach resort. Within Doha, enjoy the private beaches of the hotels and resorts for a fee. Women are expected to keep covered to the shoulders and knees even in the water, especially during Islamic holy days. Arrange to go dune bashing in a four-wheel drive on a desert tour with stops to ride camels and swim in the inland sea.
Visit Qatar in autumn through spring since summer temperatures are very hot. Late afternoons and early evenings are the best times to explore, unless you’re seeking heat on the beaches. Fly to the Hamad International Airport or arrive over land from Saudi Arabia.