Qatar Travel Guide
An emerging Gulf State UAE wanna-be, Qatar is one of the richest Gulf States in the world due to its rich oil and gas reserves. Despite being mostly made up of salt flats and sand dunes, the country is also blessed with a number of fine beaches.
The capital city of Doha is better known for hosting a ‘certain international World Trade conference’ and is a nice blend of modern architecture and traditional Arabic themes. Don’t expect a kicking nightlife and it gets a tad hot at the wrong times of the year, but those who want to hit the beach can go to Al Khor, which is ideally situated around a shallow harbor. The best time to visit Qatar is from November to March when the weather is cooler.
When to Go
The weather is cooler between the months of November and March. There is hardly any rainfall during this time.
The climate is at its hottest from June to September – which is hotter than anything you’ve probably experienced.
Getting There & Away
Qatar’s international airport is located in Doha. From the airport, taxis and cars for hire can take you around town, but their rates are high and fixed. The road system is relatively fair, but driving on the road during the wet season can be dangerous. There is no organized public bus service in the country, everyone drives everywher in personal vehicles with gasoline that is sometimes cheaper than water. An aggressive plan to make this an air hub means an efficient experience arrive by plane.
Health & Safety
With unusual hygiene habits, Qatar is prone to outbreaks of diseases such as typhoid and hepatitis A and B. Take all the necessary precautions to avoid contracting these diseases. Getting vaccinations is a must. There are a number of hospitals in the country, but health care costs. Due to the threats Al Qaeda continues to send out to the countries in the Gulf region including Qatar, Western looking tourists are advised to be vigilant and be aware of any terrorist threat especially in public places, growing a beard and dressing like the locals is a fine idea.
Food & Hospitality
There are many first-class hotels in Qatar as well as several two-, three-, and four-star hotels where you can get accommodation at reasonable rates. These hotels are equipped with modern facilities and amenities. Advanced booking is required. With it’s recenty desire to be taken seriously Qatar is investing heavily in its tourist infrastructure and presents good value.
- Two days in Doha
- Two days in Al Khor
- One day in Northern Qatar
Doha: the capital city of Qatar, Doha is both a modern and traditional city, often in the news as a by-word for world economic talks. The Grand Mosque and the Abu Bakir al-Siddiq Mosque are two of its most popular attractions.
National Museum: also located in Doha, the National Museum showcases the country’s historical, cultural, political, and economic developments.
Gharya: Gharya is known for its golden, sandy beaches that stretch for miles. It’s not the Cote d ’Azur but you’ll have most of it to yourself.
Al Khor: The second largest city in the country, Al Khor is located in a natural harbor where you can get a nice view of the beach.
Northern Qatar: The northern portion of the country features many historic sites such as the Umm Salal Mohammed, a large village dominated by the ruins of a 19th-century fort – quite unlike your usual tourist sites.
Sightseeing: Take a tour of Doha and visits its museums, mosques, and galleries. The Grand Mosque, the Clock Tower, and the New Amir’s Palace are particularly interesting, if oil money edifices appeal to you.
Water activities: The beaches in the country, especially those on the west coast, are equipped with facilities for diving, surfing, sailing, and boating. Bikinis are out, modestly in.
Dhow cruise: Take a dhow cruise from Ruwais to Bahrain. These ancient Arab trading vessels are the quintessential Middle East maritime experience.
Camel racing: Dukhan has an 18-kilometer graded track used for camel racing – National Sport in places like these.