Qatar: 15 best things to do in Doha

Author: Clark Tos
2022-11-14 18:38:01

Qatar is one of the most beautiful territories in the Persian Gulf combining luxury and adventure. Discover the things to do and places to visit for the perfect vacation in Doha.

Qatar is a destination of choice, incredible experiences, local cuisine full of flavor, cultural activities at reasonable prices... In short, a multitude of activities and places to discover for a total change of scenery. Moreover, Qatar is one of the safest destinations in the world. On the program upon your arrival and a warm welcome, a local culture. Follow our guide to prepare your stay in Doha!

1. Have a picnic at Mia-Park in Doha

A family walk at Mia-Park in Doha. Credit: Qatar Tourism Board

The Mia Park is located next to the Museum of Islamic Art, it offers a breathtaking view of the Doha Skyline. This place is full of green spaces, leisure activities not to mention the breathtaking view of the Doha West Bay skyline. If you go to Doha with your family, know that you will find playgrounds for children completely free. Whether it's a picnic to admire the Doha skyline, a walk to enjoy the sunset or a drink on the terrace with your friends, Mia-Park is the best viewpoint in the city. Do not forget your camera !

Do you get a little hungry during your walk? In this park you will find a wide choice of kiosks and cafes for a snack or drinks. In terms of activities, there is something for everyone: kayaking, paddle fit, etc.

2. Visit the National Museum of Qatar designed by Jean Nouvel

The National Museum of Qatar, an incredible architecture. Credit: Qatar Tourism Board

The National Museum of Qatar, a museum that celebrates the culture and history of Qatar. Around the historic Princely Palace of Sheikh Abdullah bin Jassim Al Thani of Qatar and facing the Bay of Doha, is the National Museum of Qatar, a realization of the French architect Jean Nouvel! Inaugurated in 2019, the museum is in the shape of a sand rose, 350 m long and over 52,000 m2, a true architectural masterpiece.

Discover Qatar's rich cultural history, from the Bedouin past to the evolution of the modern nation that is today's Qatar. The museum will immerse you in a ballad that mixes music, oriental scents, projections and contemporary works by Qatari and international artists. What disorient all your senses thanks to the time of this immersive, playful and sensory visit.

3. Villaggio mall, a shopping center with a Venetian decor

Le villagio Mall, a little Venise au Qatar. Credit : D.R.

The Villagio Mall is the perfect place to shop in Doha in an artistic Venetian setting. A shopping mall with sumptuous ornate ceilings, your shopping session will take on the appearance of a stroll. In addition to the shops, you will find a huge leisure complex and a fun fair, an ice rink, a bowling alley as well as a huge Gondolina amusement park.

If you are with your family, this place will fill your day with the various activities on offer. On the shop side, international brands such as Louis Vuitton, Prada, Dior, Mango, H&M etc. are there. Are you tired of shopping? Take a break for a gondola ride on the canal that winds its way through the mall. No you are not dreaming, you are not in Venice but in Doha in Qatar.

4. The magnificent beaches of Doha

Sealine Beach in Qatar. Credit: Qatar Tourism

Only 1h20 from Doha, a sandy beach and crystal clear water of Fuwairit Beach awaits you. An exceptional place to enjoy a landscape heavenly and bathe in transparent water. For water sports enthusiasts, it is possible to go kitesurfing. Fuwairit is a hanging site for hawksbill (sea) turtles, an endangered species.

For those who want to enjoy a beach not far from the capital of Qatar, there is Sealine Beach in Mesaieed, one of the most popular beaches in Qatar. This beach has many activities to do with family and even with friends: camel rides, safari in the dunes, swimming... Do not hesitate to stroll on this beach at the end of the day to enjoy a wonderful sunset.

To get there: Sealine Beach is located in the south of Qatar, 40 minutes from the city of Doha.

5. Katara Cultural Village, a village with traditional architecture

Katara Cultural Village. Credit: Visit Qatar

The Katara cultural village concentrates the culture and traditions of Qatar. This village with traditional oriental architecture is home to many galleries and cultural and artistic associations. A mix between tradition and modernity.

The Katara Cultural Village covers almost 100 hectares! Stop at the museum which showcases the country's maritime heritage. By the sea, you will find straw huts and tourist souvenirs. Katara also has a magnificent outdoor amphitheater in the Greco-Roman style.

6. Souq Waqif, an age-old market in Doha

The gold souq in Doha, an iconic place. Credit: Qatar Tourism

The iconic Souq Waqif is located in Doha's oldest district, on the banks of Wadi Musheireb. Discover an urban landscape of Doha, many shops and stalls await you, a real traditional market always very lively. This is the perfect place to buy oriental spices, handicrafts and pashmina shawls. As for the “Gold Souq”, this souk is dedicated to gold. Make no mistake about it, the gold souk will satisfy all your needs, whatever your budget!

As with all souqs, you have to haggle a bit to negotiate the price! Take a break at the camel paddock to see different animals such as magnificent Arabian horses. It is also possible to book a cruise aboard a traditional dhow along the Corniche. The opportunity to admire the beautiful sunset and admire Doha in the evening.

7. The Pearl Qatar: A Fascinating Island

Pearl Qatar, a prestigious area of ​​West Bay. Credit: Visit Qatar

A pleasant island that combines relaxation and entertainment. Pearl-Qatar is an artificial island located not far from the West Bay Lagoon in Doha. As its name suggests, the island is built in the shape of a pearl on an old dive site dedicated to pearl fishing.

Lined with yachts, the island is surrounded by beachside villas, luxury shops, marinas, residential towers and luxurious hotels. For meals, the island is home to modern restaurants, a real journey of flavors. The Pearl is a very touristy place, it is also nicknamed the 'Arab Riviera'.

8. Stroll along the Doha Corniche

Doha corniche. Credit: Visit Qatar

A 7-kilometer horse-shoe-shaped ride by the sea with breathtaking views of the modern Doha city landscape. A boulevard framed by palm trees lined with palm trees and a two-lane carriageway.

Various events enliven the Corniche such as the National Day and the National Sports Day. Do you want to take a walk on the Corniche in the evening? The traditional boats will illuminate your night stroll along the bay. Board an Arabian dhow for a cruise along the Doha Corniche.

9. Visit the Imam Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab Mosque

Exterior of Imam Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab Mosque. Credit: Visit Qatar

A dazzling fort-like religious stronghold. The Imam Abdul Wahhab Mosque is located on top of a hill. A mix between the traditional and the modern. Inaugurated in 2011, it is the largest mosque in the State of Qatar. This building houses three libraries, separate prayer rooms and rooms devoted to the memorization of the Koran. This holy place can accommodate more than 30,000 faithful. Visitors will be able to visit the mosque outside of prayer times. Also note that the entrance to the Imam Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab Mosque is completely free.

The Islamic architecture of the Grand Mosque of Doha is resplendent. It is made up of several domes with an exterior that is illuminated after dark. During the hottest days, the marble floor will cool you down.

10. Banana Island, an island for a lazy day

Banana Island seen from above. Credit: Visit Qatar

Located just 25 minutes from the heart of Qatar's capital, the resort sits on a beautiful island. Many activities are offered to you. For a moment of idleness, the Banana Island Resort offers relaxation, well-being and pleasure. It is a true place of Arabian luxury, perfect for a romantic or family stay.

The resort also has a swimming pool with an artificial wave to try surfing or diving. For the more athletic, many water sports are on offer such as wakeboarding and kayaking excursions.

11. Qatar Desert 4x4 Safari

Visit the Qatar desert on the back of a camel. Credit: Visit Qatar

Admire the beauty of the Qatar desert and the mer turquoise by Khor Al Adaid. A dune landscape that flows into the ocean. We advise you to book your departure from Doha which will take you south along the coast of Qatar in a private 4x4. Also enjoy a traditional camel ride.

12. How to get around in Doha?

The city of Doha and its main roads. Credit: Visit Qatar

In Doha, one of the best ways to get around is the new metro system. A high-tech network that includes trains that can go up to 100 km/h! Premium passengers have a “gold class”. Regarding the ticket, the trip costs 2 QAR (about 0.50 euro cents). A reusable transport card costs 10 QAR (2.75 euro cents).

There are many means of transport available for visitors: buses, taxis as well as public transport apps like Careem and Uber.

13. Take a walk in Msheireb Downtown Doha

Credit: Visit Qatar

Booming neighborhood with contemporary architecture. On the program, a community atmosphere, lively shopping streets and a culinary scene to absolutely discover. Msheireb Downtown Doha means “a place to drink water” in Arabic. A refreshing neighborhood full of luxury boutiques and an air-conditioned outdoor dining area.

300 retail stores as well as commercial buildings can be found in this revitalized center of Doha. To get there, nothing could be simpler. Qatar's largest metro station makes it easy to get to and from this neighborhood. Are you transported? A large underground car park is at your disposal.

14. Take a Dhow Ride

Take a tour of part of Doha aboard a dhow. Credit: Qatar Tourism

Embark on a sightseeing tour of Doha aboard a traditional dhow boat. Boarding is near the Museum of Islamic Art. Generally, this peaceful ride lasts about 2 hours. You will follow the Corniche and the West Bay to finally reach the Sheraton Park.

15. Where to stay in Doha?

The hotel spa. Credit: Hilton Salwa Beach Resort

Many hotels are available to you during your stay in Doha. However, the editor's favorite is the Hilton Salwa Beach Resort hotel, which is located not far from the Saudi Arabian border. Indeed, the hotel has a private beach stretching over 3.5 km. The hotel is a place between relaxation and sensation thanks to its aquatic theme park. Ideal for families! The Hilton hotel also has a spa and an outdoor swimming pool and more than 20 restaurants. Villas are also available by the sea for a breathtaking view.