Doha Travel Diary
by Cassie Hale / 2019-10-24 14:40:44
Qatar is a destination more and more travellers are considering and it’s easy to see why. From the sky scrapers of West Bay, which are lit up on an evening, to the shopping malls, local souqs, museums, and excursions including bus tours and visits to the desert, there really is lots to see and do in Doha.
I flew with Qatar Airlines, enjoying business class both inbound and outbounds, which was truly one of the best flight experiences I have had. I have never received the impeccable, individual service I received on board with Qatar. From the champagne on arrive to the greeting from my personal crew member and the extensive list of food and beverages on board, it was fantastic. With the on-board entertainment and fully reclining bed, I did not want the flight to end!
There are so many hotels to choose from in Doha whether that is the more boutique hotels in the Souq Waqif to larger, resort-like hotels on the pearl or West Bay. All hotels are within easy reach of the airport - Doha International Airport is only 30 minutes’ drive from Doha City.
A great way to see all Doha has to offer is on the Doha Hop On Hop Off bus. All the sights are in easy reach of each other and I would recommend stopping to see the National History Museum of Qatar and the Museum of Islamic Art.
A visit to Doha also would not be complete without visiting the Souq Waqif to experience the local lifestyle and grab yourself a bargain! It was great to witness the thriving hub of Doha and have a go at bartering with the locals. From beautiful smelling spices to Aladdin lamps, there was something for everyone. You should also visit the Falcon hospital which has more departments than most of our hospitals in the UK.
We enjoyed dinner on our first evening at the 360 degree revolving restaurant, Three Sixty, at the top of the Torch Hotel. We enjoyed a delicious meal whilst the restaurant revolved over 60 minutes and the views are stunning. The hotel is located in the Aspire Park and overlooks the Khalifa International Stadium which will be used as one of the stadiums for the 2022 World Cup semi-final.
One of the best things I experienced in Doha was driving out to the desert and going Dune Bashing. This was out of my comfort zone but I absolutely loved every minute of it. The drivers are experts at what they do and know the desert like the back of their hand. Their stories of the desert add to the adventure and it was very exhilarating.
We also went to see the Khor Al Adaid (Inland Sea) which is absolutely stunning. As you arrive, all you can see is the rolling hills of the sand dunes meeting the beautiful sea which links to the Persian gulf. I had a paddle in the sea and could not believe how it felt like a warm bath. The experience of driving on the dunes and seeing the inland sea is an experience you will never forget.
Doha is great as a destination in its own right but I’d also recommend it as a stopover destination. We frequently think of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but we should definitely consider Doha.
Cassie’s top tips for Doha
- Take something to cover up your shoulders (e.g. a scarf) for when you go to local places so that it is easy to cover up.
- Sun cream for the hot Arabian sun is a must! Temperatures can range from 20 degrees Celsius to 46 degrees Celsius.
- Tell your phone company you are travelling to Doha and turn off your data roaming as this can be quite costly – all hotels have wifi so log on when you arrive.
- If you want a seamless end to your holiday, try the meet and greet service at Doha Airport. It really is easy and you can grab a coffee whilst you are waiting to check in at the special meet and greet area – a relaxing end to any break!
- Remember to take a camera to capture all the wonderful moments you will experience whilst you are there.