Every day, an influx of passengers travel through the Hamad International Airport in Qatar for a connecting flight. This busy transit hub has become the global gateway for every traveller – but Qatar is more than just a pit stop! With its rich culture, stunning skyline and sandy landscapes, there’s plenty to explore in this cosmopolitan Gulf nation. The next time you’re in Qatar for a layover, stick around and spend a few days outside the airport – a perfect excuse to enjoy a late checkout with our summer offer, where you’ll get up to 3 nights of hotel stay for free at our selected hotels! Here are 5 reasons you should visit Qatar:
The ancient Souq Waqif
Also known as “the standing market”, Souq Waqif was built on the site of an ancient Bedouin marketplace. It was then renovated in 2004 using wood and stone to recreate ancient Qatari architecture. Souq Waqif remains as Qatar’s main attraction – and also one of the most traditional marketplaces you’ll find in the city. Take a stroll down the bustling alleys of this marketplace and soak up the atmosphere around you, as the sounds of enchanting traditional music play in the background. Whether you’re looking for perfumes, spices, handicrafts, garments, antiques, or local coffee, you’ll find everything you need here! This spot is a must-visit if you want to experience an authentic culture trip.
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Al Zubarah Archaeological Site
Unravel the cultural history of Qatar at the restored Al Zubarah Fort. This archaeological site is located in the coastal town of Zubarah, Qatar’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site. Part of the Persian Gulf, the coastal town of Zubarah was once a large pearling and trading centre, before getting destroyed in 1811 – and abandoned in the late 1900s. This UNESCO World Heritage Site will take you back in time to learn about how pearl trading sustained the region’s major coastal towns, leading to the development of independent Gulf states.
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Katara Cultural Village
Nestled between the iconic Pearl Qatar and West Bay in Doha, the Katara Cultural Village is home to Qatar’s growing arts scene. Also known as “The Valley Of Cultures”, this destination will charm you with its architecture, theatre and tradition. Rekindle your love for everything arts and culture when you explore the Katara Cultural Village! We’re talking live music, exhibitions, and super cool conventions to keep you entertained.
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Dhows and Doha’s famous Corniche
If there’s one thing you can’t miss out on in Doha, it’s taking a cruise on a traditional boat called the “Dhow”. This boat will take you to the famous Corniche in Doha, where you’ll feast your eyes on Doha’s magnificent city skyline – from skyscrapers to the outlines of the Museum of Islamic Art! Did you know that Doha’s Corniche is seven kilometres long? This waterfront promenade stretches on for the entire length of Doha Bay – perfect for a late afternoon stroll in the city.
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Khor Al Udaid
Located 60 kilometres away, in the South-Eastern part of Doha, is where you’ll discover the unique Khor Al Udaid beach. This natural wonder of Doha, also known as “Inland Sea”, is nothing like the beaches you’ve seen – because it’s surrounded by sand dunes! This UNESCO-recognised nature reserve is one of the few places in the world where you can find the sea deep in the heart of the desert. With its bold, navy-blue waters and rare species of wildlife, the Khor Al Udaid beach is a world-class scenic beauty that you should visit at least once in a lifetime.
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Whether it’s a magnificent city skyline or a buzzing arts scene, there’s no denying that Qatar has a lot to offer! What do you think of all these gems we’ve mentioned? If you’re keen to experience these beautiful places, start packing your bags and book your vacation now with our summer offer and get a 2 for 1 hotel stay for up to 6 nights until 31st August 2018!
Even better – if you join our Late Checkout Competition and share your best late checkout excuse by the 30th June 2018, you stand a chance to win a 4-night stay in The Maldives!