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Best Zoo In Qatar

author
Ava Flores
• Tuesday, 03 November, 2020
• 31 min read

Being a desert land sitting by the Gulf, Qatar houses every specie from the aquatic to terrestrial, the reptiles, nocturnal and migratory lives. An abundance of wilderness can be discovered in Qatar and about 23 per cent of its land it just for the conservation of these species.

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(Source: www.tripadvisor.co.uk)

Contents

Taking about the wildlife preserved here, one can spot the endangered family of reptiles, the native flora and migratory birds resting along the silent coastlines. Coming to the fauna, a majority of animals in Qatar, are adapted to its geographic condition.

With no dense population of animals, Qatar is a niche for its permanent wilds that can survive in its extreme high temperate and sparse vegetation. While the numbers of animals may be less compared to the safari region of the African continent, Qatar has its unique wilderness that deserves to be highlighted.

Not only the wildlife, but there are also some conservatoires and park that exhibits the natural habitat of Qatar favoring the condition for the survival of these fascinating wilds. The Al Shakira Mangroves is a rare sight to discover greenery amidst the deserts of Qatar.

With its distinct ecosystem, the mangrove vegetation and the water stream, this region is known for the migratory birds like herons and flamingos arriving here during the season. Apart from a wildlife tour in Qatar, this is the attraction famous for kayaking while discovering the mangrove plantations along the stream.

The mangroves of Al Shakira are characterized by white or gray leaves and pencil roots that are adapted to survive in high salinity of the water. This is an educational center where you can learn about different species, their behavior and habitat along with the local culture.

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And other wilds like deer, ostrich, camels and emus along with the big cats like cheetahs, tigers and lion can be spotted here. A paradise for bird watchers, Kaya Farm is a home for many infects and a panoramic view.

There are fields, rocks made of limestones, sandy plain region and scattered vegetation that can be observed in the entire area. Famous for- migratory birds, snakes and spiders How to reach- Kaya farm is located towards the west of Doha at a distance of 50 km that will take an hour of drive.

It is the arid climatic condition that makes the Al Seem reserve suitable for the survival of these animals in their natural habitat. This game reserve is not just a conservatory but even a breeding ground for these vulnerable wilds to check on their population.

Famous for- Gazelles and Onyx How to reach- The Al Seem Reserve is located at a distance of 65 km from Doha that will take an hour of drive. Apart from housing more than 315 wilds in its premises, the park has set up activity grounds, cafés and fountains for the visitors.

For your next vacation, plan an excursion to these amazing nature reserves, discovering the wildlife in Qatar. Qatar houses six species of Falcons that you can see in any Doha zoo or game park.

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Try moving the map or changing your filters. My uncle who lives in Qatar says that the zoo is pale compared to the ones in Singapore, Malaysia, India or any country for that matter.

Perhaps not in your TOP Bucket list to wander caused by society’s connotation be related to one of the Arab Countries. In fact, it’s a great spot for sunshine at least before the temperature strikes 41 °C and not as cold as snow during winter season.

Structures of the buildings brings a unique modern profile to the skyline of the city in the middle of the desert. Still in the development stage where constructions are everywhere and possibly the drawback for some areas. Plenty of huge shopping centers with fewer people than the usual malls we have back home except weekend of Thursday and Fridays.

Local women in traditional dress (Avaya) worn with pride on a daily basis showing their fashionable heeled stilettos or stacked heels while men with the usual thaws, beards and mustache that emphasizes their strong-willed personalities. The population consists higher percentage of expatriates than locals working in different fields with equally reasonable wage based on level of position.

Banana Island Resort a setting closed to perfection of scenic view with defined Architectonic design that’s just 5 min away ferry ride from Shock Port. Famed marketplace of Soul Waif flooded of stalls and bustling people studded with local restaurants, souvenir shops, the scent of homeland in all corners will make you feel the essence of Arabian country.

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Tourist should not need to worry about the no-go areas as place is safe yet being cautious around you isn’t such a bad idea at all, crimes are very low compared to other neighboring countries even by walking alone in the street or alleys just amazed me as an Asian exposed to lawbreaking activities. Living here for 3 years I could say Qatar is a glam and gem, beautifully flicker on its own that earns a spot on your list as well.

“Unjustified judgement of minds before seeing what it truly deserves molds the character of an individual that leaves mark in the society.”. The zoo has a cafeteria and children's play area located within its 4.2 hectare grounds.

Other than the Onyx Farm in the Al Shamanic region of central Qatar Doha Zoo is the only venue where visitors can view animals in captivity. Visitors need a special permit from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Agriculture to visit the Onyx Farm.

The onyx is a fine-looking member of the antelope family with large, impressive, straight horns. It is another wonderful attraction for visitors after Aqua Park Of Qatar.

The Doha Zoo is abode to many rare species, along with other animals, including onyx, zebras, elephants, baboons and giraffes. Onyx is the national animal of Qatar, and it is the main attraction of this zoo.

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Address: Doha Zoo, Al Furiously Street, Salsa Road South, Doha-820, Qatar. Note: Any kind of entry fees has not been charged for Disabled people and child below 2 years.

Zoo In Qatar Doha This one of the largest animal park present in the region is a wonderful place for local residents and foreign tourists to spend some quality time with their family and children. It includes the small size aviary which has a good collection of bright and noisy birds.

Otherwise, you need to visit Onyx park which is located in the Al Shamanic region of Qatar. The animal park offers a great experience both for adults and kids alike.

Apart from enjoyment, this unique zoological park serves well as an enlightening trip for kids. After crossing Hyatt plaza signal you need to take a right turn and after few meters, you can see the zoo on your left-hand side.

If you are coming in the summers then don’t forget to take sunglasses, cap and water bottle. The first phase of the gradual lifting of COVID-19 restrictions in Qatar will see the opening of several mosques, shops at malls and commercial complexes, as well as some parks, among others.

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The official completion of Education City Stadium was celebrated with a special TV program to showcase the third match-ready FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. As Qatar prepares to kick-start its four-phased plan of the gradual lifting of restrictions in place against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), The Ministry of Away and Islamic Affairs has confirmed that at least 500 mosques across the country will be reopened from June 15.

In the past decade, Zoom has had the honor of participating in many of the biggest national events, driven by an extensive resource base and a belief that any idea can be realized, regardless of physical, geographic or time-based constraints. By focusing on building our human and technical assets, Zoom has been able to deliver nearly 4,000 turnkey projects and events for Qatari brands and institutions domestically and around the world.

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It is one of the most rapidly-developing cities on the Persian Gulf, akin to the development seen in nearby Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and is aiming to become a center of international trade and travel. For most of its history Doha was a poor fishing village dependent on pearl diving, and was regarded as a sleepy backwater until the early 1990s.

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Following the accession of Sheikh Haman bin Khalifa Al Than as Emir in 1995, however, Qatar quickly began to modernize, and Doha is now taking huge strides to catch up with other nearby Gulf cities, especially in preparation for its hosting of the FIFA World Cup in 2022. The city is very much a work-in-progress, with a rapidly growing skyline and new buildings sprouting up almost like mushrooms.

Although Arabic is Qatar's official language, English is by default the lingua franca, as the majority of the city's expats do not speak Arabic, including most shopkeepers and service providers, and most Qataris speak English to communicate with the numerous migrant workers who work for them. Doha is also now one of the fastest-growing cities in the world, as workers continue to pour in to help build the developing economy.

Doha is fairly liberal by the standards of the Islamic world, though less so than most Western countries. Alcohol is legal for non-Muslims, and non-Muslim women are not required to wear the hijab, though dressing in very skimpy outfits is still illegal.

Homosexuality is also a crime that carries the death penalty (though not actively enforced), so gay visitors should be as discreet as possible. Written by a resident Indian-American, this is a collection of insightful essays about life as an expatriate in Doha.

The primary point of entry for most travelers, it is the hub and base for Qatar Airways, which has positioned itself as one of the “Big Three” Middle Eastern airlines. It has built a far-reaching network, flying to destinations in Europe, South and East Asia, Australia, Africa and the Americas.

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Compared to Dubai, the home of Qatar Airways' arch-rival Emirates, Doha is served by much fewer other carriers. The major European airlines usually provide a single connection to Doha from their main hubs (e.g. Lufthansa from Frankfurt, KLM from Amsterdam), but minor ones do not.

Pretty much all airlines of the Middle East, Turkey included (but not Israel), provide connections to Doha. Relatively few Asian airlines do so, however, except a relatively good choice of connections to India and Pakistan.

If you're arriving from outside the Persian Gulf region, probably the most economical way to visit is to use Qatar as an intermediate stopover en route to another destination. Prices of tickets originating in or terminating in Doha are artificially high because of limited competition, while prices for transit tickets are very competitive, as Qatar Airways continues working to build Doha as a global transit hub.

However, this is rarely an option, as obtaining permits driving through Saudi Arabia can be extremely difficult. Early plans are underway to connect Qatar using bridges with both Bahrain in the north-east and the United Arab Emirates in the south-east.

Every metro station has a restroom with baby changing table and an ablution room, right after the turnstiles. The public bus system is operated by the government-owned Masala, which runs a wide network of routes catering for most of Doha, along with adjacent and surrounding towns.

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Fares within the city cost between QR 3-9 and are payable with exact change, or with a Karma Smart card , available for purchase at the bus station. In order to ease ever-increasing traffic congestion, Masala operates a free shuttle bus service, servicing passengers with two routes in the West Bay (downtown) area; plans are underway to offer more routes.

It offers a hop-on, hop-off tourist bus service, with stops at various locations between the Marriott Hotel and the Pearl- Qatar. Alternatively, the manager/dispatcher is happy to take your call on her mobile and this will prevent you waiting on hold or even getting a busy signal.

The energetic young crew of Piney, Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan expats might not seem like the most organized bunch, but they try really hard to make things right, and they never stop smiling. There is shuttle service available from the airport to the first stop of the tour, which requires 30 minutes advance notice to arrange.

If you're doing this on your last day in Doha, they will even arrange to pick you up at one of the main stops along the route and transfer you back to the airport for a not-unreasonable QR 50. “Limousine” taxis are available, which are unmarked, much more expensive (often two to four times the cost of Areas) and may not carry a meter.

If you feel sure about the fare, you can negotiate it up front, but it is advisable to insist on a meter. The demand for taxis far exceeds the supply and waiting times may vary greatly.

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At other times, it may take upwards of 90 minutes for an on-call taxi to arrive, and hailing one may be impossible in many places. The only places where you are guaranteed to find a taxi (normal or limousine) are at major malls, the airport and international hotels.

The acute shortage has led to a thriving market for unlicensed, or unofficial, taxi services, most with a steady clientele. Occasionally, you may find a local driver will stop and offer to give you a ride if he or she sees you looking lost on the side of the road.

If a driver slows down and flashes their headlights, they are usually signalling they're willing to give you a lift; beckon them over with a wave in response. Several car rental agencies are found in and around Doha International Airport.

These rental agencies offer seasonal discounts, and it is advisable to check their websites before booking. If you're looking to rent a car, it is best to reserve in advance, to ensure a good price and minimize wait times.

However, the laws regarding driving licenses change almost yearly; visitors are advised to verify this information before arrival. Driving in Qatar is on the right-hand side of the road, with similar traffic rules to elsewhere in the world.

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However, because Doha residents come from all corners of the globe, driving styles vary wildly. Many museums are under seemingly never-ending refurbishment, the opening hours are not particularly tourist friendly, websites lack practical information such as opening times and location, and many museums require you to phone in advance for a special appointment (which can make the solo visitor feel somewhat uncomfortable as the curator opens up just for one person).

Pei, the museum hosts artifacts from Muslim dynasties all over Asia, Africa and Europe. An hourly shuttle service provides free transportation between MIA and Math WSU 11:00-17:00; driving time between the two museums is 25-35 minutes.

25.310556 51.419722 2 Math: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Al Junta St, Education City (shuttle bus), +974 4402 8855, mathaf_info@qma.org.qa. A specially designed building housing a collection of modern art from the Arab world, based on a personal collection amassed by Sheikh Haman bin Khalifa Al Than.

The original museum was housed in an early 20th-century palace; its extension, now under construction, was designed by French architect Jean Novel and inspired by the desert sand rose. 25.287 51.544 4 Orientalist Museum, Off Al Mutual St (Mira), +974 4436 7711.

The approximate 700 paintings, water colors, drawings and prints trace Orientalism back to the early 18th century. 25.359522 51.525704 5 Arab Postal Stamp Museum, off of Lugsail St (Atari Cultural Village, Bldg 22A), +974 4409 1077.

An extension of the Sheikh Faisal bin Passim Museum in Al Shahaniyah, this branch displays carpets from various Middle Eastern countries, and furniture and domestic objects from Qatar and the Gulf region. Curator have a small gallery, with exhibitions which change every few months, in their campus on Education City, which is open to everyone (sign in at reception).

Because of the ongoing building works at Education City, it's a nightmare to get from Math to here, but when the trams are running it should be an easy side-trip from there! (updated Sep 2019) 25.302606 51.507642 9 Forestation Artist in Residence, Mohammed Bin Than St, +974 4422-4222, contact@firestation.org.qa.

Covered passageway in Soul WaqifMsheireb Enrichment Center 25.286654 51.531006 10 Al Foot Fort (Doha Fort), Passim Bin Mohammed St (parking lot near Soul Waif). Built in 1880 during the Ottoman period, this big white fort is in what is now the parking lot of Soul Waif.

It was used as an ethnographic museum, the building is undergoing renovations and is closed, although it is still a popular place to take photos. 25.2889 51.53564 11 Final Qatar Islamic Cultural Center, Abdullah Bin Passim St (near the Cornice and Soul Waif), +974 4425 0169, info@fanar.qa.

Easily spotted from the Cornice with its distinctive spiral minaret, the center aims to educate non-Muslims about Islam by offering free Arabic classes as well as art and calligraphy exhibits. The center conducts bi-weekly tours of local mosques followed by a traditional dinner (bays provided for women, registration required), and also hosts weekly coffee mornings with presentations on Qatari culture and lifestyle (registration required).

Next to the Grand Mosque, this old clock tower features Arabic numerals on its face. Soul Waif is the renovated Arabic market quarter, where one can easily wander around the maze-like corridors for hours.

There is a section of spice shops, another of textiles, and even a quarter with falcons for sale. Stables with Arabian horses are not far from the falcons, and camels are kept near Al Foot Fort and the parking lot.

Also look for places to buy souvenirs, sit down to smoke a Sheesh, or enjoy food at one of the restaurants bordering it. Traditionally-dressed Qatari police occasionally patrol the soul area, in the morning mounted on camels and in the evening on horseback.

25.31601 51.531564 15 Sheree Enrichment Center, barge docked off the Cornice, next to the Sheraton, +974 33197482, +974 33192305, mec@msheireb.com. It is one of the largest research centers in the Middle East, and is based on a collection started by Sheikh Hassan Bin Mohamed Al Than in 1979.

Opened in April 2018, the building was designed by renowned Dutch architect Rem Koalas. 25.3146 51.4335 18 Virginia Commonwealth University Gallery, Al Junta St, Education City (entrance at Gate 2), +974 4402 0555, info Qatar .ICU.edu.

The gallery at the CUT campus in Education City regularly hosts visiting exhibitions and the work of faculty members and students. Visitors can expect to see weaving, pearl trading, and a dhow (traditional boat).

There are still a few notable old villas and mosques which predate the mostly 1970s-era buildings; given the pace of redevelopment in Doha it is unclear how much longer they will survive. 25.321468 51.442786 21 House of Sheikh Abdullah bin Than Altai, Al Junta St (near the Education City Roundabout).

In the afternoons you will see plenty of locals strolling, often trying to get out of the way of the odd crazy Western ex-pat on rollerblades. Highlights along the Cornice (from east to west) include an informal morning fish market, the MIA (Museum of Islamic Art), the 'Water Pots' fountain, the giant Oyster and Pearl sculpture, the Dhow Harbor (with traditional wooden dhows), and a giant 'Sorry' statue (the mascot for the 2006 Asian Games).

Formerly known as Rural Park, this is opposite the Cornice with an outdoor theater, art gallery, water features, children’s play area and skateboard/rollerblading half-pipe. This building complex is designed to resemble a traditional Qatari village, and includes a large open-air amphitheater, opera house, drama theater, galleries, as well as a number of (expensive) restaurants featuring international cuisine.

The galleries host changing art and photography exhibits, and various festivals are held here throughout the year. There is also a public beach here (entry fee QR 100) which offers waterspout activities.

One of Qatar's claims to fame is the Al Jazeera news network, which broadcasts to hundreds of millions around the world. A small on-site museum is dedicated to journalists who have died in the field, and has various timelines and displays about the network's history.

(updated May 2018) 25.294701 51.543106 27 MIA Park, Cornice (adjacent to the Museum of Islamic Art). This modern park was built on reclaimed land and affords great views of the West Bay skyline.

Visitors can rent bicycles or paddle boats, and enjoy coffee or ice cream at a small café. At the end of the promenade is the monumental sculpture '7' by American sculptor Richard Serra.

During the winter the MIA Park Bazaar is held on the first Saturday of every month, offering an eclectic mix of food, arts, crafts, books, and souvenirs. The project required four months to complete and showcases El Seed's signature style fusing Arabic calligraphy with street art.

25.320923 51.444656 29 The Miraculous Journey, Sudra Medical and Research Center (near Education City). A series of 14 monumental bronze sculptures depicting the stages of development of a fetus from gestation to newborn, by British artist Damien First.

The sculptures were commissioned by the Qatar Museum Authority, which reportedly paid US$20 million for them. Traditional dhows along the CornicheDoha has a reputation for not being the most exciting place on earth; however, should you find yourself here for a longer visit, there is a variety of activities and events.

Start off with a tour of the city, which should take you about 2 hours and from there you will have a good idea of what you would like to see. There are well-maintained private beaches in Doha owned by hotels, which permit public access for a fee.

Hotels with beaches include the Grand Hyatt, Diplomatic Club, InterContinental, Sheraton, Share Village, and the Four Seasons, with fees ranging from QR 180 for weekday passes to annual family memberships. Additionally, the Atari Cultural Village operates Doha's only public beach, with an entry fee of QR 100.

Many cruises offer meals and entertainment, and can be booked for large tours or for more informal arrangements. Films are screened at the Museum of Islamic Art and at Atari Cultural Village; tickets can be booked online.

25.381874 51.505272 1 Doha Golf Club, West Bay, +974 4496 0777, fax : +974 4483 4790, info@dohagolfclub.com. Drag racing is promoted by the Qatari government on an organized racetrack so young drivers do not feel the need for crazy driving on the streets of Doha.

3500 m² of animal-themed children's attractions, Qatar's most popular indoor theme park. Entailed Adventures offers guided sea kayaking trips within Doha, or further afield along coastal mangroves and secluded beaches, with opportunities for birdwatching and camping.

Gambling is prohibited, but attendees can enter free raffles to guess the winning horses, with substantial prizes (including cars). The Club also hosts an Arabian horse show every March; details are published in the local press.

25.349572 51.531602 5 Sailing, Al Internal Rd (West Bay Lagoon, near the InterContinental Hotel), +974 4442 4577, regatta Qatar .net.QA. A typical Middle Eastern activity in the afternoons is to find a sheesh café and smoke some fruit-flavoured tobacco.

It's in a picturesque old-style building reminiscent, in color and texture if not grandeur, of the red Mughal structures in India. Ras-Naswa has a nice outdoor garden and serves decent Middle Eastern food.

You can buy pretty much anything you want in Doha, apart from pork products and alcohol (except with a license or in the major hotels). Shopping is a major leisure pursuit of many Qataris and expats; prices however are somewhat higher than in Dubai.

Also referred to as the Old Soul, this is the best place to pick up souvenirs and rub shoulder with locals. Also, worth visiting are the horse stables (near the falcon shops) and the camels (near Al Foot Fort).

25.285582 51.537797 2 Gold Soul, Ali Bin Abdullah St (Old Al Ghana, near HSBC by the bus station). 25.287203 51.536563 3 Fabric Soul, Al Ahmed St (near Final Mosque, with the distinctive spiral minaret).

Here you can choose from a selection of exotic fabrics and have clothing designed and tailored to your specifications. 25.247161 51.475859 4 Omani Soul, By Amour (near the Wholesale Market, parallel to Salsa Rd).

Also, be aware that some malls schedule “Family Days”, where single men will be turned away at the door. In practice, however, most Westerners will be allowed in, but brown-skinned persons (particularly South Asians in their native dressing) will be turned away.

25.324574 51.530553 5 City Center Doha, Conference Center St (West Bay). In West Bay, the modern part of the city on the northern end of the Cornice, it offers a large and diverse shopping experience, including some jewellery and perfume stores.

For entertainment there is a large multiplex cinema, a bowling alley, a children's arcade, as well as an indoor ice skating rink. By western standards, this mall is quite dated for its age, but remains popular due to its large size and ideal location.

There is a good-sized food court and a large children's play land called “Jungle Zone.” 25.375981 51.524781 9 Lagoon Plaza, West Bay, Zone 66 (distinctive zigzag towers, near the Pearl- Qatar), +974 4433 5555.

The mall is designed to look like Venice in terms of architecture, and is home to many western stores, as well as a large Carrefour. The availability of English-language books in Doha is fairly limited but improving, and there are several shops which offer some current titles as well as regional travel guides.

Carrefour, Lulu Hypermarket, and Mega mart all sell international magazines and newspapers along with local maps. Sells Arabic and English language books, and a good selection of international magazines and newspapers.

Qatari sweets at Soul WaqifInformal fish market along the CornicheGiven the population diversity in Doha, there is a large variety of different types of cuisine, including Indian, Thai, Chinese, Italian, Korean and, of course, typical Middle Eastern food. Most major American fast food chains have multiple branches here, including McDonald's, KFC, Harder's, Arby's, Burger King, Subway, and Dairy Queen.

Many of them are in the major shopping centers, and at Ramada Junction (the intersection of C-Ring and Salsa RDS). There are also a number of more upscale American chains, including TGI Fridays (in the Landmark, Village shopping malls, Bin Oman Opposite the Civil Defense and Scheme Bin Haman Street, Already), Applebee's, Chili's, Fuddruckers, Benign's, and Ponderosa Steakhouse.

25.282388 51.545526 1 RIC's Country Kitchen, Sana Complex, Ra's Abu About St (southeast corner of Ra's Abu About St and D Ring Rd), +974 4443 7846. Serves up large classic American breakfasts, and one of the few places in Doha with real bacon and pork sausages.

This is undisputedly the most popular pizza in Doha, surprisingly offered by a well-established and efficient Filipino operation. 25.281518 51.501684 2 Fish Sushi, Al Said St (Royal Plaza Mall), +974 442 8989.

25.242027 51.46262 3 Royal Hamilton, Salsa Rd (behind the Al Jazeera petrol station, across from Quality Hypermarket), +974 7721 9865. A Doha institution, offers authentic Thai street food for very reasonable prices.

25.2774 51.50046 8 Yes CWA Restaurant, Al-Kinana St (in the Doha Downtown Hotel), +974 4441 9898, YeeHwaDoha@gmail.com. This restaurant specializes in Korean barbecue and Japanese cuisine, and is one of the better places in Doha for sushi.

Offers thin-crust pizza baked in a traditional oven, along with a good selection of pastas and risottos. 25.283223 51.549281 10 J&G Sandwich Cellar, Ra's Abu About St (near the C-Ring flyover), +974 4435 7559, fax : +974 4435 7936, Sandwich.cellar@gmail.com.

Doha's only British café, with full English breakfasts and Yorkshire pudding. Delicious northern Indian cuisine, with especially good fish tandoori and chicken vandalism.

25.311549 51.494978 19 The Garden Village Restaurant Doha, Feared Julie St (opposite Marduk Petrol Station & Nissan showroom, ahead of Al Ali Hospital while going from Ramada signal), +974 4488 5115. Recommended for its good ambience and nice Indian village model interior.

A Doha institution, featuring traditional Syrian and Lebanese dishes, and sheesh. An upscale place with tasty Lebanese dishes and some of the best views in Doha.

25.30635 51.498385 23 Ankara Pastry Restaurant, Ahmed Bin Ali St (across from Alkali Hospital), +974 4487 1861. 25.23874 51.499561 24 Istanbul Sultan, Messier Rd (near the left corner of the strip mall behind Abu Amour Petrol Station).

The portions are large (try the mixed grill or swish taboo) and the appetizers are excellent, particularly the chili label. For local street food, nothing beats the home-made goodness dished out by the Pancake Ladies in Soul Waif every evening in the square by the car park.

The crepe-like cartouche is particularly tasty, filled with your choice of label (cheese), ZA’star, or the less-traditional Nutella for QR5. Other local specialties feature meat, chicken, and fish, and there are even a couple of vegetarian options.

25.349451 51.53106 29 Fish Market, Al Internal Rd, West Bay (InterContinental Hotel), +974 4484 4444. 25.35849 51.526479 30 L'war Seafood Market, Atari Cultural Village, Bldg 27, +974 4408 0710, fax : +974 4408 0722, info@lwzaar.com.

For self-catering options there are a few hypermarkets as well as a number of smaller neighborhood grocery stores distributed throughout the city. This UAE-based chain operates two full hypermarkets: on D-Ring Rd (near the airport) and in Al GARAF (across from Landmark Mall).

There is also a smaller express store near Education City, and a branch has been opened in Al Messily. 25.274756 51.516082 31 Mega Mart, The Center, Salsa Rd (not far from the Radisson Blu (formerly Ramada) hotel).

Very popular with western expats as it imports a lot of products from America and Europe, but can be quite expensive. Also has a Costa Coffee nearby, as well as many smaller shops stocking cards, electronics and perfumes.

Should your bill include a service charge, feel free to strike it from the total and leave a tip on the table instead. Arabic coffee in Soul Waif Alcohol is strictly regulated in Qatar, as it is a Muslim country, and for visitors is only available in bars attached to large 5-star international hotels.

Bars are required to see identification (i.e. a passport) at the door, although this is rarely enforced. Residents with a special liquor license may purchase alcohol at the ADC (Qatar Distribution Company) on the outskirts of town.

Some places favored by local expats are the Crystal Lounge and Wham Poolside Lounge (W Doha Hotel), Sky View Bar (La CIGALES Hotel), the Belgian Café (InterContinental at West Bay Lagoon), and Trader Vic's (Hilton). The Irish Harp (in the basement of the Sheraton near City Center Mall) has frequent live music.

Kara is the local specialty, a very sweet concoction made from tea and evaporated milk available from stalls everywhere, some of them drive-through (just park your car outside and honk). Most international coffee chains (including the ubiquitous Starbucks) are well-represented here, especially in shopping malls.

This branch of the popular Malaysian café chain offers a good selection of coffee and teas, along with special ROTC buns. The hotel offers well-furnished suites all equipped with air-conditioner, Internet connection, cable TV, and coffee/tea maker.

Some of its facilities are fitness room/gym, airport and city transfers, tours and excursion desk, and laundry service. Some of its amenities are Wi-Fi connectivity, health club, business center, and laundry service.

It has two towers of excellent 4-star rooms and a selection of restaurants few hotels can match: the Mexican is acceptable, the pan-Asian quite good, the buffet nothing special, and the Indian really great. There is a disco attached to the hotel that has a door policy to match Studio 54 at its 1970s' peak (again though, showing up in a Maserati will get you whisked inside).

You can walk around and see things just outside the door (unlike most Doha hotels, which are someone isolated), but it is also a little less tranquil. The pub on the hotel's first floor is a large club that on weekends comes alive as a disco under the guidance of a Filipino cover band and hundreds of Asian workers letting loose after a hard 6-day work week.

The Library Bar, on the hotel's top floor, has a small, slightly worn chubby field populated by large-bellied expats. Facilities include a gymnasium, recreation room, indoor swimming pool and children’s playroom.

25.3757 51.5277 12 Grand Hyatt Doha, City Center (West Bay Lagoon), +974 448 1234, doha.grand@hyatt.com. Most of the suites & rooms have breathtaking views of the Persian Gulf and feature balconies or terraces.

Five minutes up the coast from the town center and directly across the road from the seemingly never open Allan's Kingdom amusement park. A member of The Leading Hotels of the World, in the heart of the city and only 15 minutes by car from the airport.

225 luxurious rooms and suites; 11 dining and entertainment outlets offering a selection of cuisine including Italian, Japanese, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Oriental and evening chill-out options; two ballrooms; a well-equipped gymnasium with certified instructors; an indoor swimming pool and a deluxe spa with ham mam facilities. 25.282109 51.542497 18 Merwebhotel Central Doha, Ra's Abu About (Near Sana R/A), +974 440 94444.

5-star hotel designed to meet the needs of business travelers through the use of innovative technologies and tailor made services adding a subtle flair of Qatari hospitality and heritage. The pool complex is large and landscaped to look an oasis, complete with fake rocks and waterfall.

The cigar bar/cocktail lounge is small, but the balcony has great views of the marina and pool. There is a disco on the grounds, but only hotel guests, club members, and people driving Italian supercars are allowed in.

The Sheraton is an architectural and minor cultural landmark in Doha, having been in town longer than any other international hotel. Shaped like a pyramid with an Imperial Star Destroyer stuck on top, it is at one end of the Cornice, making it visible from that long, waterfront road and walkway.

25.261803 51.446441 23 The Torch Doha, Al Saab St (Aspire Zone), +974 4446 5600, fax : +974 4446 5700. In the distinctive 300-m-high Aspire Tower built for the Asian Games, the Torch Hotel offers modern-appointed rooms over 51 floors.

25.28808 51.53561 7 Lair Exchange, Soul Ahmed bin Ali (entrance on Al Teen St), +974 4441 9010, fax : +974 4441 2224, large Qatar .net.QA. Traveled, Doha International Airport (in Terminal B Departures area, near Costa Coffee before passport control), +974 4462 0850, Qat.2050@travelex.com.

Australia, 21st Floor, Tornado Tower, Males Al Taiwan St, +974 4007-8500, fax : +974 4007-8503. (updated Oct 2017) Austria, Palm Tower B, Level 33, PO Box 12011 (West Bay), +974 4421 5541, +974 4421 5574, fax : +974 4421 5415, doha-ob@bmeia.gv.at.

Bahrain, Al Dana, Animal Street, Section 66, PO Box 24888, +974 4483-9360, +974 4483-9370. Closed due to ongoing diplomatic dispute between Qatar and its Gulf State neighbors.

(updated Oct 2017) Canada, Tornado Tower, PO Box 24876 (corner of Males Al Taiwan St and Al Funds St), +974 4419-9000, fax : +974 4419 9035, dohag@international.gc.ca. Not all consular services are provided by this mission; the nearest regular embassy is in Kuwait.

(updated Oct 2017) Ethiopia, Al Katina No, 66 Adana, PO Box 24856, +974 4020-7000. (updated Oct 2017) France, West Bay, PO Box 2669 (Diplomatic Area), +974 4402 1777, +974 4402 1755 (Emergencies), ambadoha@ Qatar .net.QA.

(updated Oct 2017) Iran, Daphne, Diplomatic Area, PO Box 1633, +974 4483-1550, +974 4483-5300, +974 4483-1950. (updated Oct 2017) Iraq, Dana, West Side, Diplomatic Area, Street 509, # 9, P.O.

(updated Oct 2017) Japan, West Bay, Diplomatic Area, PO Box 2208, +974 4484-0888. (updated Oct 2017) Kuwait, West Bay Al Dana, PO Box 1177, +974 4483-2111.

(updated Oct 2017) South Korea, West Bay, Diplomatic Area, PO Box 3727, +974 4483-2238, +974 4483-2239. The Overseas Labor Office is at the corner of Al Surat & Al Hudson St, Zone 66, Oneida; +974 4486-8001 and +974 4488-3858 (updated Oct 2017) Russian Federation, Area 66, Street 804, Villa No.

Closed due to ongoing diplomatic dispute between Qatar and its Gulf State neighbors. (updated Oct 2017) Singapore, New West Bay Area, PO Box 24497 (off of Lugsail St), +974 4412 8082, +974 4412 8083, +974 6673 6152 (Emergencies), fax : +974 4412 8180, singemb_doh@sgmfa.gov.sg.

South Africa, Stand 801, Saga 570, Plot 5 (West Bay Lagoon), +974 4485 7111, fax : +974 4483 5961, saembdoha@ Qatar .net.QA. Spain, Lugsail Street (Al- Internal Even), West Bay, PO Box 24616, +974 4483-5886, emb.doha@maec.es.

(updated Oct 2017) United Kingdom, Level 16, Gateway Building, 1 Macquarie Place, +974 4496 2000, fax : +974 4496 2086, embassy. United Arab Emirates, Diplomatic Quarters, West Bay, PO Box 3099, +974 4483-8880.

Closed due to ongoing diplomatic dispute between Qatar and its Gulf State neighbors. (updated Oct 2017) United States, 22nd February St, Al Junta District, PO Box 2399, +974 4488-4101, +974 4488-4101 (x 6117 ACS voicemail), +974 4496-6000 (Emergencies), fax : +974 4488-4298, PASDoha@state.gov, acsconsulardoha@state.gov MULTIPLE-EMAIL.

Al Jazeera English provides good regional coverage, but only rarely covers events within Qatar itself. Head SW of Doha on Salsa Rd; after about 13 km you will pass a large roundabout; after you come to the Mobil Petrol station make a U-turn and turn right on Messaged Road.

There are a number of kart caves in Qatar, the most well-known of them a short distance from Doha. All caves have not been fully explored, and it is believed that there is an extensive network of tunnels connecting many of them.

The most well-known of Qatar's caves, this 40 m-deep formation contains fibrous, faintly phosphorescent gypsum crystals. For safety reasons the site is surrounded by a chain link fence, but the gate is unlocked and visitors may enter freely.

25.122724 51.228212 10 Muddled Cave, Mutants (south of Salsa Rd near Earth Satellite Station). Additionally, there are a handful of sights outside of Doha which can only be accessed with prior government permission, which a tour company can arrange on your behalf.

This will cost you several hundred Qatari riyals, and may require a minimum of four persons to join in the fun. Beyond sand dune trips, several of these companies can arrange for overnight desert camping, excursions to historical sites, and city tours.

Gulf Adventures Tourism, 29 Aspire Zone St (Al RayBan), +974 4422 1888, fax : +974 4422 1866, info@gulf-adventures.com. Qatar International Tours, Al Hail Bldg, Mater St (Old Airport), +974 4455 1141, fax : +974 4465 3461, info@qittour.com.

Regency Travel and Tours, Sheikh Susie Bin Haman St (Al Said), +974 4434 4444, fax : +974 4434 1037, bookings@regencyholidays.com. Qatar Marine (GO SPORT), Village & City Center Mall, +974 5531 9507, info@qatarmarine.net.

Doha Sub Aqua Club, off Ra's Abu About (near Share Village and Spa), +974 6630 4061. A branch of the British Sub Aqua Club, offers a range of diving courses based on BSA qualifications.

Offers a full range of PAD courses, and organizes dives around Qatar. Drive south to visit the dhow harbor in Al Sarah, and then hit the beach and go dune bashing near Besieged.

Or drive north to see the fortress and prehistoric grave mounds near Umm Salad Muhammad, and continue on to kayak through the mangrove forests near Al Thor. It has a variety of good, quality information including hotels, restaurants, attractions and travel details.

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