Got 24 hours in Qatar? Here are places you must visit

Our GCC neighbours offer several attractions for a quick getaway

by

Husain Rizvi

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The Pearl, Qatar
The Pearl, Qatar

Published: Thu 2 May 2024, 5:55 PM

Last updated: Fri 3 May 2024, 1:18 PM

If you've absorbed all your weekends in exploring the countless hidden gems in the UAE and are now thinking to head to one of our neighbouring countries for a quick getaway, we've got you covered.

In this week's travel guide, let's traverse through Qatar, a destination which is just an hour away by flight, and seven hours by car. It's so close that you can go in the morning, finish your work, enjoy the evening, and head back home to the UAE at night. And many people do that, especially those who hold business meetings often. But in this guide, we'll tell you about a few attractions that you can visit in 24-hours.


Check-in and freshen up

Let's assume you take a morning flight to Qatar; you arrive in Doha, the capital city, in about 60 minutes, and head to a hotel where you'll be staying for the night. We recommend Four Seasons The Pearl, Qatar for your night stay. A 20-25-minute drive from the airport, the hotel is located in one of Doha's most popular areas. From there, you can easily head to several tourist destinations which we'll cover in this guide.


The Pearl, Qatar
The Pearl, Qatar

Qanat Quartier, Qatar’s very-own Venice

You don’t have to go to Italy any more to enjoy the charm of Venice, the city of canals. We’re not undermining the beauty of Venice, but the Qanat Quartier is much easier to travel to, especially because you don’t have to wait for months to acquire a schengen visa. Qanat Quartier at The Pearl is a mini-version of Venice; it’s got canals and boats, beautiful bridges, colourful apartments, and many cafes to check out. Although a residential area, you can visit the destination as a tourist and take plenty of pictures for your Instagram. There’s also a beach right next to it if you’re in the mood for it. Arabs really know how to give all-in-one packages.

Qanat Quartier at The Pearl
Qanat Quartier at The Pearl

Katara Cultural Village

When you’ve had your fill of canals and coffee, it’s time to take in some culture. And you’ve got an entire cultural village next to you. Located between The Pearl residential neighbourhood and the financial district of West Bay, Katara is your destination. Here, you can marvel at the mosques, check out the pigeon towers, go shopping at Galeries Lafayette, which is very similar to the original in Paris, and explore art galleries.

Katara Cultural Village
Katara Cultural Village

Mina District, Old Doha Port

Towards the evening, head to Mina District, a picturesque neighbourhood located on the Doha Corniche featuring pastel-coloured buildings, a docking bay, and a stunning fish market. The place used to be a port but is now transformed into a tourist attraction, though cruise ships are still docked during the winter cruise season. The buildings at Mina District also feature beautiful street-style artwork on its walls. Cosy cafes and restaurants make for a pleasant environment as you walk along the pier at the bay. There’s also a popular fish market and seafood restaurant, Chabrat Al Mina, if you want to go seafood shopping. Nearby, there’s a Box Park, built with shipping containers turned into food and shopping outlets, a Flag Plaza, with flags of many counties fluttering, and the popular Souq Waqif.

Mina District
Mina District

Place Vendôme

Here’s another Paris-like architectural masterpiece in the heart of Qatar. On your way back to The Pearl, before you sign off for the day, check out the extravagant mall Place Vendôme (we know you love to shop on a vacation). The four-floored mall houses 580 high-end and mid-range stores, including every global fashion brand. You can also indulge in culinary experiences at the several cafes and restraurants within the mall. And then, if you’re not bored already of the fountains, check out the Dancing Fountains shows that take place during day and night.

Lusail Stadium

If you love Lionel Messi like I do, you cannot end your trip to Qatar without visiting the Lusail Stadium. It’s here that the Argentinian footballer lifted the 2022 Fifa World Cup trophy after beating France in a nail-biting finale. Make sure you visit the spot after sunset as the stadium exteriors light up, making for a grand golden view from the empty parking spots next to it. The stadium is in Lusail City, a neighbourhood on the rise after the World Cup.

This concludes our tour; now, you can head back to the hotel for that sleep you’d very much require. If you plan to fly back the same night, you must reach the airport a little early to explore one of the world’s best airports. The Hamad International Airport houses an indoor tropical garden called The Orchard, a functioning mini metro that takes you to your departure gates, and several luxury brands for your shopping needs.

This is how you can spend 24 hours in Qatar.

Note: These places don’t sum up the various offerings of the country, there’s plenty more to explore!

wknd@khaleejtimes.com



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