Prosperous Qatar is a combination of tradition and overflowing luxury
Qatar is fast becoming one of the most interesting travel destinations in the Middle East.
The UAE and Dubai have become familiar to many Finnish travelers, but at the latest now is the time to get to know Qatar as well. Until a few years ago, the country was considered one of the most boring destinations, but the Arab country living in constant change is the real surprise of the moment.
With a population of just two million, Qatar is one of the most prosperous states in the world. This is also evident as Qatar’s futuristic skyscrapers and luxury hotels strive for the sky with unforgivable boastfulness. However, you can also experience the exoticism and authentic Arab atmosphere of the Middle East.
New and old chest side by side
According to countryaah, Qatar is located in the southeastern part of the Arabian Peninsula and is bordered by Saudi Arabia and the Gulf. Qatar is known above all for its significant oil and gas reserves, which make the country one of the most prosperous in the world.
The capital of Qatar will become familiar to Finns at the latest when Qatar Airways starts its direct flights from Helsinki to Doha. Doha is the most interesting destination in Qatar. The spectacular capital is a fascinating mix of novelty shimmering tower blocks and a traditional Arab atmosphere that can be smelled at, for example, the traditional Souk market. The fortified city of Al Zubarah is also worth a visit.
The skyline of Doha is living in constant change.
Toast all year round
During the summer, Qatar can be prepared for the scorching heat, as the mercury easily rises above a bubbling 40 degrees and the humidity drops to 100 percent. Despite the humid weather, the country also needs to be prepared for sandstorms.
The most pleasant time to travel to Qatar is winter time. Finnish frosts escape to Qatar temperatures of 20-30 degrees. In this case, evenings and nights are clearly cooler. Basically, Qatar is warm and even hot all year round, so for a wild cat, the destination is great.
Short for QA by abbreviationfinder, Qatar and especially Doha is a great destination for the shopper. There are several high-quality and even lavish shopping malls in the city. Some of the centers are attractions in themselves, but the range of shops also satisfies even the most demanding shopper.
There are both luxury and chain stores on offer. Clothing stores in Qatar are not as affordable as in Finland, but there are many stores that cannot be found in Finland. Shopping malls are typically found outside the city center, but can be easily and cheaply reached by taxi.
You should buy travel souvenirs from Souke. Excellent imports include spices, dates, incense and copper containers, such as decorative coffee pots. Rose water is also a typical Qatari product that also delights as a gift. You can bargain on the souk, but trading is quite moderate in Qatar compared to many other Arab countries.
The price level in Qatar varies. The price list of hotels and restaurants favored by tourists is easily even higher than in Finland, but in places favored by locals, the stomach is easily filled at a fairly affordable price. Also, grocery stores make effortless bargains, and the price of gasoline, for example, is amazingly affordable.
Qatar is well on its way to shedding its reputation as a boring travel destination. In addition to shopping and sunbathing, the country also has something to do for the more active holidaymaker.
In Qatar, for example, try a desert trip to explore Bedouin life and watch hunting hawks, ostriches and camels. In the desert you can also try an exotic sport: sand dune skiing.
For a more traditional pastime, golf can be combined with a holiday in Doha. Namely, Doha has a magnificent 18-hole golf course in the middle of the wilderness.
Pay attention to cultural differences
Qatar is an Arab country and this must be taken into account when traveling there. Qatar is more liberal than its neighbor Saudi Arabia, but on the other hand more closed than the UAE, which is familiar to many.
Dressing should be conservative even for tourists. This means that except for the hotel’s pool and beach area, coveralls must be worn. In principle, it is important for women in particular to cover their shoulders and knees, but sometimes it may also be required to cover the ankles.
Alcohol in Qatar is not served outside of large international hotels, and getting around while intoxicated is not desirable. Public displays of affection should also be avoided, so a honeymoon destination is not the first choice.
Qatar, on the other hand, is also known as the relatively liberal home of the Al-Jazeera news channel.