Doha: the best sights and tours
Are you planning a stopover in Doha? Then you will find sights and highlights as well as the best tours for your stopover in the capital of Qatar.
Table of Contents
- Doha Attractions
- Architecture and buildings
- Shopping malls and markets
- Tours and excursions
Breathtaking desert landscapes, skyscrapers, luxury and culture: Qatar's capital Doha is a city of superlatives - a hub and Qatar Airways' home airport.
The metropolis is therefore ideal for a stopover for travelers to Asia or other destinations. Doha offers enough programs for several days. The same also applies to other stopover destinations in the region (e.g. Dubai or Abu Dhabi ).
We have put together the best sights and tours in Doha for you.
Do you have little time or want to learn more about the city? On a guided tour of Doha, you will explore the hotspots with a guide. The four-hour Doha Express Tour is ideal for a stopover.
You will experience Doha at night on a sightseeing tour in the evening . The Doha City Tour includes the Qatar National Museum and the Museum of Islamic Art.
Architecture and buildings
Imam Muhammad Ibn Abd Al Wahhab Mosque
Qatar's national mosque, the Imam Muhammad Ibn Abd Al Wahhab Mosque, can accommodate up to 30,000 visitors. The elegant building was opened in 2011.
The magic of the outer facade unfolds especially with lighting at night. The mosque has a total of 93 domes, 20 entrances and a total area of 175,164 square meters.
Note that you can only visit the mosque as a non-Muslim at certain times. Ideally, you should book a tour in advance.
Address: Al Muhandiseen St
The “blue mosque” in the heart of Katara is one of the most beautiful mosques in Doha. The outside is set with turquoise and purple mosaic stones, designed by the Turkish mosque designer Zainab Fadil Oglu.
The inspiration for the interior and exterior designs comes from numerous mosques in other capitals of the Muslim world.
Address: Katara Mosque
Church of our Lady of the Rosary
Inaugurated in 2008, the Catholic Church of Our Lady of the Rosary was the first church in Qatar to be built since the Muslim conquests in the 7th century.
The outer facade is kept in simple sandstone. Due to legal requirements, churches in Muslim-influenced Qatar are not allowed to wear religious symbols on the outside. The interior, however, is colorful with a cross in the center.
Address: Abu Hamour, Doha
Shopping malls and markets
Doha Festival City Mall
Covering 600,000 square meters, Qatar's largest shopping center, the Doha Festival City Mall, has more than 400 shops from well-known chains such as IKEA and H to luxury labels.
The highlight of the mall are the Snow Dunes, where children and adults can toboggan, build snowmen and jet over one of the rapid slides.
Other attractions of the mall include the Angry Birds World theme park, a large cinema, the Virtuocity Gaming Hub including escape rooms and the outdoor leisure activity trail.
Address: Umm Salal Muhammed, Qatar
Especially after sunset, the charm of Suoq Waqif unfolds and the hot temperatures become bearable.
Here you can buy a variety of spices, pastries, clothing and handicrafts. There is no way around the typical Arabic souq and the most beautiful market in the city if you want to buy souvenirs before you leave.
There are numerous restaurants and shisha lounges here and shopping can be combined excellently with feasting.
Address: Souq Waqif, Doha
A gondola ride in the shopping center? This is possible in the Vilaggio Mall based on Venice.
The shopping center with more than 200 shops has its own indoor channel, a large cinema and the Gondolania Theme Park amusement park with an ice skating rink and attractions such as roller coasters.
Address: Al Waab St.
Aspire Tower / The Torch
The Aspire Tower, Qatar's tallest building, rises 300 meters. The tower is modeled on an Olympic torch and was built in 2006 for the Asian Games.
The tower includes the 5-star hotel The Torch ( see here at Booking.com / Agoda ) and a viewing platform. At night the tower lights up in different colors.
Address: Aspire Tower, Doha
West Mound skyline viewpoint
The West Mound Skyline Viewpoint offers an impressive view of the city's skyscrapers and the West Bay business district.
You will reach the viewpoint after about ten minutes walk from the Museum of Islamic Art. Particularly beautiful at sunset.
Address: Corniche Promenade
Museum of Islamic Art
The Museum of Islamic Art, which opened in 2008, is located on its own man-made island at the southern end of the Corniche.
The masterpiece by the famous architect IM Pei is one of the most important museums for Islamic art on the Arabian Peninsula. Jewelery, weapons, textiles, manuscripts and metalwork are shown.
The museum's permanent exhibition is free of charge, you only have to pay admission for the special exhibitions.
Address: Museum of Islamic Art, Doha
Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani Museum
A smorgasbord of exhibits awaits visitors to the Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani Museum. The museum was opened in 1988 by its namesake, who collected the exhibits in his private collection over the course of 50 years.
There are more than 15,000 artifacts on display in the museum's 15 halls, including precious vintage cars, coins, carpets, antique furniture and clothes. A visit to the eclectic museum is an experience in itself.
Address: Ash-Shahaniyah, Qatar
National Museum of Qatar
The National Museum of Qatar opened in early 2019. The architecture is modeled on a desert rose, a work by French architect Jean Nouvel.
The museum not only captivates with its extravagant architecture, but also impresses with exciting insights into the history of Qatar.
Visitors have to travel one and a half kilometers to see the entire exhibition in eleven permanent exhibition rooms.
Address: Museum Park St
A visit to the Msheireb Museums gives you free entry to four different themed houses, which provide information about the global slave trade, the oil industry and life in Qatar.
Address: Msheireb Museums, Down Town Doha
Katara Cultural Village
Qatar was originally called Katara. The cultural village of Katara, which opened in 2010, builds on the history and original architecture of the city.
The village has an amphitheater, several art galleries, an opera house and two mosques: the traditional Katara Masjid mosque and the smaller golden mosque The Golden Masjid.
Katara is a center for art and culture that sees itself as a multicultural mediator. The best way to get to the Cultural Village is by taxi. It is about ten minutes from the city center. It is located on the east coast seafront, between West Bay and The Pearl.
, Doha, Katar Address: Katara Cultural Village, West Bay Lagoon area of Doha , Doha, Qatar
Note that as a woman, you need to cover yourself with fabric from elbows to knees on public beaches.
Katara Beach is the only centrally located public beach in Doha and connected to the Katara Cultural Village.
On the beach you can go water skiing or speed boating and practice parasailing. There is even the option to ride a Venetian gondola.
Address: Katara Beach, Doha
The Aspire Tower is the heart of Aspire Park, Doha's largest park with an area of 88 hectares. There are great water fountains, playgrounds and extensive green spaces in the park.
Perfect to switch off a bit of the hustle and bustle of the big city.
Address: Aspire Park, Doha
Located right next to the Museum of Islamic Art, the MIA Park offers a beautiful view of the Doha skyline.
The park with playgrounds, bike rental and a cafe is the ideal starting point for a walk along the coast.
Address: MIA Park, Doha
Tours and excursions
The artificial island The Pearl is pure luxury. Since 2006, a luxury island with numerous villas, restaurants, its own mall and its own infrastructure has been built on an area of four hectares.
The island was built on one of the main dive sites for pearls, hence the name The Pearl. It is divided into 12 quarters, each with its own architectural style.
Highlights of the island are the Marsa Arabia Port marina with expensive luxury yachts and the picturesque district of Qanat Quartier, which is based on the Italian city of Venice with its gondolas and piazzas.
Address: The Pearl, Qatar
A walk on the seven kilometer long Doha Corniche promenade leads past palm trees, green areas and skyscrapers. The path along the coast is particularly beautiful even at night with lighting.
Unfortunately there are no cafés or restaurants on the Corniche. There are numerous famous sights here, such as the Museum of Islamic Art.
Address: Corniche St
Qatar is in the middle of the desert, so you shouldn't miss a trip to the impressive natural landscape of the desert. An off-road vehicle takes you across sandy paths and steep dunes.
If you like, you can ride camels on tours like the half-day desert safari, descend the sand dunes with the sandboard and finally enjoy the view of the inland sea. Get Your Guide offers a similar tour.
Looking at the breathtaking starry sky of the Qatar desert at night? The night desert safari makes it possible.
On the water you experience Doha from a new perspective. What could be more obvious than a sunset cruise with a dhow , a traditional sailing ship?
The view of the waterfront is an experience.
Day trip in the area
In the middle of the Qatar desert is the sculpture EAST-WEST / WEST-EAST by the American sculptor Richard Serra. The installation consists of four steel plates and is around 60 kilometers from Doha.
You can experience these and other sights such as the city of Al Shahaniqa with a camel racing circuit or the Film City Zekreet on a day trip to the Doha area .