Ladies, this little travel guide is all about Arabian Nights: Welcome to Doha! Tbh I didn’t knew what to expect of this city at all and this was the most exciting experience ever!
We all have been to the UAE and at least to Dubai, and in my opinion especially Dubai lost its otherness – it’s almost like visiting another European or US city which can be pleasant, but this time it was high time for something else!
And Doha definitely is different. Literally every single local man is wearing the traditional Dischdascha so you feel like surrounded by sheiks 😉 and the women of course wear their Abayah but not without showing off the fanciest limited edition bags and heels. As a visitor you should respect this and don’t wear too short dresses or sexy tops. At many spots you are even required to wear something covering your knees and shoulders. But therefore, you can really dip into the Arabian culture and the rest of the city is incredibly modern!
There is almost no single building older than approx. ten years and the city is still growing and being built. A spectacular skyline, shopping malls out of the finest marble looking like the Galleria x10, residential areas built like a little Venice, whole beaches transformed into fun water parks, but let’s start with…
The Sharq Village & Spa by Ritz Carlton is built like a traditional Qatari village, split into villas all around the huge pool area and nestled on a private beach, facing the fascinating skyline of downtown Doha. An incredible view, especially by night when all the different skyscrapers glow in different colors. A real calm getaway in this dazzling city!
The Museum of Islamic Art: The MIA Qatar offers a super interesting collection of masterpieces from the secular as well as religious world and it’s architecture is something not to be missed by itself. Highlight: The rooftop restaurant IDAM by Alain Ducasse – not only fantastic food, but also the most amazing views of the city and stunning design by Philippe Starck.
Souq Waqif: At the souq you can spend entire days shopping everything from traditional garments over spices, handicrafts and souvenirs and enjoying the countless restaurants and Shisha lounges afterwards. Probably one of the only spots in Doha which are not completely new built – but of course also the souq was renovated some years ago, so it may be the sleekest souq I have ever visited. Attention please: There is one part of the souq I really can not recommend or even tolerate: the bird or rather pet souq. Let’s skip what it is about as this makes me a little sad, just don’t go there.
Ladies, you know I am a foodie and oh my gosh I never ate as much as I did in Doha. I would have never expected so many cool and stylish and INSTAGRAMMABLE places and especially really good baristas! My favorites:
QIFF: The Qatar International Food Festival truly is one of a kind. This huge food festival is built on several levels with beautiful skyline views in downtown Doha and you can literally taste every kind of food you can imagine here – from Michelin starred chefs to burgers straight out of NYC to traditional Arabian cuisine. SUPER YUM!
Nusr-Et: On my bucket list: visiting Salt Bae in Istanbul. So I almost freaked out when I heard that he just opened up a restaurant in Doha – a must and so much more fun than expected! Not only that seriously every single dish err meat they serve is massive and oh so good, they also make a big show out of preparing and serving their food, I have never seen anything like this! Imagine these fun but also low-key scary ice cream makers from Turkey? Take it x1000 and you can almost think of it. You have to experience this by yourself!
So overall I have to say, Doha is nothing as expected but even so much cooler!