Q Life

Doha: A City Guide to the Vibrant Heart Of Qatar

July 2024

A City Guide to Doha

Doha, the capital of Qatar, is an ever-evolving city where tradition blends seamlessly with modernity.

Q Life has compiled a guide to some of Doha’s highlights – from delectable dining options to deluxe accommodation and must-see attractions.

Here’s three places to stay, three delicious spots to eat, and three of the best things to do in Doha.

Where to stay?

Fairmont Doha and Raffles Doha, Katara Towers, Lusail Marina District

Comfort-seekers can find one of Doha’s most luxurious places to relax in the Katara Towers, up north of the capital in Lusail City. This iconic structure, home to Fairmont Doha and Raffles Doha, features two towers designed to resemble intertwined scimitars, as seen in Qatar’s national emblem. Guests can enjoy opulent rooms with stunning views, world-class dining, and rejuvenating spas.

Al Najada Hotel, Downtown Doha

For a true Gulf experience, try Al Najada hotel, located just minutes from Doha’s historic Souq Waqif. Offering a blend of traditional Qatari design and modern architecture, the hotel is a reflection of Doha’s proud heritage and forward-looking attitude. A sanctuary away from the hustle and bustle of the city, take the time to unwind by the piazza terrace or outdoor swimming pool, whether you’re travelling for business or pleasure.

Sharq Village & Spa, Ras Abu Abboud

For families looking for an idyllic place to rest and recuperate Sharq Village offers a beachfront retreat in a unique setting. The hotel is designed as an authentic re-creation of Qatari heritage and life, imitating a desert village with a luxurious twist. Perhaps more palatial resort than traditional village though, Sharq Village has 174 rooms and suites with a sweeping 350m-long private beach.

Where to eat?

Shujaa Restaurant, Souq Waqif 

Tucked into the labyrinths of Souq Waqif, amongst stores selling everything from fragrant spices to ornate jewellery, you’ll find Shujaa Restaurant. Open in the evenings, customers can enjoy a variety of grilled meats and traditional sides from outdoor benches under the night sky.

After your meal, take the chance to explore the famous souq, which has stood at Doha’s waterfront for over 250 years – and don’t forget to finish the night with some kunafa, a sweet Arabic cheese pastry.


Saasna, Downtown Msheireb

Its name derived from the Arabic word for “our origins”, Saasna takes a modern approach to traditional Qatari cuisine.  Enjoy local fare such as shakshuka and lamb baddawi with an innovative twist, while taking in the bustling Msheireb Downtown.

The restaurant faces a grand square called Barahat Msheireb, presenting a chance to enjoy one of the many events that often run in the space, from open-air orchestra concerts to outdoor movie nights.

Qinwan Cafe, Downtown Msheireb  

Dates are an integral aspect of Qatari culture and there’s no place quite like Qinwan Café to try the country’s finest. Founded by two brothers, the brand now travels the globe as its dates are offered to guests on Qatar Airways.

Enjoy a variety of Medjool dates with a karak tea or coffee served from a dallah, a traditional coffee pot – or take a box home as the perfect souvenir.

What to do?

Old Doha Port

Wander along the wooden marina and watch the ships come and go at Mina District. This new development has transformed the Old Doha Port, creating a delightful downtown district filled with small boutiques, colourful cafés and a stunning fish market.

The Port is also just minutes away from Msheireb Downtown Doha, a model of urban regeneration that blends traditional Qatari architecture with modern sustainability. Explore the beautifully restored buildings, cultural museums, and vibrant public spaces. The Msheireb Museums provide fascinating insights into Qatar’s history and culture.


Doha is home to several world-class museums, with exhibits on everything from fashion to sporting history. The National Museum of Qatar narrates the country’s journey through time, taking visitors through a wide-ranging historic tour of the land and its people.

Designed by famous architect I.M. Pei, the Museum of Islamic Art is home to art from across the region and ever-changing featured exhibitions, while the museum café is the perfect place to watch the sun set over the iconic Doha skyline. Other can’t-miss exhibitions are housed at the 3-2-1 Qatar Olympic and Sports Museum and M7, currently home to the Design Doha Biennial.

Escape the city

Still looking for more to do? A short drive away you’ll be able to enjoy all that Qatar’s landscape has to offer. Located in the northeast of the peninsula is Bin Ghannam Island, also known as Purple Island. Home to the country’s mangroves, visitors can kayak through the lush greenery and even spot groups of flamingos migrating from Europe to Africa.

If you fancy an Arabian adventure on land, head south into the dunes for camel-rides and dune bashing. You’ll be able to see the Inland Sea, one of just a few places in the world where the sea meets the desert!

Whether you prefer a gentle walk along the Corniche or more high-octane thrills like dune-bashing, there’s never a dull moment in Doha.