Qatar Holidays & City Breaks

  • Overview
  • Travel guide
  • Travel advice
  • Currency

Holidays to Qatar are exotic, glamourous and rich in cultural attractions. From winding souqs to sweeping sand dunes, all set against the backdrop of Doha’s glittering skyline. And the weather is magnificent all year round. Perfect if you’re chasing some winter sunshine. From October to December, you can bask in highs of 25-36'C and swim in the toasty 24-31'C gulf waters. And when the sun dips, join the locals at the bustling markets. It’s the best way to make the most of those cool Arabian nights. 

Things to do

Qatar is much smaller than its Middle Eastern neighbours, so you could easily reach the top and bottom of this miniature nation in just two hours (by car). Stroll along Doha’s crescent promenade, sandboard over Khor Al-Adaid’s infinite sands, and snack on scrumptious baklavas as you labyrinth through Souq Waqif. Qatar holidays are luxurious, exciting and full of mystic charm.

Beach days

There are so many beaches along Qatar’s vast 350-mile coastline, all with pristine sands and warm turquoise waters. From the cityside beach of Kataras to the inhibited island of Al Safliya, you’ll be spoilt for choice. For waterslides, doughnut rides and a safe paddling for little ones, hop on a boat to the crescent-shaped Banana Island. If it’s seclusion and nature you’re seeking, then you’ll want to book a 4x4 to Zekreet to see the gazelles and deer roaming freely.

History and culture

Amongst the ambitious high-rises of Doha, many of Qatar’s famous sights will transport you to a time gone by. The region offers an incredible glimpse into the past, from the archaeological sites at Al-Zubarah Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to the mud mortar Barzan Towers, watching over the Doha skyline.

Family adventures

The whole clan will find plenty of thrills and spills with a holiday to Qatar, from the largest theme park in the Middle East, Desert Falls Water & Adventure Park, to the only e-gaming hubs on the continent. And when you’re not racing down water slides and hanging out in video game lounges, there are some amazing museums to educate and inspire. A must-see is Kidzmondo, where your little ones can play dress up in a purpose-built mini-city. 

Shopping in the Souqs

Souq Waqif is the best place for some authentic market style shopping. A tableau of classic street life, you’ll breathe in jute baskets of aromatic spices, witness mesmerising costume parades, and can even learn about its historic pearl trade. Make sure to order your travel money before you go, so you can flex your bargain-hunting skills. 

Thrill-seeking
If you’re seeking high adrenaline thrills, you’ve got to book a trip to Qatar at least once in your life. This nation offers wild adventures across land, sea and air. Think quad biking across the sprawling sand dunes of Khor al-Adaid, free-falling from 12000ft down to Um Al Shkot and climbing the rocks of Zakreet National Park. Qatar is also a watersports haven. You can wakeboard, paddleboard, kayak and snorkel your way through the Arabian sea.

 

Map of Qatar

world_map
41 ℃

During the winter when temperatures dips to a pleasant 23°C.

The weather in Qatar is hot, dry and sunny for most of the year. Winters are usually pleasantly warm. Travel in November if you want to see Qatar at its quietest.

6-8 hours
The main airport in Doha is Hamad International Airport

Qatar is best for

Beach hopping: Sink your toes into pristine sands and soak up the Middle Eastern sun on over 350 miles of coastline. The Persian Gulf waters are warm and shallow too, perfect for a dip with the kids.

Romantics: Qatar is an unbeatable place to rest and rekindle. Plan an oceanside dinner in an Arabian cabana, float above Doha with a hot air balloon ride, or hope on a dhow and gaze over the moon-lit waters.

Explorers: Dune bash across the sprawling desert sands, kayak through the mangroves in Thakira, and try a Bedouin camp sleepover. The gulf is teeming with marine life too, so grab a snorkel and explore the Othman Reef.

Fast facts for Qatar

Language: The language spoken in Qatar is Arabic, with English being the second most widely spoken.

Currency: The currency used in Qatar is the Qatari Riyal ($).

Local time: Qatar is two hours ahead GMT/UK time.

Fly to: The main airport in Doha is Hamad International Airport.

Flight time from UK: 6-8 hours.

Tourist information: Further Qatar tourist information can be found at Visit Qatar.

Getting around Qatar

On foot: If you're visiting during the winter months, walking around Doha is a great way to see much of the city. You can walk right along the Corniche from West Bay around to the major museums.  

By bus: The bus services run from Hamad International Airport to destinations across the city. The fair can only be paid for with a Karwa Smartcard, which you can pick up from the airport help desk. 

Taxi: You can find taxis to and from the airport left of the arrivals hall. You will need to be mindful that all fares are cash payments in Qatari Riyal only. 


Doha Metro: A state of the art metro, boasting some of the fastest driverless trains, connects 37 stations, from the airport to major cultural attractions in Doha

Events in Qatar

Kite Festival: Every March, the skies above Doha come alive with this colourful three-day spectacle. Watch talented kite flyers from around the world compete, see traditional designs on display, and even try your hand at making your own, with daily family workshops.

Katara Dhow Festival: Each year, usually in December, Qatar displays 70 traditional Dhow boats of all shapes and sizes. The event includes art exhibitions, markets, a marine-themed firework display and you can even set sail, for a small fee.

Doha Cultural Festival: An important event in Qatar, the cultural festival celebrates local traditions, food and art in February or March. Attracting thousands of visitors every year, you’ll get the chance to see incredible costumes, and performances.

Qatar weather

Temperature: Summers can be extreme, with lows of 40°C from June to August. In spring, you can expect the mercury to sit between the mid-20s and high 30s.

Best time to visit: During the winter when temperatures dips to a pleasant 23°C.

The weather in Qatar is hot, dry and sunny for most of the year. Winters are usually pleasantly warm. Travel in November if you want to see Qatar at its quietest.

Best hotels in Qatar