Al Bidda to Doha – History Worth Knowing Before You Travel – A Guide to the Captivating City 

The humble and captivating journey from Al Bidda to Doha traces the transformation of a humble fishing village into a modern city while preserving its rich heritage and culture.

Jaseem Hamza, Al Bida Park, Westbay Doha, Qatar – panoramio (4), CC BY 3.0

Origins of Al Bidda 

Long before skyscrapers and busy streets dominated this city, Al Bidda was a simple settlement located along the Arabian Peninsula. Its strategic location made it a hub for pearl diving and fishing – activities which have sustained generations up to this day.

Rise of Doha 

Al Bidda’s historical turning point came in the 19th Century, when it was a dependency on the Ottoman Empire. In the 1820s, the ruling Al Thani family sought greater control thus leading to conflicts with the Ottomans. In 1867, then-ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Thani moved the capital from Al Wakrah to Al Bidda and renamed it Doha.

Preservation of Cultural Heritage 

Despite its rapid development, Qatar is committed to preserving its rich cultural heritage. The city of Doha is home to numerous museums and cultural institutions such as the Museum of Islamic Art, the Doha Film Institute, and the Qatar National Museum.

A Glimpse of Doha Today 

A glimpse of Doha highlights the seamless blend of modernity and tradition in the city today. From luxury hotels in Doha to the bustling souqs, visitors are sure to enjoy what the city has to offer. Visit the iconic landmarks and museums and indulge in traditional cuisine before retreating to the quiet comfort and luxury of a property such as the Banana Island Resort Doha.

Spend a day in Doha for 24 hrs – A day in the life of Doha! 

Doha, the capital city of Qatar, is a beautiful amalgamation of traditional Arabian culture and modern development. The city is an ideal destination for travellers who wish to experience the Arabian way of life while enjoying the luxuries of modern amenities. If you plan to visit Doha, here’s how to spend a day in the city for 24 hours.


Begin your day by visiting the iconic Museum of Islamic Art, which is a beautiful architectural masterpiece. The museum houses an extensive collection of Islamic art, including ceramics, textiles, and metalwork.

After the museum, head to the Souq Waqif, which is a traditional marketplace in the heart of Doha. Here, you can shop for traditional Arabian clothes, spices, perfumes and souvenirs.

Next, take a stroll along the beautiful Corniche promenade, which is a perfect spot for a morning jog or a leisurely walk.

Photo by Mohamed Imran via pexels


For lunch, head to one of the many restaurants in the city that serve authentic Qatari cuisine. You can also opt for international cuisine if you prefer.

In the afternoon, visit the Katara Cultural Village, which is a hub for arts, culture, and entertainment. The village has various cultural buildings, such as an opera house, theatres, and galleries.


In the evening, you can watch the mesmerising sunset over the desert from the iconic Torch Tower. You can also enjoy a delicious meal at the tower’s revolving restaurant. A meal with a stunning view is always welcome – as the saying goes, you eat with your eyes.


Finally, you can end your day at the Al Najada Doha Hotel Apartments By Oaks, one of the many serviced apartments Doha offers. There are many hotels located conveniently in the city’s heart that offer luxurious amenities and services for you to choose from.

Foodie experiences in Doha – Fulfilling your cravings

With the world opening up again, it’s a great time to indulge your taste buds in the diverse and flavorful cuisine of the Middle East.

Image via pexels


If you’re looking for a meal that is cosy, comfortable and reminds you of home, then Saloona is a perfect dish to start with. This classic Arabic stew is one of a kind, filled with meat (beef, fish or lamb), plenty of vegetables and flavoured with plenty of garlic and ginger.

Warak Enab

When you’re staying at hotel apartments in Qatar the likes of Al Najada Doha Hotel Apartments By Oaks, make sure you check out their buffet for the famous stuffed vine leaves. Warak enab usually consists of either minced beef or lamb, full of flavour. Slices of fresh lemon usually accompany this much-loved dish.


You cannot visit Qatar and not try out Majboos! This is Qatar’s national dish and it is made with chicken or lamb, which is slow-cooked to enhance its flavour. The meat is served on a bed of flavourful rice, homemade tomato sauce and salad.


Looking to satisfy your sweet cravings? If so, these sweet dumplings flavoured with cardamom and saffron are perfect. Deep-fried first and covered in a sweet, sticky sugar syrup, your cravings for this will only increase once you try it!

Golfing in Doha – Tee Off in Style

Ever heard of all-year-round golf courses? Golfers can rejoice because there are plenty of those in Doha! Read on to uncover what you can expect before your tee-off time in Doha.

Central Accommodation

Whether you’re in town for business or pleasure, why not stay at one of the best hotels in Doha? With many choices of resorts, such as Al Najada Doha Hotel by Tivoli offer comfortable and convenient stays so you’re never too far away from a golf course too!

Image via Al Najada Doha Hotel by Tivoli 

Beautiful Courses

The natural landscape of Doha makes for some stunning and unforgettable courses. From dunes, dramatic cliff edges and stunning ocean views, a walk around some of these courses will make you want to take up golf just for the views!

Doha Golf Club

Come and take a swing at the premier golf course in the country, the Doha Golf Club! This 18-hole course has been designed in keeping with international standards, and is perfect for both professional and avid golfers alike!

Education City Golf Club

Yet another club to visit is the Education City Golf Club. With plenty of facilities to challenge both professional and amateur players, this club is a must-visit when playing golf in Doha. There are also additional 6- and 9-hole courses for golfers to practice their swings before they tee off.

Why You Should Visit Doha, Qatar

Doha, the capital of Qatar, is a cosmopolitan city rooted in its rich heritage. Here are some reasons as to why it should be on your holiday destination bucket list!

Enthralling Souqs

A “souq” is a traditional marketplace and amongst the most popular attractions in Doha is its Souq Waqif which is more than a century old. You will find all manner of items for sale here be it handicrafts, souvenirs, Bedouin weaving, clothing or spices; it’s also home to the Gold Souq and Falcon Souq!

Preacher ladSouq Waqif, Doha (17)CC BY-SA 4.0

Water Sports

For some thrills in the ocean when in Doha, hotels by the beach offer plenty of opportunities for water sports. Such properties including the island resort of Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas feature banana boating, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, wakeboarding, fishing and diving to see marine life and underwater wrecks.

Museums & Galleries

If it’s culture you are after, you can visit the uniquely designed National Museum of Qatar which offers insights into the nation’s history and heritage. Art lovers will be captivated by the Museum of Islamic Art on the Corniche, while also of note are the Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art and Fire Station art space.

Beaches & Deserts

Amongst the best things to do in Doha is to spend time at a private beach of a resort. There’s also the public Katara Beach which is a family favourite and Al Wakrah Beach that’s close to the city. You can plan trips to the desert too where everything from dune bashing to camel rides await amidst a sea of sand.

A Doha Holiday with Kids

An ideal place for a family vacay, Doha has much to offer young travellers who will not have to suffer from boredom! Here are some of the many things that you and the kids can enjoy.

Resort Activities

The family-friendly resorts here not only offer spacious beachside villas or suites in Doha but captivating activities as well. Some resorts feature clubs for both kids and teens with plenty of games and things to do; depending on the property, there can be bowling, a cinema and a surf pool on offer too.

Image Credit: Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara

Water Sports

At such properties the likes of Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara, you will also find exciting water sports to try. Banana boating is a perennial favourite for children, while stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking are ideal for some family exploration. Older kids can look forward to wakeboarding as well.

Places to Visit

The kids will have a blast at some of the best family attractions in Doha; these include Aqua Park Qatar, the Doha Festival City mall with its Angry Birds World and the Gondolania amusement park at the Villaggio Mall. You can also enjoy time at the Doha Corniche and have a picnic at Aspire Park.

Beach Escapes

Nothing beats a day out on the sand and beside the ocean which the kids are bound to love when at the beaches in Doha. The Katara Beach which also features water sports and a play area is amongst the most popular, while Al Wakrah Beach and the Simaisma Family Beach are worth heading to as well.


Doha as a Tourist Destination

Doha – the capital city of Qatar is located on the coast of the Persian Gulf. This rising city attracts many tourists across the globe paying tribute to its spectacular architecture and one of a kind cultural heritage. Here are a few of the must-visit attractions if you are visiting Doha as a tourist.


The Museum of Islamic Art
Located closeby to many hotels in Doha Qatar, such as the popular Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels By Tivoli, the Museum of Islamic Art is an architectural gem of this city. Here you will find a collection of Islamic paintings that were collected from three continents over 1400 years!

The Doha Corniche
No one can visit Doha as a tourist and leave without visiting the ever-famous Doha Corniche! The Doha Corniche is a waterfront promenade that reshaped the country’s coastline in the 1970s and 1980s. It is an ideal place to visit for a leisurely stroll with the family.

Explore Souq Waqif
Considered a one-stop-shop for all things shopping and dining – the Souq Waqif is also one of Doha’s top attractions to visit as a tourist. Explore the alleys filled with many Arabian delights such as spices, perfumes, and even embroidered items for you to take back home as souvenirs!

The Pearl
Known as the first land in Qatar to be available for freehold ownership for foreign nationals, the Pearl is an offshore artificial island in Doha’s West Bay lagoon area. There are many high-end retail shops in this area that you could engage in some luxury shopping!


Diving in Doha

Doha is the capital city of the State of Qatar and one of the most popular tourist attractions in the region. The city is renowned for the wide range of shopping, dining and luxury accommodation settings it offers tourists. However, an often underrated attraction in Doha is the amazing diving opportunities it serves.

Due to its popularity among tourists in Doha, hotels you can choose from vary in price, service and luxury. For a fine mix of all three, consider staying at the Banana Island Resort, Doha, by Anantara. It places within close proximity to leading dive centres in the region as well.

The city is home to seven popular dive sites, all of which are accessible via PADI certified dive instructors from a number of centres in the region. The Old Club Reef (OCR) and New Club Reef (NCR) are both situated close to the Mesaieed sealine, about half hour away from Doha. The former is an artificial reef and is approximately 16 metres deep. NCR is about 20 metres deep. OCR and NCR are both rich in marine life and home to resident fish types such as Arabian Blue Angel Fish, Sergeant Major, Groupers, Batfish, Barracuda, Spangled Emperors, Twobar Seabream and much more. Other similar dive sites that immerse you in the regions rich marine life are the Inland Sea and Eel Garden.

Fans of wreckages are in for a treat as well. The Pericles Shipwreck of Al Ed-Al Gharbi is 35 metres deep. Here divers get to see an enormous sunken shipwreck with plenty of exploration opportunities. Its massive propeller is sure to leave you in awe. The Al Ed-Al Sharqi sea line, about an hour and half from the city, boasts of another huge sunken shipwreck called the MO Wreck. About 25 metres deep, this wreck is also home to some beautiful fish species.

Shehera Fioni is a travel writer who writes under the pen name Catalina Forbes. Her content is based on many thrilling escapades offered to travellers across the world.


Things to know about Doha

Qatar is the land of the wealthy. It has shown steady and steep economic growth in the past few years and its citizens have more purchasing power than those of the United States or the United Kingdom. The country has investments all over the world, it owns Harrods and the Olympic village site in London along with the largest number of shares in Sainsbury’s and it even co-owns Miramax films!
Doha, the capital itself is on the move, climbing its way to the very top. Heavily invested in construction and development, this city is set to become one of the leading cities in the Persian Gulf region. Doha International Airport, home base of Qatar Airways, is becoming a major transit hub as the national carrier grows its network and connects Qatar with the world. Visitors to the city come for a taste of the affluent lifestyle and the luxury hotels in Doha do not disappoint. The epitome of such an experience would be an island getaway with access provided exclusively by yacht or private helicopter, Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara promises precisely this and much more if you choose to stay with them.
Furthermore, the destination of extremes awaits! Head to the giant dunes for some adrenaline pumping action sports; learn about the country’s art and culture by touring the many museums and historic sites, like eighteen century Fort Zubara; or shop to your heart’s content at swankiest of malls, one of which is designed to look like Venice, complete with a long canal offering gondola rides! Food of every kind and cuisine imaginable is readily available but alcohol is restricted in many restaurants and can only be found in hotels which are linked to the international chains.


Chandrishan Williams is a travel writer who writes under the pen name, Caleb Falcon. He specializes in writing content based on the many exciting world adventures that await intrepid travellers.


Things to Do in Doha

The bustling city of Doha is an engrossing metropolis to explore, offering a host of attractions for the visitor. When it comes to selecting Doha hotels an alluring choice would be the Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara. This appealing resort offers many attractions for the modern traveller.

Doha is a vibrant city that provides an array of interesting things to do for the visitor. Shopping is a major local highlight, with both modern and traditional shopping opportunities on offer. You will find a selection of splendid modern malls, including such attractions as the vast Doha City Centre Mall and the Villaggio Mall with its classy Italian theme. On the other hand the traditional marketplaces offer a very different experience featuring bargains in the form of gold, jewellery, textiles, spices and more.

Naturally no visit to this city would be complete without taking the time to appreciate its distinctive culture and heritage. You will find numerous sightseeing attractions such as towers and forts in the environs of the city. Visitors will have the opportunity to view many traditional handicraft creations at the impressive Doha Fort. Another highlight is the Al Zubara Fort and Museum where you will find a host of interesting artefacts and antiques showcasing the history of the city. Not to be missed are the various museums where you will find an array of exquisite Islamic art.

Visitors should also undoubtedly take the opportunity to take a cruise on a traditional dhow sailing vessel. As you sail to the city’s Corniche you will be able to enjoy a sensational view of the splendid high-rise skyline. Another not-to-be-missed experience is the chance to go on a desert safari in the vast sandy expanses bordering the city. You will be able to undertake dune bashing in four wheel drive vehicles and obtain an understanding of the lifestyle of the nomadic Bedouins. With so much to see and experience a visit to Doha will always be memorable.


Uditha Dharmawardhane is a travel writer who writes under the pen name Roland Lefevre. He specializes in creating features on leisure as well as business travel destinations across the globe.