5 to try: Water sports in Doha
Fishing, swimming, sailing and more ways to get wet in Doha 2 Comments
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Take a turn behind the boat at the Diplomatic Club (4484 7407). They offer a variety of options, from equipment rental right up to lessons to help you get your feet under you. If waterskiing isn’t your thing, they also have wakeboarding and banana boat rides available—the later a big hit with kids and those who prefer to cling to an inflatable while rocking over waves. Prices vary. Open 7am-11pm. If you’re up for a day trip, head out to Sealine Beach Resort (44476 5299), in Mesaeed City, on the way to the dunes. They offer a number of water activities, including banana boats and even a floating trampoline. Prices for day passes and activities vary.
If it’s not a day on the water without casting a line, there are loads of options in Qatar. The Diplomatic Club (4484 7407), offers fishing trips as well as leisure boat trips, with a variety of times and distance options. Or, try Ronautica Middle East (4496 5801) for the luxury version of fishing: they offer boast of up to six people including rods, GPS and onboard refrigerator for sailing snacks. For a package deal, you can also try the Sheraton Health & Recreation Club (4484 4444), who offers four hour trip for a maximum of eight people on a fully equipped fishing boat.
Or, venture out on your own! You don’t even need a boat if crab is your sea creature of choice. Head north of Doha and keep your eyes peeled for rocky stretches of beach: that’s where crabs like to hide. You can park and wade right in to catch your fill of local crab, which you can even cook, right on the beach. Although you can buy netted baskets to catch them, all you need is a piece of rope. Hold it in a U shape under the water, stay very still, and wait for curious crabs to approach and grab the rope before hauling them in.
Or, head to the Barracuda Route to catch some local fish! Drive south towards Khor Al-Adaid and the Inland Sea—you can walk up to your knees in the water and catch barracuda, king fish and more. But be warned, jellyfish abound! If you want to get a little deeper, try spear fishing: the Old Reef Club on Um Saed rd rents gear for around QR150. You’ll need to bring your own spear, available at many sporting goods and fishing stores. Prices range though from basics for QR300 to up to QR2000! You can either walk right into the sea, or you can rent a boat to take you farther: either way, you can spear hamour and barracudas—just be sure not to take down any Arabian Angel fish, which is taboo.
Take to the high seas the Doha Sailing club (4443 9840), which organizes lessons, training and regular races—for those who’d rather just watch. For serious lessons, as well as organized boat and fishing trips, look no further than the Regatta Sailing Academy, adjacent to the InterContinental Hotel (4484 4444). They offer lessons for all ages, costs and times vary.
It doesn’t get more adrenaline fueled than this. Ronautica Middle East (4496 5801) offers trips, to help enhance your experience, as well as wakeboarding and banana boating. If parasailing is more your bag, the Sheraton Health & Recreation Club (4484 4444) offers 15 minute sessions for QR200.
Nothing screams summer quite as much as a dip in the pool, but if your swimming skills aren’t quite up to snuff, there’s no need to lurk in the shallow end. The Cabana Club (4428 1428) at the Ramada Plaza offers both group and private lessons for all ages, as does Qmotion (4442 6329). Packages of 10 30-minute lessons run for QR650 at The Bay Club (4484 4444) at the InterContinental Doha, and will have you dog paddling in no time. Or, head over to the Bay View 26 Wellness Centre at Mövenpick Tower & Suites. They offer lessons from an expert team, teaching proper technique, for QR90 for kids or QR100 for adults. Book 10 sessions and get two sessions free. Or try The Ritz-Carlton Spa, where kids aged 4-7 can learn from qualified instructors in set lessons every Friday from 4pm-5pm. Individual lessons are QR100, with group classes going for QR50.
Already got your floaties ready? Many hotels offer special beach packages starting over the next few months, offering day passes to their pools and beaches. Many will include a buffet or nibbles and beverages, making it a full-day mini holiday. Or, plan an adventure and head to the ultimate Qatar beach attraction: the Inland Sea! Drive South towards Khor Al-Adaid about 40 minutes and you can’t miss it. Often called the sweaty sea, the water here gets warmer and warmer as the summer heats up, and before the end of the month it will be like stepping into a warm bath. Surrounded by soft sand dunes, it’s a straight and salty drop off into deeper water that’s remarkably clear, and because of the length of the beach, private. But be warned: jellyfish abound!
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