We’re going to go ahead and take a guess that this is the bit of the Corniche with all the wooden dhows?
Ten points to Gryffindor. Right you are, that’s exactly where we’re taking you this month (although, we’re stretching things a bit, down past the Museum of Islamic Art, too).
Sounds like a lot of fresh air and sea views.
Right you are again! We’d wager that this is the most scenic and atmospheric spot on the Corniche. Many men still live and work on-board the traditional wooden boats, and the early morning hustle and bustle of fishermen returning with the day’s catch is a rare glimpse into Qatar’s history and traditions.
Is that all there is to see?
The Pearl is a quirky oyster-shaped fountain just by the docked dhows. Cracking spot for a #selfiewithagiantoyster, if that’s your thing. Generally speaking though, this stretch of the Corniche is every photographer’s dream. Especially at dawn or sunset.
Okay, I think we’ve covered the dhows. Where to next?
Head away from the Corniche for a couple of minutes, up Bank Street and right onto Abdullah Bin Jassim Street to find Al Bandar, an excellent and cheap little Yemeni restaurant. The other option, of course, is the Museum of Islamic Art for its fascinating collection of ancient artefacts from across the Islamic world. If you’d rather bask in the last of the good weather, grab a coffee from the MIA Park Café and laze on the grass watching cricket matches.
I’m pretty hungry after all this wandering and photographing.
There’s always the MIA Park Café, or IDAM by Alain Ducasse, if you feel like really splashing out. But for an authentic Qatari experience, walk just a little way past the museum to Halul Café by Doha Port. It’s usually packed with local fishermen and Qataris drinking tea and playing tawlet (a traditional game). It’s very basic, and the food isn’t great, so stick to coffee and snacks (with no English menu this can take some guesswork), but the place is a quaint step back in time with wonderful views of the water and West Bay.
Only at Dhow Harbour
Banana island ferry terminal
Just half an hour from the coast is a little slice of quiet and serene beach life. It’s the perfect place to get away from it all for a day (or a few), whether at the fantastic spa, or restaurants like Al Nahaam which have views of the city, way off on the horizon. Note that you’ll need a prior room, spa or restaurant reservation.
www.doha.anantara.com (4040 5050).